We are currently living in unprecedented times and you may be unsure what the right path to take is regarding your property sale or purchase. In this blog, I will explore what this uncertainty may mean for you and your family when it comes to buying and selling.

“What should I do if I am selling?”

Viewings on hold – now that property viewings have been suspended, you may be concerned about how this will change your moving plans. When people are uncertain of their immediate future, they are reluctant to make decisions and do anything to change their situation. Don’t worry – the buyers who are really keen, will contact your agent and leave their details, so when this situation ends, you may have an influx of viewings Immediately. Make sure you check with your estate agent that interested parties’ contact details are being recorded and your property details and video walkthrough are still being sent to the interested party to ensure they remain interested in your property.

Online interest – with everyone at home right now, logic suggests you will get a spike of buyers looking at your property details online. This should mean the property market gets a bounce back in a few months, so you need to be ready for this.  Now that the Government have slashed the borrowing rate to the lowest in its 325-year history, some buyers may feel there’s never been a better time to buy a house.

Cheeky offers – I’ve certainly had some very low offers on some of my homes from buyers wanting to cash in on this uncertainty. If you really need to move now, and just can’t wait, you may be tempted to take a low offer, but if you can wait, you’ll undoubtedly get a better price for your home down the line.

Withdrawing from the market – in my opinion, there is currently no real benefit to taking your home off the market right now unless you are doing so for the foreseeable future as you will not receive a ‘new listing’ on Rightmove unless you stay off the market for a certain period of time, so stick with it. Make sure you review the situation frequently with your estate agent who should be giving you regular updates on their view of the market and how your property is performing. I’m currently talking to my clients often to make sure they feel supported in whatever decision they make, and also to ensure they are ready for a potential influx of viewers when the situation returns to normal, and we can start conducting viewings again.

“What should I do if I am buying?”

Lower competition – at the moment there are less properties on the market than there normally would be and also a lot less buyers looking to buy a house so less competition when buying.

Potentially lower house prices – those sellers who can afford to wait to sell their homes, will do so, relaunching once things are back to normal. However, there are some homeowners who have no choice but to sell and move house in the next couple of months, and these properties could well be discounted to attract a buyer quickly. You could find yourself buying at a reduced price if you are able to move fast, despite the current situation. This could especially be of interest to investors and cash buyers right now.

Record low-interest rates – great news for buyers using a mortgage to buy a home, now could be your best chance to secure a great deal on a mortgage, potentially saving yourself tens of thousands of pounds over the duration of the mortgage.

Virtual viewings – although all viewings have been postponed, I currently offer an alternative method – a virtual viewing! A myriad of technological marvels mean I can virtually walk you around homes, while you stay comfy and warm on your sofa. Once you are able to view the house in person, you can view a much-reduced shortlist of your very favourite homes.

“what will happen to the property market over the coming months?”

We have 25 million homes in the UK, and each year on average, 1.2 million of them sell.

In other words, just under 5% of homes in the UK sell every year.

This means that when this crazy time is over, and things are getting back to normal, there will potentially be hundreds of homes that come onto the market, that would otherwise have launched during this ‘pause’ period.

This will help you to move on. More homes on the market means more choice for you and your family and more potential buyers for your home.

If I look into my crystal ball, by June we will have some sense of normality, with the economy running at 30-40%. By July and into August, I expect the country to bounce back and begin to spend. As certainty improves, so does market momentum. I think there will be a big resurgence of demand, and buyers wanting to move by Christmas, at the latest.

“what if I have already agreed to buy a house?”

If you are in the middle of buying a house, congratulations! We recommend you proceed as planned, but maybe check to see if you can get better mortgage terms than perhaps you were previously offered.  Remember that house prices rise and fall periodically, which means that if you’re planning to stay in the property for more than say, a year, any risk is limited.

Am I able to help?

Perhaps you have a burning question about your moving plans, or you need more clarity on any of the above points – whatever it is, I’m here to help at any time.

Email me personally on jonathan@henryphilips.co.uk or call me on 01252 974500, if you’d like a confidential chat.

I’ll give you clear, honest advice and I would really like to help you if I can.

I hope this blog helps and gives you some answers to the questions you undoubtedly have.

Stay safe.

Jonathan Henry