Posts with tag: housing stock

UK Property Demand Continues Upward Trend of 2017

Published On: September 28, 2017 at 8:56 am


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The latest National Hotspots Index from online estate agent shows that UK property demand rose during the third quarter (Q3) of this year, up by 5% to 38% nationally, having already increased by 5% in Q2.

The report looks at the balance between the supply and demand of housing stock in the UK, and attributes a percentage score based on the level of stock available on major property portals to that which has already sold.


Scotland has recorded the strongest growth in demand levels across the UK in Q3, up by 8% to 39%. Wales has also seen healthy growth, up by 7%, while England is the only nation to see buyer demand fall in Q3, down by 5% – a cooling in the London market largely drove this. The capital has experienced a decline of 15% in buyer demand over the past quarter, down to just 28%.


London’s reduced buyer demand makes it one of the coldest regions in the UK, with just the North East seeing a lower level, at 22%.

The South West is currently enjoying the highest level of buyer demand, at 45%, along with the East of England (45%), West Midlands (44%), East Midlands (42%) and South East (41%).

UK Property Demand Continues Upward Trend of 2017

UK Property Demand Continues Upward Trend of 2017

The top 10 hottest areas 

Wellingborough, Northamptonshire is currently seeing the highest levels of buyer demand in the UK, at 69%. Neighbouring town Kettering joins it, where demand is at 66%.

St Edmundsbury in the East of England (65%), and Solihull (63%) and Bromsgrove (61%) in the West Midlands are also enjoying a level of buyer demand above 60%.

Daventry, Rhondda Cynon Taf, Forest Heath, Rugby (all 60%) and Ipswich (59%), complete a top ten that – other than Rhondda Cynon Taf – is dominated by the Midlands and East of England.


Bexley remains at the head of the table for London buyer demand, at 52%, closely followed by Havering (50%), Waltham Forest (46%), Barking and Dagenham (44%), Hillingdon (43%), Redbridge (42%), Sutton (40%), Ealing and Enfield (both 37%).

While much of London has seen buyer demand cool off, Ealing has experienced an impressive jump of 46% since Q2. Hounslow has also seen an increase of 14%, with Havering (+3%), Wandsworth (+2%), Waltham Forest and Redbridge (both +1%) also seeing marginal growth.


The City of Bristol is the hottest county in England, with demand currently at 57%, while Lincolnshire has witnessed the largest rise in demand since Q2, up by 12%, with Cornwall second, following a jump of 6%.

East Sussex recorded the largest decrease in the quarter, of 35%, while County Durham continues a poor run of form as the coldest spot for buyer demand (21%), down by 2% on Q2.


West Lothian is the hottest spot for Scottish buyer demand (57%), with Edinburgh a close second (56%).

The City of Dundee has seen the biggest turnaround on Q2, with a rise of 21%, while it continues to be bad news in the City of Aberdeen, with a 37% drop in buyer demand, making it the coldest spot in Scotland, at just 7%.


Not only is Rhondda Cynon Taf one of the hottest spots in the UK, but the area also has the highest level of buyer demand in the whole of Wales – followed by Caerphilly (47%) and Cardiff (45%) – and has enjoyed the largest increase since Q2, up by a notable 82%.

Denbighshire has also enjoyed a significant uplift since Q2, of 49%, while Newport saw demand fall by 30%, now at just 36%.

At 20%, Gwynedd is the coldest spot for buyer demand in Wales, although it has experienced an increase of 7% since Q2.

The Founder and CEO of eMoov, Russell Quirk, comments: “Yet more positive movement where UK buyer demand is concerned, and movement that is certain to help keep prices buoyant, despite the slower market conditions seen over the last six months.

“We’ve highlighted a number of times that, while London might be under performing and tainting the overall picture for England, there is still an abundance of areas across the UK with high levels of buyer demand, where it is business as usual for UK sellers and buyers.”

He continues: “With sales transactions continuing to climb and buyer demand remaining strong, recent price adjustments are nothing to fear and are just that, adjustments appropriate to current market conditions.

“Those predicting that a market crash is imminent are wrong to do so, and would find a greater degree of success trying to predict the latest Lottery numbers.”

Just 186,000 Homes are Left for 2m Elderly Homeowners

Published On: March 27, 2017 at 8:47 am


Categories: Property News

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Just 186,000 Homes are Left for 2m Elderly Homeowners

Just 186,000 Homes are Left for 2m Elderly Homeowners

Last week, we reported that retired homeowners are cashing in on property wealth at the expense of struggling first time buyers. But there may be a very obvious reason for this – elderly homeowners have no smaller homes to move to.

In its Right-Size Report, Inspired Villages found that Britain’s elderly homeowners are not moving from their family homes because there’s a severe lack of variety and quantity of retirement housing stock.

The research found that, in total, there are around 720,000 homes across various retirement housing types in England and Wales – enough to house just 7% of the nation’s elderly homeowners.

The Right-Size Report, which maps the supply and demand of Britain’s retirement housing, also found that 1.8m elderly homeowners who would normally leave their family homes can’t because there is nowhere suitable for them to move to.

If you are looking to move, however, Portsmouth is the best place to consider, as it has the most retirement housing units for ownership.

Hyndburn and Caerphilly are the worst, with the fewest number of units available.

A quarter (25%) of people say they would like to invest in a retirement property, despite there being only enough units for 2.7% to do so.

And housing supply is definitely the problem – since 2000, while the older population has grown, as few as 5,500 retirement housing units per year have been built on average.

Using this data, Inspired Villages mapped the supply and demand of Britain’s retirement housing, considering what it could be like in 20 years’ time as a result of the country’s rapidly ageing population.

While it certainly appears that Britain’s elderly homeowners would like to move into smaller properties to free up homes for younger first time buyers, it doesn’t look like a likely solution until the country’s housing stock rapidly increases.

Housing market to be hit by low stock in 2017

Published On: December 8, 2016 at 11:18 am


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New analysis from RICS has revealed that despite a rise in sales activity in the residential sector, a sluggish sector is predicted as a result of a lack of housing stock.

The firm suggests that the number of prospective buyers in the UK housing market rose for the third month during November. This figure though still remains historically low, with 13% more surveyors recording a rise in new buyer enquiries, as opposed to a fall.

Agreed sales rise

This increased demand is also leading to further rise in agreed sales throughout Britain. 9% more respondents said they had seen more activity during November, the highest reading since February.

RICS’ data shows that the growth in sales activity, despite only being modest, has lead to a further decline in homes for purchase. The majority of respondents to the survey believe the beginning of 2017 to be quiet as a result of the lack of properties coming onto the market.

With stock continuing to fall, regions bucking the trend were the West Midlands and the North West of England.

When asked to look at the next three months, 14% more surveyors predict an increase rather than a decline.

However, respondents were less confident in the prospects for London prices in comparison to other areas, with tax changes still impacting massively on this part of the market.

Housing market to be hit by low stock in 2017

Housing market to be hit by low stock in 2017


Simon Rubinsohn, Chief Economist at RICS, noted: ‘A key issue for the housing market is the slowdown in transaction activity since the spring which is clearly being reflected in the RICS Agreed Sales data as well as in official figures. Although there are some signs that the numbers may begin to edge upwards in the new year, the combination of macro uncertainty, the on-going supply shortfall, with stock levels around historic lows, and the myriad of tax changes impacting on buyers suggest that any pick-up in activity will be relatively modest. This is significant not just for the housing market itself but also for the wider economy given how much of consumer spending is tied in with home purchases.’[1]

Brian Murphy, Head of Lending at Mortgage Advice Bureau, also commented: ‘The report released from the RICS today is based on sentiment of its members, so provides us with a good snapshot ‘from the coalface’ in terms of what Surveyors are observing on a daily basis. The survey suggest that activity from buyers in most parts of the country is increasing, albeit modestly, although this is of course reliant on available stock. As a result, RICS members in many areas expect to see prices remain steady, if not potentially increase in the next three months, although this will of course depend on continued applicant levels.’[1]



Number of Property Transactions Up by 80% in March

Published On: May 9, 2016 at 11:01 am


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Number of Property Transactions Up by 80% in March

Number of Property Transactions Up by 80% in March

A huge surge in residential property transactions in March caused an 80% increase over the past year, according to data analysed by the latest Homes & Communities Agency report.

In March, 141,310 property sales were recorded, up by 80.6% on the same month last year. The Government agency believes that this sharp rise could be the result of a rush of buy-to-let landlords hoping to beat the 1st April Stamp Duty deadline.

As of 1st April, buy-to-let landlords and second homebuyers are charged an extra 3% in Stamp Duty.

On an annual basis, there were 1,135,830 property transactions in the year to the end of March, up by 9.9% on the previous 12 months.

However, the total stock of property for sale remains at a historically low level. In England and Wales, the number of homes entering the market was down by 6% compared to March last year.

The West Midlands and South West are suffering the most from a shortage of stock, with levels falling by 12% and 11% respectively over the past year.

Greater London is the only region in England where the amount of homes coming onto the market has increased, up by 6% on the same month in 2015.

The Homes & Communities Agency reports that house price growth has returned to all regions across England. However, the house price divide between the southeastern regions and the rest of the country has widened further since the start of the year.

The report compares annual house price growth from several indices for the past year:

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Last week, we released the HomeOwners Alliance’s review of house price data for the year: /homeowners-alliance-reviews-house-price-data-year/

Planning permission numbers highest since 2009

Published On: May 3, 2016 at 11:20 am


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Encouraging new data has show that the number of planning permissions for new homes in England rose during the last year.

According to the latest housing pipeline report from HBF and Glenigan, planning permissions for 255,032 new homes were granted in 2015. This was 57% greater than the 162,204 recorded in 2009.


Permissions granted in the final three months of 2015 were 13% up on the same quarter in 2014, standing at 74,759. There have been steady rises in permissions over recent years, with housing supply also rising markedly during the last 24 months.

In excess of 180,000 new homes were added to the housing stock list in 2014/15, a rise of 22% year-on-year.

However, many of the permissions noted in the report still have problems to overcome before building work can be started. The industry has long called for the Government to simplify the planning process and make sure local authorities have the capability to deal with the volume of new applications.

These figures show that supply of houses in the future is promising.

Planning permission numbers highest since 2009

Planning permission numbers highest since 2009

Soar in supply?

Stewart Baseley, Executive Chairman of the HBF, said, ‘the number of planning applications now being submitted demonstrates the commitment of the industry to deliver further increases in housing supply. The past two years have seen huge increases in house building levels, with housing supply in England surpassing 180,000 homes per year in 2014-15, up 22% on the previous year. Whilst the increase in the number of permissions is welcome-and a strong indicator of future supply-many still have to navigate the complexities of the planning system. This is a further sign that house builders continue to step up investment in future housing supply but we need to see these permissions being processed to the stage where we can get onto site and start building more quickly and really start to meet demand for housing.’[1]

Allan Willen, Economics Director and Head of Business Market Intelligence at Glenigan added, ‘The strong rise in planning approvals during the closing months of 2015, driven by an increase in the number of private housing units approved, bodes well for housebuilding activity during the current year. The expanded development pipeline will help housebuilders to meet any strengthening in demand from house buyers. Furthermore the rise marked rise in approvals in the Midlands and North of England last year demonstrates that the recovery in housing market activity is becoming more established across the country.’[1]


RICS Urges Government to Help Older People Move House

Published On: September 24, 2015 at 11:58 am


Categories: Landlord News

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The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) has urged the Government to help older people downsize in order to solve Britain’s housing crisis.

Elderly homeowners that have paid off their mortgage but now under-occupy their properties have been in the news recently.

Earlier in the week, it was reported that Lynda Blackwell, Head of Mortgages at the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) said older homeowners that “sit quite happily in a very big house”1 should be encouraged to downsize.

The FCA responded, saying it is not its policy to make older homeowners move house. Read more here: /fca-says-its-not-policy-to-get-older-people-to-move-home/

RICS Urges Government to Help Older People Move House

RICS Urges Government to Help Older People Move House

Elderly homeowners who do wish to downsize say that they are often prevented from moving because they have left it too late, they cannot face the prospect of moving house, or the cost of retirement housing is too high.

Now, the RICS has joined the discussion, stating that if older people want to move they should receive support from the Government to do so.

In its residential policy review, the RICS urged the Government to help older people who wish to downsize. It says the measure could release £820 billion of property assets, or 2.6m family homes.

It adds that all new build developments should include a compulsory proportion of affordable rental accommodation and that second-homeowners should be encouraged to sell their properties or put them up for long-term tenancies.

Head of Policy at the RICS, Jeremy Blackburn, says: “Britain’s older homeowners are understandably reluctant to move out of much-loved but often under-occupied family homes.

“Clearly it’s an emotive issue and one that needs to be treated with sensitivity, but we would like to see central and local government provide older people with the information and the practical and financial support they need to downsize if that is their choice.”

He suggests: “This might include offering a fund to support with moving costs – Bristol City Council is already piloting a great scheme along these lines – or perhaps a Stamp Duty discount.

“Almost a third of over 55s have considered downsizing in the last five years, yet we know that only 7% actually did. Greater support for those looking to move could release 2.6m family homes.”

He explains the need for more homes: “The most consistent feature of the housing market over the last 18 months has been a distinct shortage of new sales instructions. Average stock levels on surveyors’ books have dropped to lows not seen for at least three decades.

“If we are to get to grips with this country’s housing crisis, we need to look at supply-led measures across Government and the wider industry in order to get the market moving.”1 

In a blog on the Council of Mortgage Lenders’ website, Sue Anderson writes: “The real debate is about how to address the current lack of (perceived) choice for older homeowners who would like to move, but feel they can’t.

“No one, as far as we know, is suggesting that older homeowners should be forced or guilt-tripped into doing anything they don’t want to do.”

Read more of the blog here:

Earlier in the year, Legal & General also published a report on the issue, which can be found here: