London, United Kingdom, May 18, 2009 --(PR.com
)-- Research conducted by Winkworth Estate Agents shows that property demand is rising, especially in the last few months. The number of viewings required to sell a property reached an all time high in January and February, as buyers started to show renewed interest in property, but weren’t yet confident enough to purchase. In the last two months, the research shows that the number of viewings required to sell a property has reduced substantially, as property demand has heightened. Demand is increasing due to a lack of stock and the return of buyers to the market, who have been sitting on the fence, waiting for the right time to purchase.
Low interest rates drive demand in housing market:
The shortage of stock is partly being driven by low interest rates. A large percentage of homeowners are on tracker mortgages and, whilst standard variable rates are reducing, fixed rates remain high and this, in turn, is putting people off moving mortgages and therefore properties. A Winkworth agent in Notting Hill reports that even people who lose their jobs are in no hurry to sell as they are receiving around 12-18 months pay and if they also have tracker mortgages, they are paying a fraction of what they used to in mortgage repayments. The same is true for accidental landlords, a symptom of the property downturn last year, who are choosing to continue to rent out their properties rather than sell.
Some Winkworth offices reported an average of up to 50 viewings necessary to sell a property at the beginning of this year, compared to as low as four viewings in the peak of 2007. However, most offices reported a significant drop in the number of viewings required to sell a property, down by up to 80%, in the last couple of months – as stock levels have decreased.
Ian Dickson, Franchisee of Winkworth offices in Hammersmith and Shepherds Bush says: ‘In January to February this year we had, on average, fifty viewings of a property before a sale. Recently, however, the property market has come around full circle and we now have a shortage of stock. A good negotiator should now be able to sell a correctly priced property in the first ten viewings. Currently, we have buyers waiting for properties to come onto the market.’
Winkworth offices allege that properties are now being sold nearer to and even over the asking price. Sellers are now the ones sitting on the fence, in the hope that the renewed buyer interest will drive prices up again.