To say that the first half of 2019 has been better than the last half of 2018 would be an extreme understatement. We've had a truly incredible 6 months meaning lots of sellers have found a buyer, and lots of buyers have found a home.
As of 24th June, we've sold a whopping £51,423,700 of property in the Redhill and Reigate in 2019, beyond even our wildest hopes for the year to date. But what's probably more interesting for you is to know what kinds of property in Reigate and Redhill are actually selling, which ones are sticking, and perhaps the reasons why.
As we mentioned in our previous blog, properties in Reigate and Redhill that are over £2,000,000 are having the same problem as everywhere else in the country: the associated costs - well, taxes - on moving are so high that many people are staying put to enlarge and/or improve their existing home. This has greatly reduced the number of buyers out there for the top end of the market.
The market between £1m and £1.5m is back on the move again and you can read more about the properties selling in that price bracket in our blog from two weeks ago.
So what we're going to spend our time on here are:
the typical family house market, which in Reigate and Redhill falls roughly in the £500-800k range for a 3-4 bedroom property, and;
the first time buyer market which, in Redhill tends to fall between £230-£400k, and is slightly higher in Reigate at £250k - £500k.
Family houses are really shifting. There's a big market for them, not only from local growing households but also from families leaving London for more space, better schools and a swift commute to The Big Smoke. The demand is consistent across Reigate, Redhill and their adjoining neighbourhoods, with locals more open to the villages and Londoners keeping close to transport. It’s been so active that we’ve reintroduced open days, all of which have been extremely successful AND busy!
Some examples of recent sales from open days are:
This property on Ringwood Avenue in Redhill sold from an open day viewing to buyers from London.
This property on Lynwood Road in Redhill sold from an open day viewing to a couple from London.
Now let's look at the lower end of the market. Here is about the only section of the market that is suffering from Brexit worries, with first time buyers quite understandably more sensitive to events. People who have bought a property before often take an "it'll be alright in the end" view (which of course it always has been, eventually), but people taking their first step onto the property ladder usually prefer political stability for their first foray. The irony here is that first time buyers generally tend to take the plunge when prices are higher, rather taking the opportunity when prices are lower.
So we’re finding that two bedroom apartments are taking longer to sell and that owners need to be extremely realistic and competitive with their pricing. That doesn't mean you need to sell for a bargain, but it does need to occur as a good deal to gain commitment from cautious buyers.
On the other hand, one bedroom apartments are selling well, but mainly to investors: despite many press reports to the contrary, there is still a market for buy-to-let. Our experience of the market for flats is somewhat upside down compared to this report from the BBC, but national averages never can tell a local picture.
Here are some apartments sold in Reigate and Redhill, achieved despite the shenanigans in Westminster:
This apartment on Park Lane East in Reigate sold to a cash investment buyer.
This apartment on Rydons Way in Redhill sold in its first week on the market to local first time buyers.
What all this shows is that, even in parts of the market where it's less easy, there is still business to be done. We can see from our Rightmove statistics that people do stick around the Ralph James listings quite a lot and we're fairly sure that's down to the excellent photography and videos from Still Moving. Nothing captures a buyer's initial interest more than a great image, so we're happy to invest in high quality photos and high definition video tours because they clearly bring results : skimping on marketing has never helped anyone make a sale.
Picking up the phone is also key to generating viewings and sales. It can be easy to think that Rightmove and Zoopla have removed the need to call people, but we find it works wonders and is certainly better than waiting for an email to arrive. Maybe that’s why in the list of homes we currently have under offer, twenty-four of them are properties that didn’t sell when previously on with another agent.
If you've been thinking of making a move and would like to hear about the local demand for a property like yours, please do get in touch. Either pop in to one of our offices, drop us a line, or give us a call.