June 22, 2016

Property market insight: we read, you skim

laptop for property research

Welcome to LendInvest’s weekly skimmable property market insight. Big topics this week include

  • A record rise in the price of property coming to market
  • why flat owners looking to upgrade to houses could fall short on deposits
  • why rising numbers of retired renters could face limited housing options
  • how Brexit could affect the construction sector’s workforce

Asking prices hit record high

House seller’s asking prices have hit a record high of £310,471 on average this month despite claims that the EU referendum is slowing activity in the property market, new research reveals. Asking prices increased by 0.8 per cent across England and Wales – the equivalent of £2,320.

Homes across England and Wales are now taking just 57 days typically to sell – the shortest length of time recorded since Rightmove started monitoring selling times in 2010. In May, the average length of time between a home being marketed on Rightmove and being marked as sold subject to contract was 60 days.

New listings however are down 5.3%. And London was the only area to see asking prices fall back in June, with a small 0.2 per cent month-on-month decrease. More.

People may be underestimating the costs of a trade up from flat to house

Owners of flats with ambitions to upgrade to a house may need to save for  larger deposits than they expected as the gap between house and apartment prices widens. Almost half of so-called “second steppers” are not planning to save for a deposit to buy their next home, in the belief that the difference will be covered by the rise in the value of their existing property, research found. Though prices of houses have risen by 21 per cent in the past decade, flats haven’t gone up as much, rising by 15 per cent over the same period. This could leave a potential shortfall for those looking to upgrade, according to the price comparison service uSwitch.com. More.

Will Brexit hit housebuilding targets?

Access to labour may worsen if Britain leaves the European Union, according to a survey from Knight Frank. Some 56 per cent of construction firms surveyed said they are planning to recruit additional labour. The research raises concerns over the effect a Brexit would have on the free movement of workforces between the UK and EU, which provides the construction sector with a significant number of skilled workers. It also notes that 152,440 new homes were completed across the UK in 2014/15. Knight Frank estimates this will rise to around 172,000 in 2015/16. More.

Big rise in number of retired renters

The number of retired renters has surged by 220,000 since 2012 according to a poll of private tenants. Seventeen per cent of the retired private renting population live in the South East – the area with the highest proportion across the UK. Just three per cent live in London – the area with the lowest proportion. There are almost four times as many retired renters in the North West (15 per cent) compared to the North East (four per cent), and twice as many retirees rent property in the West Midlands (eight per cent) compared to the East Midlands (four per cent). During the same timeframe the proportion of landlords who let to retired renters has almost halved: nine per cent of landlords say they currently let to retirees compared to 19 per cent in 2012. This has sparked concerns that people looking to rent in retirement may be hit with a lack of supply. More.