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Agents across the country have already cited that next year prices in London will continue to stand still, while elsewhere there will limited house price inflation and whilst I am in agreement, I see 2015 as a pause for breath.
Overall, market activity will move towards more ‘normal’ levels of trading and there will be more equilibrium between demand and supply. The last year has seen double digit property inflation, offers above asking prices and queuing to view, all of which will become a distant memory.
Prices have already stabilised and our view is that price growth will continue in the long-term, but at more sustainable levels. We anticipate that transaction levels in the period before and after the general election in May will reduce, but we expect them to resume unless there are any seismic political shocks, albeit interest rates are likely to rise later in the year.
Help to Buy will continue to influence sales, except in London where it has limited influence, but there will be less reliance on it outside of the capital. There may be some adjustment to prices where local markets have become overheated and where affordability is under pressure but generally in London it will be steady as she goes!
Postscript following the Autumn Statement 04/12/14
The cost of stamp duty has played a significant role in whether buyers can afford to purchase a property particularly those buying for the first time, something which became even more apparent when Help To Buy was introduced. The flurry of activity in the market place from those who just needed that extra bit of help to get onto the property ladder really facilitated the movement of the property market.
We therefore very positively welcome the introduction of tiered stamp duty which will encourage both first time buyers and existing homeowners wishing to move. We believe this will have a highly positive impact on the housing market in 2015 and beyond by freeing up buyers deposits and equity and allowing it to be invested in their homes rather than spent on stamp duty. It will also assist labour mobility.”
Andrew Loveday, Sales Director
Image - Brook Valley Gardens, Chipping Barnet EN5 - launching in early 2015
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