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The State of the Housing Market

Jan 2019

Well what can we say about the housing market, it has been a bit of a merry-go-round the last 12 months and looks to continue to be excitable for the next 12 months.

Brexit has dominated my clients conversations increasingly for the last few months and I am continually being asked for my opinion on what impact that this will have on the housing market, I will endeavour to answer this in the most simplistic of ways towards the end of this article.

After the last recession, when property price went in to freefall, it took several years for them to level out and several more before we saw any increase. During this time we saw repossessions increase and a lot of forced sales as the rising cost of living, wage cuts/no wage increases meant that people were needing to sell properties and in a lot of cases at lower prices than they had been bought at. 2014 saw the first signs that there was a recovery on the horizon and now in 2018 we have seen that the property prices for houses are back to similar or even better values than before the recession, unfortunately that cannot be said for flats and apartments here in the South West. When the government introduced the higher stamp duty requirements for all second properties, the buy-to-let market was to all intents and purpose brought to a halt. This added increase has stopped landlords in their tracks and unless they could get the properties at knock down prices, they, in the majority, have decided to wait things out and see where else their investment should go.

First time buyers are now not as one would expect. Previously fresh faced 20 somethings looking to start their home owning lives either as singletons or as young couples. Now with rent costs spiralling, wages not increasing as they should and unable to save a sufficient deposit for the rising costs of houses, they are staying at home longer to save on their cost of living. Now first time buyers are in their 30’s, partnered up and in some cases with their own families. Dual incomes now mean that they can afford to jump past the first step on the housing ladder and target the mid range family market instead. A lot of our 3 and 4 bed family homes are currently being sold to these older first time buyers.

On the older side of this equation, we find the true cost of the low interest rates. Most of the more settled home owners have climbed the housing ladder and now sit close to the top. Looking at the time of their lives where they are nearing retirement, the question of how they are going to pay off their living expenses becomes increasingly worrying. Previously our savings and pensions should have been able to provide sufficient funds, but seeing as how the interest rates have stayed pretty much frozen since April 2009, pensions cannot be guaranteed to cover these costs. On the flip side, the cost of living has continued to rise year on year which has created an imbalance for many and forcing them to revise their plans and in many cases they are “downsizing” to more modest properties with reduced running costs and thus able to bring the living expenses in line with their reduced incomes. Again we find the mid range family homes are popular for this, which brings me to the conclusion that the reason for the main increase in value for the family homes in this area is down to supply and demand. Plymouth house builders are not building enough 3 and 4 bed family properties and therefore when Cross Keys Estates gets a house in this criteria come to the market, they are usually sold in a matter of days, sometimes even the same day that they come to market and more than often at the top of their price range and even sometimes over asking price.

If we go back to the first point “Brexit”, all I can say is what I believe. I do not feel that the housing market will go down, even if we leave on the WTO option (No Deal) will there be a cliff edge disaster? When we had the referendum 2 years ago, the general public was warned of an immediate recession and disasters that would cripple us and bring our country to its knees. Did this happen?, No it did not and the opposite has in fact happened. If/When we leave the European Union, will major European companies stop trading with us?, will we stop buying Mercedes / Volvo / Audi / Volkswagen  cars?, I don’t think this is the case. The comparison I am trying to make is that although due to uncertainty, the property market may “Slow down”, I am confident that the property prices will not “Go down”.

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21 October, 2016

5 Star Rating
This was our first time buying so did not really know what to expect, but Crosskeys were fantastic. They kept us well informed and seemed happy to help chase up solicitors etc throughout. A few times we got a little bit anxious and were not getting much info from the solicitors, and as soon as I contacted Crosskeys they were straight onto finding out where we were and put our mind at ease. Would definitely use them in the future and would recommend to others. Thank you.
By: Abby & Ashey

Featured Sales Property

Cross Keys Estate Agents Featured Sales Property

Culme Road, Mannamead
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Cross Keys Estate Agents Featured Rental Property

Arundel Crescent, Stonehouse
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Buying

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Cross Keys House
51-53 Devonport Road
Stoke
Plymouth
PL3 4DL

T: 01752 500099
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Cherry Tree House
34 Mannamead Road
Mannamead
Plymouth
PL4 7AF

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Cherry Tree House
34 Mannamead Road
Mannamead
Plymouth
PL4 7AF

T: 01752 500018 Option 1
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Selling

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What our clients are saying about us

Cross Keys sold our house immediately, achieving the full asking price. They did exactly as they said they would, throughout every step of the process.

We chose to sell our home with Cross Keys based on the initial visit with Jack. It was apparent that his extensive local knowledge, professionalism and personable character was representative of the company and exactly the right mix of qualities that would sell our home. Robs visit to take photos and details for the brochure was as impressive and resulted in producing a quality sales brochure. The photos looked amazing and the wording was refreshingly original. Craig was proficient in explaining the detail of the contract and Tom contacted me promptly to give feedback from viewings. I can’t thank them enough, to me, they did more than sell our home, they made it possible for us to move forward with our plans for the next step of our lives.

An altogether seamless, faultless and experience. I would have absolutely no hesitation to recommend Cross Keys to family and friends.

Mr and Mrs J

From the word go we have had nothing but great help. Since walking in to the offices in Mutley plain and being referred to the Stoke office we have felt so looked after. We were looking for a property whilst trying to sort out renting out our own property. All the estate agents we had dealings with previous were either to pushy or seamed to eager to tell you what you wanted to hear. When we were visited by Jack he basically told us with out having all the bells and whistles what our property would be worth rental wise and also about a house well two that he thought would suit our family. When we met Jack at the first property we had that instant feeling and new it was the one. We are near the end and due to complete soon and with out Jack I know we would still be looking. Any issues or queries we have had just one call to the office and Rob has always answered our questions and made us feel at ease. As estate agents go and they are estate agents not just sales people, you could never find a more helpful,friendly and knowledgeable group of people and would highly recommend Cross Keys to any one as many of my friends did to me.

Darren Davis

Cross Keys is the best estate agent we have ever had dealings with. They were always available whether we popped in or on the end of the phone. The staff were very friendly and helpful and the office decor was stunning and very welcoming. The speed at which they sold our house was amazing. We will always use Cross Keys in the future and have recommended them to all our friends.

Nicola & Chris

We had a rather complicated purchase of a big old house with lots of problems. Jon demonstrated endless patience with us and good humour in challenging circumstances. He was professional, honest and reliable. As a consequence of his, and latterly Jacks, hard work we sold our house and managed to coordinate the purchase of the new house. Jon is an eloquent sales man who clearly does his research on a property, so he was great for selling our house. Furthermore, he was always ready and willing to help with our purchase too. Jack stepped in to deal with the various solicitors involved to ensure that our sale/purchase went through on time. Amazing team work, so helpful and easy to deal with. The thing I loved was that as a purchaser going on a viewing there was no after viewing pressure, unlike some local estate agents that ring you endlessly they ask you once for feedback then leave it to you to come back to them if you want to take it further. Brilliant! Well done and thank you all involved.

Janey H

Excellent, professional service from initial valuation from Steve Jones through to completion. Steve knew the market well and got the price right, Jon found the buyer quickly and kept watch on the property while it was vacant, Aimee did an excellent job of keeping me informed of progress all the way. In terms of professionalism, they were head and shoulders above the other agents we ask to value the property.

Liz

I have used Cross Keys in the past to sell a property, based on there excellent advice the property sold for the asking price in one day of being marketed. I now use them to let a property and once again have received excellent service, clear communication and true professionalism through all negotiations between myself and my tenants. Highly recommended for both sales and lettings.

Russ Wiliams

Renting

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