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Revealed - eager property buyers targeting Kent and Essex locations

09 October 2020

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The impact of the Covid-19 pandemic is encouraging more prospective property buyers to shift their search from big cities to further out locations such as Kent and Essex.

As buyers look to live in less crowded areas and purchase homes with more space, sellers in these locations can reap the benefits of quicker transactions and improved prospects of achieving their asking price or higher.

According to the latest data from Rightmove, searches in smaller locations outside of big cities surged during September. Buyer searches in Aylesford, Kent increased by 105% between September 2019 and the same month this year.

During the same period, searches in cities such as London and Bristol increased at a much lower level, by 36% and 54% respectively. Searches across the UK's ten largest cities increased by 53% over the last year.

The data also shows a 164% increase in sales agreed in Buckhurst Hill, Essex between September 2019 and last month. This shows that solid buyer interest is converting into a huge increase in transactions in regions such as Kent and Essex.

Rightmove says that the short-term shift of buyers looking to move further out, which started when the property market reopened in mid-May, has turned into a medium-term trend.

The portal says interested home hunters are turning into serious buyers putting in offers, which will be music to the ears of property sellers across Kent and Essex.

Rightmove's director of property data, Tim Bannister, says that buyers are now more willing to have a longer commute, while others are preparing for social distancing to be around for the long-term so want more space at home.

Property boom continues during September

The latest data from the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) shows that strong activity in the property market seen over recent months continued in September.

Last month marked the fourth consecutive rise in demand with +52% of survey participants reporting an increase in new buyer enquiries.

At the same time, new instructions rose for a fourth month in a row, which is the longest stretch of rising supply since 2013.

RICS says that stock levels remain relatively low and +55% of respondents noted an increase in agreed sales during September.

Most surveyors taking part in the study expect the high levels of activity to continue over the coming three months, although the 12-month outlook is slightly more uncertain.

The survey also found that house price growth continued to gain momentum last month, with all parts of the UK seeing prices rise.

Why now remains a great time to sell a homebuying

Market conditions over the last few months have been very favourable for property sellers. Demand for homes has been at record high levels due to a combination of people being able to move post-lockdown and those choosing to move in the following period.

With supply levels not meeting demand, sellers with properties currently on the market will benefit from increased competition for their home. This means a higher number of viewings and can translate into a faster sale, competitive bidding and ultimately a higher sale price.

Sellers have also benefitted from the stamp duty holiday, which runs until March 31 2021. The tax cut has encouraged even more buyers to enter the market, while there are also savings to be made for sellers that are also buying a property.

As we move into the heart of the traditionally busy autumn period, buyers will be keen to move into their new home in time for Christmas and the New Year. Therefore, the desire from all parties to get transactions completed will be strong and consistent.

All of these factors combined suggest that now remains as good a time as any to sell a property, particularly as the longer-term prospects for the housing market and wider economy are shrouded in uncertainty.

Here at Balgores Property Group, we can help you to get your property sold quickly and for the best possible price - all while following government health and safety guidelines to the letter.

For further guidance on any part of the moving process, get in touch with our expert team today. Meanwhile, you can kickstart your property sale with a free and instant online valuation to see how much your property could be worth on the current market.

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