FLIGHT TO QUALITY

During the last 6 months there have been so many influences for the market to absorb, that it can be quite difficult to establish exactly what is happening.  The trends we have seen over the last few years continue, but are exaggerated by ever more dramatic news from Westminster. 

The overriding characteristic is the caution being displayed by both buyers and sellers, resulting in a reduction in market activity.  This has the effect of a vicious circle inasmuch as lack of activity itself creates uncertainty, which perpetuates itself.  This caution is displayed equally by buyers and sellers, so the effect on prices is not, in itself, significant.  The trend does however concentrate activity into those areas of the market which clearly represent the best; that is, the best locations, the best specifications and the best styles. 

We have therefore seen surprisingly strong activity in the most sought after locations, such as cities, prime coastal and accessible and unspoiled rural locations.  We have also seen demand concentrated for well maintained, new and easily managed properties.  Recent evidence of this was produced by the sale of Furlong House at Chagford, which combined an excellent location, on the favoured eastern side of Dartmoor, with impeccable finishes and an ever popular Georgian design.  Furlong House sold in excess of its £3 million guide price.  Other examples of a property sharing similar characteristics was Fenn House, on the other side of Dartmoor, which is a well maintained, more modern house in the accessible countryside on the edge of the National Park, between Tavistock and Plymouth, which sold for very close to its £1.25 million guide price.  

Areas of the market that are experiencing less demand are those properties in less accessible rural locations, and where properties require or appear to require expensive renovation or maintenance.  Properties that fall into one of these categories need to be very accurately priced to reflect current trends in the market to ensure of attracting interest from wary buyers.

The result is, that there is probably now a greater differential between “the best” and “the rest” than there has been for some time, it also means that whilst some sectors and geographic locations of the market are increasing in value, there are other sectors and areas that are decreasing. 

At Jackson-Stops we endeavour to keep abreast of the market regionally through our network of offices throughout the West Country, and to offer reliable professional advice to ensure those wishing to sell do so on the best possible terms.  If you are contemplating a sale now or in the future, we will be only too pleased to offer our views and advice on how you might prepare to do so on the terms that suit you best.