UK Property market estimated to fall by 13%, Is it the right time to buy?

Economists and housing experts are forecasting UK-wide price falls of up to 13%, with “brutal” declines in some areas, as the property market struggles to rebuild during the coronavirus crisis.

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The range of forecasts from the major researchers is markedly wider than usual. At one end is the Centre for Economics and Business Research, which predicts that 2020 prices will be down by 13% “as a lack of transactions, high uncertainty and falling incomes take their toll”. But the estate agent Savills said the hit to the market could be more like 5%, and a third of valuation surveyors are predicting that price falls may be limited to 4% or less.

The post-lockdown market will be a buyer’s market, said Jonathan Hopper of Garrington Property Finders, as he forecast falls of 10% nationally and 15% in some areas.

“Areas with a more resilient jobs market should see values hold up better, but elsewhere the price correction could be more brutal,” he said.

Knight Frank, in a revised forecast issued this week, said it anticipated a fall of 7% in 2020, more than its earlier forecast of 3%. Its analysis suggested prices had already fallen 5% since March, with a further downtick to come.

Source: The Guardian 

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COVID19: UK Government suspends property market till further notice

The housing market was halted on Thursday night by the Government after financial institutions said they could no longer operate properly.

Ministers are discouraging buyers from going ahead with house sales and purchases unless they have ­already exchanged contracts as part of wider efforts to slow the spread of the coronavirus, saying no one should move unless absolutely necessary. ­

As a result of the pandemic, homeowners trying to sell their properties face a year of misery as the number of buyers dwindles, estate agents close their doors, banks withdraw deals and house prices falling.

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Banks and building societies have agreed to extend mortgage offers where completions have to be delayed as a safety precaution.

Grainne Gilmore, head of research at Zoopla, commented: “The clarity provided by the government announcement is welcome for buyers, sellers and agents who are in the middle of the sales process.

“Agents continue to support their buyers and vendors remotely. But, now that there is some leeway on mortgage offers – with a three month extension from lenders – this will enable some buyers to press pause, and to re-start their purchase once the current social distancing rules are relaxed.”

What does it mean if you’re buying?

You should only consider going ahead with your move in the immediate term if you have already exchanged contracts.

If you have not yet exchanged contracts, the government are advising you to delay doing so.

See the source imageBanks and building societies have agreed to extend mortgage offers for up to an additional three months to enable customers to move at a later date without losing the deal they had lined up.

If your circumstances change during this period or the terms of the house purchase alter significantly, meaning that continuing with the mortgage would put you into financial hardship, lenders have pledged to work with you to manage your finances as a matter of urgency.

What it means if you are selling?

Putting your property on the market will be more challenging than usual, as you are not allowed to have visitors to your home.

As a result, you will not be able to have estate agents come to take photos or carry out a physical market appraisal, while Energy Performance Certificate assessors are also not allowed to visit you.

If your home is already on the market, you can continue to advertise it for sale, but people cannot come to physically view your property.

Importantly, you are still allowed to accept offers on your property during the current period.

In fact, the number of sales agreed between March 16 and March 22 were only 4% lower than a year earlier.

Source: Zoopla Property News

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Dennis Bebo – MSC, BSC, DEA, CeMAP

TA DenEco Consultancy – www.deneco.co.uk

Covid-19: UK property market to be suspended as sales drop significantly

UK house buyer interest has slumped as people stay at home to try to limit the spread of the coronavirus, according to property listings websites.

Zoopla predicts housing transactions will drop by up to 60% over the next three months.

Meanwhile, an increasing number of sales that had been agreed before the lockdown are falling through.

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The government has advised homebuyers and renters to delay moving as much as they can.

“Would-be homebuyers paused major decisions and took stock of the unfolding events in the UK and around the world, even before [restrictions] announced by Prime Minister Boris Johnson,” Zoopla said.

Demand in the week to 22 March slumped 40% on a week earlier, its figures suggest.

The property listings site said the UK housing market had a strong start to the year before the coronavirus outbreak crushed demand.

The pandemic has since led to a “rapidly increasing” proportion of sales falling through, as would-be buyers “reassess whether to make a big financial decision in these shifting times”.

Sales were still being agreed, it found, but at a 4% slower rate than at the same time a year earlier.

The Financial Times has reported that bankers have been urging government ministers to suspend the housing market.

They are concerned about the impact of the pandemic on valuations but they are also worried about issuing loans due to uncertainty about the effect the virus will have on the economy, the paper reported.

In response to the crisis, UK Finance, which was formerly known as the British Bankers Association, said lenders would extend mortgage offers for people who were due to move house during the lockdown.

“Current social distancing measures mean many house moves will need to be delayed,” Stephen Jones, who runs the group, said in a statement.

“Where people have already exchanged contracts for house purchases and set dates for completion this is likely to be particularly stressful,” he said.

“To support these customers at this time, all mortgage lenders are working to find ways to enable customers who have exchanged contracts to extend their mortgage offer for up to three months to enable them to move at a later date.”

The government has told people “there is no need to pull out of transactions”, instead encouraging them to “amicably agree alternative dates to move”.

The sentiments identified by Zoopla echo a previous announcement from rival Rightmove, which said the slowdown in the UK housing market had been “significant”.

“The number of property transactions failing to complete in recent days and likely changes in tenant behaviour following the announcement of the renters’ protections by the government may put further pressure on estate and lettings agents,” it said, referring to the recent ban on evictions.

The government said on Wednesday that home buyers and renters should delay moving if possible while emergency measures are in place to fight coronavirus.

“If moving is unavoidable for contractual reasons and the parties are unable to reach an agreement to delay, people must follow advice on social distancing to minimise the spread of the virus,” a housing ministry spokesperson said.

“Anyone with symptoms, self-isolating or shielding from the virus, should follow medical advice and not move house for the time being.”

Meanwhile, there were reports on Thursday that mortgage lenders had started to temporarily restrict some products for certain customers.

Source: BBC News

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Dennis Bebo – MSC, BSC, DEA, CeMAP

TA DenEco Consultancy – www.deneco.co.uk

UK Property Key Players

Buying or selling a property in the UK required various process and professions. key players in a property transaction, including buyers, sellers and paid property professionals such as real estate agents, financial specialists, surveyors and legal practitioners.

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The main property key prayers are:

  • The middleman – The estate agent may be paid by the vendor, but they need to work with you too to make sure their client’s interests are protected and a good agreement can be reached. The agent should be your first stop when it comes to negotiating on price and striking a deal.
  • The money – In theses days of stricter lending criteria and great deals, it is important to research the best mortgage deals for your circumstances. You’ll need to provide your lender with all the information needed to make sure the process goes smoothly, and be ready to chase if getting your formal offer takes longer than expected.
  • The groundwork – The minimum requirement for mortgage lenders is generally a valuation – this basic report merely confirms the property price is right and that the property security for the mortgage loan. This is not a survey and if you need to carryout a survey, you will have to employ the service of a surveyor. The surveyor’s main role is to assess the physical state of the property. The depth of details you receive will depend on the level of service you choose.
  • The brains – The solicitor or conveyancer commissions detailed searches to make sure there are no dark secrets lurking in the property past, legally speaking. This may relate to restrictive clauses in the lease of a leasehold property, rights of way or contamination due to previous use of the land the property is built upon, or any number of other problems with a property’s title.

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Dennis Bebo – MSC, BSC, DEA, CeMAP

TA DenEco Consultancy – www.deneco.co.uk

 

Struggling UK estate agency Countrywide in talks with LSL over a possible merger

Countrywide and LSL Property Services have said they are in talks over a possible merger which could create the UK’s largest estate agency.

The news comes after several years of losses at Countrywide and a difficult time for the sector.

Countrywide owns the Hamptons and Gascoigne-Pees brands while LSL owns Your Move and Reed Rains.

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The firms said that talks were ongoing, but there could be no certainty that an offer would ultimately be made.

If the merger talks – which were first reported by Sky News – lead to a deal, it will create a combined group worth about £470m with 14,000 employees.

Countrywide reported losses of £218m for 2018, compared with a £207m loss a year earlier, and it said last year that the uncertainty surrounding Brexit had been hitting business.

Recent surveys have suggested that the UK’s housing market is starting to pick up after a long period of sluggish activity.

Last month, a survey of property professionals reported an “uplift” in sentiment in the housing market following the general election.

Sales expectations had “risen sharply”, the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors said, with the number of house sales rising in December for the first time in seven months.

The most recent survey from the Halifax found the market continued “to show signs of improvement”.

The lender said it had seen “a pick-up in transactions with more buyer and seller activity consistent with a reduction in uncertainty in the UK”, although it added it was “too early to say if a corner has been turned”.

Source BBC News

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Dennis Bebo – MSC, BSC, DEA, CeMAP

TA DenEco Consultancy – www.deneco.co.uk

What is the first thing people do after moving into a new home?

Moving into your first property can be a long, complex and emotional process. For some, it can take a while to finally settle into their new home.

According to a recent Zoopla survey, the majority of people need from one week to a month after they’ve moved in to feel like they’re in a place they can call home:

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First things first

When it comes to settling into their new homes, people divide their time between the practical and the fun.

More than a third of respondents (37%) gave their property a deep clean on the day they moved in, while a fifth (19%) decided to set up council tax and utilities. Impressive organisational skills.

However, it’s not all work and no play. One in five respondents (20%) skipped cooking and ordered takeaway on their first day and another one in four (25%) got intimate with their partners:

Zoopla asked over 2,000 people, both existing homeowners and first-time buyers, to find out

What do people do on move-in day? 

  • Give the property a deep clean – 37%
  • Get intimate with a partner – 25%
  • Order a takeaway – 20%
  • Set-up council tax or utilities – 19%
  • Have your first argument – 10%
  • Entertain family – 7%
  • Make home improvements – 7%
  • Entertain friends – 4%

Source: Zoopla Property News

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Dennis Bebo – MSC, BSC, DEA, CeMAP

TA DenEco Consultancy – www.deneco.co.uk

First time buyers on a 12 year high

First-time buyer numbers have soared to a 12-year high, reaching a level last seen before the financial crisis struck.

A total of 35,010 mortgages were advanced to people buying their first home in August – the highest monthly total since August 2007, according to UK Finance.

The typical first-time buyer borrowed £175,361, the equivalent of 80% of their property’s value.

Although the sum was an average of 3.52 times their pay, close to record-low interest rates meant monthly mortgage payments accounted for just 17.1% of their total household income.

The data from UK Finance supports Zoopla research which found that more than a third (36%) of all property purchases in 2018 were made by first-time buyers and that numbers were up by a huge 85% since 2010.

Buying a home for the first time can be daunting and expensive, which is why it’s important to get fully up to speed before you start your property search. Once your name is on the property deeds, you’ll benefit from potential equity gains, you can decorate how you like and of course you’ll always have something to call your own.

Source: Zoopla property News

For property investment in the UK from start to finish, Please Contact me

Dennis Bebo – MSC, BSC, DEA, CeMAP

TA DenEco Consultancy – www.deneco.co.uk

Property Purchase: What exactly is gazumping

The term gazumping is often use by the media but generally don’t paint a full picture of what actually happens and as such many often find it surprising and confusing to understand.

Gazumping is where a property sale has been agreed but contract not yet exchanged and a third party comes along and offers more – where a third party ‘gazumps’ the original buyer. Gazumping is a nightmare for the original buyer as they’ve no comeback against (even if a survey has been done) either of the other two parties. In other for it to happen the seller must have to accept the higher offer, although they don’t have to.

I have worked for  clients on cases where a seller received higher offers but stuck to the original because they felt it was the honourable thing to do or preferred the original buyer. Also I have worked on cases where gazumping saved the chain – the original buyer was not taking it seriously or experiencing delays in securing mortgage and the chain was about to fall through – the new buyer moved ahead quickly and the whole chain completed. Gazumping normally occurs more often in a rising housing market, but probably not as much as the media would have you believe.

For property investment in the UK from start to finish, Please Contact me

Dennis Bebo – MSC, BSC, DEA, CeMAP

TA DenEco Consultancy – www.deneco.co.uk

£2,000 can now get you into UK property ladder under shared ownership

The Government has announced changes to the shared ownership scheme which should make it easier for first-time buyers to get their own homes.

Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick has said that first-time buyers will be allowed to buy a stake of 10 per cent, which will then be upped in 1 pc increments.

Property photo

Housing Association tenants on the lowest incomes are now being given the chance to get onto the property ladder thanks to a new version of the shared ownership scheme.

Under current rules, Housing Association tenants renting a home worth £200,000 can’t buy a share of that property.

But with the new Right To Shared Ownership scheme, tenants will be able to buy an initial 10 pc stake worth £20,000, while paying subsidised rent on the remaining 90 pc of the property.

Under the new scheme tenants will be able to make up the 10 pc stake with a £2,000 deposit and an £18,000 mortgage.

Chief Executive of NAEA Propertymark, Mark Hayward, said: “Now that the measures on shared ownership have been confirmed, thousands of consumers will welcome the opportunity to increase their share of ownership more easily and to simplify the process by which they can sell their homes.

You can buy a home through shared ownership if your household earns £80,000 a year or less (or £90,000 a year or less in London) and any of the following apply:

  • you’re a first-time buyer
  • you used to own a home, but can’t afford to buy one now
  • you’re an existing shared owner

Source: Manchester Evening News

For property investment in the UK from start to finish, Please Contact me

Dennis Bebo – MSC, BSC, DEA, CeMAP

TA DenEco Consultancy – www.deneco.co.uk

I am a First Time Buyer. How do I choose the best Mortgage?

As a first time buyer, the property market and process can be very complicated and stressful. To most this might be the biggest purchase or investment they will have to make in their life, so getting it right is very important to avoid unnecessary risk and costly consequences.

The aim of this article is to make you understand the basics of mortgage as a first time buyer and how to get the best mortgage that meets your need and financial circumstance.

PIPA property photo

We will start with knowing what is a mortgage and the basic requirement for a mortgage application.

What is a Mortgage?

In basic terms, you take out a mortgage from a mortgage lender as a long term loan to make payments on a property.

The mortgage lender has the option of taking possession of the property and selling it on if the mortgage repayments aren’t made. This is so that the lender doesn’t lose money as they would be making it back from the property sale.
Any time you take out a mortgage, the loan is then split into two aspects. One of which is the interest , which is what the lender charges for lending the money. The other is the capital, which is the actual amount of money used to purchase the property.

How much can you borrow?

The actual amount you’re eligible to borrow will be determined by the cost of the property you wish to purchase and by how much money you make.

As a first time buyer, you can borrow up to 95% of the property value. It is advisable to have more percentage deposit if affordable to get the best rates available. Also there are considerable amount of fees to pay during and before completion.

There are even some lenders that will go to 100% – however more often than not, you will be made to pay over the odds for this and will most likely be made to purchase mortgage indemnity insurance in addition.mortgage-imagery-homes-made-from-twenty-pound-notesThere are some that will, in rare cases, lend over the 100% mark, although there will be circumstantial rules that must apply.

There is a general rule of thumb that you can borrow around three and a half times the amount you earn annually. The actual figures differ between different mortgage lenders.

A little secret: If you have a good credit history and a regular income then you are quite likely to be offered the finance relatively easily.

How to get the best UK Mortgage as a first time buyer?

Well it depends on your need and financial situation. As a first time buyer, you are likely to have some particular requirements.

You will probably have a very small deposit or possibly no deposit at all.

You may be having to push your budget to the limit just to afford a mortgage, but are determined to get a foot on the property ladder.

One thing that applies to almost all types of UK mortgage is whether you should choose a  fixed rate mortgage or one with a variable interest rate.

The best choice depends on your own circumstances and to an extent on interest rate levels at the time, but things to consider are:

  • Can you afford to have your payments go up each month? This could happen with a variable rate mortgage.
  • Are rates generally low at the moment? It could be a good time to get tied into a fixed rate mortgage.
  • Do you want the security of a fixed monthly payment for several years? Fixed rate periods from 1 – 10 years are available.
  • Are you having difficulty borrowing enough money? An interest only mortgage can mean lower monthly repayments ie you can borrow more against your salary. But there are drawbacks.

For property investment in the UK from start to finish, Please Contact me

Dennis Bebo – MSC, BSC, DEA, CeMAP

TA DenEco Consultancy – www.deneco.co.uk