“My, my, my Corona!” We don’t know about you, but here at Davies & Davies we’ve found carefully slotting Covid-19 slang into smash hit pop songs really brightens up the (home) office. Barry the plant sure seems happy about it, and has been known to sing along to our puntastic lockdown lyrics of an afternoon. The biggest hit so far? Neil Diamond’s inspired “hands/Washing hands/Reaching out/Don’t touch me/I won’t touch you” Sweet Corona hit. See what he did there?
Well it certainly works to take your mind off the pandemic and your eyes on the prize. The property prize, that is. Because despite COVID fears, the property market is not currently suffering and we are operating under protocols to continue our excellent service as ever in this (hideous phrase warning) new normal. Vom. So take a deep breath, grab the mic and let’s sing our way through the pandemic panic.
Ah Ozzy and Kelly. What a father daughter duo of an anthem. Such a poignant reminder of our fluctuating relationship with our (father) mortgage figures. It’s a little early to see what the old virus is doing to house prices unfortunately and it’s pretty likely that any figures (fathers or otherwise) that surface in the coming months will vary significantly. The Land Registry’s UK House Price Index was suspended during the lockdown, weren’t we all, until last week. Intrigue! The Land Registry released delayed figures for May, showing a 0.3% month-on-month drop and a 2.9% year-on-year rise in prices. It states that by 21st October 2020 they’ll be back on form like Ozzie from a hip op, and we may have a clearer indication of price and value with scheduled reports back to work. A sunnier report comes from Nationwide’s index, which is based on mortgage lending, stating a 2% month-on-month rise in prices, while Halifax, who area also based on lending, reported a rather more substantial 5.2% increase.
You may remember our somewhat inspired Cliff Richards tribute article earlier this year, outlining the implications of the stamp duty holiday. You can refresh your memories here. The incentive was created in a bid to pop a firecracker up the property market’s wazoo in the wake of Corona. However, the word on the residential street (HMRC data) shows that 70,710 property sales went through in July, up 14.5% on June’s figures but down 27% year-on-year. House prices could potentially rise in the short term, especially on the more desirable properties in sought-after areas with excellent transport links (all of our properties then). The stamp duty holiday has made the market extremely competitive for sellers in the short term, so if you really want to stand out you know where to come. We offer a competitive advantage for sellers and can help make your property look damn fine while you’re getting back out there on the market. Here’s another handy article detailing ways to up your selling game, and quick.
Apologies for the festive nod (-dy holder) but it is basically Winter after all. Despite that depressing realisation, there’s a large helping of optimism buzzing around the property market at the moment, with old trusty Rightmove hailing ‘the busiest month for 10 years’ in August and cheeky Chappy Zoopla chiming in to let us know that ‘activity is at its strongest level in five years’. What else do these likely lads have to say? Rightmove rightfully adds that the market is likely to continue performing well in the short term, but buyers and sellers ‘still need to be mindful of the wider economic concerns’. Zoopla swoops back in to say that he believes that ‘prices and activity will remain stable until the end of the year’. Like your two well informed uncles at Christmas dinner aren’t they. Thanks guys. Pass the sprouts now, will you?
Is it possible to get a good mortgage deal in this brave new world of ours? Or should we leave the house be-masked and bemused, stumbling into a lockable karaoke booth never to emerge again? Well. Data from Moneyfacts shows that average rates dropped to record lows in July and whilst they have started to rise again now, they do remain significantly lower than they were before we all had a collective breakdown / loo roll obsession back in March. Since the first horseman of the apocalypse tooted his horn, the number of mortgage deals on the market has actually halved, it’s true. BUT bear with. It doesn’t mean that there isn’t a karaoke bar buffet of good rates out there – particularly if you have a, what we call, bigger deposit. Oi oi Janine! Put that in your karaoke booth and sing it.
Now that the second coming of the lockdown is upon us, we are once again adjusting our surgical masks and gloves and sneezing deftly into our elbows for the foreseeable. We are taking extra precautions, as ever, in line with government guidelines. What does that mean exactly? This means we are still open, but with protocols in place to help protect our team, contractors, partners, clients and customers. We have decided to add additional safety measures including (but obviously not limited to) track and trace visitor logs, spaced out viewing appointments, mandatory face masks and off peak bookings where possible -particularly if you’re taking public transport. For those of you arriving by horseback, we do not welcome any more horsemen of the apocalypse at this time, thank you very much. #NotTodaySteve. For a detailed list of all measures we have in place, please see this stunner of an info-article if you please.
In conclusion, don’t be like Kanye and feel trapped in a loveless marriage. Ahem, *mortgage. Just because we’re on a second lockdown doesn’t mean you must remain in a property you’re not happy in or feel you can’t sell up / rent out or change your lockdown location. Despite all the COVID fears and uncertainty, there is nothing to worry about concerning the property market and there is a veritable lockdown songbook bursting with ideas, positive spins and great deals to sing about just waiting in our handy article guides alone. For more information and advice, do also drop us a line or give us a call and we’ll help assuage any pandemic panic, maybe even with a tune or two to cheer you up. “Cheer up sleepy Jean / Oh what can it mean / To a locked down believer and a/Home-owning queeen…”
Article by Sophie Taylor at Barefaced Studios
Photography by Odera Okoye at Barefaced StudiosBack to Useful Guides & Insights
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