Watford Property Market Update – January 2019

 What is happening in the property market?

The entire country is thoroughly fed up with hearing about Brexit, but make no mistake, Brexit has had a significant impact on the property market, while people wait to see what it all means.
And there are so many questions….
Will Brexit actually go ahead?
Will it be delayed?
Will there be another referendum?
Will it be good for the UK?
Will it be good for you and me on a personal level?
Nobody knows the answers, so we all just have to wait and see what happens.  Which is rubbish, if you need to move right now.
So what do you do?
Let’s approach this question with some facts.
Firstly, if you are selling, the market is quieter, with fewer buyers, but there are still buyers looking for property at the moment and they are making offers.  So in order to attract the attention of those buyers in the market, you need to price your property competitively. This may mean accepting a figure which is lower than you expected and less than you hoped for, but your property is only worth whatever the highest offer is that you receive.
As a buyer, there is actually a strong argument for buying right now. While everyone else is waiting to see what happens, buyers have an opportunity to take advantage of the situation and secure a property at a lower figure. This applies to sellers too, because even if you sell at a price below what you expected, you still have the opportunity to get a good deal on the property you end up buying.
So, in summary, if you want to sell, then sell.  There are buyers out there, you just have to accept that market forces will determine what price your property will achieve.
And if you want to buy, go ahead and buy.  Prices are deflated, so you will get a good deal. If you wait for market conditions to improve, prices will increase.   Buy now, or you will miss the boat.
The lettings market remains busy, with plenty of demand from professional tenants.  Rental values remain stable, and landlords should be able to find good quality tenants without any trouble, provided the property is realistically priced and well presented.
There are changes on the horizon within the rental sector, particularly with regard to the tenant fee ban and changes to taxation, as the government continue to put the squeeze on landlords.
Using a reputable letting agent should limit the impact on landlords, particularly with regard to the extra regulation that we expect, but it is possible that these changes may see some landlords deciding to exit the rental market altogether.  This may reduce the stock of available rental properties in the market, which will inevitably exert some upward pressure on rental values in the months ahead – probably not what the government intended!

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