I recently pre-viewed two similar period properties for a client planning to relocate out of London. Both were attractive period stone ‘manor house’ types with large gardens, attractive views and needing modernisation but the first, nearer Grantham was asking £985k and the second north of Stamford, half a million pounds more.
Most people understand that the further we travel away from London, the lower the prices tend to be but with these properties, it was probably quicker to get into the capital from the Grantham property.
The point of this story is that it shows that within our region, proximity to Stamford plays a significant role in the pricing of properties – however, it is not the only influence on property prices and if you understand the various factors, then buying and selling property becomes a less baffling and more cerebral affair.
Here are some of the known and less well-known influences on local property prices at the moment:
Lack of stock
Take a look at the property portals and you will see that the choice of properties to buy is not extensive. The delayed start to spring and cold Easter inevitably subdued the property market but even when the hot weather arrived, economic and political uncertainty meant that the usual explosion of new properties to the market was more of a flurry.
The resulting shortage of sale stock has meant that many sellers and agents have become more bullish and there are regular examples of properties being put on the market that are quite frankly, overpriced. Now and again these premium priced properties do sell to an unwitting buyer and those of us in the business locally shake our heads – but most buyers want to pay a fair price reflecting a realistic valuation.
Not always factored into the pricing but absolutely should be, is the existence of noise pollution such as the A1, East Coast Mainline and RAF bases which can significantly reduce the peaceful enjoyment of living in a home. Other less obvious blights can include proximity to a farm with its heavy equipment, possible animal smells and noises, nearness to a floodplain and annual disruptive events such as the Stamford Fair or Burghley Horse trials.
Looking forward, the building of large new housing estates such as the planned barracks develop in Edith Weston or installation of wind turbines may also affect property values in the years to come.
None of these will necessarily stop you buying a property but need to be considered before making an offer.
With an estimated one third of employees spending some of their week working from home and children becoming increasingly attached to the cyber world, access to fast broadband is a growing necessity. Reflecting this ‘must have’ status, Dataloft recently reported properties with superfast broadband were on average 17% more expensive than those with less than 25 mega bites per second. This bodes well for local properties enjoying the effects of the recent to fibre optics installations.
Across the UK during 2017, new homes on average attracted a 28% price premium on second hand properties. However, a quick look at properties in Oakham and Stamford suggests that the price gap between prestigious new build townhouses and high-class renovations isn’t that large but it is still something to be considered, especially if future maintenance costs are included in the thinking.
So, in conclusion…
Pricing properties is a mixture of science, local know-how and bravado. To buy and sell well you need to have an excellent understanding of the local property market and what is happening in the area. As such, be careful to do your homework or obtain independent property advice.