Tuesday, February 16, 2010Read more
An objective view of the future of Prime London PropertyCentral London is the most extraordinary and perhaps unrealistic property market, particularly Prime, and to be blunt this has been a “good” recession for those with money and property here. Never has there been so much that’s unknown or data that’s so subjective and it’s rewarding to spend a day with someone who has a uniquely objective view, as I did yesterday.
Wednesday, February 10, 2010Read more
Blind spot.....Blind spot….. This has little to do with property really but driving around all day everyday my eyes have been opened to the perils of something that’s meant to actually help us drive around all day. I’d like to talk, if I may, about the unbelievable and clod hoppish phenomenon that is the screen mounted sat nav. Rather like mobile phones the penetration of these ubiquitous gizmos must now be close to 100% and you’ll see them in cars from Park Lane to Peterhead.
Friday, February 05, 2010Read more
The politics of house pricesIf I have one more person asking, with genuine interest in the answer for a change, what’s happening in the property market I’ll have to buy an even bigger megaphone and simply tell them that I’ve no idea. Whether we’re talking objective or subjective stats, expert or amateur opinion, boardroom or pub chat or as importantly, London or Country, North or South East or West we’re all just waffling.
Wednesday, February 03, 2010Read more
Market Report – January 2010Ever since our return to work after the Christmas break, I have been besieged by requests from all corners as to what is going to happen to the market this year. My answer has been “we must wait until the end of January to get a good comparison of year on year statistics”. Considering two weeks of this January were virtually a non event because of the extreme weather conditions, the results are perhaps even more startling than they might first appear.
Friday, January 29, 2010Read more
Noughtie ParakeetsJust as we’ve got used to calling them the Noughties we’re into the Teens. The end of the Nineties saw prices and volumes in K&C moving higher very quickly, but the dot com bubble bursting caused ructions at the beginning of the new decade with a loss of volume and flattening of prices. Such worries were brushed aside and forward momentum quickly re-established. Prices in K&C have again been rising fast at the end of this decade at 10% up (Land Reg) over the last 6 months, but volumes, already half what they were in ’99 have been falling. Not really sure anyone expected this but the “perfect” central London storm looks set to continue for a few months irrespective of bankers and Tax. Will we get out of jail this time….what do I know, I’m just a stupid estate agent. We’re all bloody lucky to live in such a resilient City. On a lighter note, one of our finest spaces is Richmond Park, but every time I go there I’m shocked by the number of parakeets, and luckily they’ve just been designated as pests. Given that they’re not indigenous can I suggest that a charity parakeet shoot there would raise a fortune for charity.
Monday, January 25, 2010Read more
Why we WON’T all be selling privately in the near futureThere has been plenty of press over the weekend and Twitter chat about how the Telegraph’s interview with Sarah Beeny points to the demise of the estate agent. To be fair she opines that 50% of all property sales will be done privately by 2015 so that would seem to give half of us a stay of execution at least. Sarah has obvious charisma and appeal and it’s all too easy to denigrate agents and jump on the bandwagon. I wish her all the best with her site which is well thought out, slick and deserves to carve out a niche for itself. Private sales are not new and have in the past been the preserve of the bargain hunter, either buyer looking to buy without competition, or seller trying to avoid paying an estate agency a fee.
Thursday, January 21, 2010Read more
Tenancy Deposit Scheme" The 500% increase in costs for the TenancyDepositScheme are exorbitant, monstrous and hardly in keeping with the biggest global recession in living memory! Something must be done. I know the reason they have gone up, because a large majority of agents, particularly those new to lettings and with no experience of settling end of tenancy claims are now just forwarding every claim they have to the TDS and funnily enough TDS can`t cope. Maybe they should have thought about this when they launched the scheme! (why is everyone so incompetent, it beggars belief).
Tuesday, January 19, 2010Read more
Buy yourself a pay as you go mobile when dealing with some agents.It depends of course which estate agent you’re talking about but the US style hard sell is here to stay and it takes various forms and involves differing levels of commitment from those paid to do the selling.
Thursday, January 14, 2010Read more
Market PredictionsPrices/Stock- In D&G land, Central and SW London exclusively, prices last year rose bybetween 12 and 20% depending on the property. Unless there is a dramatic rise in stock levels I don`t see any reason why things should be that different in 2010. The forthcoming election will deter house sellers yet again, with vendors delaying moving in the hope that a Tory government might remove some of the punitive shackles that this government have inflicted on the housing market. Focus for 2010 - My main priority for this year is staff. This recession has deterred people from moving within the industry and has seriously impacted on the amount of quality candidates wishing to join the industry. The hunt is on for high calibre estate agents. Plans for 2010-Probably consolidation, 2009 was actually a very good year for both sales and lettings due to the constant demand and limited stock. I think the electionwill play a big part this year and so despite last year`s success I am not entirely convinced that they will be repeated in 2010 and I am therefore not planning massive expansion or dramatically increased marketing. Market wish for 2010-Damn location ,location, location.........I want property, property, property, both for sales and lettings, and a few decent negotiators would be nice.