Expert View: Encouraging signs for the St Albans property market

Mark Shearing of Putterills, who have offices in St Albans, Stevenage, Hitchin, Knebworth and Welwyn

Mark Shearing of Putterills, who have offices in St Albans, Stevenage, Hitchin, Knebworth and Welwyn Garden City. Picture: Hannah Couzens - Credit: Archant

Mark Shearing of Putterills shares his views on the market across Hertfordshire as lockdown restrictions are eased.

The media seems to be doing their utmost to talk us into a property recession. Yet if you look behind the headlines, the outlook is hopefully much less scary - maybe a slowdown for a few months and some relatively small adjustments to pricing.

The results for Putterills’ offices since the easing of lockdown have been very encouraging. Our St Albans office agreed its first sale within 24-hours of reopening, the Stevenage office returned to a list of over 100 viewing appointments to be made, and our Hitchin office is on track to have its best sales month EVER!

As always, the key to selling is getting the price right, and this is more important than ever at the moment.

Buyers are reading in the press almost daily that the market is stagnant, so if your home has been on the market for a period of time, then buyers will know that and assume that there’s something wrong, or quite simply, it is too much money! If that is the case, you need to amend your price now, as the longer you leave it, the bigger reductions buyers will expect.

So, what for the future? It is quite likely that as the lockdown is slowly eased, more and more businesses reopen and staff return from furlough, sadly, there may well be some people being made redundant or perhaps having their working hours cut.

However, Hertfordshire has a diverse range of industries covering many market sectors, as well as world class pharmaceutical research facilities and major teaching hospitals.

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We are already seeing a marked increase in demand from those living in London and inside the M25 who are looking to make lifestyle changes, perhaps as a result of changing work practices, that enable them to live outside major centres. For these reasons, we are expecting that our area will remain fairly resilient to any wider property slowdown.

Even pessimistic property forecasters believe any slowdown will be short-lived. As the average time people spend in a home is over 10 years, there are likely to be other ups and downs during that period.

Fundamentally, you are buying a place to call home and that should be the most important buying decision.

To speak to Mark or a member of the Putterills team, call 01462 429271.