Less than 33% of homes will sell

A couple of weeks ago I wrote about the chances of actually finding a buyer if you put your house on the market this year. Having studied the numbers put out by Rightmove.co.uk it seemed that last year just over 40% of sellers successfully found a buyer.

What I didn’t have time to do was to look at how this compares with previous years and to try and look forward to 2011. I have now done so and you can see the results here.

Looking then at the numbers since 2003, we see that it is not unusual for less than half of all homes marketed to actually sell in any particular year – it’s one of the reasons why agents have to charge higher fees than the public expect – they have to cover the cost of the properties that don’t sell.
Looking back, 2005 and 2008 were tough years with less than 35% of available stock selling. In 2007 (the peak of house prices nationally) we saw 51% sell. It’s no coincidence that total fees earned by estate agents peaked in August 2007 at about £318m. The monthly average is usually around £169m, so you can see what a difference this makes!
Last year 41% of homes marketed actually sold, and admittedly on the back of just one month’s numbers, it looks as if in 2011 that number will fall back to around 33%. As the year progresses we will see if this changes.
Most commentators expect this year is going to be tough. For buyers and sellers, for estate agents and suppliers like builders and decorators. For removal companies and conveyencers as well as for banks and building societies – low turnover is bad for almost everyone but until values fall or unless lending starts to loosen up there is little chance of this changing.
Link – http://files.me.com/henry.pryor/yz8l14