A couple of statistics out this week may surprise you but may give frustrated buyers some optimism.
- Half of all homes for sale fail to sell. You won’t find many estate agents admitting this and of course each will claim that their own statistics are much better. There are some regional differences inevitably but there are around 650,000 homes in total for sale today across the UK. 97,600 sold last month according to HMRC and another 146,000 came on to the market. So, over the next year at the present rates of sale and resupply around 1.2m will sell from the total 650k plus 1.75m new listings that come onto the market. 1.2m out of 2.4m. In fact, leave your home for sale for the next 12 months and you have just a 48% chance of it selling – statistically.
- 20% of homes currently for sale have been on the market for over 6 months. So said Rightmove in reply to a tweet I posted earlier this week asking them and Zoopla if they knew. That’s about 130,000 properties that have been languishing over-priced, poorly marketed or with some ghastly problem the agent or the owner can’t face. Time to sober up, listen to advice, consider a new selling agent perhaps or indeed withdrawing the property for the time being. These listings are a waste of everyones time.
- In London there are over 13,700 homes for sale asking more than £1m. But last month only 278 sold! Leave you posh London property on the market until this time next year and the chances of it selling look like being just 26%! Worth remembering when the snooty selling agent sneers at your offer!
- Typical agent sells just 8 of their 41 instructions each month. The estate agent trade body publish data each month on their members numbers and said that in July the typical estate agency has 287 buyers registered, 41 homes for sale & number of sales agreed per branch on average was just 8.
- 28% of sales are to first time buyers according to NAEA.
- 76% of homes sold for lest than the original guide price according to estate agents. Rightmove say that the average discount is 4%. (Not wishing to blow my own trumpet but over the past two years my clients paid closer to 12% less!)
- I don’t have the data to prove this but anacdotally I suspect that a quarter of homes for sale have not had a single viewer.
So don’t be despondent. You may be told that the market is ‘stable’, that “prices are rising” and that you’ll be bloody lucky to be able to find let alone afford what you say you want but the reality is that most sellers would be thrilled if you wanted to view their property let alone make them an offer. Most estate agents end each month with 33 unhappy clients and 279 frustrated buyers still looking for a new home. Don’t be embarrassed to go and see something even if you don’t think it is quite right. Many agents would be glad of the novelty of arranging a viewing!
Remember, the buyer decides what a property is worth, the seller decides if it’s enough!