The first three months of 2022 have been incredibly active for the West London property market for both sales and lettings.
Across the UK house prices have continued to rise due to the imbalance between supply and demand. In London in particular the rental market has been exceptionally busy with properties let within hours of listing and fierce competition pushing rental prices to new heights.
Here in the spring issue of our West London Property News, we consider the latest local market trends and the outlook for the coming months.
Move or improve?
For those thinking of selling and buying a home in West London one of the most common considerations is whether to move or improve. A recent review from The Federation of Master Builders reported that 74% of builders had raised their prices by the end of 2021. The report also highlighted that there are also labour shortages and that the cost of materials has increased too.
With it becoming more costly to make improvements, homeowners are seeking a larger home or one where there are no works to be completed; this is certainly a theme we’re seeing across the area as we move through the first part of the year.
With the cost of building works rising, homeowners are increasingly making the decision to move rather than take on larger construction projects.Phil Coombes, Sales Manager
Selling in the Spring
Historically, the months of March, April and May are the busiest of the year for selling property. Excluding 2020, over the past 5 years, Rightmove has confirmed that the number of buyer enquiries per property has been highest during these months.
With the pent-up demand, it is expected that properties that become available to buy will continue to be sold swiftly; Rightmove reports that across the UK almost a quarter of newly marketed homes are going under offer within a week of listing. Priced correctly, we’re very much experiencing this here in West London.
Those thinking of moving should also keep in mind that interest rates are anticipated to rise in small increments over the course of 2022; spring could be a good time to act.
Buyers continue to register in large numbers. This level of interest has not been seen since 2015 and with the lack of properties for sale the market is set to continue to remain competitive for the coming months.Paul Cooney, Chiswick Director
Rental values climbing at speed
It’s been widely reported that the London lettings market is experiencing a severe shortage of property. It’s reported that the number of rental homes in the capital is down 53 per cent on last year. In stark contrast to the losses landlords might have suffered throughout the pandemic, rental values across London are now climbing at speed.
Rents are comfortably being pushed 10-15% higher than the asking prices due to the competitive bidding scenarios; ‘best and finals’ is usually something reserved for the property sales team but is now commonplace with multiple offers being received on almost all properties.
In this imbalanced market, new rental properties are comfortably being let within 48-hours of listing them on the property portals.Aggie Tukendorf, Lettings Manager
Renewal numbers at an all-time high
At present around 98% of tenants are choosing to stay and renew their tenancy when the contract end approaches, aware of the lack of alternative options, these tenants are happy to agree to fair rental increases.
Whilst the Landlords Trend Survey released at the beginning of the year reported that almost half a million landlords expect to expand their portfolio over the next two years, there are few signs of this in West London so far.
The severe shortage of stock looks unlikely to be resolved soon leaving the outlook for the West London lettings market to be a place of opportunity for landlords, might we see London rental yields rise in 2022?
We aim to inform our readers with localised property market-related information on a regular basis here in the West London Property News. If you would like to discuss any property matters with us please do get in touch, without obligation.