Press Round Up July 2021
There are many ways in which you can add space and therefore value to a home but Jeremy Leaf, principal of Jeremy Leaf & Co, told The Times that a loft conversion can make a home feel ’top heavy’: ‘A mistake which is commonly made is to not include extra space on the ground floor so that the property can become unbalanced and less saleable.'
House prices dipped by 0.5 per cent in June as the stamp duty holiday started being phased out, according to the Halifax. However, Jeremy Leaf told BBC News that there was still strength in the market: ‘We don’t expect this new balance between supply and demand to change much over the next few months, particularly if economic growth can make up for the ending of the furlough scheme.’
The number of new homes coming up for sale fell for the third consecutive month in June, which helped push prices higher, according to the latest Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors' survey. Jeremy Leaf told This is Money: ’The market paused in June as many buyers and sellers realised they just would not be able to take advantage of the stamp duty concession before it tapered off. The frenzy of April and May was replaced by an opportunity for many to try to take advantage of the increased balance in supply and demand, and give themselves a better chance of moving. Unfortunately, supply is still not increasing fast enough, despite the faster vaccination rollout. Nevertheless, we don’t expect a significant correction in prices, more of a softening at least for the next few months as confidence in the economy seems to be more of a priority than worries over the ending of the furlough scheme.'
Mortgage borrowing hit a record high of £17.9bn in June, according to the Bank of England. Jeremy Leaf told The Times that the Bank’s mortgage data would be examined closely for signs of how much heat had been taken out of the market. ‘Only then will we be able to see just how far activity has fallen, but we don’t expect a major change based on what has been happening in the past few weeks on the high street,’ he said.
Buyers may have missed out on the full stamp duty holiday but the summer can be a good time to buy property. Jeremy Leaf told The Sunday Times: ’Transactions are certainly proving more straightforward as lenders, solicitors, surveyors, search providers and removers are responding more quickly. Activity has fallen, but we don’t know yet how much further it has to go and what will be the impact on prices over the next few months.’
If you are moving house, make sure you don’t forget to make a list of people to notify. Jeremy Leaf told Mail Online: ‘When moving home, it is vital to plan ahead. Moving day can come upon you very quickly, particularly if there is a short time between exchange and completion. Buildings insurance is the most important thing that needs arranging on your new property as soon as you have exchanged contracts. Confirm your moving date with your removals firm and make a list of who needs notifying about your impending change of address - the electoral roll, the DVLA, Amazon and other delivery firms, particularly supermarket deliveries. The last thing you want is for your orders to turn up at your ‘old’ address once you have moved. Don’t forget to change your council tax, while utility providers will also need informing, and given final meter readings. The more you plan ahead, the smoother the process will be.'