Logo

Estate agents declare a ‘record breaking’ year for sales despite figures showing a 12 per cent nose dive

PUBLISHED: 13:15 27 November 2018 | UPDATED: 13:15 27 November 2018

House sales are down across the region - but some estate agents are still reporting record months for transactions. Pic: www.gettyimages.co.uk

House sales are down across the region - but some estate agents are still reporting record months for transactions. Pic: www.gettyimages.co.uk

‘Brexit is Brexit and people still want to move’ - that was the message from estate agents working in Norfolk and Suffolk who declare 2018 has been a better year for sales than 2017 despite new gloomy figures showing a 12 per cent fall in transactions.

Jonathan Wood, manager of Sowerbys in Norwich said that the office, just one of eight branches around the county, had taken just under £7.5million worth of sales last month alone which was a record. “August was amazing, with a noticeable increase in the amount of sales compared to 2017 but October was even better, far better for us than 2017 and I think this was down to quality of instructions, pricing and brand.

“But as an agent, you have to be proactive, you have to work this market. November has also been good - the only effect of Brexit has been that some people have brought forward sales becaause they feel slightly nervous about next year but the message seems to be that Brexit is Brexit and people still want to move.”

The ONS, Office for National Statistics figures published yesterday showed that up to the end of July, 8,182 properties were sold in Norfolk, 12 per cent down from the same period in 2017. In Suffolk, in the same period, 6,603 properties were sold, an 8pc drop.

Between January and July, 928 new homes were sold in Norfolk, 13 per cent down from 2017.

Paul Le Grice, managing director of Abel Homes, which builds new houses across Norfolk and Suffolk, said it had sold 10 per cent more houses this year compared to last. “There is still a pent up demand for new homes but we have seen reservations down over the past couple of months and hesitation because of the uncertainty of Brexit.

“However, we are not discounting, prices are holding up and it could be a strong factor that we are building energy efficient homes which are low maintenance and mean you can control your own destiny regarding costs and we are still launching new sites for next year.”

Joanna McIntyre, at Musker McIntyre with offices in both Norfolk and Suffolk, said: “We have seen a slight drop in transactions from January to July, however, the current period seems to still be buoyant with plenty of properties coming onto the market and offers coming in from buyers keen to move. However, the drop in figures may not be due just to Brexit. Generally speaking, people do not move as often as they used to due to the increases in stamp duty, difficulties in finding the deposit money for first time buyers and also the fact that many people may extend their current properties to create more living space.

Nick Taylor, chairman of the Norwich and District Association of Estate Agents and managing director of Norwich-based Hadley Taylor estate agents, said: “Consumers are being very cautious about any sort of investment whether it be a property, a car or a pension so the sooner we are done with Brexit the better. Perhaps it would have been better to have exited the EU in 2016 as we would have avoided two years of economic uncertainty and already be on the road to greater prosperity.

“I think it’s fair to say that house prices in Norfolk have increased by about 2pc to 3pc during the last 12 months. However, it is very unlikely that we will see any house price inflation during the next 12 months. In other words, the market has topped out and we have seen the last of property price inflation for the time being. Transaction levels continue to be subdued and one of the reasons for this has to be Brexit uncertainty.”

Martyn Baum, group residential manager at property agency Arnolds Keys, said: “The housing market lives or dies according to confidence. What we are seeing with the political uncertainty is a pause in the housing market however, unlike 10 years ago, the economy is fairly strong, unemployment is low, interest rates are low, it’s just there is some apprehension concerning Brexit.”

Latest Property Articles

Time is running out for people to have their say on where thousands of new homes could be built in and around Norwich over the next two decades.

Plans have been lodged to create a seven-bed student shared house in Norwich.

Council bosses looking to build houses and, potentially, a swimming pool in Norwich are facing a race to get the site decontaminated or they could have to pay almost £1m back to the government.

A Norfolk group chief executive has criticised ‘ridiculous’ lending criteria after he was forced to pull out of buying a city centre penthouse because he could not get a mortgage.

Reports in the national press over the last few months have highlighted a slow-down in the housing market during these uncertain times of Brexit negotiations. However, demand for new homes in East Anglia remains strong. Edward Parker, from Bennett Homes, discusses.

If you are thinking about selling your home in the New Year, you may want to make sure you have the right paperwork, records and certificates in place in order to make the process smoother. Being prepared for any potential enquiries will help to avoid delays along the way. Sharron Tennant, from Spire solicitors, discusses.

Looming on the horizon are some most unwelcome changes in the way that UK taxpayers will have to report and pay for capital gains tax (CGT) on residential properties in the future. Jon Hook, managing director at Norwich Accountancy Services, discusses.

A team of volunteers is sought to help celebrate the history of Anglia Square, after a community project was awarded a National Lottery grant of more than £50,000.

Since its Christmas – well nearly – and we haven’t had much cheer this year what with Brexit and all, here for your mild amusement is a lettings version of the 12 Days of Christmas, says Mike White from Martin & Co lettings in Norwich.

William H Brown held its last auction of the year yesterday at the Barnham Broom hotel. Managing director and auctioneer, Simon Arnes, reports on the firm’s sale.

The controversial plans to develop Norwich’s Anglia Square have been given the go-ahead and here’s a first look at what new homes in the development could look like.

The humble bungalow was once considered the house type that style forgot. But not any more. And with more people living longer and less bungalows being built, single storey dwellings have never been more popular. Whatever would Granny say?

The developer behind the £271m Anglia Square revamp has likened the scheme to Marmite - conceding that some people will hate it.

The controversial £271m redevelopment of Norwich’s Anglia Square has been approved by city councillors.

It would be an “abomination” if the £271m Anglia Square revamp is given the go-ahead, the Lord Mayor of Norwich has said, as councillors get ready to make a decision on the controversial scheme.

A family that had threatened to stage a protest at a Norfolk housing development over fears they could be homeless at Christmas have finally been promised the keys to their new home.

A decision on whether to grant permission for one of the most contentious and biggest planning applications Norwich has seen for years will be made today.

The controversial revamp of Norwich’s Anglia Square has the potential to create more than 500 new jobs, while people living in the new homes could spend up to £40m a year, council officers have said.

Designer Wayne Hemingway has joined the debate over the £271m plans for Anglia Square, urging city councillors to reject the proposals.

An estate agent who had to pull out of a city centre office said she has enjoyed her ‘best year ever’ at premises in the suburbs - as the debate continues over whether businesses are being driven out of Norwich.

A call for the government to make the final decision if councillors grant permission for the £271m Anglia Square revamp has been backed by civic watchdog the Norwich Society.

A fresh bid has been lodged over the future use of Norwich’s Grade II-listed Crystal House - and to build nine homes behind the back of the historic building.

Norwich is in danger of losing business investment because of a shortage of good quality commercial premises and an increasing number of road closures.

In today’s fast paced and technology driven society, it is essential to market your property in the most effective way, with the widest exposure. Sheron Harley, managing director of the Property Shop, discusses.

Developers behind plans for Norwich’s Anglia Square are hoping to be excused from paying almost £9m, if their proposals get the go-ahead.

Are you looking to sell a property quickly? Auction House, with four sale rooms in East Anglia, has the answer.

Hardwick House, one of the most impressive buildings in Norwich which is currently empty and boarded up, could become a pub as it goes up for rental after its £1.6 million sale falls through.

The controversial £271m proposal to revamp Norwich’s Anglia Square has been recommended for approval.

A controversial move to excuse some developers in Norwich from paying a levy of thousands of pounds is crucial if sites are not to stand derelict, council leaders have insisted.

More than £1m is to be spent to turn a block of offices into seven council homes.

‘Brexit is Brexit and people still want to move’ - that was the message from estate agents working in Norfolk and Suffolk who declare 2018 has been a better year for sales than 2017 despite new gloomy figures showing a 12 per cent fall in transactions.

He spent last winter homeless and on the streets but this Christmas a Norwich man will have a roof over his head after he has been helped by a charity.

Despite house prices rising, the number of properties sold has fallen; down by 12 per cent in Norfolk and 8 per cent in Suffolk compared with the same period last year, new figures reveal.

Important news for future house hunters contained in October’s budget was that the government’s Help to Buy scheme is to be extended – but only until 2023.

If you’re thinking about selling part of your garden land for development, there are several things to consider. Carolyn Bunn, from Spire Solicitors, discusses.

It is one of the most contentious and biggest planning applications Norwich has seen for years - the revamp of Anglia Square - and a decision is just weeks away. How did we get to this point? And what is being planned? Dan Grimmer reports.

A Norfolk couple who are house builders have won a national award at a ceremony likened to the ‘Oscars of the construction industry.’

It is a derelict, fire-hit site that has been sitting empty for a decade in Thorpe St Andrew.

Plans have been submitted to Norwich City Council to create a 10 bedroom house.

From bringing ‘ghost’ ponds back to life, to environmentally switched-on schoolchildren and energy-efficient social housing - projects in Norfolk have been celebrated with awards.

What’s the importance to a firm of feedback? Ben Rivett, of Savills’ Norwich residential team, discusses.

Situated at the end of a no-through road, you would never have reason to find this magnificent house, originally the home of an esteemed Norwich coroner. And yes, it really is on a hill! Property editor Caroline Culot had the joy of visiting Hill House in Bramerton, for sale for £2.5million.

From controversy to accolade - a Norwich housing development is up for an award.

This mid terraced house was bought at auction last year and the owners have completely renovated it, transforming it inside, and have now put it back on the market for sale for a guide price of £595,000.

Meet the Editor

Caroline Culot

Email
Twitter

I am the property editor in charge of delivering some exciting and informative content within Archant’s varied titles. We have 16-17 pages of stories, features and columns in the EDP Property supplement out every Friday free in your EDP so please don’t miss it.