HOMEBUYERS are likely to ‘go for it’ in the New Year, says a Warwickshire estate agent.
A pre-Christmas surge in the number of people asking for home valuations has led to a flurry of properties coming onto the market in the New Year to cater for a continued appetite to move, according to Leamington-based ehB Residential.
December saw a 19 per cent rise in home valuations compared with the previous month across the UK, according to property portal Rightmove, with ehB’s own experience reflecting the increased demand.
The steep rise was partly fuelled by the sellers’ desire to capitalise on a festive Rightmove spike which sees searches double between Boxing Day and New Year’s Day every year. Last year saw around 42 million searches made by home hunters as they surfed the web while munching cold turkey and cranberry sandwiches.
Rightmove also predicts an increase in stock coming onto the market in 2022, and says a continued high demand-to-availability ratio will push up prices by around five per cent nationally over the year.
Properties in the West Midlands are likely to rise by seven per cent, it adds, as this is one of four regions in particularly high demand.
ehB Residential office manager Clive Thompson said: “The appetite to move house remains high and we can’t see this desire abating in 2022.
“With home or hybrid working likely to be a standard feature of day-to-day life for years to come, many buyers cite the need for an extra room as the key reason to move. Other criteria which came to the fore at the beginning of the pandemic – outdoor space, room for children who were spending more time within their own four walls and less need to live in easy-to-commute-from areas – are all as valid in 2022 as they were in 2020.
“We also sense that there are some buyers who will just decide to go for it. As we know, Christmas precipitates a lot of life-changing decisions. It can give people time to step back for a few days and think about what they really want in life. And often that’s moving to a space which is better suited to their needs.
“In fact, Zoopla’s latest monthly report states that around a fifth of home movers put working from home as the top reason for moving.”