Against the backdrop of Brexit, UK housing market figures make for bleak reading. According to the Halifax, one of Britain’s biggest mortgage lenders, house prices across the country dropped almost 3% (2.9%) in January from the month before, as uncertainty deterred potential purchasers.
Equally, the BBC reported in January that more than a quarter of Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) members thought sales would be down throughout the first quarter of 2019 – the gloomiest prediction for more than 20 years.
At the same time, the yearly rate of growth dipped noticeably, while the average house price fell to £223,691, despite a 2.5% rise in prices at the very back end of last year. What’s more, this is the biggest monthly drop since April 2018, when there was a 3.1% tumble.
Although annual figures show more stability, and numbers of first-time buyers remain strong, the monthly figures demonstrate greater volatility. The months ahead will clearly be key for the market, with a lot of the short-term focus on whatever impact Britain’s departure from the EU may turn out to have.
All the uncertainty has led to a surge in homeowners choosing to improve their properties rather than up sticks and move. Less than a year ago, the National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA) cited a report from specialist insurer Hiscox revealing that, in 2013, a mere 3% decided to renovate instead of moving. In 2018, that figure had leapt to 15% – 25% among younger property owners.
A range of reasons was given, from high property prices and Stamp Duty fees to a sluggish market, concerns over possible rate rises and, inevitably, Brexit. Tight household finances have also been blamed.
At the same time, local councils have seen a rise of 29% in homeowners’ requests for planning permission UK-wide in the decade to 2018.
Hiscox described a decision to ‘improve not move’ as ‘the new normal for homeowners. Many see home renovations as an easier or more economical alternative to moving.’
Whether you’re thinking of selling up soon or just want to add value to your home as an investment, make sure you help your property achieve its full potential.
Replacement windows and doors offer homeowners a number of immediate benefits beyond pushing up the price of your property, including:
What’s more, designs have improved in recent years, to reduce heat loss still further, and to incorporate the newest thermal glazing. So it shouldn’t be hard to find a smart-looking product that suits your property to a T.
At Paradise Windows, we offer a range of doubled glazed replacement windows and doors across Oxfordshire, from composite doors to sliding sash windows and much more. With more than two decades’ experience under our belts, we have a cast-iron reputation for supplying high-quality, attractively priced models everywhere from Wantage to Bicester, Banbury and beyond.
Remember the compelling reasons for improving not moving at the moment – and get in touch today.