For many families, the decision to move house can take a long time and feature many twists and turns, an unhealthy dash of uncertainty and a variety of emotions along the way. I should know, I'm just moving house, I am that soldier…
In the current market with very little choice of property on the market to purchase, many potential vendors are sat on their hands, unable to move because there is nothing to buy, or unable to move because they think they can’t sell. From conversations we’re having with buyers and sellers, the biggest issue in Nottingham is simple, it’s the lack of supply and the lack of choice.
Many people deep down really do want to move, and they’ve outgrown their current home but there is simply nowhere to go. The same problem applies to downsizers – they’re rattling around the family home with the kids now married off and living elsewhere, but there is nothing suitable that jumps out that has convinced them that they can make the switch.
Shortage of new houses for sale in Sherwood, Carrington, & Mapperley Park.
In Nottingham, the problem is getting quite acute with very little in the way of new homes being built for the past 10 years. Take Carrington & Sherwood for instance. Here, you can probably count on your hands the number of properties built in the last 10 years, and if you look at new properties sold in Mapperley Park the problem is even worse - you can probably quite safely put one hand in your jacket pocket whilst you count!
Picking up a new build property currently means heading further out of town to Edwards Lane near the City Hospital, or moving a mile or two further out of town to Mapperley Plains. You can be adding a good 10 to 15 minutes onto your rush-hour commute.
The chicken and egg approach to moving house (find a buyer first and then go and buy what is available at the time) isn’t suitable for many people, as they need to stay close to family or schools. Renting somewhere short-term doesn’t appeal to most people, and with the same shortage of stock now affecting the rental market, it’s often not achievable anyway, so what on earth should you do?
Take strategic approach and do some research
Know what you want, and get real – The key to moving at the moment is knowing what you want, and also knowing the market. You may want 4 bedrooms, a swanky kitchen, good schools, a garage, and a large garden, but that maybe unrealistic in the area that you want to move to – have a look at your wish list and separate the ‘must-haves’ from the ‘would-likes’. You might find that your list of possible homes just doubled.
Get Creative – Can you in fact purchase a 3 bed that has a large plot and make it into a 4?
Make the most of what you have – I don’t mean stay-put, I mean can you improve your own home and add extra value that will increase its saleability? If you can, maybe you’ll have a bit more equity as well as a higher budget.
Does your dream move need to be done in stages? – If you’re looking to move up the ladder, and particularly if you’re chasing the best schools, have you considered a short-term move to get you at least into the right catchment. Areas with good schools are particularly sought after so you can buy in the confidence that you will always have a very sellable asset. Maybe consider purchasing something smaller than you’d like initially, add a loft conversion or an extension to add value, and then move again in a few years’ time?
Talk to your IFA – Is there a different way of skinning the cat? Maybe you can rent your house out temporarily so you aren’t in a chain scenario?
Talk to your Estate Agent
If you’re thinking of moving house this summer, talk to your local Estate Agent now! Ask them for some honest advice. Don’t feel as though you shouldn’t speak to them now, even if you’re not planning on moving for a while. Your Estate Agent will be able to tell you the best time to come to market, and they’ll be able to give you indicative prices if you’re thinking of extending your home. A good Estate Agent will understand what you’re going through, and they should be able to offer you some sage advice.
Even in a tough market, there are still opportunities for people to move home. It just might take a bit of creativity to make it happen.
Give me a call if you’d like to talk. A problem shared is a problem halved, so they say.