The new year looks set to mark the start of an extremely busy period for the property market, with both landlords and sellers having plenty of reasons for optimism.
Local property specialist Leaders believes consistent growth, high demand and remarkably quick sales and lets will be features of the sector throughout 2016.
Jane Wilkinson, lettings director at Leaders, says: “2015 was a year of exceptionally strong demand in the property market and, having got off to a very busy start in January, we expect more of the same in 2016.
“Tenant demand is sure to remain extremely high, with renting a home always a popular option among those who either cannot afford to buy or simply value the flexibility it offers. This will help landlords to achieve a good return on their property and encourage more investors to the market."
A spike in buy-to-let activity is also forecast for the early months of the new year, following confirmation of a three per cent stamp duty on investment properties in the government’s recent Autumn Statement.
Jane explains: “The additional stamp duty will be charged from April 1st, so there is sure to be a rush in investors pushing through property purchases ahead of this date in order to avoid the levy.
“Regardless of the stamp duty changes, we are confident the buy-to-let market will remain strong and appealing in the long term, as investors know it still delivers a very attractive return in comparison with other types of investment.
“We are already working with a number of investors looking to expand their property portfolios ahead of the stamp duty changes and we are delighted to offer a bespoke property selection and purchase service to other people aiming to do the same.”
Kevin Shaw, national sales director at Leaders, is similarly optimistic about the sales market’s prospects for the next 12 months.
“The sales sector looks set to be extremely busy in 2016, with pent-up demand likely to transform into a rise in activity over the coming months. We believe a shortage of properties to buy during 2015 discouraged some people from moving last year, but many will use the new year as a chance to get their plans back on track,” he explains.
“High demand will always push prices up, and right now demand is booming. I expect house prices to continue to rise over the coming months, albeit at a slower pace than they did last year. It means people who opt to sell in 2016 can expect to achieve a great price for their home.”
The new year is the ideal time for anybody thinking of selling or letting a property to do so as it provides an invaluable opportunity to take advantage of a surge in demand. For advice on all matters relating to selling or letting, please contact your local Leaders branch.