Today's Conveyancer Podcast

Cross-market data shows ‘optimistic signs’ for summer but still ‘reactive to external shocks’

The latest cross-market data from Landmark shows a “cautiously optimistic” market – although one that is still “highly reactive to external shocks” such as fluctuating interest rates. 

Landmark’s newly released Q1 Residential Property Trends report offers a comprehensive analysis of property data from the first quarter of the year, examining the entire residential property transaction chain.

According to the data, supply is particularly encouraging, with listings on average 5% higher than 2019 benchmark levels throughout Q1 – an improvement on previous quarters where supply tracked the 2019 benchmark. This stronger supply signals a positive start to 2024 and indicates that demand is likely to pick up in Q2 as strong supply starts to filter through as sellers become buyers.

However, the data shows that while there has been an increase in the availability of more competitively priced mortgage products in recent months, constrained affordability continues to prevent demand from progressing, with SSTC and completion levels down circa 40% on 2019 levels.

This increase in more competitively priced mortgage products can be seen in high valuation volumes at the start of Q1, with both January and February volumes considerably higher than the same period last year (20% and 15% higher respectively).

However, March volumes cooled in response to lenders re-pricing throughout March – decreasing more than would be expected in typical market conditions, suggesting a degree of reactivity in the market.   Simon Brown, CEO of Landmark Information Group, said:

“This quarter has seen a continuation of the green shoots of recovery we saw towards the end of last year, with stronger listings painting a positive picture for the summer.

Despite this cautious optimism, it’s clear that the market still needs stability, reacting more extremely to volatility in mortgage rates than we would typically see in a healthy market. If rates decrease – and then crucially, stabilise for a sustained period of time – there are clear indications that pent-up demand could start to flow through into the summer period.”

In a special edition of the Today’s Conveyancer Podcast Landmark Estate Agency Services MD Ben Robinson, and Ochresoft MD Rob Gurney join host David Opie for a review of the latest Property Trends Report, covering January to March 2023, and what we might expect in the coming months.

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