Buyer demand for chain-free homes surges

Demand for chain-free homes has gone through the roof, as buyers are happy to pay a significant premium for a fast and efficient purchase, according to property purchasing firm HBB Solutions.

UK chain-free property transactions amounted to £28.8 billion in the past year, £8.7 billion or 43% more than the previous year.

This increase has been created by both value and volume, as the number of chain-free transactions increased by 29% in the past year.

A property chain is a series of linked transactions that are established when people need the money from a sale to finance the purchase of a new home.

In a normal property chain situation all parties are reliant on the slowest link in the chain before exchanging contracts.

However if the seller is already wealthy enough to have bought another property it can quicken up the process, as they aren’t reliant on any party other than the buyer.

Chris Hodgkinson, managing director of HBB Solutions, said: “It’s clear that buyers are all too aware of how competitive today’s housing market is.

“Such heightened market activity alongside stagnant supply is not only driving house price growth, but it’s overloading the market and we’ve seen the time it’s taking to sell increase considerably during the pandemic, with the level of sales falling through also on the up.

“Chain-free homes provide an opportunity to avoid this lengthy transaction timeline and while they’ve always been popular, buyers are currently grabbing the chance of a chain-free purchase with both hands.

“This high demand coupled with the promise of a smoother, quicker transaction means that chain-free homes command a significantly higher asking price.

“As a result, we’ve seen both an increase in chain-free transactions, and a hike in the price paid for these properties, contribute to a significant increase in the total value of chain-free homes sold across the market.”

On a regional level, the UK’s chain-free hotspot is Northern Ireland, where the accumulated transactions value is £196.5 million – 67% more than the previous year.

HBB Solutions reckoned this number has skyrocketed thanks to rising house price growth.

In Scotland, total transaction value has grown by 58% while the number of sales has risen by 42%.

Every single region saw a rise in the value and quantity of transactions.

The North East saw the lowest rise, with a 23% increase in transaction values and a 16% surge in sales.

In England’s South East the value increase is 55%; in the East of England the value is up 49%; in the South West 48%; in Wales 44%; and in London 43%.

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