Country market in calm before the storm

Buyer appetite for country properties dipped this year, as more people look to holiday abroad.

Viewings for holiday homes were down by 16% against the five-year average in August.

However it seems the market could become busier over the next few months, as offers accepted were up 33% last month compared to the five-year average, as Knight Frank said buyers are looking to act before mortgage rates get any higher.

Charles Davenport, head of the Elmbridge region at Knight Frank, said: “The last 24 hours have felt like a return to May or June regarding the number of new instructions we have launched.

“Buyers have kept in touch while away on holiday and there’s huge appetite to buy, as many people have an eye on locking in a mortgage rate ahead of any further increases in the cost of borrowing.”

The amount of homes available for sale in the country market has been gradually increasing and at -25% in the 12 months to August vs the previous year, was the narrowest gap since October (please see chart below).

With Liz Truss now Prime Minister, the prognosis for the housing market will likely be dictated by the action taken to mitigate the cost of living and soaring energy prices.

Knight Frank said the announcement of a £100bn+ energy support package will likely boost buyer sentiment in the short-term.

If unemployment remains low and inflation is contained, it expects house price growth in the housing market to continue to moderate in the coming months but avoid a cliff-edge moment.


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