Is it a Buyers or Sellers Market?

The property landscape in 2024 has sparked a significant debate: are we in a buyers or sellers market? With the dynamics of the UK property market continuously evolving, understanding where the advantage lies is crucial for anyone looking to navigate these waters. Our latest video provides an in-depth analysis of the market trends and statistics from January 2024, aiming to shed light on this pivotal question for both potential buyers and sellers.

Ryder & Dutton

January 2024 Property Market Trends

The beginning of 2024 has seen a continuation of the positive momentum from the previous year, with several key indicators pointing towards an active market:

  • A nearly 25% increase in buyer registrations.
  • Property viewings arranged by our agents surged by almost a third.
  • A 20% rise in sales agreements compared to the same period last year.
These figures suggest a vibrant market, potentially leaning towards a sellers market. However, deeper insights reveal a more complex picture.

The Impact of Interest and Mortgage Rates

The recent stabilisation of interest rates and the reduction in mortgage rates have undeniably encouraged a wave of buyers to enter the market. This increased demand could typically signify a sellers market, but current conditions suggest we remain in a nuanced phase that could benefit buyers as well.

Supply and Demand Dynamics

The availability of properties for sale is a critical factor in determining market conditions. With the inventory of homes for sale being double that of 18 months ago and a 16% increase in new listings in January compared to the year before, the market is experiencing a shift. This increase in supply, especially in larger family homes, provides buyers with more options, potentially swinging the market in their favour.

Mortgage Costs and Buyer Behaviour

Despite a dip from the July 2023 peak, mortgage costs remain higher than they were two years ago, affecting buyer sensitivity to price. Zoopla's latest UK Housing Market Report highlights that around 20% of sellers have had to reduce their asking price by more than 10% to close a sale. This trend, alongside a 12% increase in price reductions in January year-on-year, signals a competitive environment where sellers are vying for buyers' attention.

Strategic Advice for Sellers in 2024

The influx of serious buyers not postponing their buying decisions presents an opportunity for sellers. Yet, achieving a sale requires realistic pricing to meet the market's demands. Despite the appearance of a sellers market, the competitive landscape and buyer sensitivity mean pricing strategy is more important than ever.

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