What will property buyers want in 2024? Our New Year predictions
With New Year celebrations now firmly behind us, it’s time to give some thought to where the London property market may be headed in 2024.
In December, Zoopla reported above-average levels of home sales in London. Now, figures from Rightmove show that demand for property was 19 per cent higher in the first two weeks of January than it was a year ago.
With interest rates finally easing and mortgage approvals defying the forecasts, this seems like a good time to sell your property and buy a new home. But before you get swept away on a wave of “New Year, new start” energy, let’s explore what property buyers will be looking for in 2024.
Value for money
Over the last eighteen months, we’ve seen a swing away from the pandemic-led sellers’ market towards a buyers’ market.
London house values dipped last year, but prices remained relatively steady thanks to a shortage of available properties. Housing stock still remains at low levels, but Rightmove notes that the number of new listings has recently increased by 15 per cent.
We’re unlikely to see a flood of properties entering the market in 2024, but it’s a fact that buyers will have more property options to choose from. Therefore vendors who set a call-to-action price, designed to attract buyers, will stand more chance of a successful sale.
When there is more competition, it’s vital to give your property the edge. One of the ways you can do that is to make sure it is well presented. Follow these guidelines to show your property at its photogenic best:
- clean and declutter, moving furniture to maximise space
- add a fresh coat of paint where necessary, using neutral colours
- bring in light by opening curtains, use mirrors to enhance daylight and position lamps in darker corners
- deal with any obvious flaws such as broken tiles, chipped sinks or stained carpets.
Need more advice? Our experienced sales teams in Clapham, Kennington, London Bridge and Westminster know what buyers are looking for and can advise you on the finer points of presentation.
The great outdoors
Properties with outdoor space are always in high demand, so if you have a garden, a patio, a roof terrace or a balcony, you can expect more interest from buyers. In winter and early spring, outdoor spaces probably won’t be looking their best, but you can brighten them up by tidying, pruning and introducing some pots of flowering bulbs.
Good natural light is another selling point, so make the most of patio doors and windows by keeping them clean and tying back curtains to let the daylight in.
Cheaper energy bills
Domestic fuel prices have risen by 51 per cent since the winter of 2021/22, and this month they increased yet again, pushing the average household bill up to £1,928 per year. These changes have turned energy-saving appliances from ‘nice-to-haves’ to ‘must-haves’.
Your home could be more attractive to potential buyers if you’ve installed an ultra-efficient boiler, solar panels or triple-glazed windows. However, while buyers generally welcome energy-saving features, green credentials may not make a significant difference to the final selling price.
Don’t be tempted to spend thousands on installing a new system without first obtaining an accurate property valuation.
An ideal location
A desirable location is still top of the list for most buyers, who value easy access for work, travel and leisure. London Bridge, with its fast onward connections to Kings Cross and St Pancras, plus rail links that extend throughout the south, is a convenient travel hub for Londoners.
Buyers also look for locations where high quality shopping and dining experiences are close to hand. Sophisticated Westminster, with its distinctive blend of historic and contemporary architecture, is a close neighbour to some of London’s most exclusive areas, including Belgravia, Sloane Square and Kensington.
Young professionals are keen to live near vibrant locations such as Bermondsey Street, with its wide range of independent shops, bars and restaurants. Professionals who value easy access to central London choose Kennington. Its proximity to Westminster makes it a favoured home for politicians, many of whom are attracted by the 18th century townhouses on Cleaver Square. Kennington is also renowned for friendly pubs, independent shops and green open spaces, while the Oval Cricket Ground is the ultimate destination for cricket fans.
Will the election affect the London property market?
General elections aren’t usually thought to affect house prices, but the next one – currently expected in the autumn – may be different. That’s because polls indicate that the election is likely to usher in a new government.
The policies put in place by the incoming government will determine what happens to the property market. We will, of course, be watching the news carefully towards the end of the year and commenting on any new developments.
Spring and summer of 2024 could, therefore, be an optimum time to sell your home. As an independent, family-run agency founded in the 1990s, we can offer you the experience, personal attention and end-to-end service needed in today’s competitive marketplace.
Why not get in touch and start the year with an unbiased property valuation? Call us for an expert, no obligation valuation today.