Insider’s guide to buying a new home

Clarke Gammon - October Newsletter


Steve Cook - Clarke Gammon

Market Update – October 2021
By Steve Cook – Partner Clarke Gammon 

With competition between buyers for new homes coming to the market at its highest ever level, and prices for these new properties also at record highs. Buyers often ask me what they need to do to be in the running for their dream home when it hits the market.

Here is my Insider’s guide to buying a new home

As is generally the case when demand for any product is higher than available supply, there is inevitably an increase in price, people get worked into a frenzy by the competition and regrettably, there will be disappointment, as for every winner, there are always those that loose out… The answer, is to become a power buyer.

How to become a Power Buyer

The ‘Power Buyer’ title has become the label used within the property media to describe highly motivated buyers that are ready and able to buy a property immediately. These are often buyers that have previously lost out in the competitive scrum for their dream home, and having been previously disappointed, decided to get serious and be ready next time.

To be considered a power buyer you must be chain-free i.e. no property to sell and in rented accommodation or living with family. With regard to finance, you would ideally have cash in the bank or with a small mortgage required.

For people looking to move that are not in this position, it is often difficult to compete with such motivated buyers.

For many, the prospect of selling before they’ve found another home is beyond consideration, and I have some sympathy with this position. Although, having seen the fallout from those with their hearts set on ‘the’ perfect new home, only to be outgunned by the power buyer, I have to say that this is something that I find myself recommending with regularity.

Will autumn cool the current market?

Whilst the headlines confirm that the current market is at its highest ever level, certainly in terms of both buyer demand and property asking prices. The underlying trend according to the recent ‘House price Index’ from property portal Rightmove, confirms that the national average house price of property coming on to the market is up by 0.3% on the previous month. This is a relatively lower increase compared with previous months.

More locally, the report confirms that in the south-east region, prices are increasing more strongly at 1.2% in the month and a considerable 8.5% year on year rise. Certainly anecdotally, within our own office network, in Guildford, Haslemere and Liphook this is the case.

Given the current levels of demand, it’s unlikely that we’ll see much of a slow down in the run-up to Christmas, as the chances of moving in before this are unlikely. So today’s buyers are already looking to the New Year, without having this emotional time requirement hanging over them.

Moving home before Christmas

I know that even the mention of Christmas in October is enough to make even the hardiest of us grown loudly, but it is a question I’m frequently asked. So, unless you have already found a new home and are fairly well progressed in the process, there is little realistic prospect of finding a new home and moving in before Christmas.

Even in normal times, we expect the process to take around 12 weeks, and with the current buying frenzy that’s been somewhat extended… So with less than 10 weeks until the big day, the chances are very, if not impossibly, slim…

With that vexed question behind us, shall we look to the New Year, argh I hear you say, well, perhaps we’ll look at this next month.

Until then, happy house hunting.

if you are considering a move in the near future, why not enter our Christmas prize draw to win a Christmas Hamper, simply arrange for us to value your home before the end of November to be in with the a chance…

If you require any further help or advice, please contact me at our Liphook Office.

Steve Cook
Partner Clarke Gammon


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