Today marks the first day of a ‘new normal’ for England’s property market. High Street estate agents have been given the orange light to open again. We say ‘orange’ because it’s not quite the ‘green’ light in that social distancing measures will still be in place.
What it does mean, however, is that viewings will be allowed to resume – both for selling and letting. The new guidance will also be a driving force for removals firms to restart, while surveyors are expected to resurface by the end of the week.
This freeing up of lockdown measures will bring relief to thousands of home owners and landlords in England. Towards the end of April, property website Zoopla reckoned there were more than 45,000 individuals and families who had been forced to put moving in plans on hold due to the coronavirus pandemic. The value of those sales was estimated to be worth around £82bn.
Meanwhile, it might be good news for English movers but those planning to locate anywhere else in the UK will be sorely disappointed. That’s because in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, the property market remains shut – thanks to differing lockdown rules.
This begs the question, will people in England feel safe venturing out again? The fact that we have all been cooped up indoors for so long is likely to encourage people to get out and view new properties, say many analysts in the industry. And, indeed, online portals have seen a surge in traffic of up to one fifth in recent days. And, anyhow, for those who still feel a little tentative about mixing with others, there are plenty of video and online viewings to sign up to. A final physical viewing must be carried out though to make property sale transactions legally viable.
Some analysts are predicting that house hunting priorities will also have changed for many buyers and renters. Where in the past a spare bedroom was a luxury, for many it will now prove to be very much an essential. This is especially the case for those who plan on working from home, at least some of the time, on a more permanent basis. The coronavirus scare will also have made properties with gardens more favourable – for families in particular.
A hit to personal finances will probably also result in more price haggling when it comes to property buying and selling, say those in the industry.
Meanwhile, both the property and construction industries (the latter returned to work this week), have always been seen as reflective of the country’s economic situation. Kickstarting both, it’s hoped, will help quells fears of an on-going recession over the next few months (even if that economic downturned is short-lived).
Interested in letting or renting? Then do get in touch with the team here at Griffin Lettings. As professional online estate agents, we offer a property listing package starting at just £19.95. We also offer plenty of advice and tips to first-time renters, couples and families. Why not let us help you find your perfect rental today? Call 0345 561 0050 for email us via our contact page.