Prime Central London boutique property consultancy, Alexander Millett, has seen a renaissance in the house market in Prime Central London, with £5m+ house sales up and the average number of days on the market reduced.
Data analysed by Alexander Millett shows that £5m+ house sales were up 140% comparing Jan-April 2021 vs 2019, whilst flat sales were down by 27% during the same period. The average number of days on the market for houses also reduced from 217 in the year to May 2020, to 186 days in the year to May 2021 – a 15% reduction.
Alexander Millett, founder of the firm, comments: “Houses are very much in demand at the moment, with flats having fallen out of favour, largely thanks to the pandemic. Pre-pandemic, people were less pre-occupied about the outside space that came with their London home, largely due to the inconsistency of the English weather and the ability to go out for dinner whenever they wished.
“The last year has completely changed how we view our homes – an area in which to work, as well as outside space, has become an absolute must for many buyers. The concept of entertaining yourself or friends at home has become a key, if not the main, selling feature of a lot of homes we now deal with. As such, a property’s outdoor entertaining space and gardens have become paramount to the London housing market.”
He adds: “We are seeing house buyers being more decisive, wary that someone else may swoop in if they deliberate for too long. However, it is worth noting that the speed of a sale is very much dependant on the accuracy of the asking price.
“This desire to buy is a very different sentiment from the Brexit malaise we saw after the 2016 referendum. Following the leave vote, the Prime Central London market suffered a type of paralysis due to the general negative sentiment. There was no urgency as in essence, buyers were reluctant to make decisions – the perception was that the market would decline or at least do nothing. We are pleased to see that the reverse is happening now. What is particularly interesting is that this activity has been generated by domestic demand or by people pre-settled in the UK.
“That said, there is a significant part of the usual Prime Central London market that has not travelled to the UK for over a year due to travel restrictions. As a firm, we estimate that this makes up another 50% of the buyer demographic. Once the travel restrictions lift, we expect to see a significant increase in activity in the London market, with interest in flats set to surge again.”