Optimistic for 2019
Its that time of year again. I am on yet another diet that hopefully will last more than 2 weeks! I am trying to get fit again, you may even have the pleasure of seeing my extremely attractive sweaty self plodding the streets trying to run or waddle.
Yes, after the Christmas indulgences the New Year is an ideal time to take stock and refocus. Obviously, I like everyone else set unrealistic new years resolutions to run marathons or lose 3 stone and they have all been long forgotten weeks before the Easter Eggs are starting to appear in the shops.
There is only one thing I would really like to achieve this year. CERTAINTY! As has been well documented by me and many others last year saw a great deal of uncertainty in the housing market which understandably led to people worrying about selling or buying houses locally and nationally.
As I have said many times before we are extremely fortunate in Leigh on Sea that our popularity (and happiness obviously) has ensured that prices haven’t dropped a great deal compared to other parts of the country and even county but like everywhere else we have seen a sharp reduction in the amount of transactions that took place in 2018.
This is down to one reason and one reason only. BREXIT, yes, the B word that if you are anything like me you are sick of by now? In my opinion Brexit shouldn’t have a huge and long lasting impact on the housing market, especially locally, but like any other market it is affected by the uncertainty that it brings.
Over 2 years ago just over half of us (you know who you are!) voted to leave the EU. When the vote took place and the campaigning before I don’t think that we were given the truth about the implications of leaving (or staying to be honest) and 2 years on I still don’t think that we are being told the truth or even more worrying the so called experts don’t actually know what is going to happen!
With just over 2 months to go before we are due to leave we don’t know if a deal is going to be done, a new deal will be renegotiated, a new Conservative prime minister will be put in place, we will leave without a deal, we will have a new referendum to see if we have changed our mind or a general election to see if Labour can do any better (which I doubt).
With that kind of backdrop and uncertainty I cant really blame people for waiting to see what might happen before making such a huge decision such as moving house.
Fortunately, there is a glimmer of hope a ray of light at the end of the tunnel that thankfully has nothing to do with the politicians. As ever, all that you need to do is leave to the great British public. If you tell them that they cant or shouldn’t do something then of course they will kick back and do exactly what they want to do instead.
As I have said 2018 saw a fall in transactions but inevitably there are always people that have to or need to move. Some of these people wont of done because of the negativity in the press but there comes a time when they just have to bite the bullet and get on with it.
Like any other type of market it doesn’t take much for the housing market to kick start and see that positivity coming back. In a small town like ours it can be as little as a few houses coming to the market to get people talking and excited again in moving it could even be a single landmark style property that comes to the market get loads and loads of interest and sells for a top price to put any fears of negativity well on the back burner.
Thankfully we have already started to see some green shoots of recovery. In the short time we have been back after New Year we have taken loads of new properties on to the market (more than 1 a day so far!) ranging from 1 bedroom flats near the Broadway, right through the spectrum to 5 bedroom detached houses on the Marine Estate. These properties are getting loads of interest and astute buyers are already snapping them up.
We can always rely on the British public to buck the trend and thanks to this I am quietly optimistic for 2019. Lets just agree to leave it to us and let the politicians argue amongst themselves about the B word that we must never mention!