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My 2014 local house market review & 2015 predictions

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As 2014 draws to a close, it seems an appropriate time to reflect on the local property market scene, dust of the crystal ball and attempt to take a look into the future! 

2014 was generally a good year for home owners in the Cheadle area with prices up 11% on the previous year.  Average prices have now returned to the pre market crash levels of 2007/8 – £229,907* against 2007 levels of £226,501. Cheadle Hulme is still the highest in the SK8 area at £253,986.

Interestingly our average time from listing a property to sale came down dramatically from 133 days in 2013 to just 74 days in 2014!

Semi detached properties remain the most popular, probably because of the excellent local schools, reaching an average price of £210,764. We saw strong demand for properties on the Boundary estate and as always the prestigious roads close to the centre of the village such as Broadway, Highgrove Road and Warren Avenue. Detached properties averaged £328, 527 and there was resurgent demand for high end properties around Daylesford Road and Schools Hill, whilst the terraced market remained our bread and butter, with prices averaging £167,773 – we sold numerous properties on Jackson Street, New Hey Road and Bulkeley Road, whilst there was a clamour amongst the young professional buyers for properties on Frances Street, Massie Street Mary Street and behind the church in the Hall Street conservation area.

So what does 2015 hold in store? On the face of it, the signs remain very positive. The Chancellor announced recently in his Autumn statement an overdue reform of stamp duty, which will result in the vast majority of buyers in our area paying less duty when buying a property. Also the new government  starter home initiative for first time buyers under the age of 40, offering a 20% discount on new homes could have a knock on effect and bring more second steppers to our market.

Inflation remains low and Stockport has one of the highest employment rates in the North West.

Having said all of the above, there is a flip side and potentially one or two clouds on the horizon. Despite mortgage lending figures being up in 2014, lenders continue to make it difficult for the vast majority of borrowers, which is keeping a lid on buyer demand. There is also the spectre of interest rate rises at some point after the forthcoming general election.

The general election is looming in May 2015 and historically has an impact on the house market as less sellers are tempted to the market before the election, many preferring to adopt a “sit and wait” mentality as uncertainty usually creates nervousness and apathy.

Taking everything into consideration, given that the market in Cheadle perhaps doesn’t experience great highs or lows, such as London does, I feel we can be cautiously optimistic for the year ahead. There may be fewer properties brought to market in the first half of the year, which could force some upward pressure on prices, but this will be countered by the on going austerity measures from the Bank of England as the government do not want to see house prices spiralling out of control and pressure that would place on inflation.

Therefore I am forecasting more modest house price growth next year than this of between 5 and 8% – obviously things can change quickly and I will be keeping a close eye on the market and providing regular updates throughout 2015.

From a buying perspective it might be prudent to start your property search early in the New Year as many sellers may well be looking to do deals before the general election.  Savvy sellers may decide to take advantage of the lack of competition to secure a buyer, especially if making an onward purchase to hopefully secure it at a lower price.

If you would like any advice on where to position your property in the market, I would be happy to provide a free, current valuation of your property and discuss an individual marketing plan to help maximise the best price at a time convenient to you. I can be contacted on 0161 428 3663, email mk@mkiea.co.uk or on social media via twitter @MauriceKilbride

In the meantime if you prefer to get the festivities out of the way first! may I take this opportunity to wish you a very merry Christmas and a happy and prosperous New Year

*average price data from latest land registry figures November 2014

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