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swervy_ervy

St Albans Seems Very Busy At The Moment

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I'm trying to book some viewing to houses in central st albans this weekend and they don't have space to put me in! Damn, looks like plenty of people are getting sucked in to this good-time-to-buy argument (myself (half) included). House prices are up in June too and viewing per sale down. Bit of an **** really.

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This does'nt make sense as shown on my earlier thread actual sales in the "AL" postcodes are approx 58% down this year !!

They really should be working a 3 day week.

Maybe that's why they can't fit you in, they spend the rest of the week on the golf course !!

Seriously though, I don't expect St. Albans to be one of the hardest hit areas in the coming crash, last time round it seemed to be one of the last places to drop, and one of the first places to rise again.

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Come on people !!

There must be more of you out there who have an interest, or some knowledge of the Herts area.

What are your views of where we are now, and where do you think we may be in 2 - 3 years time.

I suspect that most of the Home counties, Commuter belt, Stockbroker belt, whatever you want to call it will be affected in a similar way.

But by how much, and over what time period ?

Sales down by approx. 58% this year something is happening !!

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I have noted that St Albans asking prices had been reducing slowly but gradually between February and June. These reductions appear to have slowed down in July and August.

Its difficult to call the St Albans market at the moment. Rental yields are absurdly low (3.5 - 4% appear typical gross yields for flats). However there doesn't seem much sense of concern at present, possibly because prices appear reasonable compared with the (asking) prices for new build flats in Hatfield.

Does anyone know about the experiences of people trying to sell in the current market? Q1 2005 sales were 30% down on 2004 levels so there must be concerned vendors out there.

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I have noted that St Albans asking prices had been reducing slowly but gradually between February and June. These reductions appear to have slowed down in July and August.

Its difficult to call the St Albans market at the moment. Rental yields are absurdly low (3.5 - 4% appear typical gross yields for flats). However there doesn't seem much sense of concern at present, possibly because prices appear reasonable compared with the (asking) prices for new build flats in Hatfield.

Does anyone know about the experiences of people trying to sell in the current market? Q1 2005 sales were 30% down on 2004 levels so there must be concerned vendors out there.

I know of two couples currently trying to sell in the St. Albans area, neither are having any luck.

One has been on the market for about 3 months with lots of viewing but no offers.

The other has been on the market for over 18 months !! Nice big house much improved, and much reduced.

They recently accepted an offer for £155k less than the EA originally recommended they ask for it. Yes you did read that right £155 k less !!

Unfortunately even this has since fallen through.

I guess you are referring to the new builds on the old airfield in Hatfield - Completely plastic and characterless IMO, and I think places like Hatfield will be hit very much harder in the coming crash, than St. Albans will be.

Edited by FaTB

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Hello what is average price for St Albans at the moment for 3 bed house.

Thanks

Over in Berkhamsted (West Herts) houses are still selling but I doubt all are acheiving full asking price. My neigbour sold her 2 bed terrace for £237 last month (sale not yet completed), asking price was £249.950.

Some of the houses, which have been on the market for a while, have been reduced. For example:

http://www.rightmove.co.uk/viewdetails-899...pa_n=1&tr_t=buy

I believe this one was on for around £250 originally, now £239.950

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I've been following the asking prices on Rightmove for flats (up to £170k). Over the last few weeks there has been a notable decrease in the number of flats for sale. In the blocks around the station there has been a decrease in estate agents boards.

This doesn't seem to match experiences elsewhere in the country. Is there something unusual happening in St Albans?

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From my own experience, St Albans is a nice area. It has decent links into London aswell as being reasonably close to the A1 and M25. I had a look at prices over the past couple of years and they haven't moved that much.

I noticed that there are quite a lot of students around town whenever I've been out for a beer up there, not sure which uni's they go to.

Edited by Tron

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Hi FaTB,

Thanks for the nod to this thread.

A few years ago, I used to rent (with friends) on Victoria street, near lattimore road. The house was riddled with problems, such as faulty electrics and plaster on the floor instead of the walls. Yet about a year ago the owner tried to sell it for £380,000. Luckily, no one took the plung and it came off the market. :lol:

I struggle to find a nice area close to the town that is worth giving up my money for. The conservation area is pretty but that's about all it is, at the weekends it decended on by drunks (ok I may be one of them) and it's a fight to park your car (especially now the traffic warden problem has been resolved).

There does seem to be a lot of flats being built and they seem to aimed at the city worker as many are priced at well over £300,000. I believe there's quite a glut of flats already in St Albans, but with the talk of job losses in the city, this could be the straw that broke the camels back? What do you think?

Laughing Goat

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[quote name=laughing_goat

There does seem to be a lot of flats being built and they seem to aimed at the city worker as many are priced at well over £300' date='000. I believe there's quite a glut of flats already in St Albans, but with the talk of job losses in the city, this could be the straw that broke the camels back? What do you think ?

As you say there are alot of overpriced new build flats in the area now, that don't seem to be exactly getting snapped up, but then I don't think much is moving in the area at the moment.

And don't get me started on the bloody Traffic wardens they are a complete pain in the ar*e !!

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Have just started seeing first signs of movement (downwards that is !!)

A 2 bed flat in Redbourn Herts. that I was interested in back in Feb. is still on the market but has now been reduced from £167500 to £163000. (yes 7 months on)

Not much but its going in the right direction.

Also have seen a two bed flat off the Hatfield road in St. Albans up for £139000

flats in same block have been advertised for as much as £155000 not that long ago !!

Anybody else noticed similar reductions in the area ?

Or places that have stuck on the market a long time ?

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Have just started seeing first signs of movement (downwards that is !!)

A 2 bed flat in Redbourn Herts. that I was interested in back in Feb. is still on the market but has now been reduced from £167500 to £163000. (yes 7 months on)

Not much but its going in the right direction.

Also have seen a two bed flat off the Hatfield road in St. Albans up for £139000

flats in same block have been advertised for as much as £155000 not that long ago !!

Anybody else noticed similar reductions in the area ?

Or places that have stuck on the market a long time ?

At last! I never understood the attraction of paying a fortune to live on Hatfield road. A college of mine used to live there and find a new scratch on his car every day!

My take on Harpenden

18 months ago, I would say that most property in Harpenden ricocheted off the agents books, now the mood is far more subdued, some property is still selling but the days of off loading your ex-council house for £400,000 are well and truly over. Most people take their house off the market if it doesn't sell but a signifigant few are dropping there prices.

There's been a house on Coleswood road (Southdown) which went on the market about 2 years ago for over £300,000 (can't remember the exact figure as it was so long ago), it's last price was about £285,000. Also there are alot of homes in the Broadstone road area that have been grossly over priced at around £350,000, which have mainly been taken off the market as they're not selling, but one was taken down to well under £300,000, still not sold. I've noticed that usually, if a house doesn't sell it the owners will take it off the market rather drop its price signifigantly. So, it doesn't look like many need to sell yet.

Some of the estate agents amaze me. One, who shall remain nameless (don't worry I'm weak so I'll tell you sooner or later), had a house with parking for sale on Queens road for £360,000 but didn't sell, it was later dropped to £335,000 and sold. About 4 weeks later a house 3 doors down, exactly the same, except it had no parking, came on the market with the same agent for £400,000!?! Oddly, it didn't sell, the vendor couldn't possibly drop the price, so it came off the market. Surely the agents would have known this wasn't going to sell and realised that the money they spent on advertising would be wasted?

Anyway, I had the property paper delivered last night but didn't get time to read it. My sense of urgency on these matters has certainly dwindled in the last 12 months, quite often they go STRB (straight to recycling bin - Laughing 'eco-warrior' Goat).

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I've been tracking all St. Albans properties for sale with Connells since the start of July. I haven't yet done analysis on the data, but the spreadsheet is attached, with conditional formatting highlighting price reductions.

EDIT: I can't work out how to attach files (Mozilla) - I'll have a look tomorrow...

Edited by mjdazeley

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I've been tracking all St. Albans properties for sale with Connells since the start of July. I haven't yet done analysis on the data, but the spreadsheet is attached, with conditional formatting highlighting price reductions.

EDIT: I can't work out how to attach files (Mozilla) - I'll have a look tomorrow...

Great i'll be very interested to see them ! Cheers mjdazeley

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Mmmmm. Here we are FaTB. Couldn't attach an Excel spreadsheet, so a zipped copy attached.

The spreadsheet has a Connells property ID for each row, and each column represents a day since July.

Use the following link to check out individual proprties:

http://www.connells.co.uk/search_propertycode.asp

Good luck and let me know what you think. To me it seems that there's a steady stream of reductions, though nothing too dramatic.

FYI, my unhealthy interest in the St. Albans market is a result of my STR.

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Hmmm... Lots of numbers making my eyes go blurry.... But Iv'e had a couple of beers.

As you say not much at the moment, but its going the right way !

Some of the higher value properties have had 15 or 20k knocked off, it just shows you that when EA's value a place they just pick a figure out of the air.

Also remember this is just the beginning, when the ball gets rolling through next year, your spreadsheets will be covered in red !!

Good work keep it up !!

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FaTB

There's really not much to keep up as I wrote a small VB app to whip the data from the site each evening.

I'll post the latest data every couple of weeks or so, and might get around to some analysis too..........

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There's really not much to keep up as I wrote a small VB app to whip the data from the site each evening.

Thats really clever. Is it possible to do the same with the rightmove website, including the postcode in the download? This may allow a comparison with Land Registry data to check achieved prices.

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I initially tried the rightmove website, but there were login issues with the code. I've done logins before using VB, but I wanted a quick and dirty app, and the Connells site is easy to access.

I may have another go in a week or so...

<RANT>

I should add that the use of Connells' site was attractive to me as the Connells St. Albans office has just taken (??shafted/swindled??) £4k from me for 'selling' my flat. The service was truely shocking. 21 weeks from offer to completion on a sale that had no chain and few complications, pertinent staff going on long holidays without telling me, blah, blah, blah. I therefore felt that they owed me at least something useful, in the form of some data.

</RANT>

Edited by mjdazeley

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I initially tried the rightmove website, but there were login issues with the code. I've done logins before using VB, but I wanted a quick and dirty app, and the Connells site is easy to access.

I may have another go in a week or so...

<RANT>

I should add that the use of Connells' site was attractive to me as the Connells St. Albans office has just taken (??shafted/swindled??) £4k from me for 'selling' my flat. The service was truely shocking. 21 weeks from offer to completion on a sale that had no chain and few complications, pertinent staff going on long holidays without telling me, blah, blah, blah. I therefore felt that they owed me at least something useful, in the form of some data.

</RANT>

I had an 'experience' with them once. They were invited to value my flat a few years ago, along with Ashton's, Allsops and Frosts (I chose Ashton's as they were the cheapest and had the widest reaching advertising). Anyway, when I phoned Connell's to set up the valuation we had the following conversation;

Agent: "Will we be the first or the last agents to come around?"

Me:"You'll be the last"

Agent: "We normally prefer to be the first"

Me: "Well, I'm afraid, I can't do anything about that now, I've already made arrangements with the other agents"

Agent: "How about I come around now?"

Me: "I'm afraid I'm not home, the date I have given you is the earliest I can do." (it was about two days later).

Agent: "Can you assure me that you will not take on another agent before we visit?"

Me:"Yes, I will not be making any decisions on agents until the following Monday."

Anyway, when the time came for their "boy" to value the flat, he seemed to think it was worth £20,000 more than all the other agents did. But even more scary, told me he had people waiting on the end of the phone to view the place that night, offering to phone one of them there and then. I told him I was going to leave it a few days before I made my decision as I'd explained to him on the phone earlier in the week. He then started offering me incentives such as a dedicated agent to deal with any issues I have (kinda thought I'd get that anyway) and a discounted solicitor service (I wasn't sure if this was low cost or the solicitor was not supposed to be practicing law).

I was relieved when he left.

LG

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I note that a lot of people on this thread mention the coming crash.  I have not been on this board as long as some ... How long have people been saying "forthcoming crash"??

I think its fair to say alot of people have been worried about house prices since around 1999, but I for one did not see the further boom in prices coming post 2001.

But I believe this site has only been up 18 months at most.

But regardless of weather we were right or wrong in the past, or if its taken alot longer to turn than many thought, surely you can't still believe in the "soft landing" theory or that prices will take off again ?

I also believe as i've posted before that it will be a gradual slide down over 3- 5 years, it will only be referred to as a "crash" after the event.

I'm confused as to why so many people still believe prices can't / won't come down, even people who are old enough to remember the early 90's.

Do they really have very short memories or do they just believe what they want to believe ?

Edited by FaTB

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I note that a lot of people on this thread mention the coming crash.  I have not been on this board as long as some ... How long have people been saying "forthcoming crash"??

Hi Apollo1966,

I remember in 1999 thinking, the prices were too high. So I suppose I've been waiting since then, I did own a property during this period.

As stated by FaTB, these things can take a few years to happen. It's improtant to remmember that HPI have been rising for about 10 years, it's not going to fall back to something sensible overnight.

LG

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  • 301 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
      • up 2.5%
      • up 5%



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