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Guest Charlie The Tramp

As our own surveyor posted

surveyor Posted on: Sep 28 2005, 03:08 PM

Hello there! I still pop in to check the news and find some of the links to be very interesting. Unfortunately the standard of threads (Met Office predicts coldest winter etc) seem to be straw clutching in the extreme. However I think the question Charlie asked re. prices is probably of interest. Of course prices aren't still rising across the board. In the SE where I work, I get to speak to dozens of estate agents each week (well somebody's got to do it). It's been clear for this year that the market has stalled, record numbers of agreed sales are not completing, marketing times have grown (a year is now not uncommon), and asking prices have been coming down. As a general comment, I'd say about 10%. Volumes have gone through the floor, but the market is not entirely dead. I find that where I'm doing proper surveys and speak to the sellers and buyers, there's a good reason for moving, often older people downsizing, families moving through necessity of growing family, work reasons etc. Most seem to have significant equity, so a crash wouldn't affect them much.

Some lenders are in denial. I was recently asked why I ticked the 'prices falling' box. This was not the first such enquiry, and I was so bored with the question that I sent them 15 pages of reports from BBC, Bloomberg, Reuters, FT etc quoting everyone from Rightmove to the RICS. And guess what? They all said the 'F' word; Prices falling. So to any bull who's still in denial, either all these sources must be mistaken, or possibly you are.

A colleague came back from valuing a semi with annexe flat in Orpington today. On market a year ago at £425,000. Several agents and 12 months later now under offer at £300,000 for a quick sale. Hardly evidence of a rising market.

I'm getting more instructions for valuing repos than at any time in the past 5 years. Also drive by valuations for bankruptcy cases, often of larger £500,000 plus houses. I've just turned down an instruction to act as an expert witness for some mug trying to sue a valuer for over valuing his flat. He's in deep do-do now and looking for someone else to blame (watch out for lots more of this). I read between the lines and realised this was a mortgage fraud (on the plaintiff's part) and thought 'Tough'. I think the market has been propped up by fraud at all levels, not just self cert.

For anyone relying on ODPM's stats, these are unreliable. As George Buckley of Deutsche Bank says: 'The ODPM measure is playing catch up.'

Two questions from myself;

1) Why do bulls insist that house prices are still steady or even going up?

2) Can anyone explain to a simple soul why high house prices are a good thing?

3) Why DO people write 'alot' ?

I've always been with Charlie on this; it's all about debt.

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Check out the thread linked below.

I wonder if this could be a major contributing factor to sales falling through, after you see a "Sold" sign go up.

Maybe this is a common occurrence in a stagnant / falling market.

http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.html?t=96953

Heard these stories around 1990 as well, about 2 years in prices were going up way faster than valuations - locking out the FTBs. They have used this at the end of the boom to maintain the fear factor. People who jumped on the titanic in the last 12 months are often remembering recent history. Its a shame they weren't around for the longer cycle.

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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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