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Time Gentlemen Please


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I have just given one of my local agents a call and pretended to be a landlord with 2 flats to sell, wanting to know whether the time was right and the market had picked up.

Was not really told much at all, usual inane ramblings.

Did say that end of last year was quiet because of "the time of year."

Points of note are that she said and "that they had lots of "new instructions" coming on this month because people want to be in their new houses by easter, using the easter holidays to move."

She also let slip "that a growing number of reposessions are coming onto the market."

I asked again how she thought things were and she concurred with me that the prices were down on Q1 2004.

Interesting about the reposessions though.

This was an agent in Bexleyheath, SE London.

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This is my approach;

"Ive got a couple of flats Im thinking of selling, but Im wondering if its the right time. How are u finding things"?

Hold on - that question was directed to me!

I usually say - 'I've got a couple of flats to sell, but I'm not sure if now is the right time - I've been hearing a lot of stuff about a House Price Crash and I'm worried that if I don't sell them now I might get a lot less for them in a year's time. What do you think'?

I recently surveyed 945 Estate Agents by email posing the above question.

943 did not reply but, of the two that did, they both thought the market was heading down and that I should put my two flats on the market immediately. So, of those that replied, 100% felt the market was moving down.

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As we are in the world of anecdotal ravings:

I had a plumber round yesterday (problem with gas hob since you ask - I am in rented so plumber is courtesy of my landlord). Anyway the man is a jack of all trades and works exclusively for letting agents and estate agents on propety maintenance. He tells me that he is constantly being offered repos at the moment and other properties where the agents are saying 'this bloke's desperate now, you could get 50k off that' etc. It's nice to know that agents are trying to offload their client's properties to people they know well at knock-down prices.

Now, dogbox, have I made that up?

Funnily enough, I haven't.

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Its clear that DB is roughly in the area where I live and all I can say is there does not appear to be any pick up in this area -on the contrary there is new a huge pull out supplement in the local paper on props For Sale...

FP, Ive telephoned E/A in your area (Hemel I think u said).

Castles said "Things are ok, we have sold 19 in January" (I mean 19!!).

Some bears say this type of anecdotal evidence is next to useless. Lessons from war history demonstrate that so many battles were lost / mis - directed as a result of 'the Generals' not having enough direct contact with 'the front'. It seems many such Generals still exist.

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FP, Ive telephoned E/A in your area (Hemel I think u said).

Castles said "Things are ok, we have sold 19 in January" (I mean 19!!).

Some bears say this type of anecdotal evidence is next to useless. Lessons from war history demonstrate that so many battles were lost / mis - directed as a result of 'the Generals' not having enough direct contact with 'the front'. It seems many such Generals still exist.

What they may have said is 'we have had offers accepted on 19' - not a huge number if they are a decent size agency. They are not sold yet, not by a long way. How many are under offer to people in a position to proceed? That is the acid test.

Lots of people round me are getting the Sold sign up - have been for 2 years - but they never move.

Next time its daylight and I go into my nearest big town, I'll take the old digital camera and post some pictures of the blocks of flats. I saw one the other day with 22 Estate Agents boards outside. Just like 1990 again.

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Only 15 minutes to go. But I must say the misuse of the term sold by EA's is one of my pet hates. They put up sold signs before exchange, before structural surveys, before valuations. It would be like Tesco including items people pick up and look at before returning to the shelf as turnover.

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  • 441 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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