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more bad news for Northampton:

http://www.northamptonchron.co.uk/news/Ano...s-to.3761900.jp

And this count of nowhere bloke somehow managed to get a dig in about house prices and the 334 reductions this week even though the article is about 100 job losses.

He's not helping matters bringing such bad news to the masses !!!!

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more bad news for Northampton:

http://www.northamptonchron.co.uk/news/Ano...s-to.3761900.jp

And this count of nowhere bloke somehow managed to get a dig in about house prices and the 334 reductions this week even though the article is about 100 job losses.

He's not helping matters bringing such bad news to the masses !!!!

There's nothing else for it - we'll just have to reopen those shoe factories and start trying to compete with Jimmy Choo and Gucci. ;)

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Check this place out:

http://www.rightmove.co.uk/viewdetails-189...=7&tr_t=buy

According to propertysnake it was dropped:

07 Nov 2007 First day listed (price £154,950)

09 Dec 2007 Price changed from £154,950 to £144,950

08 Feb 2008 Price changed from £144,950 to £115,000

It's been sold straight away at 115K.

Thats probably a good price for that place....now tell me how do they expect to sell 2 bed flats for 180K when you can get a 3 bed semi for 115K ??????

According to propertysnake, 355 houses reduce in price as of today !!!!!

It was 334 yesterday !!!!!

Northampton really is toast

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Still, falling asking prices isn't the same thing as falling prices. When we were bought our house four years ago, we looked round loads of houses that were clearly overpriced. Many of these dropped prices after a month or two of no interest. I suppose the difference is, in a rising market, the market will eventually catch up with your asking price and you'll make a sale, whereas in a static market it won't.

What I don't know, with regards to selling my own house, is whether estate agents might put pressure on vendors to lower the price and make a sale purely for the sake of helping their cashflow. If people hold their nerve and wait for spring, maybe the market will pick up a bit? What I don't want to do is accept a 5% drop in the value of my house, only for it to rise by 3% in the summer whilst I'm in rented accomodation. At the end of year, it will be reported that house prices have dropped by 2% (5 minus 3), but I'll have actually sold at the bottom of the market, rather than near the top. I'll be five grand out of pocket compared with waiting until the summer to sell.

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Still, falling asking prices isn't the same thing as falling prices. When we were bought our house four years ago, we looked round loads of houses that were clearly overpriced. Many of these dropped prices after a month or two of no interest. I suppose the difference is, in a rising market, the market will eventually catch up with your asking price and you'll make a sale, whereas in a static market it won't.

What I don't know, with regards to selling my own house, is whether estate agents might put pressure on vendors to lower the price and make a sale purely for the sake of helping their cashflow. If people hold their nerve and wait for spring, maybe the market will pick up a bit? What I don't want to do is accept a 5% drop in the value of my house, only for it to rise by 3% in the summer whilst I'm in rented accomodation. At the end of year, it will be reported that house prices have dropped by 2% (5 minus 3), but I'll have actually sold at the bottom of the market, rather than near the top. I'll be five grand out of pocket compared with waiting until the summer to sell.

The trouble is that no one really knows what will happen but as you point out by playing the game you can be a fair bit better off. You just have to do what you think is right.

Personally I think sentiment has most definitely changed and a day doesnt go by now with me hearing someone talk about the house prices dropping. Saying that it does look like a few houses round Northampton are starting to shift, but ive heard of several people having sold then their buyers pull out and/or the chain collapses.

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Yes, another big reason we're going to rent is to keep the chain as small as possible. Now's no time to worry about a long chain! Looking at Property Snake, I get the feeling most of the price drops are either new builds, novelty houses, flats or blatently overpriced houses. I've yet to find many drops for what I'd call the bedrock of Northampton housing: 3 bed Victorian terraces and 3 bed inter-war semis. Once they start crashing I'll worry.

Although its seems to be quite difficult to figure out which houses Property Snake is referring to - it lacks detail. Unless I'm not using it correctly.

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Although its seems to be quite difficult to figure out which houses Property Snake is referring to - it lacks detail. Unless I'm not using it correctly.

I have the same problem. You can usually guess which property it is by using the post code/area search in rightmove for the new selling price. Not ideal but it usually works.

The no chain thing is a good idea, you can move quickly and will be able to negotiate a much better price. You will probably be able to negotiate away your cost of renting for a year just based on the fact you have no chain.

I think this week has seem some houses being shifted (if you look on rigthmove and includ sold STC in your searches) but i think the problems with chains will see lots fall through. There is just no money to lend 100% mortgages for the first time buyers at the bottom of the pyramid.

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Well my 2 euros worth – I think we have entered into the turning phase of the market – whereby prices will bob about a bit for a few months but then go fully negative around June, July 08.

After 10 years of house price inflation ~ press stories about house price inflation ~ local estate agent news about house price inflation ~ pub talk about house price inflation ~ and even next-doors children going on about how much their buy-to-let was worth! - its going to take a while before the man on the street changes his mind fully to the idea that the market has turned.

Quite naturally, the individual sellers house price will never be effected by a downturn! .. well because .. its in such a good location, its so desirable, because the one down the road sold for x last year, because the estate agent told it would never go down in value when he sold it to me 4 years ago!

So what do I see on Rightmove ~ well lots of properties coming on to the local market - and at a much higher rate than they are being sold. I see a growing number of price drops and only a couple of increases. I also see a few rental properties have dropped their price too.

Estate agents in the local paper seem to be reporting mixed messages ~ on one hand their saying that prices need to be sensible and there will be a small correction, on the other hand their saying that now as always its a good time to buy and that prices will rise again this year but not by a significant amount.

However, two 'overheard' estate agents at the gym did discuss - 30 job loses (which appears to have come true), and that buy-to-lets were panicking and that 'the crash' would not be as bad as the 90's crash, but they didn't know what effect the credit crunch would have or why the central banks were helping out?!

Furthermore, the local press appear not so interested at present in the local housing market - vested interests, no interest and advertising revenue could all be playing a part!

So all this leaves the local Northampton house seller more confused than ever – so currently there is very little movement ~ after all who wants to be first to drop the price of their house?

Just give it a little time .. June or July ;)

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Furthermore, the local press appear not so interested at present in the local housing market - vested interests, no interest and advertising revenue could all be playing a part!

HouseDog, spot on with all your comments there.

Regarding your comment above, I was thinking that very same thing this morning. There has been just about zero press on housing market in Northampton since last year.

I have a funny feeling that they dont like the article posters on their website that point out the facts every time they post a vest interest article.

Those comments negate every positive thing that a VI article trys to brainwash the locals into thinking, so maybe they are prefering to stay neutral for now.

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Intersting article in the Sunday Times yesterday:

"certain areas in Britain are safe investments (well, as safe as any investment can be), almost regardless of when or, in most cases, what you buy."

http://property.timesonline.co.uk/tol/life...icle3327954.ece

Milton Keynes is 4th.

"Prices, at an average of £239,834, are reasonable: a two-bed flat with a private roof terrace within walking distance of the station costs between £200,000 and £300,000."

I still can't get used to the idea that £300 grand for a two-bed flat in Milton Keynes is reasonable when less than ten years ago my wife and I were looking at one-bed flats in the centre of London for a third of that price.

Anyway, if true, it would imply that Northampton is fairly safe as well - as much as what they write about MK also holds true of Northampton (albeit to a lesser extent): rising population, new town, commutable to Euston, access to countryside, good transport links. Personally, I'd have thought that if train prices rise by 10%, and London property falls by 30%, many commuters will consider moving to London from MK, rather than vice-versa as the article suggests.

Of course the article is full of quotes from Estate Agents, and not a single quote from an economist - so you pays your money and takes your chances with an article like that.

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http://property.timesonline.co.uk/tol/life...icle3327954.ece

Milton Keynes is 4th.

"Prices, at an average of £239,834, are reasonable: a two-bed flat with a private roof terrace within walking distance of the station costs between £200,000 and £300,000."

I still can't get used to the idea that £300 grand for a two-bed flat in Milton Keynes is reasonable when less than ten years ago my wife and I were looking at one-bed flats in the centre of London for a third of that price.

Presumably that's Campbell Park? I think that place looks like a prison, and indeed it does have (Ian) Huntley Crescent and Mara (Hindley) Place there, so perhaps I'm not alone in that thought ;)

Peter.

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Intersting article in the Sunday Times yesterday:

"certain areas in Britain are safe investments (well, as safe as any investment can be), almost regardless of when or, in most cases, what you buy."

http://property.timesonline.co.uk/tol/life...icle3327954.ece

Milton Keynes is 4th.

"Prices, at an average of £239,834, are reasonable: a two-bed flat with a private roof terrace within walking distance of the station costs between £200,000 and £300,000."

I still can't get used to the idea that £300 grand for a two-bed flat in Milton Keynes is reasonable when less than ten years ago my wife and I were looking at one-bed flats in the centre of London for a third of that price.

Anyway, if true, it would imply that Northampton is fairly safe as well - as much as what they write about MK also holds true of Northampton (albeit to a lesser extent): rising population, new town, commutable to Euston, access to countryside, good transport links. Personally, I'd have thought that if train prices rise by 10%, and London property falls by 30%, many commuters will consider moving to London from MK, rather than vice-versa as the article suggests.

Of course the article is full of quotes from Estate Agents, and not a single quote from an economist - so you pays your money and takes your chances with an article like that.

Whats that then about 8 times average salary in MK...probably 10 times in Northampton. Very reasonable.

EDIT: PS - something is most definitely happening in Northampton, on property snake of as today there are 382 price reductions listed. This is by far the biggest number I have seen.

EDIT: PS - Also, more job losses 320 more and in this article it lists another 400 that I never noticed before:

http://www.northamptonchron.co.uk/news/Sho...hire.3767850.jp

This is terrible news for the area.

EDIT: PS, found this little gem, 3 bed flat, good area, originally sold for 150K, going to auction guide price 105K

http://auctions.erinaceous.com/images/dirt...tial/312/34.pdf

Will be interesting to see what it goes for !!!

EDIT: You can tell by the number of edits that there's a lot going on this week :)

EDIT: Propertysnake up to 402 propertys for Northamptonshire today ( 13/2/08) What's going on ???

Edited by TheCountOfNowhere
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I read the Property section of the Chronicle last night. I didn't see any 'reduced' property adverts, I thought I would. There was an "article" by the Bond chap (I forget his first name) of O'Riordon Bond EAs. I say article, it was an advert really. However, he said something along the lines of "the market is ok, providing vendors are realistic about their prices". I read this to mean prices have definately fallen in Northampton and people had just better accept that. I thought it a bit strange because I get the impression that O'Riordon Bond market houses at slightly higher prices than most of the other big agents round here, not lower prices.

I think I'm going to accept that my house has dropped by 3% to 5% since last summer and sell it fairly quickly (if I can), with the view that it can only drop by more if I wait around. But my gut feeling is that now prices have dropped by 5% then they'll stay static for the rest of the year (or at least until late Autumn when perhaps they'll have an another big fall).

EDIT: I've just read the first post of this thread where Mr Bond is quoted in December as saying: "Over the next six to 12 months house price growth will slow down to about inflation". He certainly didn't mention "growth" in last night's paper.

Edited by pablopatito
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I read the Property section of the Chronicle last night. I didn't see any 'reduced' property adverts, I thought I would. There was an "article" by the Bond chap (I forget his first name) of O'Riordon Bond EAs. I say article, it was an advert really. However, he said something along the lines of "the market is ok, providing vendors are realistic about their prices". I read this to mean prices have definately fallen in Northampton and people had just better accept that. I thought it a bit strange because I get the impression that O'Riordon Bond market houses at slightly higher prices than most of the other big agents round here, not lower prices.

I think I'm going to accept that my house has dropped by 3% to 5% since last summer and sell it fairly quickly (if I can), with the view that it can only drop by more if I wait around. But my gut feeling is that now prices have dropped by 5% then they'll stay static for the rest of the year (or at least until late Autumn when perhaps they'll have an another big fall).

EDIT: I've just read the first post of this thread where Mr Bond is quoted in December as saying: "Over the next six to 12 months house price growth will slow down to about inflation". He certainly didn't mention "growth" in last night's paper.

Must have been an advert as I havent seen any comments from an agent on their website for a while, it sounds like he has changed his tune though.

it's interesting that you now accept that your own price will be 3-5 % down, I think most people have realised this now. Just dont get into the "chassing the market down" scenario.

I still think there are still too many over-priced places out there and a lot of vendors will now be happy to accept 10% below asking. Ive noticed loads of top end places coming on the market recently, im guessing people are trying to cash in their chips at the peak....but they are 6 months too late.

Also, on propertysnake today, the number of listing of drops for Northamptonshire is now as a massive 449 !!!! I think the agents must now be playing hardball with the vendors. The question is now, if these drops do not attract buyers what happens next, stagnation or rapid decline ?

It's interesting to watch.

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What I find really interesting to watch during this slowdown/crash is the relationship between the prices of the three main types of property: new builds, flats and period houses. I lived in Hong Kong for a while where property was always described by the cost per square foot, and applied the principle when I came home and bought a house here - the cost per sq ft of my house was relatively low.

Compare these properties, all on with the same agent and all within a few hundred yards of each other:

A 2 bed flat for £135k

http://www.rightmove.co.uk/viewdetails-185...=3&tr_t=buy

Or a 3 bed Victorian terrace for £130k

http://www.rightmove.co.uk/viewdetails-181...=3&tr_t=buy

A 2 bed new build house for £147k

http://www.rightmove.co.uk/viewdetails-191...=2&tr_t=buy

Or a 3 bed 1930s house for £150k

http://www.rightmove.co.uk/viewdetails-188...=2&tr_t=buy

The new build house and new build flat are really, really tiny (can a 9'3 x 7'5 bedroom really be described as a "double bedroom"?). I just don't understand why they cost the same as much more substantial properties in the SAME area. They are literally a few hundred yards apart. I'll be interested to see how the relative prices change (assuming they do).

Edited by pablopatito
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What I find really interesting to watch during this slowdown/crash is the relationship between the prices of the three main types of property: new builds, flats and period houses. I lived in Hong Kong for a while where property was always described by the cost per square foot, and applied the principle when I came home and bought a house here - the cost per sq ft of my house was relatively low.

Compare these properties, all on with the same agent and all within a few hundred yards of each other:

A 2 bed flat for £135k

http://www.rightmove.co.uk/viewdetails-185...=3&tr_t=buy

Or a 3 bed Victorian terrace for £130k

http://www.rightmove.co.uk/viewdetails-181...=3&tr_t=buy

A 2 bed new build house for £147k

http://www.rightmove.co.uk/viewdetails-191...=2&tr_t=buy

Or a 3 bed 1930s house for £150k

http://www.rightmove.co.uk/viewdetails-188...=2&tr_t=buy

The new build house and new build flat are really, really tiny (can a 9'3 x 7'5 bedroom really be described as a "double bedroom"?). I just don't understand why they cost the same as much more substantial properties in the SAME area. They are literally a few hundred yards apart. I'll be interested to see how the relative prices change (assuming they do).

Anyone with any sense would apply the price per square feet rule when buying a house. Obviously things like location, amenities, character affect that but as a general rule they should be that much different.

The new build places price per square foot is way over inflated and eventually, when it's no longer a new build, the price per square foot has to come down to match the rest of the market, which is what we see in east/west Hunsbury. Wootton/Grange park will eventually drop to match East/West Hunsbury. As I said to an agent recently during a viewing....Me: "It's over-priced", Agent: "Yes, but its Wootton", Me:"It's a housing estate, could be anywhere"....say no more.

Edited by TheCountOfNowhere
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I read the Property section of the Chronicle last night. I didn't see any 'reduced' property adverts, I thought I would. There was an "article" by the Bond chap (I forget his first name) of O'Riordon Bond EAs. I say article, it was an advert really. However, he said something along the lines of "the market is ok, providing vendors are realistic about their prices". I read this to mean prices have definately fallen in Northampton and people had just better accept that. I thought it a bit strange because I get the impression that O'Riordon Bond market houses at slightly higher prices than most of the other big agents round here, not lower prices.

I think I'm going to accept that my house has dropped by 3% to 5% since last summer and sell it fairly quickly (if I can), with the view that it can only drop by more if I wait around. But my gut feeling is that now prices have dropped by 5% then they'll stay static for the rest of the year (or at least until late Autumn when perhaps they'll have an another big fall).

EDIT: I've just read the first post of this thread where Mr Bond is quoted in December as saying: "Over the next six to 12 months house price growth will slow down to about inflation". He certainly didn't mention "growth" in last night's paper.

The Property section of the Chron is all paid for by the Estate Agents and Letting Agencies etc. – so the "article" by the Bond chap is an Advert - its just a local Estate Agent putting their best practiced spin on a declining market as best they can. After reading a few months worth of the same column it’s easy to see their just circulating the same old tired marketing lines in different ways. The reality is that prices are dropping Propertysnake and Propertybee show this quite clearly.

Most other data the EAs talk about can be interpreted in a number of ways - forexample:

There has been increased customer activity; more people have come into our offices who are worried about their buy-to-let and want to sell.

We’ve had more HITS on our website; HITS = How idiots track success ~ HITS are a fairly meaningless website stat, user sessions maybe or searches are maybe more useful. An increase in website traffic can easily just be researchers like us looking at the market. Not necessarily buying or selling

Like you I also get the impression that O'Riordon Bond markets houses at slightly higher prices than most of the other agents in Northampton ~ O'Riordon Bond as the biggest firm with I suspect the biggest footprint probably have greater overheads they need to cover. However, I think if I were selling I’d be talking to them, (regardless of the experience you had before).

Regards

HD

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Me: "It's over-priced", Agent: "Yes, but its Wootton", Me:"It's a housing estate, could be anywhere"....say no more.

If you want to know the difference between Hunsbury and Wootton then you need to read the Ofsted reports of Mereway school and Caroline Chrisholm school. Of course using schools to determine house prices is a risky business because the LEA can change admission criteria whenever they fancy.

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If you want to know the difference between Hunsbury and Wootton then you need to read the Ofsted reports of Mereway school and Caroline Chrisholm school. Of course using schools to determine house prices is a risky business because the LEA can change admission criteria whenever they fancy.

I've heard they have changed it and it will be based on a lottery system !!!

http://www.dfes.gov.uk/sacode/docs/FinalSACode08Jan2007.doc

"Random allocation (lottery)

2.28 Random allocation of school places can be good practice particularly for urban areas and secondary schools. However, it may not be suitable in rural areas. It may be used as the sole means of allocating places or alongside other oversubscription criteria. Random allocation can widen access to schools for those unable to afford to buy houses near to favoured schools and create greater social equity."

That pretty much devalues the over-valued wootton propertys by 15%.

Not happy reading for a wootton resident !!!

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I'm not sure. I think they've just changed it for selective schools (the boys' and girls' grammar schools). Previously, the boys grammar used distance from the school as a tie-breaker between two otherwise identical boys, and I think this has been ruled unfair on the grounds that everyone should have an equal chance of getting into a single-sex school if they desire single-sex education. I don't think it applies to normal schools (yet).

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Looks like the C&E is turning bearish

http://www.northamptonchron.co.uk/news/Hom...isen.3781592.jp

"Many people remember the boom and bust policies of the last Conservative Government which saw tens of thousands of people lose their home because they could not keep up with mortgage payments.

Now it looks as though the current Labour Government has blundered into a similar mess."

Not sure about:

"These families in 2007 paid the price for growing economic incompetence by Gordon Brown in Northampton. There are now serious concerns that in 2008, the situation will get worse."

No one has held a gun to their head and forced them to spank the equity in their homes.

EDIT: I had a think about this article and the 4% reported seems very low, especially when repo's are soaring everywhere else...I went back to make that point on their website and would you believe it, the facility to post comments for this article is not active, so no-one can challenge their comments....interesting, maybe they are fed up with all the negeative comments getting posted when they put up bullish articles.

Edited by TheCountOfNowhere
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EDIT: I had a think about this article and the 4% reported seems very low, especially when repo's are soaring everywhere else...I went back to make that point on their website and would you believe it, the facility to post comments for this article is not active, so no-one can challenge their comments....interesting, maybe they are fed up with all the negeative comments getting posted when they put up bullish articles.

I think the 'post comment' button is now working!

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http://www.northantset.co.uk/news/More-ris...e-as.3781683.jp [ 15.02.08 ]

More risk losing home as bills bite

THE number of county homes repossessed rose in 2007 as increases in the cost of living continue to bite.

The number of mortgage and landlord claims issued in Northamptonshire last year was up 24 per cent on 2006 figures, to 561. In Kettering, 175 claims were issued – 35 per cent higher than in 2006.

However, in Wellingborough the number of homes repossessed fell eight per cent to 257, according to the Government's Department of Justice.

A spokesman for Nene Valley Citizens Advice Bureau said: "It is a cause for concern, but I suppose it is inevitable with the way the prices in houses have gone.

"The ideal thing is to do something sooner rather than later if you feel you are getting into financial trouble. The most important thing is to talk to the lender as there is a number of ways that an amenable lender can help you out."

Simon Woodham, 42, of Rushton Road, Desborough, said: "I think the days when people used to have a bit of emergency money left are over.

"If you fall behind one month on a mortgage it's so expensive to catch up."

Scott Martin, 21, of Argyll Street, Kettering, said: "In terms of having a house repossessed, I wouldn't take on a mortgage with higher repayments than I could afford – the fallout of having it repossessed and ending up with nowhere to live is too risky."

Michael Dent, a partner from Harwoods estate agents in Wellingborough, said: "Estate agents have a duty to the seller. We sell the property for what it is worth and they take advice from a mortgage broker or a building society.

"We do not give financial advice. A lot of estate agents work alongside mortgage brokers, but it is down to the brokers.

"In my experience when property is repossessed normally it involves a change of circumstance such as a bereavement or business going under."

Housing charity Shelter England is concerned about the growing number of homeowners contacting it for help. It received more than 80,000 calls from homeowners worried about falling behind with payments last year.

"It has now called on mortgage lenders and the Financial Services Authority to set up a free advice line.

Shelter chief executive Adam Sampson said: "A free and impartial advice service is a much-needed first step to stop mortgage arrears and repossessions escalating and help thousands of ordinary people keep a roof over their heads."

The Council of Mortgage Lenders has previously stated said the level of mortgage arrears and possessions remained "extremely small" in the context of 11.8 million mortgaged households in the UK.

------------------------------------------

Northamptonshire news is slowly but surely turning .. bearish :blink:

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