From entering a national lockdown wondering if the housing market could collapse due to a global pandemic to house prices soaring and record breaking sales across the borough, it’s been quite the year for estate agents across the country.
In 2020, after an eight-week Covid lockdown, estate agents tentatively reopened their doors, each wondering how, after no viewings within that period it had affected their livelihoods.
However, they needn’t have worried as the housing market surged. Home Estate Agents agreed sales on more than 450 properties in six months following lockdown; an average of 75 sales per month.
As Tameside’s top selling agent for five years running, their previous monthly record was 42 sales.
Owner John Grantham says: “It was a welcome relief knowing it wasn’t just a short term spike and that month on month we have seen huge sales figures.”
With low mortgage rates, first time buyers have seized their opportunity to get onto the property ladder and have flooded the housing market. This followed by a freeze on stamp duty means that houses have been selling faster than they have been coming onto the market.
In November, Home estate agents agreed sales on almost 70 properties in what is traditionally one of the slowest months of the year - well over double any previous year.
With the government set to introduce a new five per cent deposit incentive scheme there seems no end to this strong housing market.
When asked about how they coped with the challenges of lockdown John was confident that they could offer business as usual.
He explained: “We didn’t have to adapt too much as we have an extremely successful marketing package that showcases properties to their best including our virtual tours and Matterport scans.
“Thankfully we have invested in state-of-the-art telephone and computer software which enabled everyone to work from home without too much disruption.”
Home did have to make some changes starting with a move of their own! But don’t worry they haven’t gone too far, just around the corner in fact to new larger offices at the top of Huddersfield Road, Stalybridge. It’s an exciting move for Home who started out just over 10 years ago in a box bedroom and have gone from strength to strength, year on year.
With the flood of new enquiries and sales, Home have taken on extra negotiators to meet the demand as well as introducing an in-house mortgage team and solicitors which enables a much more efficient process from start to finish.
Historically, there has been huge demand for property in the weeks following Christmas.
For the last few years Rightmove has seen record numbers of property views on Boxing Day resulting in a massive influx of new enquiries in January, kickstarting the housing market into the spring.
So if you are thinking of moving, get ahead of the market and get a free valuation from Home estate agents on 0161 304 0000.