According to buying agents Property Vision, approximately 15 houses have sold for in excess of £5 million in the past two months, showing increased confidence in the prime country house market.

However, the transaction numbers are considerably down on 2008 when approximately 70 prime country houses were sold. ‘In total, it now means we are now operating at only 26% of the transaction levels of 2008,’ says Ed Sugden.

Estimated number of properties in excess of £5m sold in southern half of England

Total 2008: 70

Jan – April 2009: 3

May – July 2009: 15

‘Supply of these rare and expensive properties is down by 60% since the market peak, which is perhaps why a few are now achieving their 2007 prices. However, in the main, prime property prices have dropped by 20% since the start of the recession, but returning confidence has bumped prices up by 5% – 8% since the spring. This is in contrast to other, more commoditised, markets which have seen price reductions of up to 25%,’ continues Mr Sugden.

The buying agency are seeing most activity for properties valued between £400,000 and £800,000.
‘Interestingly, some properties had been on the market since before the start of recession – it only took one buyer to break from the pack to instil confidence and the others followed. A number of buyers who have been on the market for some time have realised they may have to compromise, and now that we are in view of the bottom of the market, they are getting on with buying.’ 

*Country houses for sale

 

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