The reduced bonus pot and the need for buyers to maximise their equity means that that much of the movement in the market is concentrated in the £500,000 to £1m market, according to research by Savills.

Some vendors still haven’t come to terms with the new price reality. Expectations appear to be more entrenched particularly in the higher price brackets which is constraining transaction levels of country houses above £2m in particular.

Buyers are cautious and where a property has been on the market for any length of time a price reduction is needed to generate an initial bid. However, increasingly this will trigger competitive bidding as it gives prospective buyers the confidence they need.

The future

‘Unless there is a glut of forced sales, we expect limited demand and supply to remain balanced in the autumn. Barring any further significant economic shocks, this indicates a period of relatively static prices.

How the agents describe the regional market

Central London Overseas buyers taking advantage of weakness in sterling. The very top end (£10m plus) very slow. Buyers expecting big discounts
Kensington Uncertainty
Barnes Lack of good quality stock particularly in the family house section
Chiswick Constrained
Fulham Caution restrained by mortgage finance
Hampstead Significantly improved. Demand from increasingly competitive bidders
Islington Active, but lack of activity over £2million
Putney Improving but constrained by a lack of stock
Richmond Fickle
Wandsworth Surprisingly bubbly but could go either way
Wimbledon The nervous crab buys increasingly but can crawl back into the cave
Canary Wharf Volatile
Wapping The start of the recovery?
Amersham Cautious buyers
Beaconsfield Very hesitant with occasional surprise
Cobham Active
Harpenden Blinkered
Rickmansworth Markets forming as confidence returns.
Sunningdale Patchy /inconsistent
Weybridge The real battle is yet to start
Windsor Three steps forward, two steps back – very challenging
Country Houses Dull. There are green shoots but voluntary sellers are rare.
Banbury Stock shortage, motivated buyers
Cranbrook Short supply in good school catchments Sales price dependant.
Guildford Erratic
Haywards Heath Active
Newbury Buyers feel prices still falling, sellers think market is recovering
Oxford Very busy
Reigate Hopeful
Tunbridge Wells Promising
Winchester Active but yet to be productive
Bath Fragile
Bristol There are no properties available to ignite the market
Cardiff Subdued
Cirencester Fragile and unpredictable
Exeter Getting more confident at lower levels
Truro Lots of legwork for very few deals
Chelmsford Lack of urgency
Ipswich Steady but more chains being made to get the deals to happen
Norwich Mid market is performing quite strong (activity but not price), top end slow
Chester An air of cautious positivity
Harrogate Too much over-priced stock
Lincoln Erratic

Nottingham Price and quality sensitive

Solihull Encouraging
Edinburgh Beginning to recover from a major shock

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