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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

Second Covid wave not hurting London house sales - top agent

The London sales market is slowing as Christmas nears but no significant impact has been caused by the second wave of Coronavirus, says a leading agency.

Chestertons says new enquiries and buyer registrations in October were down 16 per cent and 17 per cent respectively compared to the previous month, while the number of offers being made on properties was down by nine per cent - all roughly to be expected at this time of year.

However, new enquiries were still 40 per cent higher than October last year, and there were six per cent more new buyers registering, demonstrating that confidence in the market was still strong despite the second lockdown.

Chestertons’ figures also show that the agency enjoyed 23 per cent more sales agreed and one per cent more property viewings in October compared to September.

“The sales market will always slow as we approach the winter months and so the lower number of enquiries and registrations compared to September was to be expected” explains Guy Gittins, Chestertons’ managing director. 

“However, we are pleased to see that activity levels are still tracking well above last year’s figures and are at the highest levels for five years. The emergence of the second wave of Covid cases didn’t have any significant impact on demand.”

He continues: “There was understandably a bit of concern amongst buyers and sellers at the end of October as a second nationwide lockdown became something of an inevitability. Interestingly though, people’s main concern was about having their move date delayed and potentially missing the stamp duty holiday deadline, rather than fear about prices dropping substantially, as was the case in the first lockdown in March.”

Gittins says the race is now on to complete the sales of those properties currently under offer, before the end of the year or at least ahead of the stamp duty holiday deadline on March 31.

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