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OTM: Buyer and seller confidence is ‘surprisingly good’

Almost three quarters of buyers are still confident about purchasing a property in the new year, while sellers are a bit more cautious, research suggests.

OnTheMarket’s (OTM) latest Property Sentiment Index for November shows 71% of buyers were confident about purchasing a property within the next three months, compared with 72% in October.

Meanwhile, 56% of vendors were confident about making a sale, down from 58% in October.


Regionally, there were some significant variations with a 6 percentage-point decrease in seller confidence in Scotland, while the East Midlands saw a 7 percentage-point increase in confidence.

The report shows a third of properties were Sold Subject to Contract within 30 days of first being listed for sale in November, down from 36% in October - the lowest level seen this year.

Meanwhile, the proportion of properties taking up to 150 days to go under offer has increased from 14% in November 2022 to 24% last month.

Jason Tebb, chief executive of OTM, said: “Although borrowers must get used to a higher-rate environment, levels of confidence among buyers and sellers are surprisingly good.

“Those who want to get on with the business of moving are doing just that, and where sentiment fluctuates, it’s only by a few percentage points, demonstrating a resilient buyer and seller cohort shaking off what is happening macro-economically and simply getting on with it. Provided property is priced attractively, it is entirely possible to attract serious buyers.”

Meanwhile, LonRes suggests positive signs are emerging in prime markets as the year draws to a close.

Values across prime London remain largely in line with their early 2014 level, its latest figures show.

While November’s sold prices were down 4.1% annually, they remain 1.6% higher than five years ago and 4.1% higher than the previous decade.

Transactions were down 32.1% in November compared to November last year but 2023 sales look likely to end the year only slightly below their long-term average, LonRes said.

The number of properties going under offer in November was also 8.6% lower annually but new instructions increased by 5.0%.

This combination of recent supply and demand activity means that there was 5.9% more stock on the market across prime London at the end of November than a year ago.

In the £5m-plus market, new instructions rose slightly compared to a year earlier, by 1.4%.  

While sales were lower on the same basis - by 28.1%- the number of properties going under offer increased by 16.1% over the same period.


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