Written by rosalind renshaw

Despite high numbers of unsold stock on agents’ books outside central London, Connells surveying arm has claimed that it is seeing a ‘sustained’ recovery in the housing and mortgage market.

Connells Survey and Valuation has also claimed that housing market activity is being buoyed by first-time buyers and the buy-to-let sector.

The business said that last month, its valuation work increased by 5% compared with February, and that in the first three months of this year, valuations were 24% up on the first quarter of last year.

Connells said there was an encouraging increase in the number of first-time buyers entering the market in March, with 21% more valuations for first-timers than in February, and 26% more in the first quarter of 2011 than in the previous quarter.
It said 34% of all valuations were for first-time buyers, whilst buy-to-let valuations rose 14% compared with March a year ago.


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    Mike Wilson

    Sounds like you are in Wokingham?

    • 18 April 2011 23:58 PM
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    My apologies to Haarts - I missed them off my list - they too gave up a while ago.

    • 18 April 2011 19:12 PM
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    Every Repo needs 2 RICs surveys, they will be busier then won’t they?

    • 18 April 2011 13:31 PM
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    It's always amused me that the corporates can't cut the mustard in my local town.

    Connells - office closed a few years ago
    Roger Platt (Sequence) - office closed a few years ago
    Hamptons - closed a few years ago - only open for about a year
    Mann and Co - closed a few years ago
    Your Move - closed a few years ago

    Seems the corporates cannot live with our local independents.

    Only corporate in town at the moment is Bairstowe Eves (are they are franchise?)

    • 18 April 2011 10:27 AM
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    Cashback, My Choice Home Buy, Call Me Cards, Protect your fee, Morning Meetings, area managers who dont believe in what they preach!! what a loads of tosh, Blah Blah Blah.........Connels and Sequence......

    • 17 April 2011 16:49 PM
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    House prices are going rise dramatically, you can't go wrong with bricks and mortar. If prices fall I will eat my hat, well my new hat after eating the last one when prices fell.

    Invest in property now and you will be a property Billionaire by Christmas. What could go wrong.

    I get so so cross when people talk down the housing market, if they continue I get less shows and money from Channel 4.

    There will be no crash, I am always right on this except the last time. I'm off for food.

    • 16 April 2011 14:52 PM
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    @Mr perfect

    Why use such crude words? Surely you can make your points without them. The public see this site and It does not do you or the site any favours.

    • 16 April 2011 11:37 AM
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    Why use such crude words? Surely you can make your points without them. The public see this site and It does not do you or the site any favours.

    • 16 April 2011 11:35 AM
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    I walked past a Connells branch today, twice in fact, both times there was a distinct lack of customers inside or even people glancing in the window. 5 EA sitting there looking all lonely.

    The do have a nice big sign on the front window that always gives me a chuckle, it's a great big WHAM!, just like you used to see on the original Batman, as soon as they move on to POW! or BAM! It maybe time for me to go in and whap them with the bat-a-rang!

    P.s. As far as the story goes, I reakon they're full of shite...

    • 15 April 2011 22:58 PM
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    It does whiff a bit of a press release and a bit of a flakey one but it from their SURVEY business not the EA (which I think some of you have missed) and based on the point a valuation / homebuyers is done in the process it might turn out to be a positive indicator for volumes.

    Obviously the old chestnut of stats pops up here and it doesn’t tell us if they have recently been awarded a big contract in the period they are quoting, what their coverage is as a percentage of the country and all that detail nonsense

    Apart from that and the stuff everyone else has picked up it’s a nice solid indicator of the market out there


    • 15 April 2011 16:58 PM
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    Wardy is right. Connells have pulled their willy out and EAT have grabbed the shaft and started waving it around.

    • 15 April 2011 14:01 PM
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    Quite right F-FS. It is one thing to call a recovery, another to define that as sustainable and a degree of certainty to go further and label it as already sustained.

    • 15 April 2011 13:56 PM
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    'Sustained'. 'Recovery'. It's this kind of dishonest tosh that brings our profession into disrepute. Connells should be ashamed of themselves for bringing out this disgraceful piece of highly-selective spin.

    When we see six months of rising sales VOLUMES (rising prices are a different matter entirely and other than in a few local hotspots, highly unlikely for the foreseeable) then 'sustanied recovery in the market' might be justified.

    A rise in numbers of valuations means nothing at all at this point in the absence of fresh, PROCEEDABLE buyers.

    • 15 April 2011 13:12 PM
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    I defy anyone to 'value' an average family property (£170,000 - £200,000?) to within less than 5/10% and an agent sould always err on the high side as an asking price. You can always come down but very rarely go up.

    • 15 April 2011 12:08 PM
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    @Estate Agent - good for you. Are you in London per chance?

    • 15 April 2011 11:37 AM
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    @rantnrave 15% is my normal, 12 weeks of hard work gets it sold and dosh in my bank.

    • 15 April 2011 11:35 AM
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    @Estate Agent - Overvalue a property by 10% above the competition and then put your feet up as no buyers show any interest in it! Admittedly, it's not a great business model though.

    • 15 April 2011 11:10 AM
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    Yeah and if one valuation takes place in my street compared to 0 the month before and then sells that’s a 100% improvement. What’s your point?
    Just another bit of Connells willy waving that’s all.

    • 15 April 2011 10:44 AM
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    Have a feeling that estate agents who comment on this are not busy because they are not working hard enough. Go on hit me with your worst!

    • 15 April 2011 10:37 AM
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    Wardy - I took that data from Rightmove for my postcode. 35 houses sold in November, 19 in December, 18 in January and 4 in February.

    The average price for a detached property sold in my town for February was zero. I am tempted to jump in at those prices, but still worry about getting into negative equity...

    • 15 April 2011 10:16 AM
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    Dom is right - but then that's what happened pre HIPs and is almost certainly happening post abandonment of HIPs. Why not when if they get a no sale no fee deal vendors can float proiperties and see what happens?

    • 15 April 2011 10:09 AM
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    Oh come on Rant,

    • 15 April 2011 09:59 AM
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    If a 25% increase in valuations over the last month were to translate to a similar increase in sales, in my small town that would mean five properties were sold in March over the four in February. That is still less than one per EA branch in the high street.

    • 15 April 2011 09:42 AM
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    Isn't this supposed to be the busiest time of the year? From my observations it is pretty static out there. There was more activity in late Feburary and early March than now.

    Lots of percentages for valuations but how many are being sold, and at what prices? I would have thought an article with this title would compare sales in February, March etc with similar periods in 2009, 2010.

    Getting a valuation can be "just looking" or "crapping myself that I'm in negative equity".

    • 15 April 2011 09:22 AM