Property news roundup: Why do so many home sales fall through?
Plus, aversion to grand designs, Thunderbird home for sale, latest house price figures, Grand National effect
Alex Johnson has been part of The Independent's online team since 2007. He has been writing about microarchitecture on his internationally-acclaimed Shedworking blog since 2006 and is the author of Shedworking: The Alternative Workplace Revolution. His latest book is Bookshelf, published by Thames & Hudson.
Wednesday 16 April 2014
A 'fall through index' for March suggests that over a quarter of home sales fail to complete, a 63 per cent increase compared with March 2013.
Donna Houguez, Market Analyst at Quick Move Now which released the data, said: "It isn't surprising that as buyers are rushing to make purchases before prices increase further, a higher proportion of those sales are falling through.
"Since the property market crash in 2007, although the fall through rate has changed, the main reason sales failed to complete has remained the inability to secure mortgage finance. Now that has changed. The majority of sales falling through do so because of issues on the buyers’ side - they either receive a better offer or they experience problems within their own chain.
"This is a major step-change and shows us that we have moved definitively into a sellers’ market."
F.A.B. home for sale
Built by property developer Eddie Mitchell and inspired by the home of International Rescue on Tracy Island, 'Thunderbird' in Poole's Branksome Park area is on the market with Sotheby's at a guide price of £2,950,000. It doesn't have room for a space rocket, but the detached home does have five bedrooms, a luxury fitted kitchen, cinema and gymnasium.
Latest house price figures
Home prices across England and Wales jumped 1.3 per cent over the last month, making the annual rise 8.4 per cent, according to Home.co.uk.
The biggest price rises were in the South East (1.8 per cent), East Anglia (2.2 per cent) and the South West (1.7 per cent). Overall, the average time a property now spends on the market has fallen to 96 days, 34 days less than in April 2013.
Earlier in the week, official ONS figures from the Government put the overall rise in the UK at 9.1 per cent between February 2013 and February 2014, up by 9.7 per cent in England, 5.3 per cent in Wales, 2.4 per cent in Scotland and 2.8 per cent in Northern Ireland. Excluding London and the South East, UK house prices increased by 5.8 per cent.
In February 2014, prices paid by first-time buyers were 10.5 per cent higher on average than in February 2013.
Grand National effect on property
The Grand National final straight saw Rightmove traffic fall by 15 per cent. Head of Communications at Rightmove, Matthew James, said: "This isn’t the first time that we’ve seen a stand-out sporting event hit our traffic. It happened last year when Andy Murray served for Wimbledon glory and in 2012 when we picked up three dips on Super Saturday which tallied perfectly with Greg Rutherford, Jess Ennis and Mo Farah winning gold."
Not so keen on grand designs
New research reveals that more than three quarters of househunters look for properties which require very little work, while a third say that they would only consider buying a newly built home.
The survey from Gocompare.com home insurance asked more than 2,000 people about what they would look for in a new home. Of those homebuyers considering a ‘house project', just under a quarter would be happy to buy a property that needed major renovation work.
Energy efficiency held the biggest appeal for those preferring new-build homes, with a third saying that new-builds are well insulated, cheaper to heat, and ‘maintenance-free'.
Ben Wilson, from Gocompare.com, said: "While many people enjoy watching home makeover and renovation programmes on television, our research suggests that most aren't that keen on undertaking their own ‘grand design' or restoration project."
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A three-bedrom home in sought-after Queen's Gate Mews, with Italian marble-finished bathrooms
Surrounded by glorious countryside in the village of Udimore, sits this impressive four-kiln oast and barn conversion
A five-bedroom house in the picturesque village of Kettlewell, north Yorkshire
An 18th-century former coaching inn with original staircase, open fireplaces and beams throughout
A Grade II-listed Georgian town house with three bedrooms and a south-facing courtyard, near Arundel Castle
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A Grade II-listed Victorian villa with six bedrooms and two further cottages, all with spectacular sea views
A grade II-listed, Georgian cottage with mature 50ft garden, perfect for summer entertaining
A magnificent Georgian pile with turrets, seven bedrooms, a heated pool and four acres of gardens
Fairoak Farm has five bedroom suites, gym, outdoor swimming pool and golf course
Chic two-bedroom river-fronted flat with a private lift that delivers you directly to your home
A spectacular seven-bedroom Tudor pile, once owned by Henry VIII, with 18 acres of land
A seven-bedroom Georgian property previously used as a picturesque wedding venue
A split-level flat in a church conversion with two en suite bedrooms and 1,200sq ft of living space
A three-bedroom bungalow situated behind an impressive stone wall, £645,000
Windsor Castle overlooks this three-bedroom Victorian cottage located on one of Windsor's smartest roads
Chapel House is a former vicarage with nine bedrooms in the beautiful Upper Wye Valley
A five-bedroom B&B and separate owner's accomodation with potential for conversion
Enjoy summer by the Thames in this two double-bedroom converted warehouse in Rotherhithe village
A one-bedroom, luxury apartment with private gym and concierge service in Moorgate
A four-bedroom house in Hermitage Gardens with three reception rooms and landscaped gardens
A seven-bedroom Grade II-listed property with a separate self-contained apartment
A five-bedroom Victorian house with three reception rooms and galleried landing, £695,000
A six-bedroom farmhouse with five acres of land in a former cloth-making village
A secluded seven-bedroom detached house with large private garden, £490,000
A three-bedroom cottage overlooking Sarratt village green with open fires and solid oak floors
A three-bedroom maisonette flat in a Grade I-listed, Georgian townhouse in a sought-after location
A one-bedroom apartment located within a private gated development, north of Turnham Green
Look forward to a brighter future at two-bedroom Sunny Cottages, ideal for Londoners looking to downsize
A three-bedroom red-brick cottage with outbuildings and pretty gardens, £200,000
This three-bedroom flat within a former textile factory spans the corner of the fourth floor and has a balcony
A charming four-bedroom Oxfordshire cottage with oak floors and chunky-beamed ceilings, £465,000
A beautiful one-bed flat in a sought-after portered block, with access to Norland Square communal gardens
A one-bedroom flat within a Sixties school conversion with high-spec design and open-plan kitchen, close to Lambeth North Tube, £435,000
A 17th century four-bedroom house, with open fireplaces, cellar and pool, £600,000
A three-bedroom, coach house with luxury open-plan living space and contemporary breakfast bar
A newly refurbished one-bedroom flat in the heart of Mayfair, close to Grosvenor Square
A charming four-bedroom house overlooking Burleigh Square Park, close to Thorpe Bay
A three-bedroom farmhouse with a large inglenook fireplace and exposed beams
A boutique mews house, set around a central courtyard, with three bedrooms and a private roof terrace
A four-bedroom farm-conversion with three bathrooms and two reception rooms
A two-bedroom detached house with ensuite bathrooms and a sun-drenched decked terrace, £750,000
A modern and spacious two-bedroom, penthouse flat with two bathrooms in a prestigious development
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