Cheffins is among the agents finding it difficult to secure sufficient volume of new properties for sale to meet demand. The company is reporting the lowest stock of homes for 20 years due to a drop in new instructions.
Richard Freshwater, director at Cheffins, commented: “This is the biggest lack of stock we’ve seen on the market for at least the past 20 years. Demand is huge, created by a perfect storm of low interest rates, the stamp duty holiday and changes in people’s working patterns.
“The dreary five day a week commute for many is now over, and this has led to areas outside of London becoming some of the most in demand.”
On average, every house Cheffins put on the market at the moment sees more than 40 requests for viewings, all from buyers who are in the position to move, according to Freshwater.
He continued: “The amazing thing as well is that this level of interest is throughout the market at all price levels, with demand for large country homes at the same rate as the more affordable, smaller city-based options.
“As competition is fierce, sealed bids have become the order of the day, with over 25% of sales since February conducted by Cheffins ending up in a best and final offers situation.”
Freshwater added: “Clearly, this level of competition has led to quickly rising prices in the local area and this trend is set to continue throughout the summer months.
“Many sellers are currently holding fire on putting their houses on the market until they have had their second Covid vaccination, and with this in mind, once the vaccine roll out gets into its later stages I would expect to see a good number of properties hit the market as people look to get on with selling.”