The coronavirus pandemic has meant we’ve experienced many changes to our day-to-day lives, with many of us now working from home rather than our usual place of work. This ‘new normal’ has been met with mixed reviews as it has allowed a better work life balance in some instances, but also posed practical difficulties for others.
This new way of working has shown the majority of us that with the use of technology we are able to carry out our roles just as effectively from home as when we are in the office. This realisation could have a significant impact on home location choices going forward, as it has raised the prospect of being able to relocate further a field without the need to be near the city.
According to Rightmove, buyer enquiries from people considering homes in villages, rose 125% in June and July – compared to the 68% increase in people searching for homes in towns.*
With no end to the pandemic in sight buying a new property that better meets the requirement and opportunities of the new normal might sound like an attractive option, however everyone’s circumstances are different so it is wise to look over your situation and weigh up your options. Speaking to a qualified mortgage adviser can help with this.
What is the property market like right now?
According to Nationwide, property prices increased 2% throughout August compared to July, believing ‘behavioural shifts’ from the need to work remotely were a contributing factor to the rise.**
Additional factors included what analysts have called ‘a release of pent-up demand’ following the ease of lockdown restrictions in May, as well as the fact that many people have managed to save throughout the pandemic due to their reduced social life and lack of holiday travel, and are wanting to invest that into their future.
Further stimulus came in the form of the government’s announcement of a stamp duty ‘holiday’ for homes up to £500,000, which is in effect until 31 March 2021 across England and Northern Ireland.
Whatever the reasons for this rise in interest, it is unlikely to be sustainable. There are many factors at play considering the situation were in; whether the government will extend the stamp duty holiday, what people’s circumstance are in regards to working from home and the unemployment rate given the governments support measures.
Plan and protect
Prospective home buyers will now require a substantial deposit in order to buy due to the uncertainty from lenders, this is where those savings from lockdown could prove useful for many.
Many lenders are offering mortgages of a maximum 85% LTV (loan to value), with few options available for 90%, these are very high in demand. You may also find getting a mortgage a little trickier than previously due to the current economic climate, and with the future being a big unknown for many, lenders are being cautious.
You will need to fully assess your options, to make sure that you are moving at the right time for you. It’s worthwhile speaking to a mortgage adviser about your situation, as they’re in the know about what’s currently available on the market and which lenders may accept you and your circumstances. They can also help keep on top of any delays or changes throughout the process.
If now’s the right time for you to move, it’s important to have adequate protection in place too. This can give you peace of mind that your mortgage repayments will be covered should the worst happen. Our advisers can help find a suitable plan for your needs and guide you through the process.
A guiding hand in uncertain times
Buying a home is a major step that is much easier to take if you are well-informed and well-advised, regardless of whether you are a first-time buyer or someone who has moved before.
We are responsible for advising you on the most suitable mortgage for your circumstances. Whether you’re moving up the ladder, looking to downsize, purchasing another property or remortgaging, please get in touch; we have our finger on the pulse in this evolving environment and can assist you to navigate any challenges.
We are qualified advisers with in-depth knowledge of the market and are able to look at a whole range of mortgage products. Getting a mortgage is one of the biggest financial decisions you will make, so it’s important to get it right.
As a mortgage is secured against your home, it could be repossessed if you do not keep up the mortgage repayments.
*‘Village enquiries double as city dwellers escape to the country’, Rightmove, August 2020
**Nationwide House Price Index, August 2020