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As students across the country returned to their lessons after the summer holiday, we’ve also taken the property market back to school this month, achieving the second-best monthly figures in the company’s eleven-year history.

Although many political and economic commentators have been complaining that the uncertainty which still surrounds the run-up to the Brexit deadline in October has negatively impacted the property market, many of their gloomy predictions are being shown to be unfounded.

The rate of inflation fell again in August to 1.7% - the lowest rate since 2016 – consequently wages are now comfortably exceeding inflation. The economy as a whole has also performed well recently, with economic growth in July coming in at 0.3%, exceeding forecasters’ expectations.

As a result, household finances are in a relatively strong position and so there are still plenty of people ready to move, especially in this traditionally busy period.

Recent data from UK Finance shows that the number of mortgage approvals for home movers rose by 1.4% to 32,710 in the twelve months to July. This is the highest total since November last year and was coupled with a 5.8% increase in first-time buyer mortgage approvals over the same period, bringing a further 32,460 buyers to the market.

We’ve certainly been noticing an uplift recently. Since the last market update, we’ve agreed another 18 sales and exchanged on a further eight properties. In the process, we’ve set a few more new records: sales in Halyards Court and Julius Court achieved record prices for one-bedroom apartments in Brentford Lock West and Brentford Dock respectively, while a sale in Point Wharf Lane achieved a record price per square foot for the Ferry Quays development.

September is a busy month for the lettings market too, and demand continues to be strong in the sector. Average rents have continued to rise by 1.3% - a rate which has been stable since May this year – and this shows no signs of changing in the near future. Since the last update we’ve agreed another 36 lets and have experienced even higher levels of enquiries since the middle of the month.

A recent report by the RICS has confirmed the trends we have been noticing throughout the summer, namely that growing tenant demand coupled with low instruction rates from landlords is responsible for the consistent rental price increases currently being witnessed by the market. With only 5,800 new buy-to-let mortgages approved nationwide in the twelve months to July, this cycle looks unlikely to be broken any time soon.

For landlords, this ensures that their investments will continue to bring in stable returns. Void periods are also down to an average of just eleven days, according to referencing platform Goodlord, providing further good news for investors. Now is an excellent time to be a buy-to-let landlord, so if you’re thinking of starting or expanding your portfolio you can read our guide to buying the right investment property here.

For tenants, a growth in the build-to-rent sector may provide good news. New developments designed specifically for renters are helping to combat the reduced supply of available property, and often include smart facilities including lounges, gyms, gardens and games rooms. Two new sites have recently launched within our patch: at Charter Place in Hounslow and Greenford Quay in Greenford.

If you would like to discuss the property market and how you can benefit from the high activity levels we are experiencing at the moment, you can contact our sales team here and our lettings team here.
 
This is part of our series of Market Updates. You can read the other 2019 updates here: January - February - March - April 
 May - June - July - August