South Lakes Market Settles For Sensible

H&H Land & Estates Property Valuer South Lakes, Alex Bibby, reports a quieter rural and residential market adjusting to a turbulent start to 2023

After a challenging 6 months of mortgage rate rises and painful increases in household bills, the South Lakes area is still attracting a steady stream of potential buyers looking for a foothold in the rural way of life.

Although the market has inevitably been quieter, more affordable properties are finding buyers, more often than not these are young families looking to move to the second rung on the property ladder . Spring came late this year, which prompted sellers to delay bringing homes to the market, but now with improved weather and the holiday season upon us we are seeing many more properties coming forward.

People are still buying in the South Lakes, as long as the price is right. In the current economic climate, buyers are doing their due diligence very thoroughly, being more sensible and perhaps more cautious, and as agents we are there to support them and to work collaboratively with them.

For sellers and their agents, more cautious buyers put an even more important premium on bringing your property to the market in the best possible way, and successful sellers must get three key aspects of their marketing right:  Presentation; pricing, and motivation.

Presentation has always been critical, and every seller recognises the importance of presenting their property to its best advantage, and the power of good photography to catch a buyer’s eye. But in a quieter market the quality of the property’s presentation is even more critical, especially online where the average time a viewer spends looking at any property is estimated at a mere eight seconds.

After a long period of rising prices in an area where demand for principal residences and second homes has always been fiercely competitive, this year sensible pricing has become a determining factor in securing a sale. Sellers need to be realistic, and as agents our role is to offer objective, professional advice based comparable values achieved.

In a cautious market, buyers are also more likely to take other factors into consideration, including the seller’s motivation for the sale. The phrase "motivated seller" can mean several things. But, primarily, the term signifies that the property owner is eager to close the deal on a piece of property quickly. The desire to close quickly can be for any number of reasons. It's important for buyers to get a sense of those reasons, and how to temper the offers they make accordingly. 

Clearly, mortgage rates have made the rural and residential market in the South Lakes even more  challenging for first time buyers. People are living at home for longer to try to save bigger deposits, and this trend is also affecting the rental market.

Although interest rates are lower than they were 10 years ago, people have become used to the extremely low rates we have enjoyed, and no-one could have foreseen or planned for the interest rate inflation that has made house buying so much more difficult over the past six months for buyers requiring a mortgage.

Stamp duty has also impacted the second home market for rural properties so often sought after in this area. But the South Lakes nevertheless remains one of the most desirable areas in the country, and Kendal still is and always will be a sought after location with excellent transport links , easy proximity to Wales, Scotland and the North of England, g reat schools, and on its doorstep the unique appeal of the spectacular Lake District National Park.

To contact our South Lakes team please call 01539 721375  or email [email protected]