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London Property Market 12 February 2015

London Prime Residential Sales Report - Winter 2014/15

The final quarter of 2014 brought a further slowing in activity, with buyers and vendors more reluctant to commit to transactions.

Nick Barnes, Head of Research

Key Trends

  • Further decline in prime resale capital values in final quarter of 2014.
  • New build market remained buoyant – 2014 was a record year for offplan sales and new construction.
  • Uncertainty surrounding Election outcome and impact of tax hikes slows market activity.
  • Quarter end available stock down by 12.5% on Q3.

Supply & demand trends

As expected, the final quarter of 2014 brought a further slowdown in activity in the prime London residential sales market. On the buying side, applicants were 24% down on the preceding quarter, viewings were 11% lower and exchanges fell by 7%.

Vendors displayed a similar reluctance to market their properties (new instructions and appraisals were respectively 37% and 29% lower than in Q3) which resulted in quarter-end available stock dropping by 12.5% over the quarter. For the year as a whole, the decline was less dramatic thanks to the strong first quarter performance.

On a more encouraging note, the number of fall throughs fell by 24% on a quarterly basis. This is arguably a reflection that although numbers were down, those buyers that were in evidence were more committed and perhaps attracted by the prospect of negotiating a more favourable sale price in a softening market.