A LEADING Worcester and Malvern estate agent has hailed the county’s property market as ‘red hot’ despite a near 20 per cent drop in sales.
Home buying across Worcestershire dropped by 18.4 per cent to 3,984 in the last 12 months, according to a new market update from Nicol and Co.
Figures up to the end of March this year from the Land Registry show house sales in Worcester fell by 13 per cent to 1,778 while property transactions in Malvern fell by 19 per cent to 599.
The company saw their biggest drop in sales in Droitwich which saw sales fall by some 35 per cent with just 387 properties sold in the 12 months to March 31.
But despite the falls, managing director Matt Nicol delivered a bullish update on the state of the market in the county.
“Rather than a fall-off in demand, this is a case of the statistics catching up with what was a spike in sales in the previous year caused by the Stamp Duty holiday,” he said.
“The reduction in sales recorded in Droitwich is more significant due to a high number of transactions involving new build properties which came on to the market in the previous year.
“What this all means is that the housing market, formerly described as ‘white hot’, is probably now better described as ‘red hot’.”
Average house prices had still increased across the county in the last 12 months, rising to £291,000 in Malvern, £268,000 in Droitwich and £237,600 in Worcester, according to the property chief.
“There is still a supply and demand issue, and prices are not likely to drop, they may just not climb so fast.
“Looking five years ahead, now is the best time to buy and clearly a great time to sell as there are plenty of buyers very keen to make a move.”
Mr Nicol added the local lettings picture had continued to fluctuate over the last 12 months with rises in Worcester and Malvern of five and three per cent respectively.
Monthly rents in Worcester and Malvern were on average £760 and £785 respectively but again Droitwich saw a drop in lettings of 18 per cent with an average rent of £743.
Nicol and Co’s local market analysis is based on statistics from various sources including Dataloft, Rightmove and the RICS Housing Market Survey.