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Spalding area customers see mortgages more than double – but experts say housing market is still active

Our area’s property market remains strong despite a national downturn in house prices – this is the view of mortgage advisors and estate agents in Spalding who are at the forefront of the action.

Nationwide says prices in the year to May dropped by 3.4%, the biggest decline since July 2009.

However, Simon Templer, of Harrison Rose’s Spalding office, says as long as sellers are ‘realistic’ about pricing up their homes there is still plenty of activity.

Simon Templer of Harrison Rose, Spalding
Simon Templer of Harrison Rose, Spalding

“Despite the uncertainty of the current financial climate we are still experiencing good levels of activity,” he explained.

“For example, we have a property in Spring Gardens in Spalding which has had six viewings in the last week.

“We are still registering new buyers daily but I think buyers are adjusting to the new rates.

“Lenders are making mortgages more accessible for buyers.

“Of course some realism is creeping in and new properties coming to the market do need to be realistically priced but there’s certainly a lot of people still looking to move to this area.

“The railway station, schools and the fact we are not too far from Peterborough are really important factors, especially for people who have sold high equity properties in the south.

“I think it’s busier than we expected and I’d say the second quarter of this year is busier than the start.

“Hopefully people will stay motivated to move and this will last.”

In recent months mortgage rates have shot up – and are predicted to hit levels last seen in the 1980s by the end of the year as the Bank of England base rate is set to rise to 5.75%

Frankee Hearth, of Mortgage Advice Bureau Spalding, has seen clients paying hundreds more than usual over the past few months.

She said: “It is tough at the moment.

“This all started when we started to come out of Covid – that’s when the base rates started to increase and created the issues.

“The lenders became nervous about the state of the economy and rising inflation so they had to increase their base rates.

“It certainly is affecting people but it’s mostly those with variable mortgages which fluctuate rather than fixed. For example, I know of people who have been paying £300 per month for years but this has suddenly shot up to £700.

“When it comes to fixed rates, it’s not going to go back to what it was in 2019 for a long time.

“I think what we are seeing now is temporary but it won’t change any time soon.

“I would say it’s best to get a fixed mortgage now, even if just for a couple of years.”

Other factors are having an impact on the market – including new rules and regulations for landlords including a requirement for a property to rate at least a C on an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) in order to be let.

“The buy to let market has changed massively. It appears with the new rules on EPCs and the Renters Reform Bill, people are thinking twice about their investments,” said Frankee.

“There’s been talk of 100% mortgages but I think while this might be good for some, people will be able to buy their own houses, but it will be the end of rentals. “Landlords are already at a disadvantage and I think they will just want to get rid of their properties to scrape back their investment.

“The market was booming a few years ago. While the beginning of this year was busy, March and April were dead and estate agents I work with were becoming very concerned. However, this month has been quite busy.

“I think people are reluctant to move because they know they will be paying more on their mortgages that three or four years ago.

“Unfortunately, the media has scared people.

“Yes, rates are going up but not to the extremes which are being reported – and it’s only really on those mortgages which fluctuate.

“It’s a case of looking at everyone’s individual situation and working with them to find the right mortgage for them.”

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