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Home.co.uk

News: FTBs optimistic about 2008

Wed, 02 Jan 08

The weakening housing market is good news for desperate FTBs...

Resolve seems to be in short supply for 2008 according propertyfinder.com’s New Year’s resolutions survey.

Compared to last year, respondents were less enthusiastic about more or less everything when it came to thinking about their home for the New Year.  Fewer plan to move, and with the economy slowing, fewer want to spend money on redecoration or home improvements. 

Higher mortgage rates are deterring re-mortgaging – far fewer plan to remortgage.  Lower energy prices are diminishing interest in energy efficiency, despite the government’s much vaunted energy performance certificates. 

However first time buyers and property investors look more optimistic.  The proportion of propertyfinder.com’s visitors resolved to get on the housing ladder is up 5% points on last year to 19.4%, and the proportion looking to buy an investment property is up 1.5% points too. 

Warren Bright, chief executive of propertyfinder.com commented: “Spending money on housing is clearly less important to people for 2008 than it was last year. 

But these results show slackening price growth is not deterring people from bricks and mortar – in fact, the prospect of a weaker housing market is giving a boost to the chances of first time buyers and investors.  As the balance of power shifts from seller to buyer, there will be real opportunities for these people to make opportunistic bids.

And with rates set to fall again as soon as January affordability pressures will begin to ease a little”



Ranking

New year resolution

2008 %

2007

%

1

Re-decorate the house

24.5%

32.7%

2

Move up the housing ladder

19.4%

24.6%

3

Buy my first home

18.7%

14.9%

4

Garden makeover

18.7%

19.7%

5

Make my home more energy efficient

18.1%

27.3%

7

Put my home up for sale

16.8%

15.9%

8

Buy a second property

13.5%

11.0%

9

New bathroom

11.0%

19.3%

10

New kitchen

11.0%

17.2%

11

Re-mortgage

10.3%

14.2%

12

Improve security

9.7%

10.1%

13

Move in with a partner

9.0%

12.7%

14

Move down the housing ladder

7.1%

5.3%

15

Build an extension

5.8%

Despite being less popular than last year, home decoration has topped the New Year resolutions list with 25% of people questioned intending to give their home a face lift.  Re-decoration has topped the tables every year since the annual survey began, and garden makeovers also rate high on people’s priorities every year.

Warren Bright concluded: “After the Christmas slowdown, the property market usually picks up in January - 17% of those surveyed said they planned to sell their home in 2008, more than last year.  Until confidence rallies, there will be fewer buyers in the market so freshening up the house and garden can maximise your chances of a sale.  

“A fresh coat of neutral paint can do wonders in helping to appeal to buyers, and is obviously the most economical way to make over your home.  Most gardens look a bit of wreck in the winter, but it’s a good time to do some landscaping ahead of the spring – that’s when gardens look their best and the housing market is at its busiest.”

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