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UK property market shows signs of life

UK Property Market Is Still Alive & Well

The overall number of properties ‘Sold’ in November 2011 was up +1.4% compared to November 2010 and up +0.1% against November 2009.

November has seen the UK’s residential property market start its traditional seasonal decline according to data released from the Agency Express Property Activity Index.

But whilst month on month properties nationally achieving ‘Sold’ status in November were down -7.1% on October 2011 and the number of new ‘For Sale’ listings recorded were down, by -11.8%, it was the second smallest November drop since the Index began in 2007.

Encouragingly, the overall number of properties ‘Sold’ in November 2011 was also up +1.4% compared to November 2010 and up +0.1% against November 2009.

Regionally, there were some positive signs with four of the twelve regions bucking the seasonal trend and showing positive figures for the number of properties ‘Sold’ in November against the previous month.

The North East topped the hot-spots up +18.8% on October, followed by the South West up +15.7% and Scotland up +12.0%.

When it came to the regional ‘not-so-hot-spots’ for November, West Midlands was bottom of the table with a drop in the number of properties ‘Sold’ down -15.9%, the South East was down -15.1% and the North West was down -15.0%.

The seasonal decline was more evident in the number of new ‘For Sale’ listings recorded in November against October, with only one region generating positive month on month figures, (which was London) up +7.8%.

At the other end of the table the regional ‘not-so-hot-spots’ for new ‘For Sale’ listings were Central, down -26.9%, Wales down -25.7% and Scotland down -23.9%.

Disappointingly, the number of ‘For Sale’ listings in November 2011 were also down -1.1% on the same month in 2010 but up +11.0% on November 2009.

A good number of individual cities bucked the seasonal trend and experienced increases in month on month house sales compared to October.

Nottingham topped the ‘hot-spots’ with an increase in properties ‘Sold’ in November, up +27.0%, followed by Newcastle up +25.3% and Colchester up +24.2%.

At the opposite end, the cities recording the greatest decline in month on month properties ‘Sold’ in November were Coventry down -58.8%, Southampton down -42.3% and Norwich down -27.4%.

There was a similar picture for individual cities when it came to New ‘For Sale’ activity in November compared to October.

Colchester topped the charts with a month on month increase of +13.7%, London up +7.8% and Brighton up +5.1%. Coventry saw the greatest monthly decline in new ‘For Sale’ listings compared to October, down -46.6%, with Bristol down -45.9% and Southampton down -39.2%.

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UK Bailiffs Christmas Holidays

UK Bailiff Seasonal Amnesty

A seasonal reminder to landlords and letting agents that Bailiff Amnesty’s will begin around 12th December 2011 to the 9th January 2011. Please check your local County Court for more details.

 The amnesty, which is not widely publicised, is implemented due to local authority offices, solicitors, courts and housing welfare organisations festive holiday closures.

Unfortunately for landlords, the festive season of good cheer can be one of the costliest periods due to an increase in rent arrears, especially from LHA tenants.

 Up to the end of 2010, there were 995,000 LHA tenancies and rent arrears in this sector were thought to be in excess of £290 Million (GBP).

This year research indicates that there are now over 1Million LHA tenancies and with more changes to the Government’s Welfare Reform Bill due to be implemented on 1st January 2012, rent arrears are expected to increase further.

 Landlords are urged to act fast when dealing with defaulting tenants, especially at Christmas as courts experience backlogs of paperwork and hearings in the New Year.

Speak to your local office now or call our free phone help line – 0800 840 7133

 Legal 4 Landlords Eviction and Rent Recovery Services

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