It is undoubtedly a buyer’s market in London at the moment, with those who are looking to buy property in the capital having become intensely price-sensitive and pragmatic, expecting vendors to be more realistic about asking prices, or be prepared to negotiate, in order to achieve a sale,
Many committed sellers now understand the need to factor in market uncertainty into their price expectations in order to attract cautious purchasers, as reflected by recent data published by Coutts revealing that more than half - 53% - of prime property is being sold below asking price, compared to 42% last year, with buyers securing an average of 12.1% off the asking price.
“There are substantial discounts to be had,” said Camilla Dell of buying agency Black Brick. “We have averaged a 9% reduction on asking prices this year, with this month’s acquisition of the month reaching 19%.”
But despite the recent slowdown in the housing market in the capital, there remains plenty of demand from prospective buyers both from the UK and overseas, with many international purchasers, attracted to the weakened sterling against the dollar and the euro, continuing to view London as a safe bet.
However, there are considerable challenges in negotiating effectively, no matter how experienced the investor is, according to Dell.
She added: “It’s very easy to be overly aggressive and alienate the vendor. Every negotiation is different – there’s no rule book.”