Leading online estate agent eMoov.co.uk has released their latest insight revealing the nation’s biggest fears when buying or selling property.
With the present day property transactions fraught with potential hiccups, it’s no wonder buyers are stricken with dread. 86% agreed that they could be deterred from buying and 91% said they have worries about selling up.
eMoov surveyed over 1000 UK homeowners, research was carried out by insight agency Opinion Matters, and it comes as little surprise that the common denominator for both buying and selling property is price. 40% of sellers stated that getting the best price for their property was their primary concern and an equal percentage of buyers listed house prices as a major deterrent to buying.
The over 50s lead the way as those most concerned about securing a good price for their property. With retirement potentially on the horizon, 40% of them listed getting the best price as their primary fear. This is in contrast to those looking to buy, as 43% of those aged 18-24 were most fearful of the price they would have to pay for their property.
With London property costing double the national average, over 40% of people living in the capital feared property price tags, however Norwich was the surprise top of the bunch with over half of buyers surveyed worried about price.
Southampton held the biggest fear factor for buyers searching for a new property with 42% of them stating that finding their next dream home was a concern. Probably more surprising was their fear about stamp duty in the South coast town, at 38% only London was higher. This comes as no shock since the cost London property can incur considerable stamp duty costs. Liverpudlian’s were less worried about the cost of stamp duty and with Liverpool property prices well below the national average, only 4% listed it as a fear factor.
The research was carried out before the Autumn Statement and George Osbornes changes to Stamp Duty. Prior to this 22% of buyers with a budget of up to £200,000 listed Stamp Duty costs as a concern, rising to 38% for those with a budget over £500,000.
With interest rates currently as low as they can get and a rise inevitable, it is surprising 19% of buyers considered this something to fear when looking to purchase a property. The majority of these were under the age of 44, most likely as a result of larger mortgages and less equity in comparison to the older property buyers.
Estate agency costs were the third biggest fear for sellers (27%) and reflects the growing realisation that the cost of selling traditionally far outweighs the benefit. The fear of hefty estate agent fees was most prevalent across the age brackets of 35 and above, no doubt having previously experienced the high percentage you can end up paying during the sale of your property.
The commitment of a mortgage adds to an already daunting process and finding the right one is a concern more so for younger buyers. 29% of those aged 18-24 feared the availability of mortgages when looking to buy a property, the highest of all the age brackets surveyed. 16% of those aged 25-34 also feared finding the right mortgage which suggests that the introduction of the governments ‘Help to Buy Scheme’ in 2013 has done little to quell mortgage related headaches in the UK.
With a standard mortgage term of 25 years it is becoming increasingly difficult to estimate income once retired. The knock on affect is already becoming clear as over a quarter of 35-44 year olds feared the availability of mortgages when buying, second only to those in the lowest age bracket of 18-24. They also lead the way with fears over mortgage fees with 17% of 35-44 year olds worried about the cost involved.
Property expert Russell Quirk, Founder and CEO of eMoov.co.uk commented: “Buying or selling a property can be scary business for some. It can be a minefield of problems from start to finish and it’s no surprise it strikes fear into the hearts of those involved. It won’t come as a shock to anyone that house prices top the survey, they are what drive the market and unfortunately for the majority dictate the options open to them. It comes down to the age old game of cat and mouse, buyers worry about finding the lowest price, sellers are fearful about selling under value.
“It is interesting to see just 6% of people worry themselves silly over which estate agent they are going to use but 27% are put off by the actual cost of estate agency fees. This reflects a significant change in consumer behaviour over recent years and the importance put on ensuring value from an estate agent, something that the mainstream, high street agent simply does not provide.”