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Thoughts for 2024

December 19, 2023

Despite September 2023 seeing a 15 year high of 5.25% in interest rates, which in turn had a significant affect on UK mortgage rates, I am pleased to say that sales in the Wakefield and Pontefract area have remained steady throughout this time and the district has certainly weathered the rumblings of this period.

Moving into the latter part of 2023, mortgage deals have stabilised, and rates have actually decreased towards the end of the year, with rates as low as 4.5% on 5 year fixed deals (dependable on loan to value). Whilst we do not anticipate the Bank of England making any changes to the current rates anytime soon, I am pleased to report that in the last quarter of 2023 we are in fact 22% up on agreed sales in comparison to the same time last year. It goes to show that perhaps the confidence in the property market remains resilient, and whilst we are not expecting any dramatic changes in market conditions in 2024, we are optimistic the supply will continue to grow, as the demand for buying a house is very much already here.

Turning to the rental market, 2023 saw an unprecedented demand for rental properties, with a record number of applicants looking for rental accommodation. We have also seen rents increase on average 13% over this period. With 2024 just around the corner, we feel that the rental market is beginning to stabilise but demand for accommodation remains very high. We have also seen a large increase in the way a property has to be managed from a legal point of view and this will continue into 2024, with further legislation changes that Landlords will have to adhere to.

Here at Richard Kendall, we firmly believe that our ultimate strength is in our ability to personally advise and guide all our clients. If you are a landlord, it is essential to receive professional and knowledgeable advice to remain fully compliant in renting out your homes. With a legacy of nearly 55 years in the residential market in Wakefield and Pontefract, being a local, independent estate agent is key to how we run our business. The public want to see real value in the advice and service that they are receiving, having one individual looking after the sale or rental of their home from start to finish. It is the Richard Kendall way.