Interest in the property market has gone “ballistic” according to Uckfield estate agents Peter Oliver.
The reason? The Government’s initiative to cut stamp duty on properties up to £500,000.
Peter Oliver director Nick Gulliver told Uckfield News more houses are coming onto the market and more are being sold so they have taken on an extra member of staff to cope with demand.
Last week the estate agent conducted 177 viewings – with 97 appointments on Saturday alone – when normally they would expect between 70 and 100 in a week.
Nick says a lot of people are up-sizing as they work more from home and need additional space, and others are looking for more greenery.
Buyers from outside the area are attracted to the town because of the lovely villages around it, and the Ashdown Forest near by, along with very good links to the coast, and the railway line to London.
The estate agents were stunned by interest in one property, put on the market at £900,000, with a sale price agreed at £200,000 above that.
The £900,000 valuation was higher than the owners had expected, but within three days there were 18 viewings and nine offers before one was accepted.
Nick said the cut in stamp duty which will run until March 31, means that having bought their home people have more money to spend on decorating and making it their own.
Previously a property bought at £400,000 would have attracted tax of £10,000 and one of £500,000, £15,000. “That’s a lot of money to save,” said Nick.
He said first-time buyers were having a tougher time than before lockdown because fewer mortgage products were available but he was convinced banks would release more funds as they saw confidence in the housing market growing.
New to the Peter Oliver team is Sharon Wallis. She lives in Uckfield and has worked in estate agency for 11 years.
Sharon is married with two children, a son and a daughter, and enjoys the theatre and reading.