Laying solid foundations for the future

5 Mar 2014

The team at Cumbrian Homes is looking to the future with optimism as we have seen a significant growth in sales and general interest over the past six months.  To kick start the year we are holding a series of open days at our newest development Howgill Skies, near Sedbergh This weekend 8/9th March & 15/16th March.

The housing market has been particularly affected by the UK recession over the past six years.  It was the first area to be affected by the credit crunch as banks curtailed their lending, making it more difficult for buyers to get a mortgage.  However, we are one of only a handful of small independent builders to ride the storm; seeing significant development and growth in the last six months.

Enquiry levels over the last six months to end of Jan have been 2 ½ times higher than the same period last year, which has led to reservations doubling over the same period and sales completions not too far behind.

Our ‘order book’ has increased substantially; forecast completions for the next six months will exceed our targets and are close to the levels we were achieving pre-recession.  The increase in enquiries and serious visitor traffic suggest the market is picking up in our area and we are confident the trend shown in the figures so far will continue through the year.

The whole country is going through the recovery phase; with London and the South East showing significant increases, however the upward trend here in Cumbria has been a much more gradual one since early 2013.  However, sales volumes in the last 3 months recorded (Aug, Sept & Oct 2013) are 25% higher than the same time last year which is the busier end of the year for completions generally, which would suggest the market is on the move.  

The Government’s ‘Help to Buy’ scheme has helped the new build market generally, however out of recent sales and reservations for the company, only 15% have taken advantage of the ‘Help to Buy’ scheme. Part one being an equity loan scheme specifically aimed at the new build market and Part 2, just recently introduced, guarantees lender’s higher LTV loans to the whole market – new build and resale. Both these schemes are designed to reduce the requirement for large deposits in order to buy a house and/or obtain a competitive mortgage.

Here at Cumbrian Homes, we are seeing a fundamental change in confidence and a lot more activity from buyers.  There are fears from central government of returning to an overheated housing market through these types of schemes, so we are not surprised to hear they’re keeping a close eye on things in order to temper demand if needs be. Though it is quite apparent that the main reason for the increase in average UK house prices is largely due to the large increases seen in London and the South East, rather than consistent growth throughout the rest of the UK. The market in London is not been driven by these buyer incentives so we don’t think there will be a dramatic policy u-turn just yet.

Making the most of the current climate we are holding a series of open days at our newest development Howgill Skies.  Consisting of just twelve new homes on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales National Park, work began in 2012 with the first homes going on the market mid to late 2013.  Seven properties have already been sold or reserved, with only five remaining on what is proving to be a sought after site.  The houses are built in local stone in a variety of 2, 3 and 4 bedroom designs and the site is the first new development within the town for many years. With the chance of early input into the remaining properties, it is an excellent time to for potential buyers to consider these luxury new homes.

The housing market is moving back towards a seller’s market rather than the strong buyer’s market it has been for the last few years.  The locations we are building in are sought after areas and the high quality homes we build are attractive to a range of buyers, so we feel we have good cause for optimism over the years ahead.  

The show home at Howgill Skies will be open from 10am to 4pm on Saturday and Sunday 8th & 9th March and 15th & 16th March.  Prices start from £260,000, with £13,000 deposit needed for the ‘Help to Buy’ scheme.

To find out more call head office on 01768 840 840 or call Jill for sales on 07501 223 094