I don’t normally discuss house price data, mortgage data, stats, Lies, damned lies and statistics, but I have been sucked into the whirlpool of despair that is the current housing market.
I can’t find it now, but I have seen stats for sales in January and I think I read it correctly when it stated only 10,000 properties were sold in January. That is 10,000 for a population of 60 million people, the percentage is too depressing to publish. The Halifax reported a small rise in property prices in January, but this has been largely dismissed as incorrect by commentators and economists. Indeed, the Halifax and Nationwide figures for February show a steady decline in house prices with figures resembling something close to 1994. Ironically, a hit song in 1994 was ‘things can only get better’. It was a bad song then and things will get far worse before they get better.
So these are the stats, but what about real life? Well, I met an old friend of mine recently who is a solicitor. Now don’t hold that against him as it gets worse, he is a conveyancing solicitor. He was happy, why? He had completed on a property, his second this year! Two in two months! His happiness was short lived when I asked how many he expected in March? “probably the same” he said.
Perhaps Seth Godin was right some time ago when he said it was time to quit.
If you insist staying in the business, rentals, repossessions and auctions are the only place where anything will happen.
I am off to write a song!