House sale enquiries boom in south west London during pandemic

Three of the top five boroughs for growth in house sale enquiries are in south west London, new data has revealed.

Over the past year, 32 out of 33 London boroughs saw an increase in homeowners considering a quick sale of their home, according to We Buy Any Home.

Lambeth saw the second biggest rise with 174%, whilst Kingston and Wandsworth both saw 150% jumps to make up the top five.

Hackney saw the biggest growth by far at 225% with Islington third with 172%.

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The data reveals the changing property trends of the past four years, including the reasons behind why people are contemplating selling their homes in London and the UK overall.

Although the number of London home owners considering selling their home has increased by 68% since 2018, the trend has significantly amplified over the past 12 months.

London house sale enquiries increased by 81% comparing the periods of January to May in 2020 to 2021, causing Greater London to see the sixth biggest increase in enquiries during the pandemic.

The City of London was the only borough within Greater London not to have seen a rise in homeowners looking to sell this past year.

Kensington & Chelsea and Croydon were among those with the smallest growth at 36% and 38% respectively.

The primary reason London homeowners typically give for selling is to upsize, and this desire was heightened by the pandemic after a year of lockdowns and remote working.

Rukshana Khanam, Letting Negotiator at Kinleigh Folkard & Hayward, explained: “Covid has affected a lot of things in regards to why people are moving, and people have realised they do not want to be cooped up in small properties when they could get much better value for money further out from London.

“Where a lot of offices are either shutting down or you can work remotely, people don’t need to be central.

“I don’t think I know one person who sold their property to relocate in the same area, or closer to London.”

Khanam spoke of the increased interest from families and young professionals in areas such as Battersea due to the amount of outdoor space and value for money compared to more central areas.

The second most common reason given by London homeowners was the sale of a second home, revealing Londoners to be cutting any unnecessary costs.

Additionally, Londoners appear luckier than most when it comes to love as one in 20 homeowners sought to sell their home due to the end of a relationship, however in London only 3.5% registered due to a break-up, the least of any region in England.

Khanam added: “Stamp duty 100% inflated prices as vendors were getting more in the purchase price because there was no stamp duty cost.

“A lot of homeowners were keen to sell because they knew they would be getting more for their property, and a lot of houses were going for over asking prices as people were fighting for houses as they were under the impression they were getting a discount. 

“The market was very crazy up until June.”

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