Docklands News

House prices fall slightly in March

The average house price in the UK fell by 1% in March, marking the first monthly decline since September last year. According to Halifax, the average home now costs £288,430, down £2,900 from the previous month. Kim Kinnaird, Halifax's director of mortgages, said the housing market "remains sensitive to the scale and pace of interest rate changes. That a monthly fall should occur following five consecutive months of growth is not entirely unexpected, particularly in view of the reset the market has been going through since interest rates began to rise sharply in 2022. Despite this, house prices have shown surprising resilience in the face of significantly higher borrowing costs." 

BBC News (06/04/2024)   Daily Mail (06/04/2024)   Financial Times (06/04/2024)   The Daily Telegraph (06/04/2024)  

Read more »

First-time buyers more reliant on friends and family

Office for National Statistics data shows that first-time buyers are increasingly reliant on help from family and friends to get onto the housing ladder. Between April 2022 and March 2023, 36% of recent first-time buyers used gifts from family and friends to help buy a home, while 9% relied on inheritance. These rates far exceed these seen 20 years ago, when 20% of first-time buyers received financial support from family and friends and 3% relied on an inheritance. Data also shows Britons are purchasing their first home at 36, earning the greatest salary by 47 and are mortgage-free by 61. Meanwhile, the increase in private renting is greatest among those aged 35 to 54. In 2021, 21% of this group rented privately, compared with 14% in 2011. 

City AM (08/04/2024)   I (08/04/2024)  

Read more »

Unkempt gardens and neighbours impact home values

A messy next-door neighbour can significantly decrease the value of a seller's home, with unkempt gardens and even garden gnomes deterring potential buyers. According to insurer Churchill, 82% of estate agents emphasise the importance of improving the appearance of neighbouring properties before putting homes on the market. On average, a messy neighbour can reduce a home's value by £31,000, which is around 10% of the average house price in England. The biggest impact is seen in London, where untidy neighbours could decrease the sale price by over £56,950. 

The Daily Telegraph (06/04/2024)  

Read more »

Michael Gove approves Marsh Wall tower extension

Chalegrove Properties' plans for a seven-storey extension to a consented residential tower scheme in the Isle of Dogs, have been given the green-light by Michael Gove. The developer's proposal to extend the 48-storey project at One Thames Quay, 225 Marsh Wall, to 55 storeys were rejected in June 2022 by Tower Hamlets Council, due to concerns that the structure would be “detrimental to the townscape and Canary Wharf skyline”. However Mr Gove, Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, agreed that the tower "would be just another tall building… and would not, in the panoramic view from Greenwich Park, be intrusive or have any adverse effect on the distinctiveness of the area”. Construction is already underway on the development; at completion, it will include 390 apartments, 84 of which will be affordable. 

Property Week (28/03/2024)  

Read more »

Canary Wharf struggles amidst office exodus

Canary Wharf in London's Docklands, once a symbol of financial ambition, now needs a government subsidy to adapt and survive, the i reports. HSBC and other major tenants are leaving, and the vacancy rate is higher than in any other major UK city. No new offices are set to be built, raising concerns about the district's future. Some plans include converting vacant offices into laboratories and developing new homes. Efforts to attract tourists and embrace emerging sectors like science labs are underway. However, the FT reports that Canary Wharf has received a welcome boost after US investment bank Morgan Stanley added a decade to the lease on its European headquarters in the east London financial centre. 

Financial Times (03/04/2024)   I (03/04/2024)  

Read more »

Record number of first-time buyers in London property market

First-time buyers have made a significant impact on the London property market, accounting for a record 50% of homes sold this year. Nationwide reported that the share of houses purchased by first-time buyers reached an all-time high of 33% in the first quarter of 2024, thanks to falling mortgage rates. The South of England saw the largest increase in first-time buyer purchases, with London leading the way as half of all sales went to first-time buyers. However, affordability remains a challenge, resulting in smaller homes and lower borrowing amounts. 

Daily Mail (01/04/2024)   Evening Standard (01/04/2024)   The Daily Telegraph (01/04/2024)   The Independent (01/04/2024)  

Read more »