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Marlborough News September 2013

How to make sense of the property hyperbole • “Nationwide Building Society - the average house now costs £167,912…” • “On the Halifax’s measure, the average price of a house exceeded the £170,000 mark for the first time in five years”

on statistics. The rest of the country, with a few exceptions, is more in the line of 1% or 2%. Indeed, areas of negative equity still exist. Houses that do sell are on average achieving 93% of the asking price.

• “Annual price growth hit 3.9%, Nationwide Andrew Turner, National Head of Residential Sales at Smiths Gore comments: “The Building Society said.” picture is one of a market on the cusp of change. The northern counties are clearly he headlines above hide the fact that lagging behind but the message across the average house price in 2007 before the country is one of increasing rises or the crash was around £200,000, so we’re decreasing falls in property values. still playing catch up. Also the resurgence


is not national. Some areas of London are enjoying around a 9% hike in prices. With prices as high as £105 million, it only takes the sale of a few houses to make an impact

“Without doubt, this is the brightest picture across the country since 2007 and reflects improvements in other sectors of the economy and the stimulus injected into the

MP Comes Home

“When one is building one’s house, one suddenly realises that in the process one has learned something that one really needed to know in the worst way – before one began” Friedrich Nietzsche


are key when buying a house. Whether the house is close to good schools, shops, pubs or the closest railway station are key considerations. So it is no surprise that the planned upgrade to the rail network generate such passion in the area, with the links to London Paddington under close scrutiny. And result of the campaigning? As far as we can tell electrification will go as far as Great Bedwyn, but not to Pewsey, although not until 2019, with funding sources still a little uncertain. Marlborough has been without a station since 1961, with Bedwyn being the closest station and it seems unlikely that a Marlborough station would be reopened, due to cost.

The economy is in positive growth and the property market is starting to feel the confidence of investors as more buy to lets and first time buyers move onto the ladder again. But, it is still a buyers’ market and vendors have to be realistic about the sale price.

New for old!

Build more retirement homes is the

call of former That’s Life presenter Esther Rantzen CBE, who is leading the Campaign for Housing in Later Life by the Home Builder’s Federation.

A train of thought...

Communications and transport links

market by the Help to Buy Scheme. There is a notable difference in the market between rural and urban areas which has been overlooked by the mainstream property commentators. House prices in rural areas in the North are recovering better than urban house prices whereas in the South, urban properties are faring better than houses in rural areas.”

miths Gore welcomed MP Claire Perry to the Marlborough office, marking our first year at 42 High Street. Thomas Brunt, Partner and Edward Hall, Head of Agency shared a recent Smiths Gore report on the rural housing market with Ms Perry looking beyond the headlines and at the reality of the North/South divide on property prices. London may be experiencing increases of nearly 10%, but in the North prices are still decreasing in some areas. Having recently bought a new home, the Devizes MP is delighted at the prospect of moving and being able to live and work in the heart of her constituency at Charlton St Peter in the Pewsey Vale. Edward Hall commented: “Properties in the Pewsey Vale are generally sound investments because of good schooling as well as being in a beautiful part of the county.” Research has shown that the proximity of a station with a fast commute, a good school within 20 minutes of a property can add £50,000 to the value! There are many examples of parents securing places for their children at a school and then finding a house - paying whatever it takes to get it!

A report published last week claims £400bn is tied up in homes of the over-60s who want to downsize. But demand is outstripping supply with 3.5 million over 60s interested in buying retirement property, however only 100,000 suitable homes are available for sale. Building more retirement properties would free up more than 3 million homes, offering a lifeline to families desperate to move up the housing ladder. In a survey of 1,500 people aged over 60, 58% said they were interested in moving but felt restricted by a lack of suitable housing or a fear of moving to an unfamiliar environment. The poll also shows that 76% of over-60s wanting to move from three, four and five bedroom houses wish to downsize.

Audley Inglewood Retirement Village

Marlborough News September 2013 Property of the month:

Town Mill, Marlborough Launched onto the market at a guide price of £295,000 and now available for viewings.

A semi detached cottage in the Town Mill complex will shortly be launched onto the market; the property promotes independent living under an umbrella of care. Built in 1988, this brick built cottage has been well designed to provide roomy accommodation with attention to detail and a wow-factor location. There are splendid views across the river to Coopers Meadow and the grazing sheep. The rooms are a good size with the master bedroom enjoying bucolic views across the meadow. It is only a shame one has to be of retirement age to enjoy the situation and amenities on offer.

The call is to build more retirement

Marlborough itself is an ideal retirement spot, providing focal points for interests, sports, culture and education.

The Smiths Gore research team produces top quality reports on property trends whilst other services for property owners, include architectural and planning advice, renewable expertise, design and construction and renewable expertise.

Town Mill is located in Marlborough on the site of a former mill on the banks of the River Kennet with wildlife on your doorstep and fish literally trying to leap out of the water.

The average time between agreeing

a price for a property and completing is 13-15 weeks, according to Townends estate agency, five weeks longer than it was before Easter. And that’s for a straightforward sale: six months is not uncommon. The reason for the delays, says George Franks, sales director of Douglas & Gordon, is that the property industry, law firms, banks, chartered surveyors, mortgage surveyors, scaled back on staff during the downturn and has been caught on the hop by the recent upturn.


man who likes a challenge is Edward Hall of Smiths Gore. Whether it’s returning to fitness after getting run over by a tank or opening an estate agency in Marlborough High Street against some of the biggest names in the business, he’s the man for the job. “We are doing this differently” says Hall “Property Forums, seminars, support for the Jazz Festival, it never stops. We are the meeting place for the buyers coming to Marlborough.”

homes and they could do no better than emulate the Town Mill example in Marlborough.

Did You Know…

Profile: Building the business

What’s on in October... Mop Fairs High Street 5th & 19th October Apple Day 13th October Smiths Gore, Property Forum 26th October, 5 - 7 pm “Right sizing – the right choice?” Guest speakers offer advice on retirement, downsizing etc. Everyone welcome – just let us know you’re coming!

So how does a man that used to demonstrate tanks to his colleagues in the army get run over? He explains simply. “An American parked his tank on top of me one night. This made a mess of my legs and hands, as well as giving me pulmonary embolism but one year later after time in Headley Court (the inspiration for the Help for Heroes charity) I was back in uniform. I left the army and started selling houses; I cut my teeth in Hungerford for Lane Fox and then in Newbury for Strutt and Parker, where I ran the estate agency team for 4 years. It was the challenge of building the agency business for Smiths Gore that drove me to Marlborough.” Edward Hall t 01672 529056

“The house was clean, scrubbed and immaculate, curtains washed, windows polished, but all as a man does it - the ironed curtains did not hang quite straight and there were streaks on the windows and a square showed on the table when a book was moved.” John Steinbeck, East of Eden

Marlborough News September 2013  
Marlborough News September 2013  

News from the Marlborough area.