The traditional way of classifying property in the UK is to look at the number of bedrooms rather than its size in square metres (although now we are leaving the EU – I wonder if we will go back to feet and inches?). It seems that homeowners and tenants are happy to pay for more space. It’s quite obvious, the more bedrooms a house or apartment has, the bigger it is likely to be. The reason being not only the actual additional bedroom space, but that properties with more bedrooms tend to have larger / more reception (living) rooms. However, if you think about it, this isn’t so astonishing given that properties with more bedrooms would typically accommodate more people and therefore require larger reception rooms.
In today’s Medway property market, the Medway homeowners and Medway landlords I talk to are always asking me which attributes and features are likely to make their property comparatively more attractive and which ones may detract from the price. Over time, buyers’ and tenants’ wants and needs have changed. In Medway, location is still the No. 1 factor affecting the value of property, and a property in the best neighbourhoods, say Hempstead, Shorne or Rainham, can command a price nearly 50% higher than a similar house in an average area. However, after location, the next characteristic that has a significant influence on the desirability, and thus price, of property is the number of bedrooms and the type of property.
In previous articles, I have analysed the Medway housing stock into bedrooms and type of property, but never before now have I cross-referenced type against bedrooms. These figures for the Medway Council area make fascinating reading. It shows 82% of all properties in the area have 3 or more bedrooms:
Terraced (including end-terrace)
5 or more bedrooms
I was genuinely surprised at the low numbers of one and two bed properties specifically 2 bed semi-detached houses, especially as tenants like the smaller one and two bed properties in Medway. You see, it might interest the homeowners and landlords of Medway, that there has been a change in the numbers of properties on the market and the split in bedrooms on the market over the last 12 months
· 12 months ago, 249 one bed properties were for sale in Medway, today 196, a drop of 22%
· 12 months ago, 492 two bed properties were for sale in Medway, today 486, a drop of 2%
· 12 months ago, 519 three bed properties were for sale in Medway, today 704, a increase of 36%
· 12 months ago, 350 four bed properties were for sale in Medway, today 349, no real change
· 12 months ago, 143 five + bed properties were for sale in Medway, today 111, a drop of 22%
For several years Medway buy-to-let investors have been the dominant buyers at the lower end of the market, as they have been enticed by high tenant demand and attractive returns. Some Medway landlords believe their window of opportunity has started to close with the new tax regime for landlords, whilst it already appears to be opening wider for first-time buyers. This is great news for first time buyers, but one final note for Medway landlords; look at the growth of the number of three bed properties in Medway – you can still pick up bargains! You will just need to be a lot more savvy and do your homework.
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