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Change and uncertainty has contributed to ‘slowdown in market activity’

The housing market is currently seeing more cautious behaviour by property investors due to greater political and economic uncertainty, according to one leading expert.

Residential property sales have fallen across many parts of the country during the second half of the year, as fewer investors buy property, as reflected by the drop in the volume of homes sold under the hammer.

Property auction market activity continued to slow in October, with the number of lots offered and lots sold both falling by 4.1% and 3.3% respectively last month, compared with the same month last year, whilst the overall amount raised dropped by £72m – down 14.3% year-on-year, according to the latest figures.

“Change and uncertainty has contributed to the slowdown in market activity over the last few months,” said Strettons’ director Philip Waterfield.

But despite cooler market conditions, Waterfield is hoping that Strettons can end the year on a high.

The company has released its catalogue for the sale on 13 December, which consists of 52 properties, 84% of which are within the M25, with prices ranging from £2,500 for a freehold ground rent in Ilford, to £1.1m – £1.2m for a freehold commercial/residential investment in Hackney.

The sale also features two properties which have the potential for unique conversions. The first is a 5,597 sq ft basement with exposed brickwork and vaulted ceilings at St Katherine’s Dock. Guided at £600,000 the premises have a 999 year lease, planning permission to be converted into office space and are located directly underneath the communal gardens of the City Quay residential development.

Also available are ‘The Old Maltings’ a pair of Grade II former industrial buildings and a maisonette for repair in Nailsworth, Gloucestershire, guided at £200,000-£225,000.

Waterfield said: “Auctions are often the ideal route to market for unusual properties and the St Katherine’s Dock basement and The Old Maltings are no exception. Subject to consent both could make eye catching conversions should someone want to undertake their own grand design.”

He added: “In uncertain times there is always the certainty of auctions and we are still pleased to report predicted sales of £65-plus million over the year and an average 77% success rate.”

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