Don’t take your foot off the gas

The South is clearly the place to be! Our local housing market has thrived during the last 9 months thanks to the stamp duty holiday, the finale of the Help to Buy scheme and an increase in focus on ‘home’ causing people to re-evaluate where they live.

Property portals all indicate an increase in the number of property searches where ‘rural’ and ‘garden’ are key priorities. In August 2020, Rightmove reported that “enquiries from city residents about village homes for sale, have risen by 126% across June and July compared to the same  period last year.”

As some sense of normality feels like it might soon appear as a tempting spec on the horizon, there was a fear that support for the industry might reduce and the property market could slump and stale. However, when Chancellor Rishi Sunak extended the stamp duty holiday until June 2021, hopes were lifted that the buoyancy of the market might continue into summer both on the South coast and across the UK.

PICTURED ABOVE: Simon Jenns and Annie Huddleston, Directors at Antler.

“We hope that the extension of the stamp duty holiday and the furlough scheme will prevent the housing market slowing in the spring and summer as it was predicted to.” says Simon Jenns, Director at Antler. “We’re delighted for our customers, and their customers too!” Antler is a specialist property marketing agency working with housebuilders to harness their marketing and focus on strategy.

In the South house prices could rise still further beyond their current lofty peeks. In December 2020, UK prices rose by 8.5%. In Dorset, the average house price is now well above the average at £359,090. Sold prices are 9% up on the previous year and 11% up on 2018.

The newly announced Mortgage Guarantee Scheme is set to bring back lower loan to value (LTV) mortgages with just 5% deposits. “This news is a welcome relief to the sector after Help to Buy came to an end” explains Antler Director, Annie Huddleston. “Our clients will be very glad to see a return of the higher loan to value products”.

All sounds good doesn’t it? However, don’t rest on your laurels just yet. During buoyant times, housebuilders should refocus their marketing effort to focus from lead-generation to brand-building, reputation and strategy.

Selling off-plan is a great opportunity for housebuilders during this time; take advantage of advanced sales on developments where there isn’t yet bricks and mortar and get those reservations in before the summer is upon us.

Regional housebuilder Metis Homes has refocused its sales strategy to sell off-plan in light of the market and with the support of Antler. “Antler’s strategic knowledge of the off-plan sales process and their understanding of the specific marketing required to attract, support and achieve off plan sales, has helped Metis to enjoy success” explains Adam O’Brien, Managing Director at Metis Homes. “Working with Metis, Antler challenges the perceived market-wide approach of ‘doing things the way they’ve always been done’, to create and deliver on marketing strategies which directly increases off-plan sales.”

Developers who have worked hard on their brands see the benefits of excellent reputations in their local areas. Our client, Bayview Developments, is renowned for high-quality, visually stunning properties in the best locations in the South West. As soon as the hoardings are pitched at a site enquiries begin to flow in.

“We know how important the hoardings would be to the development so we ensured they were very well designed and provided enough information for interested buyers to get in touch,” said Annie, Director at Antler. “We were overwhelmed with the response!”

In our experience, signage can be one of the very biggest sources of enquiries. One of our clients received over 800 enquiries from hoardings alone.

About Antler
Antler is a full service marketing agency working exclusively in the property sector. By focusing on one sector we can offer the specialism and industry knowledge a house builder needs to achieve swift sales at the right price. You can trust us to take the lead or offer support to your internal team.

We work with organisations from across the property sectors from local to national house builders through to regional estate agents and land consultants, to local authorities and housing associations. Our range of experience allows us to benefit from a wide range of lessons learned and makes us well placed to support house builders of any size, anywhere in the UK.

T. 01489 290290

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