I agree with those senior city figures who contend that the proposed ‘help to buy’ scheme will increase the potential for house prices to spiral and then subside.
There has never been a ‘help the market’ stimulus that has not had that effect and, on top of that, doing it in the run up to the next general election seems pretty characteristic of past eras and past failures to me.
To change for the better when helping the housing market to recover, all we need to do is improve the way the market operates - not pump more short-term cash into it; as before. When will we ever learn, that that simply doesn’t work?
Instead, we need to improve the way choices between the properties currently available are made.
By this I mean changing the marketing methods of estate agency from acting mostly from a seller’s viewpoint (as now), to acting for buyers; by also offering a complete service to those buying, if required. Change needs to come from within the house marketing industry and is long overdue.
Valuing the buyers’ input into the housing market should become ‘key’ as they ae the true market makers in actual fact. They are the purchasers. Without purchasers there can be no market. This does not mean finding more ways to help them borrow more and pay more however! They should instead be professionally represented, at least as much as anyone wishing to sell.
The right answer, is for more buying agents to enter the marketplace acting for buyers instead of just having vendor’s agents as now. If you don’t believe me, ask Phil Spencer and friends!
The effect of this would be to smooth the humps and troughs in the housing market and reduce or even eliminate future slumps in levels of transactions in the housing market by allowing the market to function more perfectly in all states of this great nation’s economic cycles. It’s perfectly possible to do this if we should want to.
Who thinks this idea has merit instead of simply trying to pump more finance into the significantly stalled marketplace?
Peter Hendry, Consultant in Housing Valuation