Opinion: Unprecedented demand for new homes looks set to continue

Two wooden houses and a green good positive trend on easel. Real estate value increase. Rising price

When it comes to the new homes market the level of activity has been unprecedented - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Earlier this year Savills started one of its many research publications by saying that 2021 was likely to be a “complex” 12 months. Little did we know just how true a prediction that would prove.

Record low mortgage rates and sustained demand for more space supported house price growth, while a range of stamp duty holidays also added fuel to the fire.

The Covid-19 pandemic has encouraged buyers to reassess where they want to live and what they want from their homes. This has prompted many people to upsize or relocate, in some cases to be nearer to family and in others because of lifestyle reasons.

RMG Photography - July 2017Savills - Staff portraits - 2017.Pic - Richard Marsham/RMG Photography

Max Turner, who leads the new homes team at Savills Ipswich - Credit: Richard Marsham/RMG Photography

When it comes to the new homes market the level of activity has been unprecedented and our team in Suffolk is on course for a record year.

Strength of demand has consistently outweighed supply – and we are expecting that to continue as we head into 2022.

At what is traditionally a quieter time of year the pace shows little sign of slowing. We have a new scheme at Ashfield Farm in Elmswell, near Bury St Edmunds launching this weekend, while The Lilacs in Trimley St Martin near Felixstowe, Deben Meadows in Woodbridge and The Limes in Great Cornard are all attracting plenty of interest.

CGIs of new family homes at Ashfield Farm in Elmswell, Suffolk, which launches 11 December

Savills' new scheme at Ashfield Farm in Elmswell, near Bury St Edmunds, launches this weekend - Credit: Balance Design

Levels of activity are such that properties are still being reserved within days of becoming available – demonstrating the enduring appeal of buying a newly built property.

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Designed with the needs of modern homeowners in mind, buyers know they will be moving into a home that’s ready to personalise straightaway and which hasn’t been lived in by anyone else. There’s also the benefit of a 10 year warranty and new properties tend to be more energy efficient – leading to lower heating bills and less impact on the environment.

Buying a new home also means you don't have to worry about the seller's end of the deal falling through. As this is a business transaction for the developers, they are much less likely to change their minds half way through a sale.

Rising interest rates and the prospect of increased taxes may well gradually squeeze the spending power of wealthier households as we move through 2022 – leading to lower levels of house price growth in the market more generally.

It also remains to be seen how a rise in construction demands and shortages in materials and labour will impact the delivery of new homes.

However, longer term changes to people’s working patterns are still likely to underpin demand among those who are able to widen their search to more rural areas.

CGI of a row of terraces at The Lilacs, a new housing development in Trimley St Martin near Felixstowe

The Lilacs in Trimley St Martin near Felixstowe is seeing strong interest - Credit: Savills

With miles of coastline, an abundance of countryside, excellent schooling and a fine selection of towns and villages with plenty of amenities – Suffolk will remain an attractive option for homeowners.

We are also expecting to see a rise in demand for properties that qualify for Help to Buy support, with first time buyers keen to take advantage before the scheme ends in 2023.

With a bit of luck, 2022 will be a less complex year than 2021. But the key is for buyers to register their interest early – increasing the likelihood of finding exactly the right home for their needs.

The new homes team at Savills would like to wish all our clients a merry Christmas and happy new year.

For any advice on moving home in 2022 contact Max Turner on 01473 234826 or MTurner@savills.com.

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