You will probably agree with RICS in its conclusion that the UK housing market lacked impetus in 2018, having continued to struggle with a lack of homes on estate agents’ books; affordability issues; uncertainty caused by Brexit; and prospective interest rate rises.
Unfortunately, looking ahead, it seems unlikely that sales will grow significantly in 2019. In fact, given the obstacles in the current market, RICS anticipates that activity will weaken further, with overall sales volumes to weaken by around 5% this year.
As well as lower transactional volumes, properties are also taking longer to sell, with the average time taken to complete from initial listing rising to approximately 19 weeks at the end of 2018, which is the longest since the series was introduced.
So, set against this backdrop of a slow-moving market, how can you ensure that your cases keep moving and your conversions remain high?
In the current environment, so much is out of our control, but there is one element that you do have control over, which could make a tangible difference to your figures come the end of the year.
The secret is accuracy
Accuracy might seem like a nice to have, but a simple miss-key on application can have a significant knock-on effect further down the line. So many systems are now linked during the home-buying process that an error on an application could potentially lead to an incorrect valuation, so taking the time to ensure your data is accurate at the beginning of the process could prevent stumbling blocks further down the line.
In today’s uncertain environment, accuracy and consistency are more important than ever and this focus on accuracy is one of the reasons we recently promoted Alistair White, our Technical Surveyor Manager to Director.
You can’t control the market, buy you can control your interaction with it, so in this slow-moving environment, remember to put even greater emphasis on the accuracy of your instructions. It could ultimately impact your bottom line.