Published by: Spencer CushingThe results might surprise you! It's not where you think...
Many dream of an escape to the countryside but following the pandemic, when a magnitude of people looked to relocate to the serenity of Norfolk, Sowerbys Estate Agents witnessed a surprising trend among buyers.
Spencer Cushing, Sowerbys Burnham Market branch manager reveals who purchased property through his branch in 2021 and where they moved from – the results might surprise you:
Words by Spencer Cushing:
At the start of every year estate agents look forward with eager anticipation to what the next twelve months will bring and what the unpredictable housing market might throw at us.
Not only that, but it is also a time for us to reflect on the previous year and see what lessons we can learn.
This year, as part of that reflection, I have been looking at where our buyers have hailed from - and such analysis has made for some very interesting discoveries.
Having grown up in North Norfolk but spent much of my career outside of the county, I had, as I believe many still do, always assumed that the prices of coastal properties was underpinned by London money.
However, the reality of working in this area for the last five years has taught me that historically this assumption was far removed from the truth. Furthermore, the evidence from last year’s sales presents what I think most will find a very surprising result.
Before the pandemic the number of buyers from the capital was relatively insignificant, with no more than about 5% year on year and almost exclusively these were second home buyers.
In the Sowerbys’ Burnham Market branch alone, the buyers of 2021 came from a total of 20 different counties – commonly those bordering Norfolk.
London buyer numbers did increase almost threefold to 13% with a further 14% coming from the commuter belt county of Hertfordshire, meaning almost a third of all our buyers came from this part of the UK.
What was noticeable about this group though - was the number who were leaving city life or the commuting belt behind and buying their main home in Norfolk to live permanently.
What I expect will surprise people the most, is that by far the largest number - almost a fifth of all our buyers - came from within Norfolk itself!
The draw of our beautiful beaches and our unspoilt coastal villages makes owning a home in North Norfolk just as attractive to our own, as it does to those who are drawn here from far afield.
Finally, I am very proud to report that last year’s statistics show almost 70% of properties sold with Sowerbys did so for the guide price or above.
Not only that, but overall we achieved an average of 11% above guide price across all sales in 2022 with some houses selling for as much as 50% above the guide price.
Looking ahead to 2022, it is my firm belief that the strength of the market will continue with Sowerbys clients looking to make the most of all that Norfolk has to offer.
A buoyant market has made it an enticing time to sell and relocate within the county for those already here, while the post pandemic focus on achieving a work-life balance - and more opportunity than ever to work from home - will undoubtedly mean we continue to witness those from further afield looking to Norfolk.