Agent Insight: Paul Ivens of Green & Co in the West Midlands

Posted 21 September 2015

We speak to Paul Ivens of Green & Co, which has a network of sales and lettings offices across Sutton Coldfield, Tamworth, Castle Bromwich, Great Barr and Erdington.

What do you expect to see happen in your local market during the remainder of the year?

We are consistently above our forecast for market appraisals and sales, and have no reason to believe that will change in the coming months. There are plenty of homes coming on the market and plenty of buyers looking for homes – although we are finding that it’s taking longer for transactions to complete, partly due to the level of detail demanded from solicitors and lenders.

We said at the start of the year that we were not expecting any significant increase in local property prices in 2015 and this has been true, but there is certainly still cause for optimism. It’s a very active market and I’m expecting that to continue for the rest of the year.

Is now a good time to sell your home?

Mortgage approvals are up and the number of active buyers remains strong, so it is undoubtedly a good time to sell. With 24/7 viewings online and on mobile, we no longer see the traditional fluctuations in the housing market that we used to.

Summer has been busy despite the disappointing weather and we are expecting interest levels to increase further when the children go back to school. As we get closer to Christmas, many people think they should wait until the New Year - but I would always advise getting your home on the market as early as possible.

Year after year, the busiest days for online house hunting are over the Christmas period, and if you wait until the New Year before marketing your property, you will miss out on that peak online traffic.

What are your top five tips for people looking to sell?

  1. The most important thing is to choose the right agent in the first place. Ask what the package includes, whether there is a restrictive tie-in period, what information the agent will share with you, what they know about the local market and what they will do if your home doesn’t sell in the first four weeks.
  2. Remind yourself of your home’s key selling points, any improvements you have made and the benefits of living in your area.
  3. De-clutter. Grab a washing basket and pick up all those bits of paperwork, shoes, clothes, toys and anything else that doesn’t belong on the floor.
  4. Choose your route. If you are hosting the viewing yourself, aim to end your viewing in the room that you are most proud of so you leave prospective buyers with a good impression.
  5. Have a Plan B. Some homes won’t sell immediately and if this is the case, then my best tip to sell your home is to simply ask your agent how they are going to do it. A good agent will analyse the data available to them and look at ways to improve your online listings.

Are there any prominent buying trends in your area?

In Sutton Coldfield, the standard of education has a big impact on the property market. The royal town has no fewer than eight secondary schools, including two grammar schools, and the excellent standards are a key reason why people move to - and stay in - the town.

As a result, demand for homes in the immediate catchment areas of Sutton Coldfield's Ofsted 'Outstanding' schools shows no sign of dropping and there is inevitably a positive impact on prices.

Find out more at ; 0121 355 8828

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