Population in the Plymouth area set to rise to 284,200 by 2036

Populationgraph

Plymouth faces a predicament. The population is growing and the provision of new housing isn’t keeping up. With the average age of a Plymouth person being 39.0 years (compared to the South West average of 41.6 years old and the national average of 39.4 years of age), the population of Plymouth is growing at an alarming rate. This is due to an amalgamation of longer life expectancy, a fairly high birth rate (compared to previous decades) and high net immigration, all of which contribute to housing shortages and burgeoning house prices.

Durham University have kindly produced some statistics specifically for the Plymouth City Council area. Known as the UK’s leading authority for such statistics, their population projections make some startling reading…

For the Plymouth City Council area … these are the statistics and future forecasts

 

2016 population           264,457

2021 population           269,216

2026 population           274,349

2031 population           280,168

2036 population           284,266

 

The normal ratio of people to property is 2 to 1 in the UK, which therefore means…

We need just under 10,000 additional new properties to be built in the Plymouth City Council area over the next 20 years.

Whilst focusing on population growth does not tackle the housing crisis in the short term in Plymouth, it has a fundamental role to play in long-term housing development and strategy in the City. The rise of Plymouth property values over the last six years since the credit crunch are primarily a result of a lack of properties coming onto the market, a lack of new properties being built in the City and rising demand (especially from landlords looking to buy property to rent them out to the growing number of people wanting to live in Plymouth but can’t buy or rent from the Council).

Although many are talking about the need to improve supply (i.e. the building of new properties), the issue of accumulative demand from population growth is often overlooked. Nationally, the proportion of 25-34 year olds who own their own home has dropped dramatically from 66.7% in 1987 to 43.8% in 2014, whilst 78.2% of over 65s own their own home. Longer life expectancies mean houses remain in the same hands for longer.

The swift population growth over the last thirty years provides more competition for the young than for mature population. It might surprise some people that 98% of all the land in the UK is either industrial, commercial or agricultural, with only two percent being used for housing, which means one could propose expanding supply to meet a expanding population by building on green belt – that most Politian’s haven’t got the stomach to tackle, especially in the Tory’ strongholds of the South of England, where the demand is the greatest. People mention brownfield sites, but recent research suggests there aren’t as many sites to build on, especially in Plymouth that could accommodate 10,000 properties in the next 20 years.

In the short to medium term, demand for a roof over of one’s head will continue to grow in Plymouth (and the country as a whole). In the short term, that demand can only be met from the private rental sector (which is good news for homeowners and landlords alike as that keeps house prices higher).

In the long term though, local and national Government and the UK population as a whole, need to realise these additional millions of people over the next 20 years need to live somewhere. Only once this issue starts to get addressed, in terms of extra properties being built in a sustainable and environmentally friendly way, can we all help create a socially ecological prosperous future for everyone. For more thoughts on the Plymouth Property market, please visit plymouthpropertynews.wordpress.com

Advertisements

Which is the best month to sell your Plymouth property?

BestMonthPlymouthHomeI had a homeowner from Mainstone email me the other day. She said she had been following our blog http://www.plymouthpropertynews.wordpress.com for a while and wanted to pick my brain on when is the best time of the year to sell a property. Trying to calculate the best time to put your Plymouth property on the market can often seem something akin to witchcraft and, whilst I would agree that there are particular times of the year that can prove more productive than others, there are plenty of factors that need to be taken into consideration.

 

Even if you are putting your property on the market, you don’t know how long it will take to find a buyer – no crystal ball to help with that one. At the moment, the latest set of figures for all 54 estate agents in Plymouth, show the average length of time it takes to find a buyer for any Plymouth property is as follows ..

 

Detached                    147 days

Semi                            96 days

Terraced                     104 days

Flat                              150 days

Overall average          124 days

 

 

If we roll the clock back to January 2016, the overall average time it took to find a buyer (again using data from all of the 54 Plymouth Estate Agents) was 155 days.

 

So, on the face of it, things have vastly improved over the last six months or so. Well, when I looked at the data going back to 2008, the average length of time it takes to sell a property drops between January and the Summer months, for it to rise on the run up to Christmas. For example ..

 

Winter 2008 – 157 days           Summer 2008 – 112 days

and in more recent times …

Winter 2013 – 160 days           Summer 2013 – 160 days

Winter 2014 – 148 days           Summer 2014 – 131 days

Winter 2015 – 143 days           Summer 2015 – 132 days

 

Coming back to the present, even if you placed your property on the market today in Plymouth, if it takes you on average a little under eighteen weeks to find a buyer, then you can expect solicitors and the chain to take an additional eight and twelve weeks after that, before you move. It comes down to personal choice as to when you place your property on the market. Children often affect the decision. On one side you might delay putting that for sale board in your front garden so you can move in the summer school holidays, but on the other side, you might want to move sooner to be in the catchment area of a preferred school, in plenty of time for the next academic year?

 

There are times of the year when it’s better to sell, and times when waiting a little longer can pay off in the long run. In a nutshell, I would say this is the way of the seasons ..

WHEN THE MARKET?

Spring: Customarily there are more house-buyers as the Daffodils show themselves

Summer: Sellers may miss out on house-buyers being on holiday

Autumn: The enthusiasm for buying homes returns

Winter: Interest diminishes as festive period looms

What this means to buyers and landlord investors is that they often pick up a bargain in later months of the year, as there is less competition from owner occupiers. So, whilst there are better months to achieve a quicker sale, the only piece of advice I can give to every home owner and landlord in Plymouth, is do the right thing for yourself, do your homework and buy (and sell) with both your head as well as your heart

 

For more thoughts on the Plymouth Property Market – visit http://www.plymouthpropertynews.wordpress.com