As a would be buyer, and I need to stress, not an investor. I find the current uncertainty in the market terribly frustrating.
All I want is to pay the price for a property for which I feel I could sell again for the same price in 6 months if I had to. That is my definition of a fair price.
The trouble is how do I know what is a fair price? In the UK, Estate Agents almost always advise a seller as to what properties are actually selling for in an area and that is more or less the price for which it gets put on the market.
Holiday and second homes in Spain just don’t follow that rule. Either sellers are completely ignoring agents advice or the agents are just going along with whatever the seller wants to sell for.
As a buyer that makes me terribly reluctant to believe that any price is a fair price.
Here’s a recent experience I had that I hope illustrates this.
I had seen a property that had been on the market for about three years and during that time had been reduced from €345K to 280K. I still thought it way too much but it was a nice house, my only reservation being that I felt it was a bit far from the town. Consequently I wasn’t in love with it but at the right price I would go for it. I didn’t feel I should pay more than €215K but the seller would only go down to €230K so the deal fell through. It is still on the market.
A few weeks later another almost identical property, close by, that I hadn’t looked at before, had its asking price reduced from €285K to €190K. Although I took a look, by then I had decided that it really was too far from town and didn’t make an offer. Incidentally, some 3 months later this one still hasn’t sold.
The upshot is that no matter what the asking price, I’m always going to have the suspicion that it is too much.
That, in my opinion, is not a healthy market and one that doesn’t help either sellers or buyers. But what to do about it; I have no idea!
Back in the day, paying 10-20K over the odds wasn’t a problem since 12 months later the value would have risen by that much anyway. Today it is very different and until some stability is restored both buyers and sellers are going to feel that they are being mugged by each other.
To be honest after reading your post I don’t know what is worst, being a seller waiting for the market to improve or being a buyer waiting for the market to drop.
It must be so frustrating for buyers also sitting around for years on end waiting to purchase.
I don’t know who this situation is more frustrating for 😕
When you are buying or selling one day feels like a week! I know when I was a buyer myself, waiting to find the right property is one thing, but waiting for a market to stabilize could take years. You certainly also have a long wait ahead of you…