How COVID-19 has affected the land market
29 April 2020
The Covid-19 pandemic has had an unprecedented impact on the property market as a whole, with sales and purchases seemingly grinding to a halt, and the world of farms and estates is no exception.
But it’s not all doom and gloom. Here, Tim Olliff-Lee looks at the current situation and what opportunities there might be in the future that you can start preparing for now.
Where are we now?
Transactions that were launched before lockdown, and where sufficient viewing could take place, are generally progressing, especially where surveyors are happy to carry out surveys, contents inventories etc.
Where vacant possession is necessary, then options are being considered to deal with the delay and obtaining possession with either a retention or condition contract. The circumstances of the buyer and seller will determine the most appropriate course of action.
Spring launches of particularly residential farms are being shelved, although we are starting to see some plans afoot for launches in June of this year if there is an easing of the lockdown.
At Wilsons, we are being approached to assist with the preparation of sales that weren’t intended for the Spring market, with a view to a launch following the easing of the lockdown so there could be a surge in activity in the months ahead.
The sale and purchase of bare land is taking place, particularly between neighbours. This seems to be one area that hasn’t been directly affected and there is no reason why it should be.
It is likely we will see a good supply of farms coming to the market as soon as the lockdown allows. Whether there is a demand for those properties remains to be seen but the feedback from agents suggest so.
It is too early to understand the impact of the lockdown and the depths of the recession, particularly what impact that might have on lifestyle buyers.
If you are considering the sale of a farm then now is a great time to get the preparation done. Our clients are often surprised at the amount of preparation that goes into a sale and information that has to be collated.
If a property has been in a family for generations then it is not uncommon to come across some form of title deficiency or other issues that need resolving, and it is always best to have some time to sort those out as opposed to trying to do so after a sale has been agreed.