Moving house at any time can seem like a complete headache, but during a pandemic? It sounds like the stuff of nightmares doesn't it! If you're thinking of moving house or investing in your own home, it may feel like a bad time to be looking, but is that really the case? I thought I'd share some information and answer a few questions I've seen on this topic, because it is a lot to get your head around and it may not be as bad as you think.
Has covid affected market value?
It may seem like a bad time to sell, but actually there's been a bit of a boom in house prices lately. This is predicted to be on the rise throughout the year, so it's a great time to sell. Obviously this is all relative, so in other words buyers will pay more. This is fine if you are selling and buying as you'll make more but then pay more so it balances out. As a first time buyer though, you may pay a little more than you wanted right now, but as prices are on the up, it's still a good time to invest.
Has covid affected mortgages?
There's good news and bad news here, with the banks reducing the amount of deals on offer and in some case requiring a larger deposit due to the uncertain times we find ourselves in. In contrast though, the base rate is at a record low, meaning that if you're on a flexible mortgage, payments will be lower each month. If you have a fixed mortgage, then you won't see any change, but you will also be secure if the base rate rockets any time. If you need a new mortgage, then you can find out what you can borrow by using a mortgage calculator and hopefully you'll also find a suitable mortgage deal out there to fit your needs.
I'm furloughed, can I still get a mortgage?
You can still apply for a mortgage on furlough, though in most cases as your mortgage is calculated on you earnings, you may find that the amount you can borrow is less right now, but it's still worth looking into it and seeing what's on offer.
Are estate agents working & can I view houses?
Estate agents are still open as normal and yes you can still view houses. Also house movers, surveyors and valuers can still work, so there's nothing to stop you moving. People outside of your bubble can't help you move though, unless it's your only option. On the up side, you can still go for viewings, as well as travel and stay over night if needed to view houses in other areas. Viewings must be by appointment though and it's recommended to view 'virtually' first to save wasted journeys and to abide by the rules to stay safe such as wearing a mask, keeping windows open and washing hands.
In short, there's absolutely no reason to not move right now if you need to, it's not a bad time to sell or buy and although there are less deals out there, they are still out there. Are you thinking of moving any time soon? If so, don't let covid be the reason you stay put!