Autumn is generally a great time for the Chiswick property market. The days may be getting shorter, but before the clocks turn back and the nights close in, those considering one of the area’s prestigious riverside homes can still imagine returning from work in time to see the latest afternoon sun on the water. .
Across Turnham Green, Chiswick Common or the patchwork of smaller greens that dot the area, the trees are in full autumn colours. In these months, Chiswick, a symbol of West London life, is nearing its prime.
But this fall is different. Ben Rivera, a local buying agent, is working hard with local contacts, including surveyors, developers and architects, to get leads on homeowners who would like to sell. “I go out every day, but I can’t find anything, there’s nothing inside or outside the market,” he says. “Anyone who might have been persuaded from the start of the pandemic has already sold.”
As mortgage rates rise (the average rate for a five-year fix hit 6.36 percent on Wednesday, according to financial information company Moneyfacts), the amount most people can afford to spend on a mortgage is shrinking. house, buyers refrain from buying and wait to see what happens. what that means for prices in Chiswick. But wealthy homeowners in the area, many of whom are in no hurry to sell, are reluctant to strike a deal. The result, agents say, is a dead end.
“Usually mid-November is a relatively good selling period as families return from vacation with plans to move. But this year that won’t happen,” says Christopher Bramwell, who heads Savills’ Chiswick office.
One witness to the sluggishness of buyer interest is Sonia Jones. In her fifties, with children who have grown up and moved on, she is in the process of downsizing. A month ago, she put her four-bedroom townhouse, which is separated from the river by the old Chiswick Cemetery, up for sale for £1.85m.
A handful of buyers visited the house in the first few weeks, but there were no offers. “They would have been interested in having the same house on the river,” he says, an hardly realistic ambition given that equivalent riverside houses sell for two or three times their asking price.
He says the closest he came to a sale was two days before former Chancellor of the Exchequer Kwasi Kwarteng’s “mini” budget on September 23. indoors; then they said they would prepare the offer for him over the weekend.” Today, more than a month later, they still haven’t done one.
Chiswick has attracted space-seeking pandemic-era buyers, thanks to its offering of large homes, many of them detached, with gardens, its propensity for green space, tree-lined streets, and a laid-back, laid-back vibe. This popularity has pushed up prices: the median price of a house sold in Chiswick this year reached £1.476 million; 16 percent more than in 2019, according to Hamptons using data from the Land Registry.
Chiswick Mall, the area’s most prestigious street, where a £16.5m riverside house has just gone on sale, attracts the area’s wealthiest buyers. Further north, the wide strip of streets between Chiswick High Road and Great West Road are also popular.
On the eastern edge of that area, streets such as Airedale Avenue, Netheravon Road and Homefield Road offer a range of good-sized Edwardian-era terraced and terraced houses. They have gardens large enough to attract family shoppers and are close to Chiswick High Road, the main shopping street, whose wide pavements accommodate the area’s large fleet of prams.
Those looking for a gym, pool or sports facilities can join the local Hogarth Club; the Chiswick independent cinema is also just around the corner. Buyers looking for a little more space for the same money, or after one of Chiswick’s larger houses, will consider Grove Park, which has a large number of early 20th-century houses with large gardens.
Among those who were drawn to Chiswick for its rural setting were Toby and Chris. The couple, who are in their 30s and declined to give their real names, bought a house together in early October after spending a few months renting in the area.
“It’s nice to have that break from the manic atmosphere of the city and come home to a more relaxed area. You can cycle into town here, but you feel things calm down the moment you pass the Hammersmith roundabout,” says Toby.
The couple are living together for the first time: Toby, who is a doctor, has moved from Oxford; Chris, who works in finance, sold his flat in Islington, north London. They were looking for a home where they could raise a family. They chose Heathfield Terrace, a colorfully painted row of houses on the edge of Turnham Green and one of the few collections of Georgian terraces in the area. It is on the west side of the high street, within walking distance of Turnham Green tube station.
Although they spent just over their £2.5m budget, they were wary of the rush of demand from buyers earlier in the year, given rising interest rates which they hoped would push mortgage rates higher still. more, says Toby.
“It was amazing how many houses were even 30 or 40 percent over the sale price. We found it a bit silly in most cases; it just didn’t make sense,” she says.
Rivera, who found them a home, says most of the clients she serves, whose budgets range from £2m to £8m, are less sensitive to interest rate increases than those with smaller budgets. But, if Toby and Chris had arranged their mortgage today instead of when they did, they would not have been able to afford this purchase.
Agents crossing their fingers for increased supply point to the large number of Chiswick residents who own multiple homes. Bramwell says she has received many inquiries over the past week from clients who have moved forward with their plans to downsize to a second home in the country to avoid paying higher mortgage rates on two homes.
“They recognize that over the next two to six months, when they have to remortgage, the higher costs will outweigh the benefits of owning both,” he says.
Jones is a salesman facing the unpleasant prospect of two mortgages. He bought an off-plan flat in Brentford, west London, two years ago with a 20 per cent deposit and is due to pay the balance of the £1.1m purchase price when it is completed in April.
If you haven’t sold your Chiswick home by then, you can rent it out and switch your mortgage to buy-to-let. Adding in the mortgage you’ll need for your new home, this would leave you with two big loans — an unappealing prospect today, with rates on many products topping 6 percent.
With a successful singing career, including backing sessions with the Rolling Stones, he says he can afford it, but may have to give up access to the recording studio that includes his generously proportioned Chiswick home. Like many sellers in Chiswick, she is reluctant to settle for less than she thinks her house is worth, suggesting that the Chiswick standoff will continue.
“An additional mortgage would be a challenge and I’m downsizing for more peace of mind, not less,” she says. “But I’ve been working all my life, I’m used to dealing with these things. If the offer is too low, I’m not in a hurry; yes, the market is calm but people always need houses to live in”.
Part of the London Borough of Hounslow in west London, Chiswick is home to four District Line tube stations, including Chiswick Park, which is 30 minutes from Monument in the City of London.
This year, 59 per cent of Chiswick’s resale sales were houses and 45 per cent of all homes sold for more than £1 million, according to Savills/Land Registry.
What you can buy. . .
Flat, Acton Lane, £500,000
A two-bedroom, 56sqm apartment on the first floor of a converted townhouse near the Acton border. The period property has sash windows in every room and an open plan kitchen/living room. Chiswick Park tube station is 10 minutes walk, South Acton Overground 8 minutes. on the market with swamp and parsons.
House, Woodstock Road, £1.65bn
A 112m2 terraced house in the Bedford Park conservation area with three bedrooms, two reception rooms and a garden. In addition, there is a loft of 33 m2. Chiswick High Road and Turnham Green Tube Station are a 10-minute walk away. for sale with swamp and parsons.
House, Wavendon Avenue, £2.65m
Four-storey semi-detached house with 255 m2 of living space and a south-facing garden. There are six bedrooms, three bathrooms and a laundry room in the basement. It is a 5 minute walk from Chiswick High Road, 10 minutes from Turnham Green tube station. listing with savills.