A Look Back At The Worthing Property Market Jan - Mar 2014

A Look Back At The Worthing Property Market Jan - Mar 2014

Can we really be more than a quarter of the way through 2014? It has flown by and it feels like it's the market that is causing time to race, there has hardly been a moment to draw breath since the traditional Christmas slow down ended.

Here's my view of the Worthing property market and I'll do my best to peel away all the layers of hype and publicity that seems to be in the press daily to give a (hopefully!) balanced view.

The Sales Market:

I won't be the first to say that it has been somewhat busy of late! We seem to have seen a perfect combination of continued low interest rates, increased demand from investors and owner occupiers, The Help To Buy Scheme gathering pace and continued investment from overseas. Some of the latter have bought Worthing homes but many have bought in London, pushing up prices there and making a seaside retreat a cheap looking option hence so many Londoners buying here. We have seen the demand for quality apartments rocket and these have seen considerable price growth in this three month period.

With a better economic outlook many hesitant family buyers have decided to come out of rented and into the market, fuelling demand for small to medium sized houses. Landlords, attracted by ever growing rental yields have also seen the advantages of buying a property for investment with an eye on future capital growth too and have jumped into this sector further fuelling increases. As families and less wealthy investors are forced to reign in their expectations, so we have seen a spike in demand for large flats - especially those with a garden or outside space.

The recovery in the market has therefore been quite unusual in that it has been boosted at the top by the rich and super rich and then has trickled down to more modest property. Past recoveries have seen smaller flats and homes be the first to recover with the increases being passed upward, not down as in today's market.

The end of March saw a very slight reduction in levels of demand, perhaps caused by bad weather and a late Easter.

We certainly expect the next three months to see further increases in demand an values.


The letting market is usually a pretty steady ship that is not affected by the ups and downs of the sale market over short periods at least. January to March have seen some modest gains in rents achieved and a steady demand from tenants. It is still the case that anything that comes up to let usually goes within just days. As sale prices seem destined to increase for a while to come we expect rental demand to increase as people switch from hoping to buy, back to the rental market.

We have noticed tenants remaining in their properties for longer which has created a minor shortage of property but don't expect this to have a huge impact.


The increase in activity and prices has turned from an optimistic 'blip' into a trend that seems set to continue for some time to come. There are very real concerns over a 'bubble' but as yet no steps have been taken to slow growth. Business optimism is reminiscent of the mid 2000's especially in the property sector where we have seen a number of new estate agency branches opening.

At Robert Luff and Co we are hoping for a slower, steady growth in the second quarter, cementing the recovery made so far.