Demand from out-of-town buyers pushing house sales above asking price, say agents

AN INCREASING number of houses are selling for more than their asking price, according to estate agents in the village.

Most agreed that an influx of buyers from Brighton and Hove and further afield was the major factor behind the rise in prices.

Eddie Conroy, branch manager at Fox & Sons, said demand for properties in the area was very high with homes achieving record prices.

Mr Conroy said open-house viewings – where several buyers view a property at the same time, before submitting their best offers – were proving particularly popular.

“Within the last week we have had three open-house successes with one property achieving 12 viewings, four offers and being sold in excess of the asking price,” he said.

“We are experiencing huge demand from out-of-the-area buyers from Brighton and London who are willing to pay high prices to get the property they want.”

It was a similar story at Bacon and Co, where branch manager Robert Jackson said a number of factors were bumping up prices, including open-house viewings, which almost created a ‘mini-auction’ with 15 to 20 viewings typically resulting in five firm offers.

He added that many properties were worth more than people thought and urged owners to get up-to-date valuations.

Mr Jackson said the firm was also getting good sale prices by asking for ‘offers in excess of’ a certain amount.

Gary Evans, partner at Michael Jones, said this was the most exciting time he had ever known in the village, with regeneration accelerating and many buyers being priced out of the market in Brighton and Hove.

Mr Evans said Lancing was especially popular among investors due to the relatively low house prices and rental returns that were almost as high as in neighbouring towns including Worthing and Shoreham.

“It’s a fantastic investment area,” said Mr Evans, adding that the Brighton and Hove Albion Football Club training ground was the ‘best thing to happen to the village in the last 50 years’ as it would put Lancing on the map.

Grant Connelly, branch manager at Jacobs Steel, said houses were typically fetching between £5,000 and £7,000 above the asking price thanks to a ‘massive’ demand for property and a shortage of houses on the market.

“It’s a popular area in terms of what you have got here, “ said Mr Connelly.

“You’ve got parks, the beach, good transport links with the mainline railway and the A27.

“I have worked here for 10 years and it has just changed so much.

“Now it’s become a really thriving area, doing what Shoreham has been doing for the last ten to 12 years.”

All the agents agreed they would like to see more properties coming onto the market.