Demand for Chain-Free Transactions Climbs as Buyers Attempt to Dodge The Market Backlog

14 June 2021 | General

Research from the homebuying platform, YesHomebuyers, has found that demand for chain-free properties has climbed across the UK’s major cities as many homebuyers look to minimise current market delays for a fast property purchase.

A chain-free sale is thought to reduce conveyancing times from around 12 to 4 weeks, which has become particularly sought after in the current market due to many property transactions delaying months on end at the final legal stages.

Currently across the UK, 56 per cent of all chain-free homes for sale have already been snapped up by buyers hoping to skip the current market bottleneck, and the research by Yes Homebuyers shows that in some cities, this has increased considerably in just two months.

When comparing buyer demand for chain-free transactions between March and June alone, demand across the UK has climbed by 6 per cent. However, in Cambridge, chain-free property demand has increased by 10 per cent since March alone.

Swansea has also seen a notable increase in the number of buyers snapping up chain-free homes, with demand climbing 9 per cent.

In Southampton and Liverpool, chain-free demand is up 8 per cent since March, with Bournemouth (7 per cent), Sunderland (7 per cent), Edinburgh (6 per cent), Leeds (6 per cent), Bristol (6 per cent) and Newcastle (6 per cent) also seeing some of the most significant uplifts.

So, where presents the best opportunity of snagging a chain-free transaction? Chain-free stock levels have dropped across 17 of the 26 major UK cities analysed by Yes Homebuyers, and Glasgow is home to the lowest level, with just 6 per cent of all homes listed for sale marked as chain-free.

However, half of all for sale stock currently on the market in Belfast is chain-free, while in Manchester and Cambridge, chain-free stock levels sit at 47 per cent. Sheffield is also home to a large degree of chain-free stock at 45 per cent, as is Liverpool (44 per cent).

Matthew Cooper, founder and managing director of Yes Homebuyers, commented: “Many homebuyers have now accepted the fact that a stamp duty holiday saving is no longer on the cards, but that they will have to contend with the long market delays that have materialised as a result of the initiative. In this respect, a chain-free purchase will, at least, provide some hope of reducing the transaction timeline, and so it comes as no surprise that their popularity has increased substantially in many major UK cities. Of course, the downside to this high demand is that chain-free stock levels have dropped across the majority of cities in recent months, although some do present a far better chance of finding one than others.”

Table shows current demand for chain-free properties in each city and the change between March and June 2021
Location Demand – chain free (June 2021) Difference
Cambridge 60 per cent 10 per cent
Swansea 59 per cent 9 per cent
Southampton 59 per cent 8 per cent
Liverpool 52 per cent 8 per cent
Bournemouth 65 per cent 7 per cent
Sunderland 56 per cent 7 per cent
Edinburgh 21 per cent 6 per cent
Leeds 65 per cent 6 per cent
Bristol 71 per cent 6 per cent
Newcastle 49 per cent 6 per cent
Newport 67 per cent 5 per cent
Plymouth 71 per cent 5 per cent
Portsmouth 67 per cent 5 per cent
Nottingham 63 per cent 4 per cent
Manchester 36 per cent 4 per cent
Bradford 53 per cent 4 per cent
Cardiff 51 per cent 4 per cent
Aberdeen 4 per cent 3 per cent
Glasgow 18 per cent 3 per cent
London 40 per cent 3 per cent
Birmingham 46 per cent 3 per cent
Sheffield 66 per cent 3 per cent
Oxford 42 per cent 2 per cent
Belfast 59 per cent 2 per cent
Leicester 49 per cent 2 per cent
Data sourced from Rightmove and Zoopla
     
Table shows current level of chain-free property stock in each city and the change between March and June 2021
Location Stock – chain free (June 2021) Difference
Belfast 50 per cent 3.6 per cent
Manchester 47 per cent -0.6 per cent
Cambridge 47 per cent -0.3 per cent
Sheffield 45 per cent 0.2 per cent
Liverpool 44 per cent -0.5 per cent
Southampton 43 per cent -1.2 per cent
Bristol 42 per cent 0.6 per cent
Oxford 42 per cent -0.9 per cent
Portsmouth 41 per cent -1.1 per cent
Plymouth 41 per cent 0.8 per cent
Birmingham 41 per cent 2.1 per cent
Cardiff 41 per cent -1.3 per cent
Nottingham 40 per cent -1.0 per cent
Leicester 39 per cent 1.4 per cent
Sunderland 39 per cent -4.8 per cent
Bournemouth 39 per cent 1.9 per cent
United Kingdom 36 per cent -0.1 per cent
Newcastle 36 per cent -2.1 per cent
London 35 per cent 0.6 per cent
Leeds 34 per cent -1.2 per cent
Swansea 31 per cent -0.8 per cent
Bradford 31 per cent 0.0 per cent
Newport 23 per cent -4.9 per cent
Aberdeen 13 per cent -3.6 per cent
Edinburgh 9 per cent -0.9 per cent
Glasgow 6 per cent -1.5 per cent
Data sourced from Rightmove and Zoopla
     

This post has originally been featured in Property Wire.