08 July 2020

Guernsey's quarterly housing activity drops despite strong June rebound

Sales activity in the Guernsey Local Market during the second quarter of this year was at its lowest levels for four years according to the latest conveyancing statistics compiled by Unusualities of Guernsey, an independent compiler of local conveyancing statistics.

The impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) lockdown meant just 15 Local Market house and flats were sold during April, severely affecting the quarterly total. However, in a sign that the housing Local Market is enjoying a rather buoyant post-lockdown recovery, there were a total of 82 houses and flats sold during June – the most for any month since August last year. When combined with figures for May it means that the second quarter of this year saw a total of 148 Local Market transactions compared to 221 for the same period last year.

For the six months to the end of June 2020 there were 337 Local Market houses and flats sold compared to 414 for the same period last year.

Of those 337 Local Market transactions, the median price (realty only) for the 257 houses sold so far this year, currently stands at £498,625, up from £463,125 for the same period last year. The median price (realty only) of the 80 Local Market flats sold in the first six months of 2020 currently stands at £248,625, marginally up from the £236,437 recorded for last year.*

The Guernsey Open Market has held up well before and after Guernsey's COVID-19 lockdown with the 33 transactions recorded by Unusualities of Guernsey in the first six months of 2020 matching the total for the same period last year. The 16 sales during the second quarter is actually two more than was recorded for the same period last year.

Of those 33 sales, the median price (realty only) of the 30 Open Market houses sold this year is £1.742,813, which is up from the £877,500 for the same period last year. The three Open Market flats sold so far this year have a median price (realty only) of £731,150.*

Jason Morgan, head of Carey Olsen's property group in Guernsey, said: "The bounce back in activity is extremely encouraging. Lockdown was always going to have an impact on the housing market but it was very clear once restrictions were relaxed for the Contracts Court that there was still plenty of demand in the market. This has been borne out by the fact that the monthly Local Market figures for June were the highest for 10 months and the most for any June since 2011."

*None of the total sales numbers quoted include inter-family or inter-company sales, transactions which are typically completed for a nominal consideration.