Reeds Rains Property Blog

Property News from Reeds Rains

First Time-Buyer Tracker - June 2014


First-time buyer deposits fall 10% in a year 

  • Average first-time buyer deposit of £24,637 in May, £2,700 less than 12 months ago but still 8 months’ salary needed
  • Deposits fall 11% as a proportion of income compared to May 2013
  • But first-time buyer sales slip 5% in May, as MMR holds back some higher LTV lending
  • First-time buyer mortgage rates also starting to climb – up 0.08% in last 3 months

First-time buyer deposits have fallen by £2,745 in the last twelve months, according to the latest First Time Buyer Tracker from Reeds Rains, part of LSL Property Services.

Data from estate agency chain Reeds Rains shows the average first-time buyer deposit fell 10% year-on-year from £27,382 twelve months ago to £24,637 in May 2014. It was the fourth consecutive month in which the average first-time buyer deposit was below £25,000.

One side-effect of falling deposits is that they are becoming cheaper as a proportion of wages. The average first-time buyer deposit represented 67% of a first-time buyer’s annual income in May, compared to 77% twelve months ago. But the average deposit is still equal to 8 months of the average first-time buyer salary (£37,000).

More lending to high LTV borrowers, supported by the Help to Buy scheme, has allowed the number of first-time buyers to grow over the last year. There were 23,400 first-time buyer sales in May 2014 – 3.5% higher than twelve months before.

The yearly improvement in first-time buyers came even as purchase prices increased. The average first-time buyer purchase price increased 7% year-on-year in May to £146,887, over £9,000 more than in May 2013, when the average purchase price stood at £137,561.

David Newnes, director of estate agent Reeds Rains, part of LSL Property Services group, said: “Help to Buy has helped support the first-time buyer market over the past year. It has encouraged banks to extend more loans to lower equity borrowers, relieving some of the burden of saving for a larger deposit often out of their reach. Average first-time buyer deposits have got cheaper by nearly £3,000 as a result.

“Savings rates have been stuck at rock bottom for over five years, wages are only just beginning to show signs of growth, and the cost of living has been mounting all the while. Without Help to Buy, these stumbling blocks may have been too large for some prospective home-owners to overcome.

“It is imperative to let the scheme run its course. The property market is already weighted in favour of home-owners, who have benefitted from bricks and mortar price-growth. Punishing first-time buyers by pre-maturely cutting back Help to Buy would do more damage than good. To keep price-rises in check we need to upscale housing development and build more new homes offering wider choice and supply to buyers which will dampen any danger of high price rises.”

Read the full First-Time Buyer tracker here

What does an average house in England look like?


We’ve taken a look to see what properties you can get for the average house price in England.

Nottingham, Nottinghamshire

Guide Price £250000 - £270000

  • 4 bedrooms plus 1 bedroom annex.
  • Garden Room
  • Rear garden
  • Double garage


Wakefield, West Yorkshire


  • 4 bedroom detached
  • Conservatory
  • Utility Room
  • Garden cabin


Chesterfield, Derbyshire

Guide Price £265000 - £285000

  • 3 bedroom detached
  • Front and rear gardens
  • 2 reception rooms
  • Utility Room


Stone, Staffordshire


  • 4/5 bedroom detached
  • Front and rear garden
  • Conservatory
  • Garage


Folkestone, Kent


  • 4/5 bedroom period home
  • 2 reception rooms
  • Rear garden

4 Featured Properties for Fitness Enthusiasts


We've found 4 of the best properties that will appeal to those busy people who like to keep fit but perhaps don't have the time to travel to their local gym, pool or tennis club.


1 bedroom, fifth floor apartment with on site swimming pool, gym and tennis court.

Tilehurst Court Kersal Way, Salford, M7

Offers in excess of £58000





2 bedroom apartment for sale in Nottingham, NG1 with shared gym and swimming pool

Huntingdon Street, Nottingham, NG1




5 Bedroom Detached House with swimming pool, gym and sauna

Sandfield St. Georges Road, Hightown, Liverpool, L38





5 Bedroom Detached House with indoor pool, gym and steam room.

Hurst Villa Derbyshire Level, Glossop, SK13

Offers in the region of £2,850,000

Reeds Rains win Gold for Best Property Management at the Lettings Agency of the Year Awards and Silver for the Best Large Lettings Agency 2014


Reeds Rains representatives at the Lettings Agency of the Year Awards 2014

Reeds Rains has been successful at the Lettings Agency of the Year Awards 2014 where we won Gold for Best Property Management and Silver for the Best Large Lettings Agency, despite tough competition from some of the leading names in the market. The Awards, in association with The Sunday Times and The Times and sponsored by Zoopla, are some of the most sought after in the lettings industry and to be acknowledged as a winner is seen as a major triumph for Reeds Rains – providing us with yet more ammunition to promote our great lettings services.

What the judges said about our entries 

Gold - Best Property Management Lettings Agency of the year Awards 2014

Reeds Rains impressed the judges who said: “The team at Reeds Rains takes innovative ideas to a new level, which for a business of this size impressed the panel. Systems are centralised and automation is in place where appropriate to effectively manage all branches and ensure consistency of service levels. The property management team is also centralised and they support the client facing offices via a number of core specialist units so competencies are focused in required areas and used to the best effect. The directors are very clear on the business strengths and weaknesses and what action they need to take to improve. They actively seek customer feedback, whether positive or negative, via social media platforms and the judges loved the honesty and passion of this approach; allowing landlords and tenants to appraise their services publicly is a bold move but is one which is paying off as an open testament to a fantastic business.”

Silver - Best Large Lettings Agency 2014

Reeds Rains also went onto win silver for Best Large Lettings Agency 2014. This is a fantastic achievement, which demonstrates that they really do deliver the best class in customer service.

The judges commented that:  “As a franchise model, Reeds Rains leverages its position to combine the best of services that a large corporation can offer with small independent agency work. It offers extended opening hours and second viewings are encouraged where appropriate so tenants can spend time making a decision and don’t feel rushed. Additional time is also spent with first-time renters to ensure they fully understand the contracts and their obligations as tenants. This has reduced problems during tenancies and also during vacation and the number of complaints has dramatically reduced. A dedicated management centre offers seamless service to both landlords and tenants as all the staff are fully apprised of each person’s file through the online systems and can help immediately. There is a culture of personal accountability at Reeds Rains so every employee takes full responsibility for every client interaction they participate in. The directors are hands on and remain fully involved with the business at grass roots level; every branch is audited quarterly and they value their team, rewarding them well with bonuses, incentive trips and excellent training provision.

Oliver Blake, Managing Director at Reeds Rains adds: “This is fantastic news, to win these awards is a testament to all the hard work and commitment of staff from across the business. Your diligence and care is also reflected in all the positive feedback given from our customers and – with our awards success – provides us with the opportunity to produce even greater results in the future”.

The awards ceremony took place in the luxurious Nine Kings Suite at The Lancaster London Hotel where Reeds Rains representatives received the Awards from celebrity Katie Piper.

Lord Mayor and Mayoress officially launch new Reeds Rains office


Staff and customers outside the Reeds Rains branch

Sales and lettings agent, Reeds Rains, has been celebrating the recent refurbishment of its office by hosting a special launch event. The event welcomed Durham’s Lord Mayor and Mayoress, John and Maxine Robinson, along with new and existing local customers and businesses to see for themselves the great improvements made to the office.

The office, situated at 83 New Elvet, Durham, DH1 3AQ, has been updated with modern new furnishings and high tech LED displays to enhance the on-going display of properties which is popular with the residents in Durham. This is a great step forward for the local team who are proud of their ongoing commitment and success in the local property market.

The office also features eye catching custom made wallpaper featuring the beautiful, purpose-built Gala Theatre which reinforces Reeds Rains interest in its local area. The new Reeds Rains logo has also been designed to highlight its long standing position in the property market but also its forward thinking approach to residential sales and lettings and is a key feature within the office.

Property advice given by Durham staff

As well as the Lord Mayor and Mayoress, attendees included, Branch Manager Todd Armstrong and Reeds Rains Managing Director Oliver Blake.

Oliver commented: “It was great to welcome the Lord Mayor and Mayoress, business partners and customers to the event. Lots of people supported us and all had a fantastic evening. I was honoured to be able to talk about Reeds Rains and the fact that it has been in existence since 1868 yet continues to evolve as the refurbishment clearly demonstrates.

Thank you to the Lord Mayor and Mayoress for officially launching the event and declaring our new branch open with the cutting of the ribbon.”

If you would like to find out more about how the local Reeds Rains team can help you please contact them at 83 New Elvet, Durham, DH1 3AQ  or call them on 0191 384 1222(*)

Left to right: Todd Armstrong branch manager with the Lord Mayor John Robinson

Refurbished Durham office



(*) Calls may be recorded and/or monitored for training and/or data protection purposes.



Logo for the Estate Agency Foundation, combating the causes of homelessness

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