Bedford housing market “coming back to life” after lockdown

house sold signs

A Bedford estate agent has said that Bedford’s housing market is slowly starting to “come back to life” after the Government gave estate agents permission to get back to work.

Jonathan Hawkins of Cooper Beard has told the Bedford Independent that with existing sales now being allowed to go through to completion and new property coming to market, things are slowly returning to normal.

The government recently announced that Estate Agents can now open, viewings can be made and removal firms and conveyancers can restart their services.

But the Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick has said all work must be carried out under social distancing guidelines.

“The fast changing world has meant that property agents have to be very versatile in the way that they operate,” said Copper Beard’s Jonathan Hawkins.

“All agents have clear protocol to meet with distancing and cleansing methods being at the forefront of both valuing and viewing property.

“But we also insist that prospective buyers view on line prior to a viewing at the property.

“Video tours of property enable applicants to inspect the property without the risk or inconvenience of a live viewing, or breaking social distance rules.”

Top tips to get your home sold as we leave lockdown

  • Make sure your estate agent is committed to carrying out your sale with full social distancing measures in place
  • Spend any time you may have available decorating or sprucing up areas you didn’t get a chance to before to help make your home more attractive
  • Ask your agent to create a video about your property and take new pictures
  • Get your estate agent to post your property images and videos on the Bedford Independent’s property pages so potential buyers can see it as quickly as possible
  • Arrange to have clear times for visits so you can stay out of the way and observe social distancing

While the housing market was put on pause, figures suggest that things will get back to normal quite quickly.

Jayne Beard Associates told us they agreed 35 new lettings in April with every tenant inspecting online and not actually seeing the property physically before moving in.

But the main barrier will be low buyer and seller confidence, which local agents are looking to overturn as quickly as possible.

“People are clearly and understandably nervous of interaction with agents and buyers,” added Jonathan.

“We work with them on an individual basis to make sure that the selling process is as safe as possible.

“But it’s also helped us develop new ways of selling, which will no doubt stay with us once normality is resumed, especially the video tours.”

In their announcement last week, the government also revealed further plans to get the house building sector moving.

These include, allowing builders to agree more flexible working hours with local authorities.

Local councils and developers can also publicise planning applications through online media, instead of relying on posters and leaflets.

Smaller developers will also provide support to help them to defer payments to local authorities.

Speaking the the BBC, Stewart Baseley, executive chairman of the Home Builders Federation, said: “A resumption of work will play a major part in helping the economy recover, as well as delivering the homes the country needs.

“It should also provide the supply chain with the confidence it needs to accelerate its own restart.”

To advertise your home to up to 150,000 readers, ask your estate agent to post on the Bedford Independent’s Property Pages.

If you’re an estate agent and would like to find out how you can automatically upload your porfolio to our pages, please contact

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