Bedford Property Market :84% of Bedford Properties have 3 or more bedrooms – Problem or Opportunity?

The orthodox way of classifying property in the UK is to look at the number of bedrooms rather than its size in square metres (although now we are leaving the EU – I wonder if we can go back to feet and inches?). It seems that homeowners and tenants are happy to pay for more space.

It’s quite obvious, the more bedrooms a house or apartment has, the bigger it is likely to be. The reason being not only the actual additional bedroom space, but the properties with more bedrooms tend to have larger / more reception (living) rooms. However, if you think about it, this isn’t so astonishing given that properties with more bedrooms would typically accommodate more people and therefore require larger reception rooms.

In today’s Bedford property market, the Bedford homeowners and Bedford landlords I talk to are always asking me which attributes and features are likely to make their property comparatively more attractive and which ones may detract from the price. Over time, buyers’ and tenants’ wants and needs have changed. In Bedford, location is still the No. 1 factor affecting the value of property, and a property in the best neighbourhoods, say Salph End or Harrowden can command a price nearly 50% higher than a similar house in an ‘average’ area. However, after location, the next characteristic that has a significant influence on the desirability, and thus price, of property is the number of bedrooms and the type (i.e. Detached/ Semi/Terraced/Flat).

In previous articles, I have analysed the Bedford housing stock into bedrooms and type of property, but never before now have I cross-referenced type against bedrooms. These figures for the Bedford Borough Council area make fascinating reading. It shows 84% of all properties in the Bedford area have 3 or more bedrooms

  Detached Semi-detached Terraced (including end-terrace) Flat
1 bedroom 59 85 79 416
2 bedrooms 306 1,271 1,849 1,683
3 bedrooms 2,364 8,815 6,132 458
4 bedrooms 5,338 2,487 886 63
5 or more bedrooms 2,529 1,081 227 13

I was genuinely surprised at the low numbers of one and two bed properties, especially 2 bed semis detached houses, especially as tenants like the smaller one and two bed properties in Bedford. You see, it might interest the homeowners and landlords of Bedford, that there has been a change in the numbers of properties on the market and the split in bedrooms on the market over the last 12 months

126 graph

  • 12 months ago, 63 one bed properties were for sale in Bedford, today 68, a rise of 8%
  • 12 months ago, 158 two bed properties were for sale in Bedford, today 123, a drop of 35%
  • 12 months ago, 185 three bed properties were for sale in Bedford, today 178, a drop of 4%
  • 12 months ago, 121 four bed properties were for sale in Bedford, today 120, a drop of 1%
  • 12 months ago, 71 five + bed properties were for sale in Bedford, today 37, a drop of 48%

For several years Bedford buy-to-let investors have been the only buyers at the lower end (starter homes) of the market, as they have been enticed by high tenant demand and attractive returns. Some Bedford landlords believe their window of opportunity has started to close with the new tax regime for landlords, whilst it already appears to be opening wider for first-time buyers. This is great news for first time buyers … but one final note for Bedford landlords … all is not lost … you can still pick up bargains, you just need to be a lot more savvy and do your homework … one source of such information with articles like this is the Bedford property market Blog : 

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