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Wales’ pandemic rural home buyers may leave ‘after one cold, muddy winter’ estate agent says

05 Dec 2021 3 minute read
A ‘sold’ sign in Ceredigion

Those who have bought a house in the Welsh countryside to escape the cities during the pandemic may well leave “after one cold, muddy winter” an estate agent has said.

Carol Peett, a buying agent with West Wales Property Finders, said that demand was driven by younger families moving to areas with lots of space after being stuck indoors during lockdown.

Rural parts of Wales have seen prices shoot up, with 12 local authorities making up the top 20 biggest house price rises in Wales and England, according to estate agency Hamptons, who say the rise is down to affordability. House prices in Carmarthenshire have risen 17% in the last year.

Wales overall has seen the biggest overall price rises across the UK, with annual house price inflation of 12.9 per cent, according to Halifax’s index.

Carol Peett of West Wales Property Finders said that the inflow from the cities was down to the fact that “it’s so much cheaper here than in Gloucestershire or Hampshire. Some are doctors burnt out by the pandemic”.

But speaking to the Times newspaper she said warned that “a lot of them picture a rural idyll of fluffy sheep, but I do think after one cold muddy winter here, they might be hot-footing it back into town.”

“It used to be older people retiring. Now younger families are reassessing their lives,” she said.

“Having been locked up in a London townhouse with three screaming children, they’ve all decided they wanted to buy a smallholding. Others are starting small businesses and working for themselves: producing honey, gin, boat building, upholstery.”

However, she added that it wasn’t necessarily people who were originally from outside of the areas that were moving in. “Ninety per cent of my buyers this year were born and bred here and are moving back from London or big cities,” she said.

The rise in house prices in Wales means that the average home is now selling for £198,880 said Russell Galley, managing director of Halifax.

“One of the key drivers of activity in the housing market over the past 18 months has been the race for space, with buyers seeking larger properties, often further from urban centres,” he said.

“Combined with temporary measures such as the cut to stamp duty, this has helped push the average property price up to an all-time high of £270,027.

“Since April 2020, the first full month of lockdown, the value of the average property has soared by £31,516 (13.2 per cent).”


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GW Atkinson
GW Atkinson
1 year ago

Doesn’t mean the prices will go back down though.

Grayham Jones
1 year ago

No more second homes in wales 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 we in wales have got to stop being little Englanders and and be proud to be welsh start fighting for your children and grandchildren future in wales 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 kick all English party’s out of wales 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 it’s time for a new wales 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿

Dai Rob
Dai Rob
1 year ago
Reply to  Grayham Jones

Anyone fancy buying a house next door to Graham?? 😉

David
David
1 year ago

[“Ninety per cent of my buyers this year were born and bred here and are moving back from London or big cities,” she said.] Interesting, proof is in the pudding!

Argol Mawr
Argol Mawr
1 year ago
Reply to  David

She’s an estate agent trying to plug her business! Mae’n malu c***u efo ni.

Malcolm rj
Malcolm rj
1 year ago

Keep the old myth going so the English think that it’s always raining in Wales thanks BBC it helps to keep our imagination down in Wales our fabulous country

frennifawr
frennifawr
1 year ago

An old neighbour once commented whist leaning on the gate at the bottom of his lane which overlooked a few cottages bought by welathy English immigrants ‘Not many of them getting buried here.’ And he was right. Many of the English who move into rural Wales appear to be a rootless people, looking for something they will never posses. A sense of belonging. Tney move here, use the NHS and when they get old they move away. Not many stay and contribute constructively, although there are exceptions.

Mathew Rees
Mathew Rees
11 months ago
Reply to  frennifawr

I agree wholeheartedly. The very best stay, and in my experience learn the language, I can think of at least 3 former incomer friends who are fluent and have started successful businesses and even teach in our old school.

Argol Mawr
Argol Mawr
1 year ago

Lets hope then. Though Its probably just estate agent hyperbole to plug the business.

Mathew Rees
Mathew Rees
11 months ago

My father was a solicitor in Ceredigion in the 1980s and 1990s. He made a lot of money from naive English people who sold their houses in London and SE England and bought three in Wales and have enough in spare change. Most lasted 2-3 years after realising their niche businesses and restaurants failed, or that no one was interested in their homemade candles or loony organic food schemes. I remember the pushy English parents being against WM education in the local schools, how they brought their weird Scouts/girl guides culture to the village. Indeed one winter will be enough… Read more »

Enoraidd
Enoraidd
11 months ago
Reply to  Mathew Rees

Peculiar things happen. I had to nip in to Morrison’s in Aberystwyth yesterday to buy a couple of things and joined a check-out queue with only one man in it. I thought it would be a quick check-out but it turned out that this chap – who was not wearing a mask – was buying half the shop and telling the check-out person his life history. In a nutshell, he’d just bought a “little place just north of Dolgellau” and had had to drive over 40 minutes to Aber to find “anywhere decent to shop”. It crossed my mind that,… Read more »

Mathew Rees
Mathew Rees
11 months ago
Reply to  Enoraidd

A typical story. And he’ll end up isolated socially or just networking with other incomers who don’t have a clue. They’ll try to start their own pub quizzes or other social events and bemoan the locals for not turning up when they have their own way of socialising and won’t understand the natural introversion of Welsh people. They don’t understand the meaning of community and how much and how long it takes to become part of one.

Last edited 11 months ago by Mathew Rees
Argol Fawr
Argol Fawr
11 months ago
Reply to  Enoraidd

Phew, for a moment I thought you’d told him of a closer supermarket.

Last edited 11 months ago by Argol Fawr
Reg
Reg
11 months ago

Seems most of the comments have a dislike against our English brothers and sisters

Mathew Rees
Mathew Rees
11 months ago
Reply to  Reg

Not really. Just the non-self aware lebensraum types. And they seem to be in the majority when they move to rural Wales.

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