What 2023 holds for the West Sussex Property Market

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Home-movers were on their toes in 2022, quick to snap up their dream south coast home. The south coast property market continued to boom over the year, only showing signs of change toward the latter part of the year.

After a very busy couple of years with demand rising and house prices on the up, we expect this year to be a bit steadier. Overall, UK house prices are predicted to fall by an average of 5% next year. But in more affordable areas, we might not see too much of a change.

In a wildly competitive marketplace, the next 12 months will be about timing and finding value for money. Here, we take a look through some of the key things to watch out for in 2023.

Waiting on interest rates

Figures show that many people are ready to strike – but might be waiting on interest rates. Four in ten first-time buyers with plans to buy have already got their deposit ready.

The latest thinking from experts is that interest rates will continue to rise in 2023 – with the Bank of England base rate potentially peaking at around 4.5% in the summer. It may take some time to come back down again, so if you think you’ve found your dream property, act now to secure a better rate from lenders.

The Bank of England announces any interest rate rises following their regular meetings, which take place every six weeks. Some dates for your diary:

• 2 February
• 23 March
• 11 May
• 22 June
• 3 August
• 21 September
• 2 November
• 14 December

Support for buyers

There’s some welcome news for buyers, though. The government’s 95% mortgage scheme has been extended until December 2023, which means home-movers can buy a home with just a 5% deposit on homes worth up to £600,000.

The scheme can be used by first-time buyers and people wanting to trade up the property ladder on newbuild or existing properties – but the home must be bought with a repayment mortgage, not an interest-only mortgage.

What’s more, the stamp duty cut has been extended until April 2025, meaning nobody will pay the tax on homes worth up to £250,000 and first-time buyers won’t pay it on homes worth up to £425,000.

Generation rent needs to be quick off the mark

With the interest rates rising steadily over the last 12 months, people eager to move are turning to the rental market as an alternative. According to Rightmove, rental enquiries shot up by 23% last year. But with fewer rental properties available, people will need to act fast to secure a property they’re interested in.

Character properties v modern features

While it’s lovely to look at a 200-year-old cottage in the country, it’s sometimes not practical to live in – especially with energy bills as they are.

Research by Help me Fix shows that almost three-quarters of homeowners see energy efficiency as a key driver in their search for a new property.

Good solid insulation, often more prevalent in newer properties, is key to any energy-efficient home, but added features like solar panels and renewable heating systems may also play a part in the modern-day search. All-time online searches for ‘solar panels’ peaked in August last year, so we expect the hunt for added value to continue in 2023.

Flats and apartments – which are usually cheaper to run – are likely to see a rise in demand, too.

City living making a comeback

The pandemic saw a big retreat into the countryside, with remote working on the rise. Now, as employers move to a more hybrid approach, people are reassessing their options.

Affordable areas within commuting distance to cities are likely to make a comeback in popularity in 2023. As this trend sets in, it’ll be important to show south coast homes off to their potential, with features like home offices, good networks, and transport links key. For some handy tips, read our blog about how to attract the modern homebuyer.

Downsizing to beat inflation

With some homeowners feeling the squeeze, it might be time to loosen the purse strings by downsizing to free up some cash. This will particularly suit empty nesters with too much space on their hands.

Sims Williams are independent estate and letting agents with offices covering Arundel, Bognor Regis, Chichester and The Six Villages. Thinking about selling up this year? Sell your home with us.

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Our experience with Sims Williams Letting Chichester has been phenomenal. Patient and efficient as well as understanding our personal needs and situation. Jo and the team have all assisted us to find a home. We are new to the UK and all our questions were answered and processes were explained. Everything went smoothly. Finding a home in the UK, we were told, would be really difficult and we were so worried... Sims Williams made it easy. Liaising with the landlord on our behalf and within a week we had a home. I am beyond impressed and highly recommend them. Thank you so much for making a rather stressful time in our lives that little bit easier.
Zita - Tenant - Jul 8th, 2023

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We have rented three properties with Sims Williams and each time they have gone above and beyond to sort things out for us. Jo Mallett and David Vawdrey are both extremely professional and helpful and we cannot thank you both enough for all your help and making our move easier. Thank you.
Bethan - Tenant - Nov 10th, 2021

Couldn't of been happier with the team

John and all the team were fantastic so helpful all throughout the sale highly recommend
Mr & Mrs Haimes- Vendor - Aug 12th, 2022

Our thanks go to the whole Sims Williams team.

We were very pleased with the service provided by Sims Williams Walberton, especially the after ‘sale agreed’ chasing service without which our whole chain may not have made it to the completion by the June deadline. All estates agents should have a dedicated chaser as it really works, but they don’t appear to. We would be happy to use them again, but hopefully we won’t be needing any Estate Agents for a good while now. Our thanks go to the whole Sims Williams team.
Denise - Vendor - Jul 1st, 2021

Excellent service, great team, personal touch

Jo helped us find a property in Arundel with success. We are a small growing family relocating from London to West Sussex, and Jo Mallett has made the experience seamless and smooth. I trust that the management of our rental will be good too. Thank you, Jo (and David) 🙂
Eli - Tenant - Aug 21st, 2022

Professional and friendly service.

We've let our flat through Sims Williams for about 4 years. They have always been professional and helpful and communication has also been excellent. I would recommend them to anyone wanting to let a property in the West Sussex area.
Guy - Landlord - Jun 4th, 2021


From first contact to completion of sale and also finding me a rental property service was excellent. I found the staff to be personable, efficient and courteous.
Vendor - Jan 20th, 2021

Jo and the Team

We have been delighted with the professional and helpful service that we have received. Jo and the team went above and beyond in solving the problem, which they inherited, when we asked them to take on our property.
Richard & Sue - Landlord - Apr 8th, 2023

Great service

I found Sims Williams to be an excellent company, providing a great service in a friendly manner making me feel very comfortable that everything was being done to get me exactly what I required.
Alan - Tenant - Feb 24th, 2022

Simply excellent!

The whole team at Simms Williams in Arundel are a credit to the brand. They dealt quickly with requests and queries, and nothing was ever too much trouble. A very re-assuring presence in what can sometimes be a very stressful experience!
June - Vendor - Nov 26th, 2021