Doncaster Property Blog » August 2019

Monthly Archives: August 2019

Doncaster Property News

Doncaster Homeowners can now build larger extensions without planning permission.

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The need for more homes has always been one of the biggest issues with regard to the Country’s housing crisis.  One of the main reasons for families wanting to move home is the need for more accommodation as their families grow and so in 2013 and 2015, the planning permission rules were relaxed to try an alleviate this issue.

Initially in 2013, Nick Clegg, as Deputy Prime Mister, brought in temporary planning rules to allow larger single storey rear extensions without the requirement of a full planning application.  The temporary rules allowed terraced and semi-detached homes to be extended by just over 19ft, whilst detached houses were able to add even bigger extensions of up to 24ft.  Since those rules were relaxed six years ago, 109,320 people have taken advantage of the temporary rules (aka “permitted development size guidelines”).

Homeowners wanting to extend within these permitted development guidelines, must still inform the local authority of the extension beforehand, and local authority officials still need to then notify the neighbours.  If the neighbours object, the local authority could still stop the extension being built, but only if it is likely to damage the character or enjoyment of the neighbourhood.  The planning process exists for a reason and whilst these relaxed planning rules are popular with property owners, it does mean local authorities have little chance to deliberate the impact of these extensions on their locality.  However, 22,779 permitted developments had been refused in the same time frame meaning, 17.2% of permitted development planning applications have been refused since 2013.

Now these temporary rules have been made permanent recently as the Government believe these measures will help households extend their properties without fighting through the time-consuming red tape of obtaining planning permission.  The government believes this is part of a package of planning reforms to build more households, build them better, quicker and make the housing market work, meaning families can grow without being forced to sell and move… or does it?

The average size of a property

in Doncaster is 947 sq.ft

.. internally (1,084 sq.ft  externally), whilst to the national average 929 sq.ft internally (1,081 sq.ft externally).  Interesting when compared to the average size of a new homes built nationally which is 12.1% lower at 818 sq.ft internally (927 sq.ft externally).

These relaxed rules are only for single-storey extensions though, when most growing families don’t need an extra downstairs reception room, they need an additional upstairs bedroom.  This means if families do want an extra bedroom upstairs, they will still have to go through the rigmarole of submitting a full planning permission.  Although, many Doncaster people have used these rules in the last 6 years to build a decent size granny-annex – there are other options less explored out there.

There was a second (less advertised) temporary change the Government made to planning rules in 2015, that has also been made permanent recently, many may have missed it, yet it has a bigger potential impact on the housing market.  The new rules make permanent the removal of planning rules to allow office blocks and shops to be converted into residential homes without a full planning application being made.  Since 2013, 11,090 office blocks and 1,750 shops have been converted into residential households.  This doesn’t sound a lot, but in 2017 alone, converted shops and office blocks provided 37,000 new households alone in the Country (or 17% of the new household created in 2017).

Over the next decade, more and more office blocks and shops will be converted into residential properties … and this will slowly change the dynamic of the housing market and the high street … and I’m not sure whether that will be for the good or bad … only time will tell?

Doncaster Property News

Which Street in Doncaster has seen the most homeowners moving in the last 3 years?

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Lots of people say moving home is one of the top ten most stressful events in your life. Fortunately, there is a way to mitigate your stress. In a nutshell, start as early as you can, plan ahead and do everything you can to make it easy on yourself, your family and even the family pet. As an agent in Doncaster, my team and myself have been helping homeowners, landlords, buyers and tenants move, sell and let their Doncaster homes for many years. So I thought I would share some top tips for making your move as stress free as possible – then find out which streets in Doncaster have moved the most in the last 3 years.

The first tip is to plan ahead and write a list; because whilst it is taking between 15 and 20 weeks at the moment from finding a buyer to moving, those few weeks will fly by in no time as day to day life carries on. Next, get yourself a decent home removal company as they are worth their weight in gold on moving day – and if you need to know a good one in Doncaster – drop me a line and I will let you know who my clients are raving about.

Next, a cluttered Doncaster home doesn’t sell or let well, so maybe consider decluttering before you market the property. It will sell/let better and when it comes to the move – the job will be so much easier. Know where you plan to put all your important documents (like Passports and Bank PIN etc). Tell your utility providers and it is a good idea to create electronic copies of significant documents by scanning and saving them onto a USB stick and don’t forget to get your mail redirected.

On the day of moving home stress levels will be high and I know you will want to get everything packed away and have the tea on by 5.30pm! Those who have moved many times know that isn’t the case. Be realistic, as it’s doubtful you are going to unpack all your boxes in your new home by the end of the first day.

Make sure to keep your ‘Moving Day Survival Equipment’ close by, change of clothes, wash equipment, cold bottles of water, biscuits, kettle, tea/coffee/milk, crisps (even G&T??) to keep your spirits, morale and energy up – you will be fine.. but it will take a few days to completely unpack and get your new Doncaster home the way you would like it to be. As long as you have your bed set up and made by the end of moving day – you can have the rest of the weekend to get ship shape.

So, which street or road in Doncaster (DN11 to be more precise) has put themselves through one of the most stressful moments in their life over the last 3 years? Which street has seen the most home moves and experienced the trials of moving home.

Heatherfields Crescent comes in at the top spot, with 104 home movers in the last 36 months with a total property value of £23,388,000 sold, interestingly there are only 105 properties on the road … so have a look at the top 20 and see if your street is in the Top 20!

… but before you go, if you do need any help or guidance about moving home or advice about the current state of the Doncaster property market, then feel free to drop me a line or read the other articles in my blog on the Doncaster Property market.

DN11 Street

or Road

Number of Properties Sold
in the last 36 months
Total Value
of Property Sold
Heatherfields Crescent 104 £23,388,000
Mirabelle Way 59 £8,982,000
President Place 58 £8,620,000
Hesley Road 52 £9,720,000
McConnel Crescent 28 £2,351,000
Scrooby Road 27 £3,696,000
Bracken Way 27 £4,420,000
West End Lane 24 £2,810,000
Milne Road 18 £1,744,000
Brodsworth Way 17 £3,331,000
Bawtry Road 16 £2,523,000
Aberconway Crescent 14 £1,301,000
Sherwood Road 13 £1,760,000
Sunderland Street 12 £4,266,000
Clay Flat Lane 11 £1,073,000
Essex Road 11 £981,000
Droversdale Road 11 £1,166,000
Church Meadow Road 11 £1,529,000
Elm Close 11 £2,032,000
Lancaster Crescent 10 £2,696,000
Doncaster Property News

The Affordability of Buying Property in Doncaster

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Looking back at the 75th Anniversary of the D-Day landing a few months ago, it reminded me of the huge changes that have happened to Doncaster and more specifically the Doncaster property market since WW2. Back in 1946, the average wage in Doncaster was just over £5 a week and to buy an average car would cost you just under £600, yet this is a property blog, so…

The average value of a Doncaster property in 1946 was £732

In fact, in those 75 years, the average Doncaster house had doubled in price by 1961, then again in 1971, 1975, 1980, 1988, 2000 and 2006. Now a lot of those increases (especially in the 1970’s) were caused by hyperinflation, yet since the start of the 21st Century inflation has been kept low and since the Credit Crunch (2008/9), whilst property values have been rising, they haven’t been at the rates experienced in the latter half of the 20th Century.

Now what a property sells for is irrelevant, its whether someone can afford it.

Increases in Doncaster property values have produced huge increases in equity for many Doncaster homeowners and Doncaster buy to let landlords, yet on the other side of the coin also making housing unaffordable for other people. The best measure of the affordability of housing is the ratio of Doncaster property values to Doncaster average earnings (i.e. salary/wages). The ratio works on the basis the higher the ratio, the less affordable properties are.

In 1997, the average value of a Doncaster property was 2.6 times higher than the average annual wage in Doncaster, in 2007 it peaked at 5.2, yet two years later it had dropped to 4.7 and since then has slowly risen to 4.8 times higher!

It can be seen that even though property in Doncaster became more affordable after the 2007/8 property crash (i.e. the ratio dropped), in subsequent years, with house values rising but earnings/salaries not keeping up, the ratio started to rise. This has meant there has been a decline in affordability of property in Doncaster over the last five years – so for those on particularly low incomes or with little capital, it unfortunately means that buying a Doncaster home will never become an option.

Therefore, the demand for private rented properties in Doncaster will continue to grow as many young Doncaster people are deciding to rent instead of buy their own house (knowing when their parents pass away, the equity built up in their parents property will be passed down – and then they can buy in their 50’s and 60’s – just like it happens in Germany).

Yet, that is many decades away and with fewer Doncaster people wanting or able to save up the 5% deposit required by mortgage lenders, more and more people are looking to rent. Tie this in with the subtle shift in attitudes towards renting since the Millennium and less people jumping the on the bottom rung of the property ladder, this has driven rents and demand up in Doncaster over the last few years. Yet (and it’s an important proviso) the type, location and demands of Doncaster tenants has changed over that same time frame meaning you can’t just make money from buy to let as easily as falling off a log like you did in the early 2000’s.

If you are an existing landlord with us (or even another agent in Doncaster) or someone thinking of becoming a first time Doncaster landlord looking for advice and opinion and what (or not to buy in Doncaster), one source of information is the Doncaster Property Blog REMOVE OR CHANGE insert url here if you have a blog – or drop me an email or phone call and let’s start a conversation – I don’t bite and I don’t do hard sell … and maybe, just maybe, I could help you get better returns from your property portfolio.