Cornwall LivingIssue #106
After a year of lockdowns and Coronavirus restrictions, as a place to live, Cornwall has never been more appealing.
Around this time each year, here at Cornwall Living we aim to take an in-depth look at the property market. Of course, this is because as a New Year dawns, many find themselves setting resolutions to make the most of their leisure time. Be that couples, growing families, or those who are soon to retire, one destination in the UK that is near, if not at the top of the list of the most desirable places to live, is by the sea in Cornwall. Our county has so much to offer. Adventurers can lace up their boots and strike out along the South West Coast Path, or explore the undulating countryside that rolls between coasts. Water sports enthusiasts could not be in a better place to make the most of their hobbies, and for young families, where better to bring up a child than in Cornwall, where you’re never more than a short drive from a bucket and spade day on the beach. That’s not to mention the food on offer here, made famous around the world thanks to Cornwall’s unique natural larder, from seafood landed daily by local boats, to home grown and seasonal veg, and organically reared meats. Really, there’s no place like Cornwall. This year, however, the ongoing pandemic has put paid to the plans of many who might otherwise have been beginning their search for their dream home in the Duchy. Nothing is currently more important than ensuring the safety of ourselves and those around us by adhering to the latest government guidance, and so unfortunately, at least in the short term, the active pursuit of the Cornish dream, for many, remains on pause. However, that’s no reason not to stay abreast of what’s happening and what’s available in the Cornish property market, and as with all things related to this beautiful county, we are here to help!
Here in Cornwall there is a whole spectrum of different properties to choose from. Character filled cottages in the countryside appeal to some, whilst modern homes on the fringes of the ocean suit others. For others still, contemporary and well-equipped new builds tend to tick the boxes, and two fine examples have just come on the market with The Mather Partnership (thematherpartnership.co.uk), based in Helston. Located just a few minutes’ drive from Helston town centre, these stunning new build homes at Polwidden View each offer a growing family four bedrooms of spacious accommodation. Finished inside and out to exceptionally high specifications, and inclusive of open-plan kitchen and dining rooms, log burners and gorgeous master bedroom suites, plus covered parking bays and beautiful, low-maintenance rear gardens, for anybody searching for a new home that’s ready to be moved straight into, 1 and 2 Polwidden need seeing to be believed.
“people are realising that they can access a better quality of life, which Cornwall provides.”
Other examples can be found from the developers at Acorn Blue, part of Acorn Property Group (acornpropertygroup.org). Stuart Brereton, Regional Managing Director, explains that the Cornish market is extremely buoyant at the moment, which he attributes to the fact that it’s one of the most sought-after areas in the UK. “At Acorn, we’ve seen demand for property more so by a reassessment of lifestyle and priorities – the pandemic and subsequent lockdowns have led to a re-evaluation of work/life balance.”
He suggests that many of us now place a “greater importance on easy access to outside space and fresh air”, and with remote working allowing greater flexibility, explains that “people are realising that they can access a better quality of life, which Cornwall provides.”
Acorn has been creating award-winning and innovative residential and commercial developments for more than 25 years, catering to those seeking the utmost in contemporary design and luxury, and who are unwilling to compromise on location. Recently, Stuart continues, Acorn has seen a surge in demand from those seeking to invest in its stable of homes, not just for residential reasons. “The pandemic has limited international travel and therefore many people are opting for a staycation instead. It’s reported that more than 77% of British people aspire to own a UK holiday home (according to a survey by Park Leisure), with Cornwall as the most popular destination of choice. We’re finding that investing in a second home with added potential of income via holiday letting is a more attractive opportunity than ever.” Having seen this model boost local economies when owners holiday let during peak seasons and use themselves in the quieter months, Stuart adds that this “provides a much longer tourism season for local businesses,” something we in Cornwall can certainly get on board with.
Of course, some really do prefer the character of a cottage, or the sound of the waves as they rake the sand mere moments away, and given Cornwall’s unique geography, these kinds of properties abound. And with some incredible estate agents to choose from and a growing list of highly desirable properties continuously being added to their websites, instead of waiting for current restrictions to ease, why not log on and pay those websites a visit? After all, one look won’t hurt…
There are others who might be reading this, for whom gaining insight into the property market may not be with a view to buying. Indeed, as you may well be aware, since the lifting of the first lockdown last year the demand for property in Cornwall has been increasingly high, which has led many homeowners here to consider the value of their own four walls. As Sean Johnston from Philip Martin Estate Agents (philip-martin.co.uk) says: “There seems to be more buyers than sellers at the moment,” and in some cases, he continues, “we have seen multiple buyers offering on a single property.” This, Sean elaborates, is a trend that seems to have carried over into 2021, with what he describes as “a huge demand for properties”, many of which have gone to best and final offers. For those who have been contemplating selling their Cornish home, this is interesting news indeed, and as Sean says, “now is a great time do so!” If you are interested to find out more about what your property is worth, Philip Martin are more than happy to offer a free, no-obligation appraisal.
Also happy to help are Rohrs and Rowe (rohrsandrowe.co.uk), whose successes in recent years have culminated in them being named ‘Cornwall’s Best Estate Agency’ at the International Property Awards… three times! Looking to the year ahead and Martyn Rohrs tells us that despite the ongoing pandemic, “we are predicting another strong year for the Cornish market”. “As we know,” he continues, “the second half of 2020 saw unprecedented activity in the Cornish market as a number of factors combined to make Cornwall an exceptionally desirable place to buy a property.”
Matthew Rowe, who co-founded the business alongside Martyn, agrees, and elaborates: “Whilst we have seen the usual winter slow-down in the supply of property to the market, the numbers of sellers has been further reduced due the national lockdown. However, the number of interested buyers looking for property has not been reducing as we have been inundated with a record number of calls from buyers who are desperate to find their Cornish idyll.” Indeed, with the overall picture being a low supply of property and a very high demand from buyers, as Matthew says,“it will make 2021 a potentially very attractive time to sell”.
Whether you’re buying and relocating to Cornwall, selling your current Cornish home, or are hovering over a decision to which you’ve yet to commit, the best bet is to seek advice from the experts. The agents mentioned above are just that, and Cornwall is home to many more besides. Perhaps you have an ideal home in your mind’s eye that you’ve yet to see on the current property listings, or maybe you wish to know more about particular locations and the properties available there. Our simplest and best advice would be to sign up to these stellar agencies’ mailing lists. Better still, pick up the phone and give them a call! Whilst you may be limited on what you can go outside and do, there’s absolutely nothing stopping you from stockpiling all the information you need so that when the time comes, you can really hit the ground running.
"people are realising that they can access a better quality of life, which Cornwall provides."