Wave of new home reservations & sales triggered post lockdown as buyers look to relocate from London to Home Counties

In the two weeks since the housing market was restarted and the lockdown eased, leading volume housebuilder Weston Homes has had a wave of buyer enquiries for new homes at developments across the South East as purchasers seek to relocate from inner London to locations including Denham, Maidstone and Dartford, resulting in two new sales reservations per development per week, for homes priced from £180,000 up to £680,000.


Weston Homes have some 7,000 new homes with a GDV of £3 billion under development, or in the planning pipeline, and are currently marketing over 1,000 new homes for sale across London and the Home Counties, including one, two and three bedroom apartments and four and five bedroom houses, at prices starting from £172,000 sold through marketing suites and dressed showhomes.

Weston Homes highlight that during the lockdown buyers switched to viewing homes remotely, using ‘virtual tours’, Zoom-video calls and telephone calls resulting in a series of sales reservations made by buyers during this challenging period. In addition, since the start of 2020 Weston Homes has had an extremely buoyant period with the number of applicants rising significantly following the decisive General Election Result at the end of last year.

Over the last few months Weston Homes have had 275 pre-and-post lockdown legal completions consisting of purchases of one and two bedroom apartments and four bedroom houses, at prices up to £680,000. The deals occurred across a range of Weston Homes developments including Langley Square in Dartford, a scheme of 728 waterside apartments priced from £221,000; Millers Quarter in Bury St Edmunds, a scheme of 135 apartments priced from £187,500; Springfield Park in Maidstone, providing 502 apartments priced from £199,995 and The Denham Film Studios in Outer London, where 70 family houses are priced from £680,000.

Of the legal completions to date 65% were first time buyers, 20% were young families and 15% were investors and other purchasers such as downsizers.  Weston Homes highlight that a significant proportion of the new homeowners were looking to relocate from inner London into the Home Counties with many relieved to be now able to self isolate in the safety of their own new home; with some previously occupying “crowded” homes with relatives or forced to share properties with other renters.

Bob Weston, Chairman of Weston Homes says: “Weston Homes had an extremely strong start to the year and the wave of activity since the market restarted indicates that despite the disruption it has caused, Covid-19 merely “temporarily paused” and certainly did not stop the enduring British love of home ownership.”

The current COVID-19 pandemic is naturally a period of worry, but people choose to look towards the future, with buying a home an important milestone in everyone’s lives.

Jonathan Lewis, Group Sales & Marketing Director says: “Since the restarting of the housing market Weston Homes have reopened their marketing suites and show homes across the South East and we have put in place a robust and comprehensive set of guidelines which mean that we can operate our marketing suites and showhomes safely and comply with strict social distancing requirements. As the last two weeks wave of deals have demonstrated, we are fully prepared to handle everything from a first enquiry, to customer marketing suite visits, to a customer reserving their new home.”

Weston Homes highlight that the majority of their marketing suites are in excess of 3,000 sqft in size, with spacious reception foyers with high ceilings, roomy seating areas and separate breakout rooms – providing ample space for social distancing. Each development now has individual detailed anti-Coronavirus safeguarding procedures to ensure the welfare of visitors and staff on site.

In addition to marketing suites and showhomes Weston Homes is also offering buyers ‘virtual viewings’ – where an applicant can have a remote 360 degree 3D tour of a show home from the safety of their home – at developments including The Denham Film Studios in outer London, Fletton Quays in Peterborough, and Watford Cross in Watford, Greater London.

Fletton Quays in Peterborough is a stylish development of new apartments fronting onto a wide riverside boulevard on the banks of the River Nene. At Fletton Quays there is a virtual tour of a two-bedroom apartment with a private balcony. Fletton Quays has proved incredibly popular with first time buyers, with prices for the remaining homes starting from £172,000.

At Watford Cross in Watford, Greater London, there is a virtual tour of a two-bedroom apartment with a private terrace. Watford Cross provides great transport links into Central London, making the apartment scheme ideal for commuters. Prices at Watford Cross start from £319,000 and select homes are available on the First-time SecureBuy scheme.

At The Denham Film Studios in outer London, there are two virtual tours available, one of an undressed four-bedroom ‘Lucas’ house type, and one of the dressed four-bedroom ‘Lester’ house type. The dressed Lester show home is inspired by Hollywood, with the new homes development created on the site of the historic Denham film studios, which welcomed directors including Alfred Hitchcock, Steven Spielberg, and Stanley Kubrick during the twentieth-century. The show home has glamorous interiors, with a fun ‘Star Wars’ themed children’s bedroom with a bespoke Stormtrooper mural. At the Denham Film Studios the available homes start from £644,995.

First time buyers are able to use Weston’s own First-Time SecureBuy scheme using a 5% deposit and a reservation fee of just £500 on select homes, with a reservation fee of just £1000 on other properties.

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