Green & Co speaks to BBC online
Thu 12 Feb 2015
Our Tamworth branch manager, Claire Wax, spoke to BBC online about the local property market.
View the full article here or read Claire's comments below.
Where in the UK has unemployment fallen most - and where have average wages shot up by 16%?
It is the town of Tamworth, just a few miles north-east of Birmingham.
A combination of luck and good judgement means unemployment has fallen faster here than anywhere else in England, Scotland or Wales.
Between early 2012 and last September, the town's headline rate of unemployment more than halved, from 9.9% to 4.7%.
The number of people telling the Office for National Statistics (ONS) that they were out of work and looking for a job fell from 3,400 to 1,800 in just two and a half years.
The revival of employment in Tamworth seems to have had a dramatic effect on local wage rates.
According to the Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings (ASHE), the average earnings of people working full-time in the town rose by a whopping 16% last year to £28,000.
Cash buyers for homes
The centre of Tamworth offers an odd sight.
There is a cluster of 15 different estate agency branches on two streets, all within about 100 yards of each other.
Sales and prices in the town have picked up in the past couple of years along with the rest of the country.
And at the Green & Co agency, the manager Claire Wax has noticed some interesting trends.
"A lot of people are buying properties to supplement their retirement, as a pension when they retire, so about 5% to 10% of all sales are buy-to-let," she says.
"In the Tamworth area property is still relatively affordable compared to neighbouring towns like Sutton Coldfield and Lichfield, so you can easily buy a 3-bed semi-detached house for £80,000 to £100,000 which will rent out for £650 or £700 a month."
"There are also lot of cash buyers, of all our sales in December about 90% were cash buyers - we were amazed."