Max Turner from the new homes team at Savills says downsizers and retired buyers are fuelling the market.

An increase in the proportion of downsizers and cash buyers continues to drive Suffolk’s new homes market. 

According to Savills sales data, the proportion of buyers upsizing decreased from 88% in 2022 to 45% in 2023.

Retired buyers also saw a rapid increase in 2023, rising from 15% in 2022 to 41% 12 months later. Perhaps unsurprisingly then, the age of buyers in Suffolk has become older, with those aged over 50 accounting for 60% of sales in 2023 (up from 18% in 2022).

East Anglian Daily Times: Max Turner from the new homes team at SavillsMax Turner from the new homes team at Savills (Image: RMG Photography)

The largest group of buyers has been cash buyers (42%), followed by first-time buyers (28%). 

Reassuringly, although still below pre-Covid levels, the start of this year has seen renewed demand in the new homes market which has been triggered by falling mortgage rates.

Viewings were up 15% in January compared to last year, with sales up 58% compared to January last year. Visits to our new homes web listings also increased by around 36% for January compared to 12 months ago, which further demonstrates a behavioural shift among buyers.

Certainly, we’ve had plenty of interest in new schemes launched since the start of the year. These include:

  • Otter’s Holt in Debenham – a collection of three and four-bedroom homes with prices starting from £365,000.
  • Tayfen Court in Bury St Edmunds – a mix of one and two-bedroom apartments with prices starting from £225,000.
  • Norwich Road, Little Stonham, near Stowmarket – four energy efficient family homes with a guide price of £680,000.
  • Painters Place, East Bergholt – ten luxury two and three-bedroom bungalows for the over 55s with prices starting from £575,000 and a range of incentives.

With a large proportion of buyers adapting to the more challenging market conditions – along with inflation heading back towards the Bank of England target of 2%, and more stability in the mortgage markets – we expect the primary sources of financial disturbance to ease back over the course of 2024.

East Anglian Daily Times: Otter's Holt in Debenham is one of Savills' new schemes launched since the start of the yearOtter's Holt in Debenham is one of Savills' new schemes launched since the start of the year (Image: Savills)

Put simply, falling mortgage costs should translate into a wider range of buyers and less pressure on people’s budgets. In addition, there are plenty of competitive mortgage options available. As well as reducing rates, lenders have been improving criteria and increasing their loan-to-values (LTVs), allowing purchasers to buy a new-build with a smaller deposit.

While we shouldn’t get too carried away – there are sure to be a few twists and turns ahead – the early signs are increasingly positive and there is every reason for some cautious optimism.

For advice on the new homes market in Suffolk, contact Max Turner on 07807 999746 or