So 2019 was the year that brought marriage equality and legalised abortion to Northern Ireland but no return of Stormont. It was the year that saw Brexit "Not done" but a new Prime minister and another general election to try and "get it done".

Lewis Hamilton won his 6th F1 Grand Prix World Title, South Africa won the Rugby World cup, Mark Marquez won his 8th World title in Moto GP and Jonathan Rea won the World Superbikes title for the 5th time (Don't know who did what in Football except that Manchester United were awful - again!).

Lewis Capaldi was the biggest selling album of 2019 (makes a change from Ed Sheeran) with "Divinely Unispired to a Hellish extent" and I turned 50!!

It was a year of change in the local estate agency market too with 3 agents closing offices in Newtownards and at least one internet based agent arriving with a fanfare and quietly disappearing again with a wimper.

For us it was a year of steady and continued growth in terms of numbers of sales and turnover for both our property sales and mortgage departments.

Property values also saw steady growth, although with the caveat that the much publicised figures of 4% are an average, so whilst new builds continued to rise significantly resales lagged behind. First time buyers were busy and kept the sub £150,000 and New build sectors moving whilst investors largely took a break from the market waiting to see the effects of Brexit and a new government.

The 2020 property market looks like another year of "Steady as she goes". Will BREXIT happen by the end of Janurary 2020 and if so what effect, if any, will it have on our local property market? Will Stormont return? Will I complete the Belfast City Marathon on 3rd May 2020?

What we can say is that "Some jobs require a professional" so don't take chances with the sale of your most valuable asset. Saving a few hundred pounds on the sale fee could cost you thousands on the price achieved. With 18 years in business in Newtownards we've been through the highs and lows of the property market and have developed a sales and marketing strategy that gets results. We don't offer flattering valuations or bargain basement fees but what we do deliver is the best price for your home, in the shortest time possible and for a fair fixed fee with our full professional support throughout (Fee agreed prior to instruction based on your property's individual circumstances and needs - no up front marketing or listing fees).

Tune in this time next year to see what has happened and, in the meantime, have a Happy Christmas and Peaceful and Prosperous 2020 from all at Grant Estate Agents and NIMortgages.