Pictures of London's Monopoly game

During 2015 London homeowners are forecast to substantially raise the prices of homes in the South East as they flee the big smoke for larger, commutable homes near excellent schools. Savills have produced an interactive map with price rise predictions over the next five years.

The press have also predicted that foreign property investors will spurn London for Birmingham, to take advantage of its redeveloped infrastructure and relatively low property prices. In fact, many large manufacturing firms have already pitched up there. Over towards the East of England, the Cambridge property market is set to heat up further following high rises over the past couple of years, in part-response to its flourishing digital media industry.

With reports of an imminent market slowdown, overheated central London prices and the city's health and transport services being pushed to breaking point by its record population, who can blame the Jones's for upping sticks to Sevenoaks? But while the market slowed in the last quarter of 2014, we've seen absolute signs of a return to a rising market.

Valuation requests are at the same level as they were last year
The phones usually get busy in January as people traditionally begin a new year thinking about whether to move. We're doing as many valuations as we did in January 2014, which was a record year for sales.

We are selling everything fast
We're selling things within days of coming to market. We're also suddenly selling things now that have been on the market last autumn.

Sealed bids might be returning
We've just handled buyers competing for a premium flat and the negotiations went in the fairest direction - sealed bids. The vendor choose to accept an offer that was very much above the asking price and the mortgage valuer has agreed the flat's worth.

Mortgages are reasonably easy to get
Last year's Mortgage Market Review has settled in and while the new terms make conveyancing take a little longer, few buyers had trouble borrowing in January 2015. The latest figures suggest a significant rise in lending across the country and the return of first-time buyers.

Stamp duty changes
We are certain that the current stamp duty reforms will be great news for sellers who were fairly valued at previously difficult price tags. It was far harder to sell anything priced between 500-540k and justify the corresponding stamp duty, but with today's fairer levelling out of the system, it should prove easier for London's second and third-steppers to forge forward with a move.

A shortage of stock
While valuations are up and buyers are keenly offering on homes there is a huge shortage of stock, far more so than last year. We are simply not able to meet buyers' demands which in turn raises prices.

The people we're valuing aren't all moving to Sevenoaks and it will be interesting to see how the 2015 London market plays out. We're seeing a particularly strong start to the year despite the oncoming general election and can only hope the market remains steady, not heady, to give it long-term sustainability.