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Sun, sales and Brexit...

As the weather hots up and summer holidays loom large, it is fair to say that the housing market is preparing for its annual summer lull. This traditionally means that there is an increase in the number of sellers looking to get sales completed before heading off on holiday.


We have certainly witnessed elements of this with an extremely busy May for exchanges with June figures also looking encouraging. Sales are holding up, as are the level of new instructions, which has been very positive over the last two months. We are seeing transactions taking longer to come to fruition, and this is a trend which has continued for some time now. There is more caution around the buying process, whether that be from the lending institutions or the buyers themselves (some of us might call this ‘Red Tape’), and this is having an impact on timescales and leading to delays in completing chains.


In terms of the wider economy, the prospect of Brexit looms large. As we approach the spring 2019 exit deadline we are seeing various permutations laid out before us, without really knowing more than we did 18 months ago. What is not in doubt is that the wider public discourse we witness daily concerning the type of deal which may or may not be agreed, alongside the need for clarity (as voiced recently by firms including BMW and Airbus), adds to the level of uncertainty felt by those in the property market.


It would be fair to say that there are elements of widespread price correction in the sales market at the moment with buyers wanting value for money and so will only buy at what they view to be a competitive price. Sellers are in some instances needing to adjust their price expectations accordingly and so, for the near term, we are unlikely to see much in the way of house price growth.


In the rental sector, we are witnessing growth in the number of tenants registering but there remain issues on the supply side, with some landlords looking to exit the rental market altogether. This is a nationwide trend with the UK’s professional body for letting agents, ARLA Propertymark, reporting that a record number of landlords left the rental market during April 2018, despite demand for rental properties increasing. With increased government legislation covering the lettings sector in recent months and years, this is perhaps not surprising but there is clearly still a very strong demand for rental property and so returns to be made, especially if using an accredited agent to manage property portfolios.


My teams are ready to assist you for all your property needs so don't hesitate to contact us to see how we can help you today.

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