Are you bored of Brexit?

Whether you are a remainer, a leaver or an inbetweener you have probably been peeking out from that safe place behind the sofa like me, watching what’s been going on in Parliament and the EU and trying to work out what is going to happen and whether you can make plans for the future.

I am occasionally asked how has Brexit impacted on the residential property market so far and what will happen next?

These are good questions. If you talk to the local estate agents some are very busy but, across the South East, volume of sales are down and according to the Land Registry although prices in the UK were up in January 2019 compared with January 2018, they were slightly down compared with December 2018. This is UK-wide data and includes house prices in Scotland and Northern Ireland which have held up well (whereas we know that London and the South East have suffered most). Reports from our clients are that arranging borrowing has been more difficult in recent months and our own experience is that it has required additional work and patience on all sides to get transactions over the line, particularly as chains of transactions break. That’s history, what about the future?

I don’t own a crystal ball but confidence must be the key to achieving stability first and then growth of the market. Confidence comes with certainty. While our Prime Minister is in talks with the Leader of the Official Opposition and has written another “Dear Donald” letter to the EU requesting a further extension to the Brexit process (as of Friday 5th April) (and while the Brexiteers and Secondreferendumites continue to oppose just about everything) it’s very difficult to say when all this will be settled and confidence will return.

However, some experts in a recent article published in Which online are being more bullish. Notwithstanding Mark Carney’s predictions from the Bank of England that a no-deal Brexit could see property prices tumbling by a third, property pundits have pointed out that long term purchases would certainly mitigate the risk of property price fluctuations; some mortgage advisers are reminding prospective purchasers that there are mortgage products available which offer flexibility to borrowers to manage changing interest rates without simply being tied to a long-term fixed rate.

Gardner Croft cannot predict the future but we can help you through the process of buying and selling houses or flats to live in or as investments. Our team of experienced lawyers and conveyancers will make the transaction as seamless and pain-free as possible for you without compromising on the expert advice we give. We aim to build a strong relationship with you so that we understand your goals and help you achieve them.

Tim Townsend