There has been a dramatic increase in enquiries from homebuyers looking to purchase London property following Boris Johnson’s December general election win and the UK’s departure from the EU on January 31st.
There has already been an immediate and significant upturn in both the number of new buyers registering with the company and the number of valuations being carried out.
As soon as the election win was announced, there was a substantial increase in enquiries as pent up demand was released – in fact December was one of the busiest on record, with our office receiving three times the number of offers in the last two weeks of the month than in the first two. After several years of instability and subdued house price growth following the Brexit referendum in June 2016, the positive news of the Conservative election victory and the subsequent hurdle of leaving the EU being overcome, means that homebuyers and sellers can now look forward to greater certainty and stability after years of putting their plans on hold. We immediately saw a swift increase in confidence as activity increased and this is quickly filtering through to all corners of the property market. Homebuyers and sellers had been holding back but now we are seeing a definite surge in interest for homes in the capital, both resales and brand new properties.
We have had a strong start to February, with new buyer registrations and transaction levels increasing quickly since the start of the year. We are also seeing a growing number of valuation requests from homeowners now actively looking to sell and momentum is picking up noticeably across all areas of the London property market. Demand from homeowners looking to move, either with a new job or to be within the catchment area of a specific school, is definitely increasing. Interest rates remain low and may drop still further, so with borrowing cheap this has also had a positive knock-on effect on confidence and affordability.
Of course a large number of buyers are from overseas, particularly from Asia and China – most of these are buying a property in London for their student children to live in while they are in the UK. While many of these do not need to borrow, they too are returning to the market, encouraged by the continuing currency discount and the greater feeling of positivity.
The fundamentals of London property remain strong and this renewed sense of confidence is now giving a much-needed boost to the market.
But there remains a shortage of good properties coming onto the market and we have waiting lists of potential buyers on our database looking to buy properties right across London, from Beaufort Park in North London to Battersea, south of the river. Finding good stock is a key issue and these buyers are ready to move quickly, in weeks or even in days if the property is right for them so the current outlook is extremely positive.
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