Will The Property Market Slow Down due to the Snap Election?
Prime Minister Theresa May has called for a General Election for 8th June. The polls strongly favour that it will be a Tory landslide but recent votes such as the Brexit referendum show us that polls are not always a reflection of the actual results and uncertainty is an enemy to any market – but especially the property market.
It is a particularly difficult time for the housing market as The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (Rics) has reported record low properties on the market and estate-agents like Foxtons have plummeting profits.
There is potential for the snap election to slow down an inactive UK property market to record lows. Traditionally, several months before a general election there is a decrease in property transactions. The period of uncertainty starts now and will hold out until the election day. However, with such a short window from the announcement to the general election, it is unlikely the effects will be monumental. Home-owners and buyers who have already started the process will most likely continue with their transactions, although the uncertainty caused by fluctuating polls could result in people staying in the contemplation stage until after the election – regardless of the results.
Quick polls from property websites have shown that the fact there is only about 7-weeks between now and the election helps deflate the usual pre-election property woes. Roughly, 60% of buyers and sellers have reported that they will continue with their transactions, despite the snap election announcement.
Should You Wait to Sell Your Home?
The general election can actually be good news for buyers and sellers. The number of properties on the market are still historically low, as people have tended to take a wait and see what happens with Brexit unfolding. May’s political gamble might pay off for the U.K. property market as the mini post-election boost could mean a welcomed-supply of homes.
In the past, the 3-months post-election period has seen a substantial 13-15% increase in transactions. The June elections could be a very positive momentum shift for the sluggish UK market as this post-election certainty comes during the busiest season for property sales.
The short window between now and the June 8th election means that consumer hesitancy will not have a major impact on property transactions. Post-election might see more eager buyers but that does not mean you should wait.
Initial reports suggest that there has not been a big shift in the property market since the snap election announcement. If now is the right time for you to sell your property, then you should. With record low supply, those who want to buy a property will be ready to buy before or after the election.
Furthermore – the Sterling strengthened after May announced the snap election and the strength of the currency is a good reflection of the economy. It could be because this is seen as a little certainty in an uncertain post-Brexit period. Regardless, with slightly lower average housing prices since the start of the year and the potential for a property-market boost, it could be the right time to sell your home.