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‘Confidence’ returns to the market but Tories must keep promises – reaction to Conservatives’ win

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  • 13/12/2019
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‘Confidence’ returns to the market but Tories must keep promises – reaction to Conservatives’ win
The end of political uncertainty following the Conservatives landslide win will restore confidence within the property market, industry officials have said.

 

Get the market moving again 

One prediction made by those in the industry was that the Conservative party win would bring the market out of its stagnant state. 

Transaction data and house price indices have suggested sellers and buyers have been adopting a ‘wait and see’ approach amid the unpredictability caused by Brexit and Parliamentary affairs. 

Patrick Alvarado, director of Nicolas Van Patrick, said: “It is good to have certainty and a party with a clear mandate. Although there is talk of a potential extra three per cent stamp duty for foreign buyers as detailed in the Conservative manifesto, until that time we will see the property market return to some sort of normality with the uncertainty of Brexit having been mitigated. 

“We expect buyers who are currently under offer and who might have been holding off in exchanging contracts prior to the election, now getting on with it and exchanging prior to Christmas.” 

John Phillips, national operations director at Just Mortgages, added the “political deadlock” of the last few years had “finally been broken”.

“Whatever anybody may think of the result, we now have some clarity around Brexit at long last and that should help bring more certainty to people thinking about buying or selling homes, and to investors,” he said. 

David Westgate, group chief executive at Andrews Property Group claimed the property market would be one of the “main beneficiaries” of the win. 

“Such a conclusive victory for Boris Johnson has the potential to turbocharge the property market and get it out of its current rut,” he added. 

 

Housing crisis still needs addressing 

However, Westgate added that the market should not “kid” itself that the housing crisis would be solved overnight. 

He said: “We now need a housing minister with a properly costed and fully structured long-term plan that looks beyond building a certain number of homes each year. 

“The structural issues in the property market will still be there when the euphoria of the Conservatives’ win has faded.” 

Martijn van der Heijden, chief strategy officer at Habito, said while the Conservatives made “bold election pledges” to potential buyers, they were not “imaginative enough”. 

He said: “Until the time is found to resolve the core housing issues around affordability and accessibility, fundamental barriers to many people’s dream of homeownership will remain.” 

Alvarado added that the main problem was a lack of supply but said he expected this to be addressed in the new year as vendors who were holding off would begin to list properties and balance the pent-up demand. 

He also said there would be “upwards pressure on prices, while levelling off over the year ahead as demand is satisfied”. 

 

Making good on promises 

Phillips said: “There’s been plenty of talk from Johnson’s camp – going back to his leadership campaign earlier in the year – about reforming the planning system, getting more houses built and lowering the burden of stamp duty on the higher-value end of the market. He now needs to make good on that talk.” 

Speaking on more specific proposals, Van der Heijden said it was “unclear” how the party would implement its “flagship pledge” of a lifetime fixed-rate mortgage but said it would be a “welcome step in the right direction”, while Dilpreet Bhagrath, mortgage adviser at Trussle said the issues surrounding mortgage loyalty penalty still needed fixing. 

She said: “We hope that Boris Johnson prioritises the work that Theresa May set into motion to tackle the loyalty penalty in the mortgage market. With mortgages being the largest source of debt for many, this should be the first step in lowering household bills and improving the lives of many families up and down the country.”

 

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