The housing market after the general election

The housing market thrives on stability – would-be sellers and buyers do not make big financial decisions such as moving house if they are uncertain about the market.

So now we’ve got through another general election and Theresa May is back in 10 Downing Street, heading a minority government, what does that mean for the housing market?

While transactions tend to ease off a little in the build up to a general election, the fact that this was a snap election meant that we did not see the usual dip this time around.

The market has been strong and buoyant in Birmingham since early 2014 and house prices in the city have seen an average 8% rise over the past 12 months alone – one of the highest rises in the country.

This has generally been driven by a lack of supply, which helps to maintain asking prices, and low mortgage rates. We believe that this upward trend in values will continue for the next few months at least.

We’ve seen a seller’s market in key locations in the city since late 2013 – particularly in the city centre. Demand for good quality properties in Harborne, Edgbaston and the city centre has consistently outstripped the number of properties coming on to the market.

The May residential survey by the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) showed that the market in the West Midlands has slowed down, with fewer homes going on the market. However, prices are buoyant.

Simon Rubinsohn, RICS chief economist, said that the most “ominous signal” from its latest report is that house prices are expected to increase at a faster pace than wages over the medium term.

“The increasingly tight second hand market remains a cause for concern with the RICS series tracking new instructions to agents recording its fifteenth successive negative reading,” he said. “It is hard to see this as anything other a major obstacle to the efficient functioning of the housing market.”

Despite the national picture suggesting that buyers and sellers are adopting a “wait and see” approach, we’re seeing a healthy number of enquiries coming through and buyers are keen to take advantage of attractive mortgage offers. They’re also asking more questions about the market and potential resale potential on particular properties.

Buyer and seller confidence has not been dented in the local market. Little has changed and the general election result is unlikely to have a negative impact on the number of transactions completed in the property market.

If you want to know the value of your property, contact senior sales and lettings manager Andy McHugo to arrange a free up-to-date market appraisal on 0121 456 5454 or email andy@jameslaurenceuk.com