25 Apr

Property sales slowdown in UK

Property sales slowdown in UK

New figures show only a slight increase in property sales and significantly below the levels seen at the same point last year.

Data from the HMRC show a 0.5 per cent increase in March 2017 compared to the previous month, but less than the 40.9 per cent rise recorded in March 2016.

The difference is believed to be largely down to the stamp duty changes that were introduced 12 months ago and lead to many buyers keen to complete their purchases before the additional costs become applicable.

There remains uncertainty in the market due to Brexit and the forthcoming general election, making it likely there will be further slowdowns as both buyers and sellers remain cautious.

Andy Knee, chief executive of LMS, explained: “Transaction numbers plateaued in the immediate run-up to Theresa May’s declaration of Article 50. Owner occupiers and first time buyers alike waited to see if the declaration would impact the housing market before they set their sights on a new home.

‘However, the warning signs for the wider market remain ever present. Inflation rose 0.4 per cent in 2017 and recent LMS data shows the affordability of remortgaging has worsened in the New Year. Home owners looking to purchase their next home should take stock. With a general election and Brexit negotiations likely to throw the market into an uncertain realm, the wisest course of action would be to act now while market conditions are relatively stable.”ADNFCR-1222-ID-801835071-ADNFCR

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