RICS Reports Post-Election UK Housing Market Improvement


It is safe to say that the Conservative Party’s landslide victory in the December general election represented a doomsday scenario for Remainers. For the first time, there is little to no doubt whatsoever that the United Kingdom will indeed leave the European Union at the end of January.

But far from dealing a hammer blow to the UK economy, the result of the general election has benefited some of the country’s most important markets. One of which is the housing sector, which, according to the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), has experienced an “uplift” since the Conservatives gained a significant majority in the House of Commons.

An unexpected uptick

According to the RICS, sales expectations in London and the south-east of England have risen significantly for the first time in several months. Likewise, interest among new buyers is also on the increase across much of the UK, particularly in the North East of England and Wales.

The same, however, could not be said for Scotland and Northern Ireland, where sales continue to deteriorate on a monthly basis.

The latest figures released by the RICS should give some comfort to those looking to sell up or relocate over the coming months. Following years of relentless uncertainty, the housing market may once again be showing signs of life for the immediate future, at least.

“The signals from the latest RICS survey provide further evidence that the housing market is seeing some benefit from the greater clarity provided by the decisive election outcome,” said Simon Rubinsohn, RICS chief economist.

“Whether the improvement in sentiment can be sustained remains to be seen given that there is so much work to be done over the course of this year in determining the nature of the eventual Brexit deal.”

“However, the sales expectations indicators clearly point to the prospect of a more upbeat trend in transactions emerging, with potential purchasers being more comfortable following through on initial inquiries.”

House price increases are predicted

Elevated buyer interest is being motivated in many regions by significant falls in average house prices. Particularly in London, East Anglia, and the South East of England, home prices have experienced declines over recent months.

RCIS members, however, are now predicting widespread house price increases throughout the rest of 2020. Though once again, the market remains at the mercy of the outcome of Britain’s departure from the European Union at the end of January.

As it is not yet clear whether the Conservative Party will be able to negotiate an acceptable deal with the EU, uncertainty remains as to the future of the UK housing market and its long-term buoyancy.