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By Nat Daniels

CEO, Angels Media


Property Natter - July election could be a winner for the property market

Could it be that a politician has finally done the property market a favour?

Rishi Sunak’s decision to call the general election early may have taken some  by surprise this week but it could turn out to be a pleasant one.

With news that inflation fell last month to 2.3% following a marked drop in energy prices, there were strong signs that a Base Rate cut would follow pretty sharply and mortgage rates thereafter.

Against this backdrop, the Prime Minister decided to make a run for it and announced the long-awaited general election for July 4th.

This will mean six weeks of endless electioneering, news coverage, arguments, debates, canvassing and heckling……but then it will be over.

On July 5th, buyers, sellers and agents who have endured a slightly stuttering market so far this year, can watch the green shoots of recovery grow and blossom – when the uncertainty ends, business can flourish.

There is still plenty of time for a strong second half year performance with more motivated buyers and higher transaction numbers.

True, we have to spare a thought for the sellers new to market – the next month and a half are almost certain to be quieter than they had hoped. On the other hand, there may be a few buyers sniffing around to see if they can grab themselves a good deal and there’ll probably be fewer properties listing giving those already on the market a decent chance to shine.

And as the political bandwagons hit the election trail, watch out for those policy statements on housing. More homes? More environmental sustainability? More affordability?

Let’s see those manifesto pledges.

At last….change the record!

It’s amazing what a bit of sunshine can do.

Even before the election date was announced, ONS figures released this week showed that average UK house prices increased 1.8% in the 12 months to March 2024 – the first rise since the 12 months to June 2023.

And Rightmove reported that the average asking price of a home in Britain has risen to a record high of £375000.

As has been predicted since the beginning of the year, confidence is beginning to warm up despite the fact that affordability is still a concern for many.

The result of all this of course is that more first-time buyers are opting for 35-year mortgages in the hope that they’ll be able to negotiate a shorter term when the rates are more favourable.

Going for growth and everyone’s welcome

One agency in the North East of England has been putting its money where its mouth is when it comes to demonstrating confidence in the UK property market.

Pattinsons Estate Agency has bought three other agencies in the last six months – bringing its branch network to 28.

And it seems they still have the wind in their sails because chairman and founder, Keith Pattinson, announced this week that he’s in the market for more.

He said: “We are actively seeking further opportunities to acquire or take over other estate agencies or related businesses.

“We are committed to retaining the existing stock, staff and even the owners if they wish to continue their involvement working day to day in the business.”

£8m bolthole for the Beast of Barnet

Those with a nose for news will remember the story of the Beast of Barnet which was cornered in the back garden of a large house in Cricklewood in 2001. The ‘Beast’ turned out to be a lynx that had been camping out in the undergrowth rent-free until police and animal handlers cancelled her exeat and took her into custody. It later emigrated to a French zoo and raised a family.

Property Natter - July election could be a winner for the property market

European Lynx, a close relative of the Beast of Barnet

The scene of the drama is now on the market with Beauchamp Estates at an asking price of £8,000,000. The house boasts 13 bedrooms, three reception, a gym and an indoor swimming pool. No lynx allowed but you can have pussies galore!

Property Natter - July election could be a winner for the property market

£8 million house in Hocroft Road, Cricklewood (Photo Credit: Beauchamp Estates/Casa E Progetti)

Until next time

•    If you’ve got a story you’d like me to Natter about, get in touch at press@estateagenttoday.co.uk


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