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House prices are like Brexit talks - stuck, floundering, going nowhere

The latest house price index shows very little happening in the market, with analysts expecting little significant movement until Brexit is sorted, at least in principle.

Nationwide’s figures, released over the weekend, show prices in May fell 0.2 per cent from April, with the lender saying the market was subdued thanks to uncertainty.

Compared with a year earlier, house prices rose 0.6 per cent - but that’s slower than the 0.9 per cent rise recorded the previous month.


Annual house price growth has been below one per cent for six months in a row, according to the Nationwide.

Agents, perhaps like much of the country, appear to be growing weary of an absence of political and economic direction which might spur the housing market.

“We see no real pattern for the market emerging - one month prices, transactions or mortgage approvals are up, then down or very little movement the next. The good news at the sharp end is that there is no major correction being seen or expected for the time being at least, despite some predictions to the contrary” explains Jeremy Leaf, north London estate agent and a former RICS residential chairman. 

And he adds: ‘The recent EU parliamentary elections demonstrate the country is still massively divided about Brexit just as the property market is split about how to remove the uncertainty it has created.'

Meanwhile Benham and Reeves director Marc von Grundherr asks: “Who would have thought that almost three years on from the EU Referendum the UK property market would be running primarily on a cocktail of first-time buyer demand and low mortgage rates?”

Mike Scott, chief property analyst at online agency Yopa, says: “It seems that prices have reached the limits of affordability, with would-be-buyers struggling to raise the necessary deposits. However, the number of houses sold is holding steady, the supply of homes is still very limited, and the economic fundamentals remain strong, with low unemployment, low mortgage interest rates, rising average earnings and good mortgage availability.”

  • Tony Sinclair

    Riddle Me This... Who's Really To Blame For The Brexit Mess?

    When we look at the big picture, it could be concluded that the whole Brexit shebang was hijacked from day one by over-ambitious bumbling buffoons masquerading as politicians. Entities who don't give a monkey's about the country and are oblivious to the damage and suffering they have caused across the board. Not to mention making Britain look foolish in the eyes of the world by showing it is an island race led by donkeys.

    It makes me wonder if any country would want to deal with what is left of the UK after the Brexit circus is over and the clowns in suits have taken their final bow. In fact we may even be a basket case banana republic by the time they have finished with us.

    The fallout from this Brexit fiasco has come at a time when the global economy is shaky with much uncertainty around the world. A time when trade wars are taking the global economy to the brink of the abyss. Yet while others brace themselves, here we are stuck in a helpless limbo. Dangling powerlessly like Bojo Boris stuck on a zip line during the Olympics. Another embarrassing sight for the world to behold and one that still makes me squirm in embarrassment.

    But alas and alack, the shenanigans continue and so does the madness because it's all about climbing the political power ladder and nothing to do with Brexit or in the interest of people.

    Now the poor downtrodden British public is about to have another freak show rammed down their throats in the guise of a Leadership challenge by a ragtag bunch of muppets suffering delusions of grandeur. None of whom could run a bath let alone a country. Hence why this Brexit freak show keeps dragging on and on and on and on.

    Furthermore, none have any solutions or answers or loyalty. If they had, we would have left the EU months ago. Not one of them has been forthcoming about what they plan to do in order to heal the country. Why? Because they haven't got a clue. They are blinkered to everything except climbing the career ladder and the country is suffering from their incompetence wishful thinking.

    First, it was March then April then May but the only thing promised to leave the EU in May was Theresa and even that was put back until June while Brexit is kicked into the long grass once again until October. (Which year is not yet certain)

    Let's be realistic here. If the public continues to stick their heads in the sand until October, methinks many smaller agents will indeed go under and online Hybrid agencies will struggle to keep local agents. After all, they are self-employed and if they not earning they will have to find alternative income. Some have already rejected their foray into the hybrid world of promised riches and returned to the safety of their old High Street haunts for a regular salary. They say 'until things pick up' but deep down they know it probably won't happen at least for some time yet and they will opt for the safety of a regular wage.

    Ironic isn't it? All the Hoo-Ha about the long term survival of online hybrid agencies may collapse not because of market share problems but because they can't keep hold of local property agents who they are fully dependent on.

    So who is to blame for the current state of Britain? The bumbling incompetent clowns who have infiltrated our government or the British public for allowing them to create what can now only be described as a circus.

    Meanwhile, the property market and other industries will continue to stagnate until October and beyond unless the masses get tired of waiting for Brexit and start moving on with their plans.

    Let the political backstabbing commence and hope this fiasco will soon come to an end.

  • icon

    Nigel kingmaker and Boris will be the man.
    Properties are being rented and new tenants found.
    LAs will slim line, cut overheads, offer an acceptable service to the professional landlord or cease trading.
    All this hoo har about something that was there before, 35 years ago we found tenants through LAs or not,
    Properties being sold now as before
    Brexit is not a problem for housing Sold stamp duty is,,or Rented. Fact.


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