Since Brexit the number of residential property sales completed in England and Wales has reached 901,129, 22% less than the total number of sales completed over the same period leading up to the Brexit vote, with a drop of 18% in the average monthly number of completions across both periods.
However, the average price of the total number of properties sold has increased in the 15 months since Brexit, up 7% from £213,444 to £228,968. This suggests that those at the top end of the ladder were less concerned about the market climate, and therefore, the transactions that did complete were in a higher price bracket.
In the 15 months leading up to the Brexit vote, there was an average of 77,260 property transactions a month across England and Wales with an average sold price of £213,444. However, in the time between Britain voting to leave the EU and the triggering of Article 50, this slumped to 63,159 transactions a month on average – a drop of 18%.
During the same period, the average sold price for a property completing increased by 6% to £226,408, despite slower market conditions.
Britain’s sign of intent in triggering Article 50 restored a brief air of stability to the property market in England and Wales, with the number of residential property sales completed increasing by +6% in April and May of 2017, to 66,939 a month on average, with the average sold prices also increasing +2%.
However, the call of a snap election and the disastrous outcome for the Conservatives once again caused the market to stall, with the number of residential property completions since having plummeted -26% to just 49,706 a month on average.
Despite this, the average price of properties sold in this time again increased by +2%, as falling stock levels and high buyer demand continue to keep the market ticking over.
This research shows that where uncertainty in the market is concerned, it is the snap election that has had the most detrimental impact on actual sales completions.
These events do have an almost immediate influence on the number of sellers committing to a sale in the subsequent months following them, although a consistent level of buyer demand has seen prices continue to creep up.
The UK market is certainly resilient and although a recovery in sales volumes is yet to be seen, there are signs that the market is beginning to regain momentum.
No doubt any confirmation on the details of our divorce bill will be the next significant marker and will see a movement in transaction volume and price growth, but it remains to be seen in which direction it will be.Russell Quirk