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Property industry upbeat about the Conservative victory

The property industry is upbeat about the Conservative Party’s victory in the General Election last week.

The feeling is it should lift the political uncertainty by paving the way for Brexit, as well as providing the mandate to launch new housing policies.

John Phillips, national operations director at Just Mortgages, said: “The political deadlock of the last few years has finally been broken.

“Whatever anybody may think of the result, we now have some clarity around Brexit at long last and that should help bring more certainty to people thinking about buying or selling homes, and to investors.

“The government has a majority now not just to ‘get Brexit done’, as we’ve been hearing during the election, but to get on with some of the other issues that have been holding the country back.

“There’s been plenty of talk from Boris’s camp – going back to his leadership campaign earlier in the year – about reforming the planning system, getting more houses built and lowering the burden of stamp duty on the higher-value end of the market. He now needs to make good on that talk.”

There’s likely to be a spike in business in the New Year as confidence returns, according to Martin Bikhit, managing director at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Kay & Co.

Bikhit said: “Boris Johnson’s decisive victory will enable us to leave the EU as planned.

“We expect a spike in the market in the New Year as confidence returns, and more foreign investment soon, given that sterling will now inevitably increase in value over time with investors wishing to take advantage of favourable exchange rates before this happens.”

David Bennett, commercial director at eKeeper, pointed out that some uncertainties will continue however.

He said: “The election result eliminates any uncertainty over Brexit. While it may be helpful, with the government’s pledged investment into the Midlands and Northern powerhouses, there will continue to be massive uncertainty into the economy regarding trade deals, imports and exports.

“The Conservative victory has seen a boost in the markets and we can expect renewed confidence and a spike in housing movement fed by customer confidence.

“Those customers expect higher service standards and more instant reactions, so brokers and their technology providers will need to meet this demand and ensure those expectations are met.

“UK home movers will not want technology or the economy to hold them back and brokers will want to make hay while the sun is shining.”

James Thornton, chief executive of Mayfair Capital, agreed that uncertainty will continue.

He said: “The resounding Conservative Party win removes the short-term risk of a no-deal Brexit and the fog of political uncertainty, although the medium-term risk of the UK crashing out of the EU remains.

“We expect to see greater public spending announced in the new year, which will include additional infrastructure funding – one of our core investment themes. We also expect higher GDP growth and continued high employment.

“All of these factors will support occupier demand and improve real estate investment liquidity. We do not believe a higher sterling will deter foreign investors who have been more concerned by the political uncertainty in the UK. Ultimately, property returns are correlated with economic growth.

“The removal of one risk factor should enable confidence to return, leading to stronger growth.”