Blog January 8, 2019

Charting UK Property Trends: Brexit

By Jack Harrison

In December 2018, MRI Software compiled and published results from its industry-wide survey in a report titled Charting UK Property Trends. This blog looks at its findings related to Brexit.

Whatever the nature of the deal – or ‘no deal’, as the case could potentially still be – Brexit will undoubtedly dominate news headlines in the UK throughout 2019. It’s done so, almost continuously, since the referendum nearly three years ago – not a day going by that we don’t see a story on how the UK’s departure from the European Union is going to impact on a given industry, market or business type. Of course, the real estate sector will feel the ramifications of events both before and after the exit date of 29 March – but to what extent are property professionals concerned? The answer, which may surprise some, is a tentative ‘not very’.

Statistically speaking, only 24% (less than one in four) of respondents to the recent industry survey conducted and published by MRI said they believe that Brexit will seriously hamper access to funding for developments. Granted, it’s only one aspect of a wider picture – but it does start to paint an optimistic view. As does the fact that 62% believe Brexit will have a ‘minimal’ impact on the UK rental market – this despite more than half expecting house purchase prices to fall.

Discussing the report on the Building Success podcast, James Lavery – EMEA Marketing Director at MRI – puts the general positivity down to experience. He explains: “The property industry is subject to ups and downs – not just those we’ve witnessed in the past 10 years since the financial crash, but through many previous cycles. It’s not that the sector isn’t concerned by Brexit, but they’re saying ‘we know how to handle this’ – and looking at the opportunities it could provide, not just the associated threats.”

Yes, there is undoubtedly an underlying uncertainty that surrounds the process – and that creates concern – but, on the whole the property market is displaying confidence that it can ride out the bumps in the road Brexit will inevitably throw its way. Only in time will the full impact be seen, but for now the key players appear unfazed.

To find out more you can download the complete report here, and listen to James’s podcast in full below.

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