London house prices set to fall, surveyors warn
House prices in London are set to suffer a more severe blow than any other part of the UK, according to the first major survey to be conducted in the wake of last month’s Brexit vote. Across the UK as a whole, surveyors polled by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) reported that the level of interest from homebuyers had fallen to its lowest level since the financial crisis, while around 39 per cent of those queried believed prices in London will fall during the whole of the next year. Prices in the capital have already begun to slide, according to RICS, though this was partly owing to factors other than the referendum. London has been one of the areas hardest hit, with anecdotal evidence suggesting both the EU result and tax changes, including the extra 3% stamp duty surcharge on additional home purchases which took effect at the beginning of April, as having an impact on sentiment, the report stated.
Brexit fears put brake on buyer confidence in May
Demand for property fell to its lowest level in three years in May. Estate agents recorded an average of 304 hous buyers registered per member branch in May, as uncertainty in the lead up to the referendum stalled buyers.1 This was down 6% from April and was the lowest since November 2013, when 292 buyers were registered per branch. The data also shows that compared to May 2015 demand had decreased by over a fifth (21%).
Three out of ten buyers see purchase fall through
Almost three in ten buyers have seen their house purchase fall through – typically leaving them almost £3,000 out of pocket. The main reasons for a purchase falling through were sellers deciding not to sell after all (accounting for 27% of fall-throughs), buyers pulling out as their own property sale had fallen through (21%) and buyers finding somewhere else to buy (21%) or being gazumped (21%).2