Property experts have agreed that the landslide Conservative victory in the General Election will provide a boost to the property market in 2020, so is now the time to buy property in London?
Property website, Rightmove predicts that the price of homes coming to market in Britain will rise by 2% in 2020. It says that, while home-mover confidence and activity have been dogged by political uncertainty since the 2016 referendum, “with a clear majority in the election, there is now an opportunity to release some of the pent-up demand in the spring, and for some modest upwards price movement.”
Of London in particular, Rightmove says, “London is finally showing tentative signs of bottoming out, and we expect a more modest price rise of +1% in all of the southern regions where buyer affordability remains most stretched.”
On this basis, it could be that 2020 provides a window of opportunity for those looking at buying a house in London.
House price forecasts by estate agent, Savills, suggest 2020 may be the year when prices bottom out in London, followed by a period of modest growth. In forecasts that were based on a Conservative majority government, Savills said it expects prices in London to fall by 2% in 2020 but then increase by 4% over the next five years.
The outlook is more positive for investors looking at buying rental property in London. Savills says that it expects rental values to increase by 2% in 2020 but rise by nearly 19% over the next five years.
When is the best time to buy in London?
The truth is that, while timing is important, the medium to long-term outlook for London house prices looks modest rather than spectacular and this puts more emphasis on the importance of buying the right property. In an environment of low house price inflation, additional expenses can wipe out any increases offered by rising prices.
If you are thinking that now is the time to buy in London, it’s important that you buy wisely and undertake a comprehensive survey to know what you are buying. This can help you to protect your investment and be better placed to ride out any future waves in the property market. At Arnold & Baldwin, we are launching a range of ground-breaking new property surveys, which provide even more detailed and accessible information on a property, so give us a call to discuss how we could help.
If you are an overseas investor, you will have additional considerations. Sterling is starting to bounce back and so property in London may become more expensive if you are remunerated in another currency. An additional 3% Stamp Duty Land Tax has also been mooted for overseas investors and so you may be tempted to buy quickly ahead of any future implementation. For overseas investors, we can also offer a full 360-degree virtual walkthrough of any property you like in London, so that you can know exactly what a property is like without travelling to viewings.
2020 may be the right time to buy property in London, but it’s always the right time to protect your investment and enter into any property transactions with your eyes open thanks to a professional survey.