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    The EU and Brexit: What Now for UK Property?

    Following the result of the EU referendum, we at Julie Twist Properties are staying positive! It’s been a great few years for property in Manchester and, despite the initial economic shockwaves caused by the Brexit vote, the UK is not set to leave the EU anytime soon – it could be up to two years before the situation is finalised. Until the next Prime Minister is chosen, at least, we can expect business as usual (more or less).

    That said, the situation is changing by the day and it’s important for us as a company to be on the ball – there is no use in pretending that nothing is happening and that the property market won’t be affected. It is unlikely that the EU will make it easy for the UK to leave, so the next two years could see some ups and downs. But we should remember that our country still has one of the world’s strongest economies, and this grounding will serve well to stabilise markets during turbulent times.

    Even with the current negative effect of Brexit on the pound, the UK property market might benefit – after all, the changed exchange rate may mean that investing in this country suddenly becomes more attractive to overseas buyers.

    Another point to stress is that the Manchester property market weathered the last recession far better than many others. In particular, if the reshuffled Government retains its plans for the Northern Powerhouse, the city will remain in a strong position. Effectively, this means that taking advantage of a slightly depressed market at this stage might be of massive benefit later, for those who are willing to take the risk.

    Although our ability to move around the EU might be changing, we must keep our domestic markets in mind; people aren’t going to stop moving around the country for work and education because of the referendum result; in fact, we may see more internal movement because of fewer people branching out abroad. In real terms, such a turn would be welcomed by property investors, who might see even higher competition for rental property in our larger business cities – of which Manchester is one.

    At Julie Twist Properties, another of our biggest sources of custom is the local student population. Manchester is home to one of the world’s most important research universities, as well as many other quality higher-education establishments. We are confident that students will continue to flock to our city, whatever the economic climate – and all these people will need to live somewhere! As a consequence, we cannot see that the rentals market is going to collapse any time soon.

    Scaremongers may point to the falling price of banking shares as an indicator of troubled times ahead for property sales. However, it is worth noting that mortgages remain widely available at present, indicating that banks are still able and willing to lend. We should have confidence in the number of excellent fixed-rate deals out there at the moment that can be snapped up, providing stability for property buyers not just today, but in the years to come.

    Not sure you can take our word for it? Well, the politicians seem to share our upbeat (but realistic) outlook. Brandon Lewis MP, Minister of State for Housing and Planning, was in Manchester last week at the CIH Housing conference, and he explained that, despite the challenges posed by Brexit, housebuilding remains ‘a national and Government priority’.

    ‘The world is not as it was before the result, but the need for new homes continues….we have to remember how things were in the wake of the last crash, when housebuilding was on the floor and the banks were on their knees. If we rebuilt from that dire position, we can certainly get through the current turbulence that we’ve got, where we’re starting with a housing sector in a healthier state than it was back then’.

    We can be reassured, then, that whatever happens next, the investment in housing will continue, thus helping to strengthen the property market in general.

    So, what we must do, above all else, is remain informed as the situation changes – and this is something which we aim to help you with. We will ensure that our clients and readers are updated regularly with the latest developments in the property market (and wider economy) to make sure that you can make the property decisions that are right for you.

    At a time when we face a number of unknowns, one thing should be remembered: property is a steady, tangible investment, and it’s only ever a matter of time before what comes down must go up again.


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