The latest figures for UK property prices have painted a rather positive picture, with values climbing 0.7% in April, according to new research from Nationwide. This adds weight to the claims that the sector may weather the current storm well, given that the market was already picking up, with prices increasing by 3.7% in the last 12 months, its fastest climb since February 2017.
Although it’s important to remember that the full impact of the crisis hasn’t yet played out, with reporting lags in mortgage applications to be considered, the news does offer an encouraging picture of how the sector could be well placed to perform once lockdown restrictions are lifted.
For the time being the market remains in limbo, with viewings unable to take place, and those in the process of moving or securing a mortgage awaiting the lockdown being lifted. It’s yet to be seen how this lack of activity, and reduction in subsequent transactions, will play out in the coming months.
There are, as ever, differing opinions on how the housing market will fare in the short term. The Government’s work to protect the economy could help deliver something of a rebound in the sector. This may transpire as a result of pent up demand from buyers who were unable to view property or move forward with purchases as a result of the lockdown.
Over the medium and longer term we would expect UK property to recover well and continue to offer good investment opportunities.
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David Pugh, Chief Strategy and Commercial Officer