Press release

Confidence in property market returns, Referendum result less impactful than expected

20 September 2016
People are more likely to buy a property now than they were just before the Referendum result, the BSA’s Property Tracker results reveal.

The consumer survey also indicates that house price expectations have weakened following the vote.
A greater proportion of people (12%) are more likely to purchase property now than they were at the beginning of the year, compared to just 4% less likely to do so, with confidence returning to the UK housing market after a slight dip in the run-up to the EU Referendum.

So far the Referendum result has had less influence on buyer behaviour than may have been anticipated. More than 2 in 5 (44%) consumers who are more likely to buy a property say a change in personal circumstances has put them in a better position to do so, compared to a year ago.

The results show that a change in personal circumstances is also a key reason consumers are less likely to buy property than they were this time last year, cited by 20%. The same proportion cited the Referendum result as a reason for holding off. A further 19% said they were less likely to buy because they have already bought a home this year.

House price expectations have also softened, with 17% of consumers of the view that house prices are likely to fall in the next 12 months. This time last year just 4%1 believed prices would drop.

 Commenting on the results, Paul Broadhead, Head of Mortgage Policy at the BSA said:
“With more people viewing now as a good time to buy a property, the BSA’s September Property Tracker results show a bounce back in consumer confidence.
 
“Following the decision on 24 June, there were numerous media reports of buyers pulling out of property purchases, but the fundamentals of the housing market remain strong, and there has not been a significant reduction in housing demand. Mortgage interest rates are at an all-time low and UK building societies continue to offer market leading products.
 
“Looking ahead, housing market sentiment will ultimately be determined by the health of the UK economy, and more specifically wage growth and job security. While the UK unemployment rate remains under 5%, the vote to leave the EU has had some impact on business confidence and investment.
 
“To support the housing market it’s vital that the Government continues to increase housing supply and ensure that we build enough homes to house the UK’s current population.”
 

Press contacts

Amy Harland
Press & Publications Officer
amy.harland@bsa.org.uk
020 7520 5927

Previous survey results can be found here.



Notes for Editors
  1. BSA Property Tracker September 2015.
     
  2. The Property Tracker survey is conducted quarterly by YouGov Plc for the Building Societies Association (BSA). Total sample size for September 2016: 2043 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between 1-2 September 2016. The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all GB adults (aged 18+)
  3. The Building Societies Association (BSA) represents all 44 UK building societies. Building societies have total assets of over £359 billion and, together with their subsidiaries, hold residential mortgages of over £277 billion, 21% of the total outstanding in the UK. They hold over £255 billion of retail deposits, accounting for 18% of all such deposits in the UK. Building societies account for about 32% of all cash ISA balances. They employ approximately 40,000 full and part-time staff and operate through approximately 1,550 branches.