Buyers and sellers undeterred by general election

buyers-and-sellers-undeterred-by-general-election

The vast majority of people planning to buy or sell a home soon are going forward with their plans despite the general election set to take place in just over a month, a survey found.

Research from Rightmove polling 14,322 people found that 95% were more determined to proceed with their homebuying or selling plans in light of the election.

Analysis of year-on-year buyer demand changes around the 2015 and 2019 elections also highlights steady activity in the lead up to a vote. Demand is measured by the number of people sending enquiries about properties for sale on Rightmove, and year-on-year change has been used to remove the usual seasonal peaks and troughs in the market.

In the two months leading up to the May 2015 election, buyer demand increased by 5% year-on-year in March, and by 6% in April. During the election month demand increased to 9% year-on-year, with the increase moving to 18% up in June, as the market benefitted from a post-election boost.

In 2019, buyer demand remained stable in the months before the election, increasing by 1% year-on-year in October and 4% in November. During the election month in December, demand was up by 13% year-on-year, followed by a 14% increase in January 2020.

Tim Bannister, Rightmove’s property expert, commented: “With the date now set for a summer general election, we anticipate that housing market activity will remain steady in the lead-up to the election based on previous patterns. This is further supported by the current attitude among home-movers, with the majority indicating that the election will not affect their plans. Over the past four years, home-movers have faced numerous challenges, including a global pandemic, a shortage of housing supply, and rapidly changing prices. For many, 2024 is finally the year to make their move, and they’re determined to proceed with their plans to secure their next home.

“Previous elections would indicate we may be set for a particularly strong summer once the election is over, especially if interest rates start to fall. However, every election is different, and it would depend on whether any significant housing policies are also introduced, so we’ll need to wait and see what happens to have a better view of activity for the rest of the year.”

Buyer demand 

Month Demand (year on year change)
March 2015 5%
April 2015 6%
May 2015 9%
June 2015 18%
Month Demand (year on year change)
October 2019 1%
November 2019 4%
December 2019 13%
January 2020 14%

General election unlikely to impact property market revival

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