It’s still coming home, how England beat Europe to the title of top housing market

14th July 2021

By Will Leyland

Ok, yes, the title is a little laboured (and now somewhat bittersweet) and, yes, we’re shamelessly jumping on the bandwagon from the national team’s spectacular success at the bafflingly named Euro 2020 championships, however, there is a serious message in here, we promise.

Goodness knows that a good run deep into this competition by the national team in the country’s national sport was something that we all needed after the preceding 18 months and as restrictions set to be fully lifted in about a week’s time the feel good factor is almost off the charts.

With that in mind, we thought we’d explore in a little more detail one of our other famous successes over the past 18 months, the English housing market.

To stretch this comparison to its limits, we could compare the housing market throughout the pandemic to the national team in that although its strength was recognised, few expected it to perform quite so well over the past year or so.

Through a number of different components, the market confounded those expectations and had stellar success, so we’re going into a bit more detail here to understand why.

Government support

One of the main features of the pandemic was that the government rolled out historic financial support for individuals, businesses and the property market.

Through the furlough scheme, the government protected individual worker’s wages if they were unable to work. Through the business grant scheme, the government supported businesses that were forced to close under public health restrictions and, finally, they supported the housing market by temporarily removing stamp duty and implementing tax breaks.

In May 2020, estate agents were allowed to re-open and this meant a huge rush to the market for buyers and sellers keen to make the most of these incentives, driving the market massively.

Changing attitudes

One huge driver behind the spectacular success of the market has also been how quickly people’s attitudes have changed towards their living spaces and living arrangements.

The pandemic has allowed people to refocus what they see as important. Some have called it ‘the race for space’ but that ignores two competing narratives.

Firstly, yes, there are many older home owners and city dwellers who have decided that after being stuck in their homes for the best part of a year that they’d like more space, but the living spaces they’re vacating in cities, apartments and urban areas is being quickly snapped up by younger buyers and renters who want to move into their own space after being in shared accommodation or living at home.

Ultimately, with websites like Zoopla and Rightmove reporting record traffic, it would seem that the pandemic and being stuck indoors has motivated many to make the change.

Investors

Finally, there is the aspect that investors are keener than ever to acquire English and British property as a safe investment in uncertain times.

We go back to one of the most basic rules of economics and that a restriction of supply drives demand and, subsequently, prices.

We’re likely to see that in a much more pronounced way over the course of the next year or two so it would be advisable that if you’re looking to invest for the first time or expand your portfolio that you do it quickly as prices are rising quickly.

If you are looking to invest, why not take a look through our range of current investment opportunities here?

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It’s still coming home, how England beat Europe to the title of top housing market

14 July 2021

Ok, yes, the title is a little laboured (and now somewhat bittersweet) and, yes, we’re shamelessly jumping on the bandwagon from the national team’s spectacular success at the bafflingly named Euro 2020 championships, however, there is a serious message in here, we promise.

Goodness knows that a good run deep into this competition by the national team in the country’s national sport was something that we all needed after the preceding 18 months and as restrictions set to be fully lifted in about a week’s time the feel good factor is almost off the charts.

With that in mind, we thought we’d explore in a little more detail one of our other famous successes over the past 18 months, the English housing market.

To stretch this comparison to its limits, we could compare the housing market throughout the pandemic to the national team in that although its strength was recognised, few expected it to perform quite so well over the past year or so.

Through a number of different components, the market confounded those expectations and had stellar success, so we’re going into a bit more detail here to understand why.

Government support

One of the main features of the pandemic was that the government rolled out historic financial support for individuals, businesses and the property market.

Through the furlough scheme, the government protected individual worker’s wages if they were unable to work. Through the business grant scheme, the government supported businesses that were forced to close under public health restrictions and, finally, they supported the housing market by temporarily removing stamp duty and implementing tax breaks.

In May 2020, estate agents were allowed to re-open and this meant a huge rush to the market for buyers and sellers keen to make the most of these incentives, driving the market massively.

Changing attitudes

One huge driver behind the spectacular success of the market has also been how quickly people’s attitudes have changed towards their living spaces and living arrangements.

The pandemic has allowed people to refocus what they see as important. Some have called it ‘the race for space’ but that ignores two competing narratives.

Firstly, yes, there are many older home owners and city dwellers who have decided that after being stuck in their homes for the best part of a year that they’d like more space, but the living spaces they’re vacating in cities, apartments and urban areas is being quickly snapped up by younger buyers and renters who want to move into their own space after being in shared accommodation or living at home.

Ultimately, with websites like Zoopla and Rightmove reporting record traffic, it would seem that the pandemic and being stuck indoors has motivated many to make the change.

Investors

Finally, there is the aspect that investors are keener than ever to acquire English and British property as a safe investment in uncertain times.

We go back to one of the most basic rules of economics and that a restriction of supply drives demand and, subsequently, prices.

We’re likely to see that in a much more pronounced way over the course of the next year or two so it would be advisable that if you’re looking to invest for the first time or expand your portfolio that you do it quickly as prices are rising quickly.

If you are looking to invest, why not take a look through our range of current investment opportunities here?

Will Leyland

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