What will the general election mean for the property market?

On Wednesday, the Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak, announced that a General Election will be held on Thursday 4th July 2024. Parliament will be dissolved next Thursday, May 30th.

As you might expect, the announcement has prompted speculation from various quarters as to what impact the upcoming election might have on the property market.

According to Nathan Emerson, CEO of Propertymark, housing “must be a key theme that all political parties are placing front and centre of their general election campaigns” since it is the “cornerstone for every single community across the UK” and “the foundation to a strong economy”.

Emerson added: “Many successive governments have failed to keep pace with demand, and we would encourage potential policy makers from all sides to place a rejuvenated emphasis on tackling current issues and meeting future demand. 

“There must be a sustainable mix of housing solutions for both buyers and renters, as well as a commitment to ensuring the UK leads regarding innovation, quality, and environmental sustainability. 

“In addition, any new government must ensure there is comprehensive support in place for first-time buyers to prevent the prospect of home ownership being out of reach, but equally ensure the housing market remains balanced for all. It is also important there is a full scale commitment to ensure wider infrastructure is also planned for, as we witness an ever growing population.”

Meanwhile,  Oli Sherlock, managing director of insurance at Goodlord, believes the Renters (Reform) Bill is now in ‘major doubt’ with the election scheduled for 4th July.

“This will be deeply frustrating for the whole industry, which is desperate for clarity,” he said. “Should the bill not be pushed through as part of the wash-up we will be back to square one. The best we can hope for is that the next government, whoever it’s led by, puts housing and the PRS at the heart of their agenda.”

Stuart Forsdike, founding partner of PCS Legal, raised the prospect of a cut in stamp duty and conveyancing reform.

He said: “The upcoming General Election will undoubtedly bring the housing market, and hopefully the conveyancing process, to the forefront of the political agenda. Many are hopeful that this will lead to a cut in stamp duty, alleviating some of the financial burden of moving and helping to stimulate market activity.

 “However, the issues facing the housing market go beyond just stamp duty. The entire moving process is currently so fragmented and stressful that it acts as a significant deterrent to potential movers. The complexity and inefficiency of the conveyancing process alone contributes to this stress and requires reform.  

“A complete overhaul to make the moving process more fluid and straightforward should be a priority on the agenda of all political parties. High costs and cumbersome procedures are major barriers to mobility in the housing market. Addressing these issues by simplifying and making the process more transparent could lead to increased activity and satisfaction among homeowners and buyers alike, ultimately benefiting the wider economy.”

Robin Rathore, CEO of Bamboo Auctions, simply hopes news of the election will bring some certainty to the property market.

 He said: “The Prime Minister’s announcement of a summer general election is a welcome one. With news of inflation close to the Bank of England’s target, and an interest rate drop looking likely soon, the news will be welcome for buyers, sellers and estate agents who have experienced a fragile market in recent months and have been waiting for green shoots, which will arrive with the certainty of an election result. 

“Although the next six weeks will be slightly tougher for those new sellers entering the market, there is a chance for buyers to take advantage of a quieter market and potentially flex their purchasing power in what will be a short window of opportunity. 

“The property market can look forward to an active second half of the year, where we expect to see an increase in transactions and a more committed return to the market from buyers.”


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  1. MrManyUnits

    Capital flight.

    Con and Lab are both unappealing for different reasons.
    Track record for Con, useless and Conservative in name only.
    Lab because I don’t trust Starmer, he was/is a Corbynite and there’s still plenty of them in the party, potentially dangerous.
    Lib Dems and Greens are just full of fruitloops
    Reform and Indy you may as well spoil or not turn up.

    Best thing emigrate-sinking ship gathering momentum.

    1. biffabear

      Labour will be awful for the housing market. But the Conservatives have done ****** all to ease the housing market either.

      We’re doomed.

  2. Targeting 3 week exchanges

    No more indecision. Buyers and sellers now have certainty. If you don’t already think it is a busy property market, it is just about to have the tap turned on. Here we go…..

    1. MrManyUnits

      Where are you, I’m just seeing a 3rd of properties in the SE being reduced everyday or do you have “talking the property up” overspill?

      1. biffabear

        South London and its price reductions galore.

  3. RCM1962

    Which ever party wins the election, I don’t envisage changes to current Stamp Duty levels. Government coffers remain pretty bare and due to Geo Political tensions, it is clear more money will be going into defence spending.

    However, one would imagine post election certainty will give buyers increased confidence and with quite possibly two interest rate cuts between August and December, this will hopefully underpin confidence.

  4. SimonLBradbury

    I appreciate the accepted wisdom is that activity in the housing market reduces in the run up to a general election due to a feeing of uncertainty but I don’t expect it this time. Why?
    Firstly, rightly or wrongly, the overwhelming expectation is that Labour will win, so the element of uncertainty is much reduced.
    Secondly, again rightly or wrongly, I believe that most people expect that whoever is in power after July 4th ‘things can only get better’ with a general anticipation that interest rates will go down thus improving confidence in the short and medium term.

    It will be interesting to check out Chris Watkin’s weekly market report (posted here on P.I.E.) over the next 6 weeks to see if we do actually see a reduction in activity compared to the previous year(s).

    1. BillyTheFish

      ‘Things will only get the same’ more like.
      Not much difference between blue & red these days.

  5. drasperger

    If the Tories don’t get the Renters reform bill across the line, and Labour win (as the pundits have already decided) there may well be further amendments including rent caps. Such a move will only make the current supply/demand imbalance worse.
    If I was being cynical I might even suggest that the s*^t storm that would follow would make the incumbent leadership unelectable at the next election, and this was a cunning Tory plan?

    1. BillyTheFish

      More like bumbling ineptitude over 5 years has become another piece of sabotage for the next Govt who I have very little faith will do much better.

    2. jeremy1960

      If legislation isn’t included in wash up, it falls and whoever gets the keys to number 10 has to start from scratch, they effectively cannot pick up where they left off.


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