London hit hardest as average property prices dip across England and Wales post-Brexit

New figures from Rightmove show the average asking price of a home listed for sale in England and Wales has fallen since mid-June, although Brexit uncertainty is just one of the key factors affecting the wider property market.

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Average asking prices for homes in England and Wales fell by £2,647 during the four-week period leading up to, and following, the EU referendum, although experts warn that Brexit is not the only factor impacting the wider property market.

A drop of 0.9 per cent takes the average asking price of a property to £307,824, according to Rightmove's monthly house price index.

Miles Shipside, Rightmove director and housing market analyst comments: “As far as the price of property coming to market is concerned, the fall of 0.9 per cent is within the range that we have seen at this time of year since 2010."

Despite a sharper fall in prices across Greater London, the average price in the capital is still more than double at £635,710. London's most central boroughs were hit the hardest, with £19,051 slashed off asking prices in Lambeth, Southwark, Hackney and Newham.  

Market commentators are quick to point out that a stall was expected in the second quarter of the year following the rush of buy-to-let investment ahead of April's stamp duty hikes.

Previous fast-paced growth and tougher mortgage lending criteria over the past couple of years have also been factors in recent price reductions, while July marks the start of the annual summer slowdown nationwide. In the two weeks following the referendum, compared to 2015, enquiries to estate agents from buyers were down by 16 per cent.

However, as last year’s figures were boosted following the surprise general election, Rightmove says the same period in 2014 is a more comparable benchmark. Enquiry levels post-Brexit are consistent with the same period two years ago.

Shipside says: “While confidence has been unsettled, the governmental instability in the few days after the referendum now seems to be being addressed far more quickly than was originally imagined. This is not a new credit crunch and the effect on banks and mortgage lending should be limited.

"As long as lenders keep mortgage deals attractive and available, the underlying demand for home-ownership should overcome most uncertainties.”

Post-Brexit, a larger number of new properties are being listed for sale than during the same period last year. The two weeks before the referendum saw the number of properties coming to market down by eight per cent, although levels have shot up by six per cent in the two weeks following.

Despite these early signs of the market bouncing back, most industry experts agree that it is still far too early to predict the short- or medium-term impact of Vote Leave.

Stephanie McMahon, Head of Research at Strutt & Parker in London says: “The next few months will allow us to see if the weakening of the sterling has any significant impact. One of the greatest challenges at the current time remains liquidity and volume of stock."

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