Article 50 triggered:how starting the Brexit process could impact the property market

We ask property experts how leaving the EU could affect the capital's housing market. Here's what they predict...

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Theresa May triggered Article 50 on Wednesday, kick-starting the Brexit process.

So, what's in store for London's buying and rental markets as the UK prepares to break with Europe? We ask property experts for their predictions...

Article 50 triggered: What happens now?

1. The property market will become more stable
As every new landmark is ticked off the Brexit timeline – and the triggering of Article 50 is a major one – the property market gets another little boost of stability, encouraging people to get on with their lives. Years of low transactions are almost always followed by years of increased activity. With confidence returning, sellers are already demanding higher prices. 
James Evans, CEO, Douglas & Gordon

2. Number of house sales will rise across the UK
The triggering of Article 50 should come as a sigh of relief to the residential property market, as the Government finally provides certainty that its plan for leaving the EU cannot be derailed. The UK property market is heavily reliant on confidence – something evident through transaction levels that have been suffering since the Brexit vote, especially in London where, according to our latest data, house sales are still down 20 per cent year-on-year. 
Paul Smith, CEO, haart 

3. Interest rates won't rise
It may well make the Bank of England reluctant to increase interest rates, despite the recent increase in inflation. This will preserve affordability and points to a low turnover market, with little upward or downward pressure on prices.
​Lucian Cook, Head of Residential Research, Savills

4. Property price growth will be slow
The expectation, pre-referendum, that house prices would collapse was very wide of the mark. House prices are still rising across the UK and continue to grow in London, which is arguably more sensitive to Brexit. But, over the medium term, it’s the effect of the outcome of negotiations on the UK's economic performance – particularly jobs that will determine the effect on housing market prices and activity.
Fionnuala Earley, Chief Economist, Countrywide

5. However, demand for homes will outweigh effects of any uncertainty
The London market remains impervious and, with such a shortage of stock, the overwhelming level of housing demand will plug any gaps of depleted buyer interest from further afield. 
Founder of eMoov.co.uk, Russell Quirk

6. Londoners are likely to be the most cautious 
Caution is likely to be greatest in London, given the extent to which house prices have risen relative to earnings in the capital in the past 10 years. It means home buying represents a bigger financial commitment relative to the rest of the country against a backdrop of uncertainty.
​Lucian Cook, Head of Residential Research, Savills 

7. Prime central London property will remained relatively unaffected
With all events like this, a few buyers and investors may sit on their hands to see if anything changes, but the smart money will continue to invest in central London, especially overseas buyers making the most of the weakened pound and the discounts this provides. 
Jonathan Hudson, Regional Executive for London - National Association of Estate Agents

8. International buyers will invest in the prime central property market
We feel that the impact has already reached us and the exit has simply weakened the pound, fuelling demand from overseas buyers and investors. It is important, however, to see that the deals that are happening are with sellers who have reduced their asking prices to reflect not just the impact of the referendum but the increase in stamp duty, particularly at the higher level.
Becky Fatemi, Managing Director of Rokstone


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