The sense of gathering momentum for the Leave campaign ahead of the EU referendum is causing high levels of uncertainty in the UK housing market, as many ‘nervous’ buyers and sellers adopt a wait and see policy.
Activity in the market fell last month causing house price growth to slow as uncertainty surrounding the forthcoming EU referendum hit the market, new figures reveal.
According to estate agency Haart, new buyer demand fell by 5% in May, while the volume of agreed transactions dropped by 3.9% as prices rose by just 0.8% month-on-month, down from the 1% rise reported in April.
“The upcoming EU referendum is causing high levels of short-term uncertainty in the property market, making both buyers and sellers nervous, resulting in a fall in activity,” said Paul Smith, CEO of Haart.
Regardless of whether or not the UK opts to remain in the EU, Smith believes that the UK, particularly London, will remain a safe haven for property investment.
He added: “It is the uncertainty around our status in the EU that is causing the market to stagnate, once we know the outcome, regardless of what it is, the property market will become reinvigorated. In the long term, house prices will bounce back once more as the age-old problem of a disparity between the amount of stock available and the number of buyers competing rears its head.”