Property Predictions – What do we have in store for 2018?
With what feels like the longest month over we can now start to come out of hibernation and think about the year ahead. If some of your plans involve property then here are some of the factors which may influence your decisions in 2018:
- Interest Rates – These are likely to remain low in 2018 despite the predicted Base Rate increase to 0.75% in the Spring. Many homeowners are already on fixed rates so any increase will go unnoticed by them, for new borrowers the mortgage market still remains very competitive with some very low lending rates available as well as the offer of long fixed rates.
- House Prices – for most of England house prices have risen over the last year albeit more slowly and are predicted to do so over the coming year. The London market isn’t expected to be quite as rosy with a potential decrease in prices of up to 2%, whilst not the best news the market is fairly stable and it does allow those coming on to the property ladder to purchase more easily.
- Renting – The Government still insists that the ban on agent letting fees will be introduced in 2018 despite no date being set yet, this will provide relief for those in the rental sector allowing for the easier rental of properties without tenants having to find hundreds of pounds in addition to their rent just to be able to sign up to a property.
- First Time Buyers & New Homes – with last year’s abolition of Stamp Duty for first time buyers for properties up to £300,000 this should continue to boost the property market for those taking their first steps in home ownership. The Government has also announced a £10bn boost to the Help to Buy Scheme which will continue until at least 2021 providing much needed support to those buying new properties.
- Leasehold – Last year there was a lot of discussion over leasehold properties and whether that style of ownership is still fair and relevant in today’s property market. Sweeping changes have been proposed including abolishing leasehold houses and also restricting ground rents to avoid homeowners being unable to sell due to quickly escalating rents. In addition, the greater regulation of managing agents and the fees they charge is also up for further discussion with the aim of creating a fairer system for all leasehold owners. We will have to wait and see whether the proposals are acted upon.
You can also contact one of our other solicitors in the Residential Conveyancing team here.