What does Brexit mean for the Scottish property market

Added on 01 July 2016

I think it is fair to say that the Brexit vote took many political commentators and economic experts by surprise. One of the many questions being asked is how will it affect the property market?

The first thing to highlight is there is no immediate change in our relationship with Europe. The UK needs to revoke article 50 in order to start the process of leaving and it will take at least 2 years after that before we can leave. Many experts think it could take 2 to 3 years as it is a very complex process. This gives the property market lots of time to adjust to this new world.

There is no doubt that in the short term that the uncertainty in the UK and in Scotland will slow down the market however we expect the impact to be limited as markets are always quick to adapt. Already we are seeing evidence of the market returning to normal as our Property Managers diaries are busier than they were the week or two before the Brexit vote.

House prices in Scotland have been fairly stable since the beginning of the recession and we have avoided the peaks of London and Southern England. The Banks are also on a much more solid footing and already the Bank of England has commented that they have money to put into the economy if required.

There is still a housing shortage in Scotland and in the UK. Builders will be encouraged by the government and the banks to continue building in order to try and reduce this problem. It also looks like interest rates will remain historically low over the next few years and as well as helping developers invest in their business this will also keep the cost of mortgages down encouraging people into the property market.

The housing market is always resilient and people will always want to own their own home and will also have many reasons for moving home. No matter what happens over the next few months life goes on and we would expect the property market to return to normal very soon. Already the financial markets and the pound are recovering although we expect this to be volatile over the next couple of months.

Peter Ryder

Managing Director Thorntons Property 

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