Residential property market recovering fast
The Savills director also told the audience that the strength of the property market recovery post-COVID was “really surprising”.
“In April, the number of sales in the UK fell by something in the order of 83%,” he said. “But we’ve seen a progressive improvement week-on-week to the point where last week sales were 26% over what they were in June last year. And for property over £1 million, the recovery has been even stronger, with the number of transactions 48% over where they were last June.”
He said house prices across the UK were expected to fall -7.5% this year, but rise 5% next year, 8% in 2022, and 15% over the next five years. Reasons for the recovery were thought to include low interest rates and government action to support jobs through its furlough scheme.
The future is still unclear
George Hammond, Property Correspondent at the Financial Times, said there were still too many unknowns to be sure where the residential property market would go next.
In his view, “A lot of the economic pain has been saved up by the government’s intervention. When that comes through, we’ll know more.”
And when asked about buying property as an investment, Kirstie Allsopp added, “At the start of all this there was so much talk about the ‘V-shaped recovery’, but we don’t know how sharp that V is going to be or whether it’s actually going to be a W.”
UK still attractive for international buyers
The panel was unanimous in its belief that the UK would continue to appeal to overseas buyers, despite recent talk about the end of globalisation.
In George Hammond’s opinion: “Buyers coming from China through Hong Kong recognise the legal system, but also think this is a safe place to be in terms of where to put their money. It’s a known entity for them.”
Helen Keen added that the International team at Coutts had been “crazy busy” this year working with international property buyers.
“I can’t see London diminishing in terms of its importance as a global city,” she said. “And the exchange rate benefits have made it very attractive.”
Our creative approach to lending
When asked about Coutts’ current attitude towards mortgage lending, Helen Keen summed it up well. “We’ve always been very generous and creative in the lending space,” she said. “A lot of other banks have pulled products in recent weeks, but we haven’t.”
To find out more about how Coutts could help you with your property needs, speak to your private banker or call Coutts 24 on 020 7957 2424.
Your home or property may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage.
Over-18s only. Terms and conditions apply. You may not be eligible for all Coutts mortgage solutions. Security may be required.