UK property market is given a new lease of life

Jun 22 | 2020

The property website reports that it saw a sharp increase in activity in the UK housing market in May and June following the slump due to the coronavirus lockdown.

JJ Heath-Caldwell, Managing Director of the business, said: “After a very buoyant start to the year, in mid-March to mid-April the number of enquiries quickly dropped by 80% with the lowest activity recorded on 14 April. Since then, the activity has been steadily rising and is now [late May] around 57% down (instead of 80% down). This is still low but we are seeing steady progress in response to some of the government’s initiatives to get the property market moving again.”

“Across our sites, we have seen a strong increase in activity, which is promising after everything was closed during the lockdown period. My expectation is that the number of enquiries will continue to rise as we go through this year. We won’t see the levels that we saw back in January and February, but things are definitely looking up.”

Since lockdown restrictions were implemented in the UK in March 2020, more than 450,000 people have been unable to progress their plans to move house. Now, following a Government initiative, all buyers and renters will now be able to complete purchases and view properties in person, while estate agents, conveyancers and removals firms can return to work while following social distancing guidelines.

Additionally, in another move to unlock the housing market, the Housing Secretary has announced a series of measures to get the country building homes for the future, including more flexible construction site working hours for builders, the use of social media to publicise planning applications and support for smaller developers with deferred payments to local councils. A new Charter has also been launched by the government and the Home Builders Federation, helping construction sites reopen in line with latest health and safety guidance.