Andy Sommerville, director of Search Acumen, comments on the HMRC Number of Property Transactions for June.
“The year on year deterioration in residential transaction figures in June, which today’s HMRC data shows, will not come as a surprise to stakeholders in our industry. After the pre-April spike in activity, we now continue to see the stamp duty surcharge slow-down take hold.
“However, homebuyers were also hit by creeping uncertainty ahead of the EU vote. All sectors of the UK economy were thrown into a state of uncertainty amidst the referendum vote at the end of June, which will continue to have a knock-on impact on transactions in coming weeks and months.
“On the contrary, it is encouraging to see that June’s non-residential transaction figure is 11.6% higher when compared with the same month last year.
“However, no area of the property market will be left untouched by the referendum, and as June’s transaction figures encompass just seven days of our post-Brexit economy, we cannot yet expect to get a clear picture of its impact.
“In these times, it is essential that conveyancers and professionals in the wider property market are adjusting their businesses to prepare for at the least, a short to mid-term continuation of these trends.
“A new government appointed earlier than expected offers a glimmer of political stability, but there is clearly so much left unresolved. Prioritising business acumen within firms – not just conveyancing acumen – will be absolutely essential in the months ahead, in order to ensure flexibility and competitiveness in the wake of Brexit.”