Jackson-Stops' response to the HMRC Property Transactions data published in June 2023

In response to the HMRC Property Transactions data published today showing that on a seasonally adjusted basis, UK residential transactions in May were 80,020, 27% lower than May 2022 and 3% lower than April 2023, Nick Leeming, Chairman of Jackson-Stops, comments:

“We find ourselves in a committed market, one where transactions will continue to complete and is dominated by buyers that have clear intentions of moving. As stamp duty relief and low interest rates stoked the fire of the property boom during lockdown, creating a frenzied sellers’ market unlike anything seen before, today we find ourselves in very different circumstances. A more subdued economic environment has meant that while transactions are continuing to take place, those not forced to move are waiting for the dust to settle, keeping the pace much more balanced between the volume of buyers and sellers.

“The unfortunate reality is that no one has a crystal ball. For that reason, buyers and sellers can only make decisions based on what is in front of them now. While the mortgage market may not be as competitive as a year ago, adjusting price expectations to accommodate more flexibility is a positive move for the overall health of the property transaction market. The vast majority of buyers move home because of lifestyle changes, whether that be a growing family or relocation, so I would encourage movers to keep long term perspectives in mind. For some, what will motivate buyers to remain steadfast with their search is the rising cost of renting as some private landlords re-evaluate their place within the market.

“In the prime market, the prominence of cash purchases is ensuring values hold. In a sticky market, selling to a cash buyer has even broader appeal by quickening the exchange process, not reliant on credit checks or lender surveys.

“For those reliant of mortgages or facing large chains, it is more important than ever to use a highly experienced agent, broker and solicitor, who will be needing to work harder than ever for clients to keep all parts of chain moving.”