St Albans chartered surveyor offers seasonal property advice

Expert View

Expert View - Credit: Archant

At a time of potential political and economic uncertainty in the market, Alastair Woodgate of leading chartered surveyors and estate agents, Rumball Sedgwick, looks at what is really important in buying and selling a property this spring.

Every spring, as the daffodils burst into bloom, estate agents’ signs traditionally begin multiplying like bunnies across the country. But this spring, political and economic pressures are fuelling speculation of uncertainty in the market. The government hopes that new Stamp Duty tax rates, that came into force on 1st April, will ease the pressure on prices.

But property prices continue to hit new highs and as potential homeowners are increasingly forced to rent, demand – and rents – are driven up further. Following on from last year’s general election, we now face Britain’s EU referendum in June: some commentators are forecasting a subdued market, with potential buyers being put off and decisions being postponed.

It is hard to think of a time when the property market has been so politicised and subject to so much change. This uncertainty might make buyers and sellers wonder if they should now wait for the dust to settle before moving.

But what if the dust doesn’t settle? What if there are interest rate changes after the referendum, or the US general election in November unsettles the global economy? What if?

While our lives are influenced by politicians, the politicians should not dictate our decision making; our lives have their own rhythms, governed by personal events like education needs, personal relationships, births, jobs, relocation, retirement, and - underlying it all - individual ambitions.

Some say there is never a perfect time to move home. But of course there is: it’s the time that is dictated by life. In or out of the EU, we all have personal agendas that largely ignore national and international affairs as we seek to provide for our families and ourselves. We don’t move home in the national interest, we move home in our own interest - to fulfil our needs and ambitions.

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Our houses are rather more significant to us as individuals than either the Houses of Parliament in London or the European Commission in Brussels. So, when it comes to moving home, finances permitting, perhaps it’s best to listen less to the politicians and more to our hearts.

For further details contact Alastair and his team at Rumball Sedgwick on 01727 852384 or at