In the wake of the Brexit referendum, Simon Barnes of H. Barnes & Co offers some timely advice to luxury property buyers …
After the last general election the pollsters got it very wrong, and they got it wrong again this time. In the months before the Brexit referendum, in Prime Central London there was an air of uncertainty and waiting, making for a stagnating property market.
Nothing will change instantly after the Brexit referendum
There is no doubt that the final weeks in particular before the referendum deterred some people from signing on their property deal, especially overseas buyers who wanted to wait and see how the vote impacted currency and how the pound stood up against the dollar/euro/rouble. However, now that we know the result there is no firm reason to sit on the fence, life really does have to move on and peoples’ motivation and need to buy property has not disappeared and will not disappear because of what happened on the 24th June.
Elections and referendums produce debate, fill newspapers and airwaves, but they cannot enforce dramatic change overnight. If ‘you’ve got to do it, you’ve got to do it’ and for the wealthy buyer looking to extend their property portfolio in Prime Central London, they will not be put off by the referendum outcome.
At the super prime level in the Prime Central London property market what really impacts and can halt impulse property acquisition are genuine global economic events, like oil prices plummeting or the Chinese stock markets plunging. Most discerning UHNWIs recognise that, pitted against the peaks and troughs of the global markets, London remains both a safe haven and a consistent safe bet in which to invest in prime property irrespective of whether it sits, now or in two years’ time, inside or outside the European Union.
Advice for Buyers
My advice for serious buyers wanting and needing to forge ahead with a purchase:
- Be clear and importantly be realistic about what you want and need
- Be brave and unafraid to look above your budget and then make offers
- Be ready to move quickly and have all the legal work and finances in place to avoid unnecessary delays
- Be willing to work with the vendor
- Be flexible on exchange/completion timescales
- Wear the buyer’s hat when you’re selling (typically vendors completely change their tune when they become buyers)