The year 2018 has been a very challenging year for the real estate industry. Uncertainties in the market adversely affect public confidence. Countrywide, UK’s largest estate has stated that Brexit issues have escalated the slow-down in the real estate industry. There has been a dramatic decline in commercial and residential property transactions. If such Brexit uncertainties continue, it is expected that the overall earnings would hit this year. The reported last year losses due to Brexit were £218m. A survey was conducted by Halifax that reported a 5.9% rise in the price of the houses in the month of February from January.
The Chairman of Countrywide, Peter Long has warned that the current macros suggest that Brexit would hamper both the real estate sector and public confidence. Hereby, the slow-down would reflect in the first half. The earnings are expected to decrease from £3m to £5m. Countrywide operates under many real estate brands namely, Hamptons, Bairstow Eves, John D Wood, and Bridgfords.
As uncertainties due to Brexit have increased in the year 2019, market conditions seem no improvement. The real estate brands are expected to improve their earnings post Brexit. The company is confident with its performance in the year 2018 and rests the objectives to recover the losses incurred.
The slow-down has influenced the pricing of houses. Though there was an increase in the prices of houses, experts have still expressed a caution signal for buyers and sellers as the industry is experiencing high volatility.
In comparison to previous years, 2015 and 2016, the annual price growth of houses has subdued at 2.8%. Mr. Long stated that the fourth quarter has experienced market weakness due to the uncertainties of Brexit. Mr. Long of Countrywide believes that the company is in a stronger position with credible fundamentals despite difficult conditions in the market.