UK property outlook for 2021

UK property outlook for 2021

Will there be a single person in the UK, or the world for that matter, that will not celebrate with a large glass of something special when this year finally ends?

It’s hard to imagine that anybody will truly miss this year, although it’s even harder to imagine that it won’t be looked back upon as one of the most momentous of our lives. Entire economies will be changed forever, and never again will people ever be able to look at a bottle of hand sanitiser in quite the same way.

For many of us in industries that have been badly affected, it will be a year of enormous change.

Perhaps, though, in time we’ll learn to look back at the year 2020 as the time we all came together like never before. A time when the country started to heal a little, when Marcus Rashford became the defacto Prime Minister, and a time when Andy Burnham became everybody’s crush north of Birmingham.

What did it mean for those in property though? And how does that inform what we’ll come to expect in the coming year as this one comes to a close?


As preposterous as it sounds, and here us out, 2020 really was a year of success for the property industry.

It’s resilient and successful as a norm, most years, and that has much to do with the fact that the government sees it as the absolute bedrock of a successful British economy, and so will often put notable stimulus in place to ensure it’s health.

That being said, it doesn’t really explain in full just how healthy and kicking this year has been. We’ll leave aside the widely known and widely covered economic crash caused by the virus, and the resulting drop in GDP, and the further extension of lockdown measures that shut the high street.

This was a year that saw almost the entire economy shut down at various points which, according to received economic wisdom, should have really eradicated almost all demand, at least for a while.

And yet, prices rose, yields rose, rents rose and demand went through the roof. There are a million possible explanations but let’s settle on the idea that enforced lockdown has spurred people into action when it comes to investing in property and bringing forward planned action.

In short, the year is due to end with its busiest period in a decade.


And so, what to expect next year?

Firstly, it’s sensible to imagine that the furious surge in demand will, at some point, slow down as things slowly return to normal. Things won’t be quite as crazy that’s for certain as it seems barely possible that it could maintain such a pace.

With that in mind, if the UK property market has just had one of its strongest years in a decade whilst the economy was reeling from its biggest disruption for three centuries, what might happen in property next year?

Clearly, there is already huge interest and demand for investing into property here given that it’s just yielded some of the safest and highest returns in any asset class across the world, so what do we think the logical conclusion to that will be once the economy is booming again?

In short, now is the time to conclude your buying and investment, as once construction starts to fire on all engines and Europe emerges from recession with investors hungry for strong returns, you may find that competition for scarce UK property is fierce.

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