As estate agents, we’re never very keen on impending general elections. They can encourage a few to put plans on hold.
Even so, our phones continue to ring with sellers, buyers, landlords and tenants. People still need somewhere to live and, in the case of Aylesford’s clients, a place of a standard that gives them a good deal of pleasure.
During the tenure of the current government, the property landscape has certainly changed with different taxes and regulations.
If you want a mortgage, you’ll now need to expect some intrusive questions about your fondness for claret or your choice of supermarket. But at least a little calm has now returned, with more realistic values and, as ever, London’s fabulous attributes attracting foreign buyers in search of a safe haven.
If we have just one hope for the next Parliament, it is that the top end of stamp duty returns to sane levels. We believe its escalation to be counter-productive: at sensible rates, transactions are stimulated, and more of those already sizeable stamps will wing their way to the Exchequer.
Of course, in the words of the late Mandy Rice-Davies, we would say that, wouldn’t we? But so too are buyers and sellers alike.