Comment: does anyone know what’s going on with Brexit and house prices?

Brexit Secretary David Davis on his way to do his job, I suppose

Brexit Secretary David Davis on his way to do his job, I suppose - Credit: PA Wire/PA Images

Can anyone predict what will happen to the property market when Article 50 is triggered?

They say knowledge is power, but having minimal qualifications for your job and/or no idea what you’re doing in it seems to be a fun new trend in 2017 politics.

A mediocre man failing upwards is hardly news these days, but that didn’t stop London’s journalists from collectively losing their mind over George Osborne being made editor of the Evening Standard last week.

The MP’s previous journalism experience includes not getting on the Times graduate scheme, and not getting a job at the Economist.

Fellow MP David Davis also showed blasé ignorance about the job he was hired to do. The Brexit Secretary has admitted he hasn’t calculated what the cost to our economy would be if we left the EU without a trade deal.

Let’s not even begin to talk about the qualifications/competency ratio of the current occupant of the White House.

If someone is being paid to do a job, you’d hope they have some idea what they’re doing.

That’s why this week we’ve asked the experts if it’s really worth it to pay fees to rent through an agent. In short, yes, but that doesn’t let you off the hook. Knowledge does still have some currency, so make sure you familiarise yourself with your rights.

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Sometimes, though, it is important to admit when you don’t have all the answers. Theresa May will trigger Article 50 on March 29. What this will mean for the market in north London is something we’ve been asking here at Ham & High Property since before the referendum, and honestly we’re not that much closer to having concrete answers.

Not that people aren’t trying to. YOPA has created a dedicated a ‘Brexit house price tracker’ that allows you to enter the value of your house in December 2016 in order to predict the impact on its post-Brexit price.

They’ve also collated a ‘poll of polls’ with a breakdown of property experts’ predictions on what leaving the EU will do to property prices. The tl;dr (that’s ‘too long; didn’t read’ for you non-millennials) of it? It could go either way.

Why so ambiguous? In part because there’s a delay in the data we can get our hands on.

The Land Registry house price index has a time lag of three months, so even if our agents on the ground are telling us that deals are being done, we don’t have the transaction volume data to verify it yet.

Other reports, such as the Rightmove house price index, only show what houses are being priced at, not sold.

Then there’s the fact that Brexit is small fry compared to stamp duty stresses.

Never mind his new job, Osborne’s name has been mud with estate agents since he bought in his stamp duty changes as Chancellor.

I’ve been on a roll with my column predictions, but with Brexit I think it’s time to consciously uncouple from my crystal ball.

Q: Will it affect house prices in the long run?

A: ¯\_( ? )_/¯ (*shrug emoji*)