Should the property market be concerned about tumbling transactions?

Transactions for both residential and non-residential properties continued to fall in May, according to the latest figures from HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC), but is this cause for concern?

HMRC recorded 74,360 UK residential transactions in May 2023, a significant 25% drop against May 2022 but positive 10% increase on April 2023 (non-seasonally adjusted). Additionally, UK non-residential transactions totalled 9,120. This is a 12% drop in the year to May 2023, but 4% increase on April 2023.

The reaction of experts has been distinctly split. Some commentators have expressed concern around the impact of recent swap rate volatility on pricing and affordability, alongside the continued influence of high inflation. Others have instead focused on the long-term resilience of the property market, rather than monthly changes, and the similarity of the latest figures with the pre-pandemic picture.

We spoke to Conor Murphy, CEO and Founder of Smartr365, to read between the lines – “There’s no question that the base rate rise to 5% will deter some buyers from pushing ahead with a home purchase, and the slight dip in property transactions today certainly reflects this. But these figures must be put into perspective. The housing market has remained resilient during a challenging few months and, while driven by remortgaging, business activity in the mortgage sector remains strong.”

“In fact, with hundreds of thousands of borrowers needing to remortgage during the remainder of 2023, it will be a busy time for brokers and lenders. They will need to be well equipped with the right technology to minimise friction in the mortgage journey. For instance, integrating Open Banking into their processes can help brokers to streamline mortgage applications, freeing up their time to focus on advising their clients and helping consumers navigate the market.”

At Smartr365, we partner with the biggest industry players to create tools that simplify and streamline the mortgage journey for everyone involved. Fancy seeing our latest innovations, including Open Banking tools created in partnership with Nationwide and Experian, in action?

Book your free Smartr365 demo today.