Thursday, 8 June 2017

Are general elections good for Chichester’s property market?

chichester general election

In the run up to today’s general election I’ve been reading various articles about the housing manifestos for each party and what affect they might have on the property market.

Whatever the politicians throw at it though, the property market in Chichester is something of a runaway train whereby their meddling has little effect on the overall course.

It’s often mentioned in the press that the uncertainty caused by an election causes a downturn in the lead up to the opening of the voting booths. My analysis shows this to be completely untrue, as the normal seasonal pattern occurs whether it’s an election year or not; the number of properties sold dips around Christmas, rises in Spring and Summer and drops again towards the end of the year.

There’s little effect upon house prices in the run up to an election or straight afterwards either, with perhaps the exception of May 2015’s election. Here there was a sudden jump in the average house price in Chichester immediately afterwards, possibly because the electorate gave the Conservatives an unexpected majority, which many concluded would be good for the stability of the country.

The fact the Conservatives have since introduced spurious tax changes against landlords, which will ultimately lead to an increase in rents for tenants, may be a factor as to who landlords in particular might be voting for today. Unfortunately for landlords, the other parties plans show little sympathy towards landlords nor, in my opinion, any logical thinking towards the growing privately rented sector.

House prices nationally seem to have risen at a similar pace regardless of which party is in power. My calculations suggest Labour has the slight edge in house price gains during the past sixty years. They have overseen an average increase of 13.5% for each of the 24 years they’ve been in power, compared to an average increase of 11.3% for each of the Conservative party’s 36 years.

It won’t surprise many of you that Tony Blair resided over the biggest ‘boom’ in house prices of any British Prime Minister since data began in 1955. Under his premiership from 1997 to 2007, average U.K property prices increased 211%.

Gordon Brown remains the only Prime Minister to have seen house prices fall during their time in the hot seat. During his premiership between 2007 and 2010 house prices dropped by 7.2%.

chichester property market graphing house prices

If you’d like to keep up-to-date with how the election result could affect Chichester’s property market, you can sign up for the free weekly ‘Chichester Property News’ e-mail by visiting

chichester observer property headline

(This article was featured in the Chichester Observer's property section on 8th June 2017) 

Clive Janes, CRJ Lettings.


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