UK property sector upbeat despite market turbulence

A new survey of British Property Federation (BPF) members, released today, shows a positive short-term outlook for the UK real estate sector, with 88% expressing confidence in its performance over the next 12 months. 

3rd March 2016

A new survey of British Property Federation members, released today, shows a positive short-term outlook for the UK real estate sector, with 88% expressing confidence in its performance over the next 12 months. 

The survey, commissioned by BPF and Grosvenor Britain & Ireland (Grosvenor) with fieldwork by Ipsos MORI, found the position is less certain in the longer term, with just over half (54%) confident of the real estate sector’s performance in the next five years.

A majority of property owners and investors (60%) said their company’s development activity would increase in 2016, although the survey also identified a number of barriers to property supply which central and regional Governments could lower.

In London, this included a call for the Mayor to assemble and sell developable land and encourage investment in the burgeoning ‘build to rent’ sector, which sees developers retain ownership of newly built rental homes.

According to the survey, Greater London is the most favoured area for planned investment, with a combined three quarters of respondents saying their company plans to either increase (53%) or maintain (23%) investment levels in the next 12 months. This is ahead of other regions such as the Midlands, where 60% expected to increase (33%) or maintain (23%) investment; North West England, where nearly half expected to see increased (25%) or maintained (23%) investment; and Scotland, where under a third of respondents expected increased (16%) or maintained (16%) investment levels. For a full list of regions, along with other findings, please see the link.

Melanie Leech, Chief Executive of the BPF said: “The real estate industry is a vital contributor to the UK’s economy and crucial to bringing about regeneration and growth across the country. It is therefore welcome to see that sentiment over the next year is positive.

“Wider economic circumstances and political uncertainty are outside of our control, but there are a number of things that Government can do to ensure that the outlook remains bright. The next London Mayor has a clear mandate from the industry to assemble and sell public sector land, if they really want to boost development early on in their tenure.

“It is good to see that investment is flowing into all parts of the UK however, and not just London and the South East. We hope to see this increase as devolution deals continue to be rolled out across the country.”

Peter Vernon, Chief Executive of Grosvenor Britain & Ireland said: “The findings are a reminder of the real estate sector’s willingness to invest in the UK’s long-term economic future. The sector’s ability to boost supply will rest in part on Government lowering the policy barriers. In London, getting more developable public land to the market and unlocking new rental homes to meet growing demand will be key to success.”

For further commentary and findings from the inaugural BPF Grosvenor Leader Sentiment Survey, click here.


For more information contact:
Hamish McDougall/Sorrel Basher, Press Office
020 7312 6479/6101

Notes to Editors

BPF collaborated with Grosvenor to commission an online survey of 122 BPF members (64 property owners/investors and 58 advisors) between 24 November and 24 December 2015. Analysis, interpretation and reporting of the survey results was by BPF and Grosvenor. Ipsos MORI undertook the fieldwork.

Grosvenor Britain & Ireland

Grosvenor Britain & Ireland is part of the Grosvenor Group.

Its mission is to create and recreate inspiring places and neighbourhoods, delivering value for customers, shareholders and co-investors with its place-making expertise.

It owns, develops and manages a diverse property portfolio in cities across Britain and Ireland. Business units are focused on its London estate - 300 acres of Mayfair and Belgravia in the heart of the UK’s capital - and developments elsewhere in London, Edinburgh, Liverpool, Oxford, Cambridge and Southampton. As at 31 December 2014, Grosvenor Britain & Ireland had £5.2bn of assets under management.

Twitter: @Grosvenor_GBI

British Property Federation

The BPF represents the commercial real estate sector – an industry with a market value of £1,662bn and a contribution of more than £94bn to UK GDP in 2014. We promote the interests of all those with a stake in the UK built environment, and our membership comprises a broad range of owners, managers and developers of real estate. Their investments help drive the UK's economic success by providing essential business infrastructure and creating great places where people can live, work and play.

Twitter: @BritProp

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