On Thursday 8 June, Britain will be heading to the polls to determine which political party will be responsible for negotiating the country’s withdrawal from the European Union. The Conservatives, Labour and Liberal Democrats have released their respective manifestos discussing their proposed plans for the economy. Property featured as a prominent topic, with each party pledging to increase residential housing supply to meet growing market demand.
The Conservatives have pledged to meet their 2015 commitment of delivering one million more homes by the end of 2020 and reforming the house building market so that modern methods of construction are used. The Labour Party has also announced the delivery of one million homes, supported by reforms to the rental market, while the Liberal Democrats are aiming to deliver 300,000 homes a year by 2022.
However, while targeted attempts to increase housing stock is a welcomed step forward, each major political party has so far overlooked the vital role of UK property investors in catalysing market growth and positively contributing to national housing supply. For example, with 1.4 million houses across the UK sitting empty, there is a huge amount of potential lying dormant within the country’s property market.
Moreover, with average house prices projected to increase by 6.1% by 2021, it is important for the next elected government to develop a real estate market that effectively meets the needs of investors seeking to expand their property portfolio. For this reason, MFS launched FlipFinance2017– an industry-first funding initiative to support the aspirations of budding property investors and landlords in need of specialist finance solutions. Running until June 2018, the £20 million funding drive is available to nationwide applicants in the form of bridging loans ranging from £200,000 to £1 million.