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Ric's Data Sudden Pessimism

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It's good that the net 3mo net% dipped below zero because it's the bit that'll makes headlines. They're still ~60% net (80:20) positive for 12mo price inflation.

a3PscJzl.png

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it's somehow always surprising that these 'experts' really do not have a clue.

I think it's because they are billed as such so persistently.

Don't confuse a 2nd hand XXXX salesman in a suit who is on an commission based salary with an "expert".

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it's somehow always surprising that these 'experts' really do not have a clue.

I think it's because they are billed as such so persistently.

Unfortunately i think RICs have been better than most at guessing house prices.

I say unfortunate as even this time they're saying prices will continue shooting up at many times wage inflation, along with rents.

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RICS chief economist Simon Rubinsohn said: "Sadly, for the many young people looking to enter the property market, it is unlikely that we are seeing the emergence of a more affordable market.

"Instead, it appears to me that what we are looking at is a short-term drop caused by the uncertainty resulting from the forthcoming EU referendum, coupled by a slow-down following the rush to get into the market ahead of the tax change on the purchase of investment properties." City AM

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RICS chief economist Simon Rubinsohn said: "Sadly, for the many young people looking to enter the property market, it is unlikely that we are seeing the emergence of a more affordable market.

"Instead, it appears to me that what we are looking at is a short-term drop caused by the uncertainty resulting from the forthcoming EU referendum, coupled by a slow-down following the rush to get into the market ahead of the tax change on the purchase of investment properties." City AM

Snake oil salesman says...

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I really don't get this EU referendum link. How many people in the UK today are going to base their choice to upsize, downsize, 'invest' or buy their first place based on the outcome of this vote ?

A tiny proportion.

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Guess it comes down to sentiment. If people are told often enough that Brexit will have a certain effect on house prices, it'll become self fulfilling. What else are house price rises based on now, other than expectation of future rises. Supply and demand?

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I really don't get this EU referendum link. How many people in the UK today are going to base their choice to upsize, downsize, 'invest' or buy their first place based on the outcome of this vote ? A tiny proportion.

Maybe not people in the UK, but aren't people outside the UK waiting to see the outcome before investing... ?

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RICS chief economist Simon Rubinsohn said: "Sadly, for the many young people looking to enter the property market, it is unlikely that we are seeing the emergence of a more affordable market.

"Instead, it appears to me that what we are looking at is a short-term drop caused by the uncertainty resulting from the forthcoming EU referendum, coupled by a slow-down following the rush to get into the market ahead of the tax change on the purchase of investment properties." City AM

How would this look different from the start of a period of more sustained drops?

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He has given this about 5 seconds thought and decided to state the obvious.

I bet he's on a good whack too. This could be why your 2nd gear survey costs so much.

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It is being reported poorly.

RICs data is +19% which means 19% more surveyers think house prices will go up in their area, vs those who think they will go down.

Granted it is less than the forecast of +35%.

Something smells fishy here.... It's only the director's prose in his press release that is the most bearish - he could have been asked to write it as such by the remainers.

I want house prices to come down, and I want out of the EU, but I think this is being done to scare HO into voting to stay in - that's what worries me.

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It might be because he is also privy to some data we can't see, it is quite a change of heart to move from "softening" to actually defining that drops will occur.

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RICS chief economist Simon Rubinsohn said: "Sadly, for the many young people looking to enter the property market, it is unlikely that we are seeing the emergence of a more affordable market.

"Instead, it appears to me that what we are looking at is a short-term drop caused by the uncertainty resulting from the forthcoming EU referendum, coupled by a slow-down following the rush to get into the market ahead of the tax change on the purchase of investment properties." City AM

Quick! Buy before June 24th!

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I really don't get this EU referendum link. How many people in the UK today are going to base their choice to upsize, downsize, 'invest' or buy their first place based on the outcome of this vote ? A tiny proportion.

Conversely, I don't see how people can commit to something that they will spend the next 20/30/40 years paying off, without waiting a few weeks to see how we vote.

Maybe my attitude to risk is a bit different to yours.

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Their pessimism = my optimism

It has nagged at me for some time now that my optimism = their pessimism.

I buy the argument that prices will rise in times of good economic health and so in those times, rising prices can be seen as indicative of a healthy and growing economy, and thus can be celebrated, but now is not that time.

Rising prices are not indicating good economic health, they are indicating more relaxed lending standards, higher LTV's, extended mortgage periods, etc. You know the argument - in these times of falling ownership and stretched affordability, price rises are indicative of a deepening housing crisis and increasing inequality. They should not be celebrated by anybody with an interest in the public good.

It's interesting to read back through the surveyor comments of the surveys and see that there are indeed surveyors who do not see rising prices as necessarily a good thing, but they are fairly few and far between. One has to wonder how many of them have a vested interest in seeing prices rise and cannot keep their enthusiasm under control when they see their investments grow in value.

It occurred to me today, RICS have a Royal Charter which grants them certain rights but also responsibilities. In taking a dim view of lower prices at a time when lower prices would benefit the nation, could they be neglecting their responsibility, and could this be a cause for complaint?

Here is the Charter. Most of it is about how they conduct their internal affairs in terms of membership and government, but here is a snippet containing the stated objectives given to the Institution:

The objects of the Institution shall be to secure the advancement and facilitate the acquisition of that knowledge which constitutes the profession of a surveyor, namely, the arts, sciences and practice of:

(a) determining the value of all descriptions of landed and house property and of the various interests therein and advising on direct and indirect investment therein;

(b ) managing and developing estates and other business concerned with the management of landed property;

(c ) securing the optimal use of land and its associated resources to meet social and economic needs;

(d) surveying the fabric of buildings and their services and advising on their condition, maintenance, alteration, improvement and design;

(e) measuring and delineating the physical features of the Earth;

(f) managing, developing and surveying mineral property;

(g) determining the economic use of resources of the construction industry, and the financial appraisal, management and measurement of construction work;

(h) selling (whether by auction or otherwise) buying or letting, as an agent, real or personal property or any interest therein

and to maintain and promote the usefulness of the profession for the public advantage in the United Kingdom and in any other part of the world.

So they do have a responsibility to both promote and maintain the usefulness of the profession for the public advantage. You might argue that if the judgement of valuations by surveyors were being clouded by their own vested interest in the value of property increasing, that would not be for the public advantage but rather for their own advantage.

Point © is interesting, given that it is the governments point of view that not enough land is being used to meet housing needs, although this appears to be noted as a practice of the profession rather than an objective of the institution - but then if land is not meeting social and economic needs, you might argue that the profession has failed to secure the optimal use of land and therefore the institution has failed to maintain the usefulness of the profession for the public advantage.

Does anybody else have any interest or thoughts on this?

Edit: changed the quote slightly to bypass the forums smiley and copyright symbol replacement

Edited by Digsby

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Im being mailed and phoned by agents with whom i made contact aeons ago.

Something is afoot.

They're sat twiddling their thumbs and their bosses are telling them to trawl their databases.

However, one minute after the Remain vote comes in, their phones will be red hot again i'm afraid.

Nature of the beast.

I have my house on the market, and its D.E.A.D right now.

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It's good that the net 3mo net% dipped below zero because it's the bit that'll makes headlines. They're still ~60% net (80:20) positive for 12mo price inflation.

a3PscJzl.png

That chart caught my eye too. I've never paid it much attention but it has me thinking now. Notice how consistently 12 month expectations have been more optimistic (from their point of view) than 3 month expectations since 2013, and how that gap has been growing - what is it that this is expressing?

The institutes interpretation is clearly that short term growth is being dampened by certain short term effects, but that the impact of these will ease and price inflation will pick up over the medium term. In the case of this report, the perceived short term effect is the referendum. In 2014, it was perhaps concern over over the short term impact of MMR or the SDLT changes, in early 2015 it was definitely the general election, and so on.

These market views may well prove to be correct, but the continued growth in the gap between short term expectations and medium term expectations suggests to me that there may be something else going on.

Consider the period between 2010 (when they evidently started collecting the 12 month view) to 2013. The market was obviously very suppressed at that time (not from the chart, from experience). My view of the market back then was that I was in no rush to buy because houses were only going to get cheaper in real terms in the future - or perhaps rather that price inflation was not going to be picking up any time soon at least.

There is a close correlation between the 3 and 12 month predictions during this period. Is this because the surveyors agreed with me that there was nothing on the horizon to suggest that prices would be rising any time soon? If so, then in some ways it would suggest a high degree of certainty that there was not going to be much volatility going forward.

You might suggest though that during this period, surveyors were refusing to be drawn into longer term predictions because there was a high degree of uncertainty - a bit like predicting tomorrow's weather is going to be much like today's: the least speculative answer with the best chance of being right.

It's interesting to overlay the first chart in the report, "National Prices - past three months" on top of this one:

ricschartoverlay.png

I've tinted the past 3 months prices with red to make it visible. I've not been very scientific about this: the scales were different so I stretched it so the axes were roughly aligned. The correlation between the plots is not deliberate - they are not aligned to give the greatest correlation - yet the correlation is clearly visible.

It seems to me that the price expectations over the next three months are based on little else other than the observations of the past three months. It's to be expected but I think it's useful to see what you probably already knew: these surveyors have no better idea of what is going to happen in three months time than anybody else because their predictions have consistently been along the lines of "about the same as the last three months".

Having said that, though, it is interesting to note that there has never in the series been less correlation between the direction of actual prices in the past three months and the predicted direction of prices during the next three months, and the times when the correlation lessens has always been at the point where there is a significant change in direction.

I'm still none the wiser about the growing gap between the 3 and 12 month predictions though. Perhaps it's simply down to an innate optimism that prices will rise, which has not materialised in the short term but which they need to feel sure will happen in the longer term.

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CCC I know you live in Scotland... all the doom and gloom and predictions re the referendum is Scotland ... has anything changed? and have the predictions made by both parties actually happened? I am guessing that nothing has really changed since the vote.

I suspect the RICS data is the same a bit of noise due to uncertainty and then back to normal.

I cant remember much to be fair as it was all just noise. The YES campaigns estimates of tax take and spending for an Independent Scotland were certainly way off. North Sea tax revenues dropped from almost 14 billion per year to actually negative this year. I don't think an Independent Scotland would have coped with that too well.

I cant remember too much about the no campaign - other than the opposite of the above. So the 'scare' campaign in regards to that was actually spot on.

As for house prices - the market was pretty dead up until last year and had been for ages. Didn't see much change at all. Market didn't seem to shoot up just after the vote either. It has so far this year but that's clearly due to the BTL lambs to the slaughter.

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