The more things change, the more they stay the same. Just as in 2021, our survey shows that the biggest issue facing agents was a lack of stock. And as happened then too, the majority of agents passed on higher-than-normal rental price increases to tenants - probably as a result.
While this may have meant increased rental commission income for agencies, the combined effects of lower sales commission, increasing utility and business costs and upcoming legislative changes may have contributed to a fall in optimism among property professionals, as revealed by our survey.
However, we have often seen that business confidence in the private rented sector is linked to wider consumer confidence in the economy. When a cost-of-living crisis hits consumers, property professionals feel the effects too.
But the signs are that this crisis will start to ease during 2023, increasing consumer and business confidence. There are positives to take from these circumstances for the industry too – especially agencies that offer both sales and lettings.
Agents that have built strong relationships with their tenants and landlords are in a unique position to help tenants looking to buy and offer a professional commission-based service for any of their landlords looking to sell.
The outlook for 2023 looks brighter, as the tough times of 2022 are seemingly coming to an end. Globally, we seem to have taken control of inflation, and we hope this will bring it down to more manageable levels. Already, mortgage rates have fallen from recent highs.
Plus, with rent controls in Scotland easing and signs that Westminster is listening to concerns about the English private rented sector (covered in the Legislation and politics section of this Index), there are plenty of reasons for agents to be positive in 2023.
No matter what challenges or opportunities 2023 may bring, PayProp is here to help and support you and your business; helping you get more out of work and more out of life.