Agent confidence has reached a “three-year high”, according to Zoopla’s annual State of the Property Nation survey.
Market sentiment has reportedly improved for the first time since 2016, while 55% of agents said they were “optimistic” for 2020.
The annual analysis surveyed 6,000 “nationally representative” consumers and over 650 agents. Some 52% of agents expect stock supplies to start meeting buyer and renter demand, while 40% said they were “diversifying services to bolster revenues for the year ahead”.
The findings follow a three-year consecutive decline in agent confidence, down from 79% in 2016 to 51% in 2018 after a period of “protracted political uncertainty”.
Agents in the north reported the highest levels of confidence in market performance for 2020 at 57%. Meanwhile, 53% of agents in the south reported confidence, demonstrating the highest turnaround in sentiment, up from 46% recorded the year prior.
Some 45% of agents believed that there would be an increase in the number of property transactions that take place in 2020, a “further sign of renewed market health”.
Zoopla said that the “economic and political landscape” was behind previous market challenges, though the subsequent election outcome and ‘Boris Bounce’ have “already begun to reshape market dynamics”.
Andy Marshall, chief commercial officer at Zoopla, said: “The annual State of the Property Nation findings always make for a compelling insight into all facets of the market. The study provides a barometer of agent mindset, and our findings show, on the whole, that agent confidence in the market is on the up for 2020.
“It comes as little surprise that the so-called ‘Boris Bounce’ has already started to reshape the market in the immediate term – particularly amidst reports of improving consumer confidence following the decisive election outcome.”
He added: “Without doubt, appetite to buy and sell property has been pent up since the aftermath of the Brexit vote in 2016, and it would now appear that we have the green shoots of a new cycle in the market.
“While we don’t expect runaway prices – indeed we have forecast a modest 3% growth for 2020 – we are definitely heading in the right direction and agents are rightly benefitting from what we hope will become a new dawn.
“It goes without saying that we harbour much responsibility for the shape of the market for the year ahead, and we’re doubling down on all efforts to ensure that Zoopla continues to deliver outstanding levels of valuation leads and leads per listing for agents during the next 12 months.”