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Fewer EU Nationals Renting a UK Home Since Brexit Vote



It’s been almost a year since the UK voted for Brexit and divorce negotiations have begun. While it’s not always easy to measure the impact of a vote on the property market, flat share specialists, Spare, have taken the time to analyse its own data and has some interesting insights. Top of that list, is that the rate of increase in traffic from prospective EU tenants moving to London has slowed, considerably.

Specifically, SpareRoom said the rise in EU-based registrations on its website for a flat share in the UK, has risen 4.35% in the year to May 2017. That’s down from a 14.7% rise in the 12 months to May 2016.

“While it’s not a definitive measurement of the impact of Brexit on demand for UK rental properties from EU citizens, it’s certainly a reliable indication that the vote has affected some people’s intentions to move to the UK,” said Pimlico estate agent, Andrew Reeves. “Of course, part of the slowdown could be attributed to a natural stemming of demand as the borders have been open for a number of years. But, the slowdown is large and it’s likely the Brexit vote was a significant reason, too.

Brexit Deterring Eastern Europeans the Most

Other figures from, indicate that eastern Europeans are those who have been most affected by the vote for Brexit. Between July 2016 and May 2017, the number of Slovakians planning to move to the UK fell 8%. Interest from Polish tenants declined by 5% over the same period.

Meanwhile, the number of Hungarians, Romanians and Estonians looking for a flat share or room in the UK all fell during that 11-month period, too. Indeed, of the top 15 countries where tenant demand for UK property fell, 13 were EU member states.

“The Brexit vote made it seem as though the UK no longer welcomes their EU neighbours across its borders, despite the much-needed skills and welcome diversity they bring to the country,” said Newington Green estate agent, M&M Property. “With the vote such a close one, it’s disappointing that so many EU nationals think the whole of the UK agrees with that view.”

Brexit Fails to Discourage All EU Nations

While there are signs that demand from some prospective EU tenants has fallen, it’s not the case for all member states. The number of registrations from potential Greek and Croatian tenants, have both risen by 17% in the 12 months to May. And, there was also an upward spike in the number of Americans looking to move to the UK, at around the time Donald Trump was elected US president.

However, with so much uncertainty over what the future holds for the UK’s relationship with the EU, it’s difficult for people to make decisions that will have a long-term impact on their lives. And with that in mind, it’s no surprise, at all, to see interest from potential EU tenants fall since Brexit.

“Regardless of the EU’s insistence on agreeing key terms at the beginning of negotiations, a final agreement on what Brexit means for the UK and the EU is still likely many months, if not years away,” said Marylebone estate agent, Kubie Gold. “With that in mind, it could be worthwhile for those who have even an inkling that they want to try life in the UK, to do so, sooner rather than later.”


Filed Under: Economic News

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