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RICS professions are ‘cautiously optimistic’

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Most RICS professions are ‘cautiously optimistic’ about the prospects for a UK economic recovery in the next 12 to 24 months. So said RICS, reporting on its latest survey of members, asking about the impact of Covid-19 on their businesses.

This was against the background of slight improvement from earlier survey results, and despite 64 per cent of those questioned reporting reduced cashflow since the start of lockdown, and 37 per cent reporting cancelled projects.

Some 55 per cent of RICS professionals reported reduced workload – compared to 80 per cent in April – and 52 per cent reported fewer new business enquiries – compared to 67 per cent in April.

‘In what has been a very difficult period, reports of delays to projects have predictably increased’, said RICS. ‘Significantly, feedback to this survey indicates that just over one-third of projects have now been cancelled. This compares with 29 per cent in the April survey’.

Two thirds of those surveyed reported increased business innovations in response to the impact of COVID-19. Looking forward the main challenges over the next 12 to 24 months were cited as:

  • securing new business;
  • maintaining social distancing on site;
  • restoring investor confidence;
  • shrinking of occupier demand;
  • future of the high street;
  • retention of supply chain; and
  • contractual claims and disputes.