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Press Release

AREF commissions research into property fund market post-EU referendum - read full press release here.

Following the UK’s decision to leave the European Union, a number of funds subsequently suspended trading to ensure that their existing clients’ best interests were upheld during a time of unprecedented market uncertainty.
Suspension is a vital mechanism that is laid out under stringent FCA regulation and the period that followed the referendum highlighted that those regulations are working as they are supposed to for the benefit of our clients.
To ensure that regulation and fund structures continue to work in favour of client outcomes, the Association of Real Estate Funds (AREF) has today commissioned John Forbes, an independent consultant and the author of the 2012 report for AREF - “Unlisted funds, lessons from the crisis”, to assess the impact of the referendum result on the real estate market and evaluate whether any improvements could be made.
The primary focus of the research will be to assess the impact on clients following the referendum, but it will also take a view of the whole market including fund distributors, managers, valuers and other service providers. It will also look to identify areas where market participants believe there might be aspects of manager or investor behaviour for which ‘best practice’ might be established by AREF itself or the regulator.
The research will be published in the first quarter of 2017.
John Cartwright, Chief Executive Officer of AREF, commented:
“There was a lot of media attention on the real estate funds industry in the days and weeks following the referendum. Investor interest was protected by both regulation and responsible fund manager behaviour.
“To ensure that our industry continues to provide comprehensive investor protection and deliver the best possible outcomes for its clients, we thought it was an appropriate time to look back at how the market reacted to the result and see where, if any, improvements to fund structures and processes could be made.”
John Forbes, Founder of John Forbes Consulting LLP, commented:
“I am delighted to be asked to undertake this review of an area that is of crucial importance to the real estate industry but also for investment managers in other asset classes. It is vital that the investment models available to retail and institutional clients provide protection to all investors at moments of market stress and illiquidity."
For more information please contact:
+44 (0)20 7269 4620
About The Association of Real Estate Funds (AREF):


  • The Association of Real Estate Funds (AREF) is the voice of the real estate funds industry.
  • Full members have a collective NAV of circa £65bn under management and the majority are benchmarked using the leading AREF/IPD UK Quarterly Property Fund Indices (QPFI).
  • We are recognised by policy makers, regulators, tax authorities and other official organisations as the leading spokesperson for real estate and therefore have the ability to influence the way our industry evolves.
  • Investors and advisers are aware of the high standards our members adhere to, both in transparency and corporate governance, therefore enabling us to promote their confidence when they invest in real estate.
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