More Foreign Buyers Entering London Residential Sector

There has been an increase in the number of international buyers making residential property investments in London...

There has been an increase in the number of international buyers making residential property investments in London. New research from Savills has found overseas purchasers now make up 34 per cent of all transactions in the city's prime market, a rise of seven per cent on the figures recorded for 2007. However, this equates to 49 per cent of the total value of all sales completed in the past 18 months. The firm also revealed around two-thirds (66 per cent) of the foreign buyers entering the London market are doing so to purchase a main residence and will live in the capital once they have acquired a home.

According to a report published by Lonres last month, the majority of non-domestic buyers are targeting flats, with the average value per sq ft for apartments in the GBP 2 million-plus price bracket 20 per cent higher than it was for houses of an equivalent cost. Yolande Barnes, head of Savills residential research, stated: "We expect the proportion of prime overseas buyers to continue to fluctuate between 25 per cent and 40 per cent according to market, currency, and global conditions, but they will without any doubt remain an important market force."

The Savills research noted international buyers are particularly active in the new-build sector, with 65 per cent of all units in new developments across London now sold to purchasers from this demographic. In prime districts, this rises to 70 per cent. Ms Barnes explained this provides "much-needed certainty on funding for new schemes and often supplies new rental stock in all price brackets as 53 per cent of buyers are landlords". The firm also highlighted the fact that, while overseas purchasers are making a substantial number of real estate investments in London, few are re-entering the market as sellers. It is Brits who are offloading the most property in the capital, while non-domestic vendors predominantly come from North America, Sweden and Ireland.

- Monday 09 July 2012

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