Prime property prices in central London up 0.4% last month
|Tuesday, 05 February 2013|
Prime property prices in central London increased 0.4% in January but experts do not expect any significant price movement in the market this year.
But prices will start to grow modestly again from 2014 onwards, according to the latest analysis report from Knight Frank.
Liam Bailey, global head of residential research, said that the rise in sales volumes seen at the end of 2012, following the publication of the draft Finance Bill and the clarification offered regarding £2 million plus property taxation, has carried over into this year.
‘There is little doubt that the clarification provided by the Autumn Statement and draft Finance Bill has contributed to a rise in sales volumes, releasing the pent up demand seen between June and November 2012 as buyers adopted a wait and see approach,’ he explained.
The data shows that Knightsbridge remains the best performing region in terms of price growth, with a 1.5% rise in January. Notting Hill, which has seen prices steadily decline since September, reversed some of these losses with 0.8% price growth in January.
Bailey explained that the demand for luxury London homes from overseas buyers looking for a safe haven for their money, as well as a slice of London life, has helped drive price increases over the last few months. The drop in the value of sterling in recent months has also made property an even more appealing investment.
‘Escalating concerns over the UK economic outlook have increased the pressure on the pound over the last few months. Our research shows that while prices for prime central London property increased 0.5% since November, currency movements mean that for euro denominated buyers property values have actually declined by 4% in that time, making entry into the market more affordable for European buyers,’ said Bailey.
‘The flipside of this, of course, is that euro denominated buyers who purchased property late last year have seen the value of their investment fall in recent months. However, as the Eurozone crisis continues to drag on, the long term appeal of owning property in a safe haven such as London is unlikely to diminish,’ he added.
Research from the firm’s latest London Review, shows that South Kensington drew the largest number of international buyers as a percentage of sales in 2012, with Knightsbridge, Kensington, Hyde Park and Belgravia also attracting large international interest. Buyers from France and Italy were the most active Europeans in the market in 2012.
The outlook for 2013 is muted. ‘We expect to see no significant price movement in the prime central London property market this year, before more moderate price growth from 2014 onwards,’ said Bailey.
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