Discussing the state and outlook for London housing as U.K. nears the end of lockdown restrictions.
To view the recording, click the image below.
We source opportunities, and carry out the due diligence for clients wishing to invest in property. We help both people who are just starting their property journey and others who are looking to expand their existing property portfolio.
This involves supplying clients with detailed insights into how different types of properties or investment strategies work in the current market. We endeavour to help our investors to build up a pension, create an additional income steam or simply leave a legacy.
We can also help manage all types of property projects.
Finding properties with real potential for a competitive price, is becoming increasingly difficult. As specialists in this area, we have the experience, skills, knowledge and network of connections to help.
Existing landlords are often extremely busy, particularly if they are managing their own properties. By using our invest service, investors benefit from working with professional, reputable, passionate property people who know the local market and have access to great deals.
Sotheby’s UK Invest takes away the time to research your next opportunity.
In many cases we also let and manage our investors’ existing properties, so they have real confidence in our services.
The biggest and most important difference is that we use our own in-house team to let and manage the properties that have been sourced for investors. That way, we gain a deep understanding of how a property will perform over time. It means we can give a much more consistent and accurate overview of an investment rather than just focus on purchase prices and market statistics.
A property buyers experience is often limited to seeking out properties for purchase, without the long-term commitment to investors.
In fact, you shouldn’t wait.
With the UK Government about to levy the Foreign Buyer’s Tax, letting us source your next rental investment now would save you money.
The UK Stamp Duty Holiday has been extended, knowing that buyers are continuing to snap up properties in order to save on stamp duty. This means there’s a good amount of high quality properties on the market, and you don’t have to wade through the listings yourself.
To celebrate the partnership between Difference Coffee and UK Sotheby’s International Realty, we were delighted to offer the opportunity to win a collection of Difference Coffee’s Classic Collection, the best selling boxes (valued at £99). These coffee pods are Nespresso-compatible capsules, and used by some of the best restaurants in the world. Simply sign up to the mailing list using the form below for your chance to win and don’t forget to share the contest with a friend.
Entries were accepted until 20th December, 2020 and the winners will be notified shortly after. One winner will be chosen at random. Prize is non-transferable and must be fulfilled before 31st March, 2021. By entering this contest, entrants confirm they are 18+ years of age.
The major news is that Chancellor Rishi Sunak has now raised the minimum Stamp Duty threshold to £500,000; where previously Stamp Duty was paid on homes sold for at least £125,000, for first time buyers, or on properties sold for more than £300,000.
However for those in the upper real estate market…things get a bit cloudier. Understandably, each case and situation is different so we encourage you to call us to find out how much you will be saving under the new rules.
Variables include whether or not you’re buying a second home, an investment, and the various price ranges above £500,000.
You could save thousands.
Buyers are now more actively looking to purchase.
Regarding the effects of the Covid-19 Lockdown on incoming post-secondary student activity from China to the UK, existing students are making-do with online classes but have expressed missing out on the quality and efficiency of classroom teaching, in particular face to face communication with teachers and classmates. We are receiving questions about whether Chinese families will continue to send their children to the UK for education – and the answer is YES. However, it is too soon to tell the quantity.
In the short term, Coronavirus may have dampened our will to travel worldwide, and we do expect a certain reluctance to take long-haul flights. The English may fear going to the country of origin, and the Chinese may fear coming to the European hotspot where we are still in the throes of battling the virus. In the long term, there are other socio-economic and political factors at play. However, we are seeing a particularly swelling level of enquiries from Hong Kong looking at the UK as a potential “safe-haven” with the political uncertainties and the welcoming gesture made by Boris Johnson on the promises of citizenship.
For those students and families looking to emigrate out of China, achieving an education in the UK is still a desirable and valuable option. However; if we are considering Hong Kong’s situation with respect to political changes enforced by China, we may see a new wave of immigration via education.
From the Chinese perspective, UK has performed incredibly well to offer support during the lockdown and their prevention methods were also successful in flattening the curve. So will we see more Chinese students arriving to the UK post-Coronavirus any time soon? It might be a while.
Our China Desk has made a significant sale of £12 million over the lockdown period, and have continued to make strides with closing property investment deals where virtual viewings were sufficient to satisfy investor needs. While we know the bigger investors have been relatively minimally impacted, the investors with a more modest budget will wait to hedge their bets till the time they can fly over to view in person. We continue to provide a wealth of information, promoting our virtual viewings and virtual reality options to Chinese enquiries coming in from China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia, and Vancouver; thus they gain a UK Sotheby’s International Realty education in UK real estate for both clients and buyers without the classroom setting.
Surrounded by a rewarding mix of modern style and iconic history, London Dock is situated in the heart of the capital, moments from Tower Bridge, The Tower of London, St Katharine Docks and the City. With a number of London underground and Docklands Light Railway stations within walking distance, London Dock offers quick and easy access to London’s main financial centres of the City and Canary Wharf, as well as the exciting cultural and creative neighbourhoods of Shoreditch, Whitechapel and Bermondsey.
Wapping is a truly authentic destination, filled with independent cafés and restaurants, which has for hundreds of years been a vibrant part of London life. The Prospect of Whitby – London’s oldest riverside pub – was popular with Charles Dickens, diarist Samuel Pepys and renowned artists Turner and Whistler. By the river, Hermitage Community Moorings attracts sailing barges, tugs and small boats, keeping alive Wapping’s river heritage.
The Tower, St Georges Wharf, London, SW8
3 Bedrooms | 2 Bathrooms | 1,252 Sq. Ft.
Romney Street, Westminster , London, SW1P
3 Bedrooms | 2 Bathrooms | 1,252 Sq. Ft.
As of 15th of June, face coverings will be required on all public transport in England
As we emerge from lock-down, staying alert is part of the new normal. We are open for business and we continue to follow the guidance provided by the government. We are booking viewings and valuations as per usual with respect to new safety measures.
See our other post for advice on Washable Face Coverings
The effects on the property market due to Covid-19 have been clear; with the country on lockdown since the end of March there has certainly been less activity across the UK housing market. However, since the lockdown measures were lifted for estate agents last month, we have seen an increase in lettings activity and it’s clear that people are preparing themselves for life after lockdown – a massive boost for the lettings market and one we certainly all needed!
At UK SIR, we saw lettings enquiries increase by over 130% from April to May, echoing our predictions of pent up demand during the lockdown period which put almost everything property related on hold. This huge increase is partly due to the fall in demand we saw at the end of March, but this is an extremely positive change and a sign that demand for rental properties is growing much more than sales.
Despite this returning demand and rise in enquiries, while rents initially remained fairly steady, new reports suggest that achieved rent levels look likely to come down and we have already seen Landlords accepting lower offers to ensure they have a tenant and eliminate any vacancy period even if this means taking a lower rent. June through to September is typically the busiest period of the year for lettings agents but with travel restrictions still in place, we have seen hardly any corporate relocations since Q1 and the uncertainty for students surrounding their studying means the flurry of international students we normally see at this time of the year is down as well. With that said, people will always need a place to live and with the wider impact of Covid-19 on the sales market, we expect to see more would be buyers filling the void and opting to rent instead with lettings being a more stable option as the long term effects of this pandemic become more clear. For that reason I expect the lettings market to remain buoyant with more activity predicted over the following months.
Those who are looking are planning for every eventuality and the lock-down has put peoples living situations into perspective with many revaluating what they actually need and what’s most important to them. Many of the enquiries we are now seeing have requests for outside space and a home working space which shows the shift in people’s needs as working from home for many is likely to continue for some time. With the fear this could happen again at the back of many people’s minds, they want to know they are prepared for another lock-down and have the most comfortable home environment possible.
This is also evident through the increase in activity from our Country Office. The demand for country rental properties is still strong with many London families looking to either up sticks and relocate to more rural areas with good connections into London or to acquire a second home where they can all live more comfortably without feeling on top of each other in their smaller London residences which might have little to no outside space. With the “staycation” also expected to be more popular this summer with families opting to stay in the UK rather than take the risk of traveling abroad, we expect to see many people taking out short-term holiday lets with houses coming with pools and tennis courts being the most popular.
During the lockdown it was important that we did not become complacent and were there to support our clients throughout this difficult time. While the country was on lockdown we continued to advise and prepare our landlords for when the lockdown is lifted. This was a great opportunity for many of them to get their properties ready whether that be finishing off the renovations, tidying up the garden or as we saw for many – organising virtual reality tours of their homes. We wanted to ensure we were putting our clients in the best possible position to capitalise on the returning activity as soon as social distancing measures were lifted and it was thanks to this effort that meant we were ready come 13th May, with multiple offers already agreed.
6 Bedrooms | 6,623 Sq. Ft.
£10,000 per week
Abbey Lodge is a uniquely historical house in a desirable location. The house has a rich history, and dates predominantly from the 15th and 16th centuries. Farthinghoe is a rural south Northamptonshire village close to the border of north Oxfordshire. The village has a primary school, The Fox public house/restaurant, repair garage and parish church. There is good communication with intercity train services from Bicester North to London Marylebone and access to the M40 at either J10 for the south or J11 for the north.
£6,923 per week
Enjoy your first view of this traditional country house set within 12 acres from the gravelled sweeping driveway, the solid wooden door giving access to the traditional hall with flagstone floors and high ceilings, step into a cosy TV room with comfy armchairs, cushions and colourful throws, the perfect space to lose yourself in a movie. Passing back through the dining hall a larger lounge warmed by the open fire, welcomes you with comfortable seating for all that come to stay. The indoor pool with heated pool and changing rooms is perfect whatever the season with by folding doors that open onto the gardens.
£4,000 per week
This luxury farmhouse is the perfect place from which to explore the rolling Cotswold countryside whilst still being close to the market towns of Witney, Woodstock and the City of Oxford. The farm has plenty of space with 7 bedrooms, 5 bathrooms, 3 reception rooms and a superb Johnny Grey designed kitchen. New Yatt is a small village situated 2 miles from the bustling market town of Witney. Woodstock and Blenheim Palace are 7 miles away and the “city of dreaming spires” Oxford 12 miles.
2 Bedrooms | 806 Sq. Ft.
£1,200 per week
Presenting this modern two-bedroom, two-bathroom first floor lateral apartment with a large semi-open plan living room complete with a modern bespoke kitchen. The apartment is beautifully presented having been recently redecorated throughout and further benefits from access to a balcony from the living room. Turner House is perfectly located in the heart of Covent Garden and is moments from the Covent Garden Piazza benefiting from the plethora of shops, bars and restaurants the area has to offer.
Choosing the right agent for your needs is especially important when making large life decisions, especially for a new home or a new investment opportunity; you need a personal connection and mutual understanding among the parties. While Russian myself, I have been in the UK for almost 9 years and, before joining Sotheby’s International Realty, I was working with private family offices serving the needs of UHNW individuals.
M: +44 (0) 755 740 16 26
+7 (0) 905 790 36 06
T: +44 (0) 207 498 95 80
I am a highly valued and trusted member of a dynamic sales team, providing professional client services and achieving tangible results. I have successfully negotiated a number of significant transactions of high-net-worth houses and apartments in St John’s Wood, Hampstead, Little Venice, Regents Park. Primrose Hill and the all surrounding areas of primary London. My friendly, enthusiastic approach is a reflection of my genuine passion for real estate. Through this I have established strong relationships with a large number of individuals, corporate clients, agents and property consultants.
Through relationship building and shear hard work, I have established a reputation over the last fifteen years for outstanding sales success in a competitive and challenging market.
+44 (0)20 7495 9580 | +44 (0)7710 469 156
Merton Lane, Highgate
Exceptional contemporary mansion in Highgate located on a sought-after road in the heart of Highgate and occupying a two-acre site, a bespoke family home with the accommodation predominantly arranged over three floors with the benefit of a substantial, self-contained staff lodge. On the first floor is the master suite with bathroom, four further suites each with en suite bathrooms whilst to the top floor there is a magnificent home office with panoramic views over the gardens and Hampstead Heath beyond.
Ingram Avenue, Hampstead
A stunning newly built luxury home of grand proportions totalling 14,358 sq ft. This must-see masterpiece is set on Ingram Avenue, a highly sought-after leafy road in Hampstead Garden Suburb which is defined by absolute privacy by backing directly onto Turners Wood Bird Sanctuary. The property is within walking distance to Kenwood House as well as Hampstead Heath.
A stunning newly developed family house (337 sq. m / 3,631 sq. ft.) nestled in the very heart of Belsize Park. This family home has recently undergone a two year refurbishment project whereby apart from the front façade, the house was totally remodelled. This home further benefits from having five bedrooms and five bathrooms as well as a lift servicing four floors.
Despite all the reasons why the market should be slow – for example, the general election, Christmas and Brexit – we are seeing steady movement. Well priced properties, great opportunities, probate sales and more are selling as well as they ever have done. Yes, prices are down a bit on many properties but not all. We have sold 4 probate properties in the last 4 weeks and every one of them has hit asking or more. Better still, they tend to find buyers within the first couple of weeks. One may think that its developers buying them, but it’s investors and end users. So why is this? Why are these properties selling whilst others aren’t?
It’s simply down to buyers who recognise that now is probably the best time to buy a property since 2015.
With the ‘what if’ question looming over every opportunity, buyers may have talked themselves into believing that the market is already at its worst-case scenario. It follows that with us already at ‘what if’, it is the fear of the unknown itself that is causing the angst that we are so worried about. When we finally get to the point where the facts are known, the market won’t get worse, surely it will only improve on where we are.
It’s clear that there are fewer houses coming to the market and this will benefit the rental market with those that have sold, those who are struggling to find somewhere to move to and those that are in rented accommodation, remaining reticent to buy. The market will improve, of that there is no doubt. Who reading this believes that if Brexit had happened two years ago, we would still be in a bad place? Perhaps, just maybe, we will have picked ourselves up, dusted ourselves off and would be making the most of what we’ve got.
So there is a market out there and what’s more, its strong for the right
property being marketed at the right price. Interest rates remain cheap whilst the Bank of England attempts to guide us through the current ‘what if’ climate, but when it’s gone and we all feel a little more confident, they will rise; inevitably, as they always do.
Now just might be the very best opportunity that many of you have ever had to buy.