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In its heyday, dukes, dandies, artists and politicians all lived and socialised in St James’s, London. The district, convenient for both St James’s Palace and the Houses of Parliament, was the height of fashion. Gladstone, Sir Isaac Newton and William Thackeray all lived here.

Estate agencies are spending tens of thousands of pounds developing virtual-reality tours of high-end properties, so buyers can privately gaze at the interior of immaculate homes, including those yet to be built, in their own time.

As property advisors, we are often asked what is the best kind of investment in London – a new build property or an older style or period property?

A dedicated space for doing hair, nails and make-up is becoming a must-have in high-end homes
Donald and Melania Trump have been handed the keys to the White House. This means that, in keeping with tradition, the Trumps are allowed to make changes to the property to meet their family’s needs.

Some locations are defying a downbeat Brexit market — with revived urban areas leading the way even at the best of times there are no sure things in property — and with political and economic uncertainty as a backdrop, coupled with tax changes that have hit many buyers hard, this is far from the best of times. Nonetheless, there are silver linings amid the dark pall that has hung over the market since last spring.

The biggest talking point in 2017 will be triggering Article 50 to begin the process of Britain’s exit from the EU, and what immediate effect this might have on property prices and the value of sterling. We also predict that as new tax changes start to take hold for private landlords in April 2017 we may start to see some landlords sell their properties, but with a low interest rate set to prevail, any wide-scale sell-off will likely be avoided.

We were delighted to have won, for the third year running, the Gold Award for Best Buying Estate Agent, in The Times/Sunday Times Estate Agency of the Year Awards.

Donald Trump will be US president but there is no sign of panicked exodus to London – International Business Times

What does Trump’s US election victory mean for property? – The Move Channel

How Trump’s victory will affect the London property market – London Loves Business

Property magnate becomes the American President: The prime resi industry reacts – Prime Resi

The forecast for the prime London market? That depends on which part… – Prime Resi

Agents braced for months of Brexit uncertainty and confusion – Property Industry Eye

Sub £1m market to remain resilient – Property Reporter

Black Brick’s Camilla Dell: Newbuild property in central London faces substantial price cuts – International Business Times

Focus On Bermondsey: River views, great food, warehouse conversions – what more could you want in SE1? – by Melissa York, City A.M.

Top 40 Residential Buying Agencies – PrimeResi

Experts’ guide to selling your home faster this autumn – by Stuart Penney, Everything Overseas

London’s Mega-Mansion Owners Have a Tough Time Selling – by Ruth Bloomfield, The Wall Street Journal

Prime property prices rising in some locations in London – Property Wire

Off-street parking, plus an annexe – by Jessie Hewitson, The Times

Are we entering a buyer’s market in Hampstead and Highgate after Brexit? – by Prudence Ivy, Ham & High Property

How speculation shaped the housing market – by Felicity Hannah, The Independent

Tips on selling large-family homes – by Emma Well, The Sunday Times

Hot property: how to spruce up your home before you sell – as featured on LV

Mystery clouds UK’s most expensive home – who owns the £63m flat and why does it keep going on sale? – by Shane Croucher, International Business Times

Meet the UK’s rental elite – by Graham Norwood, The Sunday Times

Brexit may trigger prime London slump – but not for ‘the global elite’ – by Graham Norwood, EstateAgentToday.co.uk

London is going to retain its attractiveness to wealthy international buyers regardless of this outcome – PrimeResi

My best advice: how to buy off-plan – by Stuart Penney, Everything Overseas

The areas set to step into the spotlight – by Laura Whateley and Gabriella Bennett – The Times

Is it too early to get rich from Crossrail 2? – by Hannah Nemeth, Moneywise

Trouble ahead: what Brexit could mean for the north London property market by India Block, Ham & High Property

Rich people are buying secret luxury apartments for the help by Marc Ellwod, New York Post

What will happen to the housing market if Britain leaves the EU? – by Marc Da Silva, Estate Agent Today

What Brexit Means For The UK Property Market By William Jaffrey, billionaire.com

MY BEST ADVICE: what would Brexit mean for the property sector? By Stuart Penney

We are thrilled to be included in the 2016 eprivateclient Top 25 Residential Property Buyers for a third year. Eprivateclient is the leading website and news service for private client practitioners, including lawyers, accountants, trustees and fee-based IFAs. The aim of the initiative is to identify, recognise, introduce and promote the Top 25 Residential Property Buyers acquiring prestigious […]

As prices soar, the district is no longer just a stepping stone to country life — it’s a place to put down permanent roots. By Zoe Dare Hall

Falling prices make it a good time to buy in the high-end enclave — as long as you have a spare £10m or so. By Graham Norwood

Fears are growing about the number of homes being bought by investors and left empty — but what can be done to stop it? By Graham Norwood

Demand for high-end homes in London, New York slows as market turmoil hits global investors.

Sealed bids are back and cash is king as buyers attempt to close deals before the April 1 deadline when stamp duty for buy-to-let homes is scheduled to increase. By Ruth Bloomfield

Health and wellness are serious considerations when it comes to London’s luxury apartment buildings, Zoe Dare Hall looks at what developers are doing to meet the demand…

Mayfair looks set to be the prime focus in London, meanwhile Spain, Barbados, Mauritius and Sydney are destined to be strong performers in 2016, says Zoe Dare Hall

Homeowners have a new mantra — renovate, don’t relocate when it comes to upsizing, says Robin Ash

From April, buyers of holiday homes will have to pay an extra 3% in stamp duty. Should you race against the clock or hold fire? asks Graham Norwood

When times get tough, commercial property provides the perfect backdrop. Abandoned office blocks, half-finished developments surrounded by barbed wire and cranes standing idly on the skyline: in an economic downturn, real estate is one of the first sectors to suffer.

A tax increase on high-end homes has already damped sales, and sluggishness is expected to continue in 2016. By RUTH BLOOMFIELD

According to independent property buying agency, Black Brick, low oil prices and a strong UK currency have made buying London residential property more expensive for those who have made their money overseas and are wishing to place it in the ‘safe haven’ of London property. However, until the reduction of tax relief on buy-to-let mortgages is announced in the July 2016 Budget, London remains an attractive option for buy-to-let investors, particularly those with a long term view of passing it on to their children.

Since 2009, more super-prime properties have traded hands in London than in any other city – will the bubble burst? Camilla Dells speaks at the Bloomberg Markets Most Influential Summit in London October 2015.

New homes around London’s “Tech City” are selling fast but at prices that may deter the area’s workers. By Cherry Casey

Banks are setting up special departments for big loans for big houses. By Holly Thomas

What better way to hide your wealth than to chose a home with a drab exterior. By Liz Rolinson

Mayfair shoebox to Scottish estates – what would your imaginary winnings get you these days in the high-end property market? by Zoe Dare Hall.

London’s swankiest neighborhoods of Knightsbridge and Belgravia are becoming no-go areas for even the wealthiest property investors. By Neil Callanan

The booming market in prime central London has finally slowed—which means some discounts on top properties. By Ruth Bloomfield

Within 12 hours of Greece defaulting on repayment of part of a loan to the International Monetary Fund, a prime central London buying agency issued a press release claiming it was seeing a rise in Greek clients. by Graham Norwood

So which companies are feeling the worst of this knock-on effect? by Jamie Nimmo

Baffled by the market figures? Carol Lewis explains how you can use the housing data like a professional.

The U.K. luxury-home market’s predicted rebound from a national election slump is failing to materialize in London as buyers push back against record prices. By Patrick Gower and Neil Callanan

Once the stamping ground of the aristocracy, it long ago lost its lustre. Now its reinventing itself, and the young and affluent are flocking to live here. Anna White reports.

We were thrilled to take home Best Property Adviser at the third edition of the Wealth Adviser Awards, presented on 15 May in London’s Mayfair, which brought together the leading names in the wealth management industry to celebrate the achievements of the best performing wealth managers and advisers in 2014. The awards were determined by […]

Experts say there has been a spectacular rise of a number of Africans in London – including those from South Africa – investing in London property. One leading estate agency claims London property purchases from Africans has risen as much as 400 per cent in the last year. Our UK correspondent Dan Whitehead

The housing market in central London is attracting a new type of buyer. By Graham Norwood

Estate agents began to exchange on property worth millions of pounds as uncertainty over the election lifted. By Francesca Steele

David Cameron is not the only big winner in the UK election, the overseas property sector is also set to benefit, with surging sales anticipated by some industry figures. By Adrian Bishop

While the Square Mile is London’s historical home of trade and finance, Clerkenwell on its northern edge is clearly the design equivalent.

The cost of deals is falling but lenders are the most generous to new landlords with substantial deposits. By Meanie Wright

How the London property market compares to the rest of Britain. by Ruth Bloomfield

Affordable housing in Zone One is becoming something of a rarity in London, but look just south of the river and you’ll find one area in particular that’s still a decent prospect for first-time buyers looking for a good investment.

Spurred by soaring home prices in prime London, young professionals are buying in some of the capital’s grittiest—and notorious—neighborhoods. By Ruth Bloomfield

32 per cent of those aged 45 to 64 would consider investing some of their pension in a buy-to-let propertyWant to put your savings to work in the property market? Ruth Bloomfield asks the experts

A recent survey of homes sold in Greater London showed that 20 per cent achieve the asking price, with 29 per cent selling for more and 51 per cent for less.

A professional property buyer can save you money and take the stress out of the buying process, here are some of the tricks they use.

London — A gracious five-bedroom Victorian townhouse in a part of southwest London once associated with a faded shabbiness has benefited from the area’s considerable gentrification in recent years. By Nicola Venning

Forget Chelsea and Wandsworth, discover riverside living on London’s South Bank. By Christopher Middleton

Hot tubs are the latest must-have accessory for residents of London’s luxury penthouses, but not everyone’s ready to join the party by Zoe Dare Hall

Outspoken and consistently outperforming, Camilla Dell is founder and MD of one of London’s most successful acquisition agencies, Black Brick. Here in conversation with PrimeResi, she discusses everything from driving a hard bargain to difficult toy dogs…

Singapore investors may incur greater compliance costs but slow, cautious market poses buying opportunity. By Lee Meixian

Swimming pools turn into dance floors, walls retract to reveal bars… London’s luxury homes are being transformed into party pads. By Zoe Dare Hall

We are thrilled to have taken home gold in the “Best Buying Agent” category at the Estate Agency of the Year Awards 2014. The esteemed event, that celebrates the very best in estate agency, took place at The Lancaster Hotel on Friday, 5th December and was sponsored by The Times and The Sunday Times.

Wealthy Nigerians spent over $390 million on property in London over the last 3 years according to new research. They are the biggest spenders out of the whole Africa – who, as a continent, spent over $938 million.

The shake up of stamp duty was announced on Wednesday. By Jessie Hewiston.

Wealthy homeowners will be forced to slash house prices in central London following the Government’s sweeping stamp duty reform, experts have warned. by Anna White

Unfavourable exchange rates and prospective tax changes have not deterred international buyers from buying expensive properties in central London, say property finders, as many prepare for one of their busiest Christmases ever, despite low levels of housing stock. by Francesca Steele

It’s not wealthy Russians of Middle Eastern buyers who have bought the most prime central London property over the last few years, but Africans, says the Black Brick agency. By Adrian Bishop

The new pension rules will give many retirees a hefty lump sum to invest. Julia Flynn explains how to make your fortune in bricks and mortar

If you need to know who should manage your money, take care of your legal affairs, find you a house or protect your family, The Spear’s 500 has the answers.

David Robson identifies the London hot spots where prices look certain to keep on soaring

Northcote Road, Chiswick and Victoria Park are sought after by young families.
By Ruth Bloomfield

Creating a “proprietory fragrance” is the latest indulgence of luxury property developers, says Zoe Dare Hall

The demand for London property has meant that it has been deemed a sellers’ market in recent years, however, this is changing for property priced £2 million and above, a new analysis suggests.

House prices are falling in parts of London for the first time in two years as the capital’s “sealed bid frenzy” comes to an abrupt halt, a report says today. by Jonathan Prynn

As competition gets tougher for house-hunters, are sealed bids the answer to secure a fair sale? Julia Fynn

The tempo is slowing in major cities. While the mood is more confident in the rural areas, buyers are still in control, says Jessie Hewitson

With prices in London roaring ahead, everyone wants to predict the next investment hot spots. As prime becomes super-prime, previous unloved pockets take off. Ed Cumming investigates where to place your bets- whatever your budget.

As more and more families rely on live-in childcare, property developers have cottoned on to the need for a suite for that extra pair of hands. by Caroline McGhie

Whitehall’s postwar office blocks are being converted into housing, as the area benefits from the redevelopment of Victoria. by Ruth Bloomfield

Underground extensions are in vogue but get the right insurance first. By Anna Mikhailova

Many homebuyers are desperate to dive into the housing market, but it helps to keep your head amid the panic. By Donna Ferguson

Some developers are taking a novel approach to finding new building sites in crowded central London, where period homes are prized: They are adding penthouses on top of existing buildings. by Art Patnaude

Prepare to be the centre of attention by Andrea Dean

Bespoke aquaria may have the wow factor, but they can be as high maintenance as their celebrity owners, by Zoe Dare Hall

eprivateclient is the leading website and news service for private client practitioners, including lawyers, accountants, trustees and fee-based IFAs.

Car stacking systems or fingerprint recognition technology? A fizzy water tap or underfloor heating? High-techery is the future for luxury homes, but what buyers value most is security and practicality by Zoe Dare Hall

Local agents say the value of property in much of the area has risen up to 20 per cent over the past year by Graham Norwood

Local agents say the value of property in much of the area has risen up to 20 per cent over the past year by Graham Norwood

Why did so many commentators and analysts get it wrong this year? Perhaps we still don’t fully understand the strength of the forces behind the price growth we’ve been witnessing, says Camilla Dell

Thoughts of the coming year in the central London property market inspire a curious cocktail of optimism and fear for agents. The market is “on fire” by Zoe Dare Hall

The residential lustre of London’s grandest quarter is once again gleaming, says Lisa Freedman, sparked by a £500m investment from the Crown Estate and myriad redevelopments that are stealing Mayfair’s limelight

London Now Has More Homes on the Real-Estate Market Listed for £50 Million or More, Topping All Previous Price Records, Ruth Bloomfield reports

The issue of greedy house sellers asking buyers for more cash has spread outside the capital. Julian Knight reports

Fierce competition for property has brought back a much-loathed spectre of boomtime, and not just in London by Ed Cumming

We are absolutely delighted to have been awarded “Property Adviser of the Year” at the prestigious Spear’s Wealth Management Awards, held at The Savoy in London on Tuesday 29th October and presented by CNBC’s Ross Westgate.

In some areas, buyers are breaking down the door; in others sellers struggle to drum up any interest. We reveal the length of the queues by Alexandra Goss

Fashion shoots, hired Bentleys, new kitchens… There are no half measures when it’s time to sell, says Zoe Dare Hall

Get the pricing right, have your paperwork in order and proceed with caution if you want to sell in this unusual market by Jayne Dowle

Homebuyers fed up with gazumping in an increasingly competitive market may find buying property at auction an attractive alternative. Auction deals are concluded much more quickly, with contracts exchanged immediately; buyers also have peace of mind, knowing that they cannot be outbid after the auction. by Abhijeet Ahluwalia

Forget Mayfair, Park Lane and Piccadilly. A new wave of investors is redrawing London’s real-life Monopoly map. Christopher Middleton learns how to load the dice in your favour.

A mystery Brunei billionaire is investing £500 million into transforming Queensway. The once grand Bayswater throughfare is set to become the Covent Garden of west London, with new apartments, refurbished luxury homes and a retail boulevard. By David Spittles

Would you buy a house on Friday 13?

The collapse of Lehman Brothers, five years ago this weekend, had an immediate impact on a UK property market already reeling from the failure of Northern Rock a year earlier. By Tanya Powley

The location of the penthouse apartment is one of London’s most desirable says Nicola Venning

Wealthy Hongkongers are among those buying to renovate and rent, or sell on to other Asians. by Richard Warren

Secret homes with lush gardens lurk in city centres, says Lauren Thompson.

Secret homes with lush gardens lurk in city centres, says Lauren Thompson.

Demand is growing for high-end homes built or adapted to meet the religious needs of their owners. By Graham Norwood.

London’s historic St James’s quarter is ripe for investment, reports Lucy Warwick-Ching

Off-market property sales are on the rise, but is the chase for privacy, exclusivity and mystique costing buyers thousands of pounds? Graham Norwood reports…

Top-end locations like prime central London there is a phenomenon spoken about in hushed terms and seen rarely in the rest of the country: it is the ‘off-market’ property.

How can we tell that an area is on the cusp of becoming the next fashionable location? Alexander Garrett looks at a few of the telltale signs.

It’s the question every would-be property investor would like answered: how do you know when an area is genuinely on the way up, and not just being talked up by the local estate agents?

Demand for resi new-build is sky high and rising. CBRE revealed earlier today that the volume of such sales above £1,000 per square foot leapt by a whopping 240% over the last year and it’s been well-documented that South East Asian buyers have increasingly become a dominant force behind similarly remarkable figures, even shaping the way in which developers develop their schemes and marketeers market them.

Investors have rushed in to reserve luxury homes planned for the revamped Battersea Power Station, with 600 of the 800 properties already claimed after just five days on the market.

The buyers are the first to advance on the redevelopment of south-west London’s iconic behemoth where the price tag per square foot exceeds £1,000.

How can we tell that an area is on the cusp of becoming the next fashionable location? Alexander Garrett looks at a few of the telltale signs.

It’s the question every would-be property investor would like answered: how do you know when an area is genuinely on the way up, and not just being talked up by the local estate agents?

The UK is experiencing a sharp increase in the number of HNWs making the move from Eastern countries, particularly China. Chloe Barrow finds out why AS UNATTRACTIVE AS living in the UK may be — the faltering economy, the unpredictable weather, sky-high living costs and seemingly hefty income tax — there is no denying its global popularity as a homemaking destination.

As more wealthy Asians seek to buy property overseas as an investment or short-term residence, their private bankers are only too happy to help. The wealth management divisions of banks are reporting a brisk business in setting up short-term revolving loans for property purchases. The term is usually five years, renewable annually after that, and the interest rate is set individually in accordance with the borrower’s credit profile.

Anna Tyzack talks to the people tasked with finding and buying the finest properties.

Since the economic crisis, the famed and fortuned- or some of them, at least- have recoiled from the ostentatious displays of wealth synonymous with the property bubble that lasted until 2007.

As irresistable as the glossy brochures of large scale housing schemes may be, many home hunters might find a better deal if they focus on smaller, less high-profile developments. One attraction of these more humble projects is their “specialness” offering the chance to buy a “one off” flat, rather than clone of the other 199 apart-ments in the block.

Forget bunds, gilts or gold. London prime central residential property is emerging as the safest of all safe havens. If you want to know where those in the know put their personal savings, just talk to a real estate agent in London.

The Property Power List You can’t measure influence like you can cash in the bank. But the 25 entries on our list represent a cross-section of the most important people working in the selling and buying of British homes. It includes those who work in the property field day-to-day, as well as those who exert […]

Luxury-home prices in central London rose the most in 10months as overseas buyers seeking the safety o f one of the world’s most resilient property markets propelled demand, Knight Frank LLP said in a report today.

The residential property market in the Prime Central London (PCL) area will remain bullish in 2012, spurred by demand from foreign investors looking for a safe haven amidst uncertain global market conditions, said UK real estate agents and property consultants.

London’s luxury market saw prices increase for a 14th consecutive month in December 2011 as overseas property buyers slugged it out to buy “safer” investments and to compete in a sector that is beginning to suffer from a severe lack of stock, international agency Knight Frank LLP told OPP this week.

INVESTMENTS into strata-titled office, retail and industrial units in Singapore, as well as overseas homes, are set to pick up as investors search for alternative assets to buy following fresh government measures to cool the residential market here.

Proposals unveiled last week by the government to boost the housing market — including a scheme to help encourage the return of 95% mortgages — are, as ever, directed towards the new-build market, which is, at present, turning out less than half the number of properties required.

SINGAPOREAN buyers now account for around 10 per cent of all purchasers at ‘new-build’ properties in Central London, industry players say.
According to estimates from sales agents at major property firms, buyers from Asia make up about 40 per cent of all investors for new-build projects (that is, projects where construction hasn’t begun) in Central London.

It is a well rehearsed fact that, since the downturn, the rich are getting richer. According to a recent report by Merrill Lynch and Capgemini, the number of millionaires across the globe grew by 8.3 per cent to 10.9m in 2010. The total wealth of these individuals rose to $42,700bn, up from $40,700bn in 2007.

The Exchequer is losing millions in tax revenue as more top London homes are traded behind scenes through offshore companies. Demand for property in the best postcodes, much of it from foreign investors seeking a safe haven for their money, has continued to push up prices in prime London locations, bucking the national downward trend.

It used to be that when London did well, the rest of the country did well a year later. Not any more Graham Norwood reports on the UK’s “Two Markets” Like rolls of a camera film and coin-operated phone boxes in the street, the housing market has its share of nostalgic but outdated concepts. one […]

Vastu is the new feng shui – or, rather, the old one, given that some say the former inspired the latter.
… around 40 per cent of the world’s most expensive real estate is bought by Asian buyers for whom the “energy” of a house can be important – and vastu is already impacting on non-Asian design.

We were delighted to be interviewed for a recent radio programme on “The Voice of Russia” about why and where Russia’s billionaires are buying property.

LONDON: In a district in north-west London that is a favourite nesting ground for bankers from all over the world, a premium housing project suddenly found itself making distress sales after the recession. They sold one flat to an Indian.

Luxury-home prices in central London rocketed upwards at their fastest rate of increase for a year during May. The pound’s weakness on the international currency exchanges helped to encourage a large number of overseas buyers to compete for a declining number of properties for sale, according to agency Knight Frank LLP.

Luxury-home prices in central London rose at the fastest pace in a year in May as the pound’s weakness encouraged overseas buyers to compete for a declining number of properties for sale, Knight Frank LLP said.

LONDON — It’s not usually until summer is in full swing that wealthy Arabs descend upon London, but this year, along with the unusually warm weather, the rich have come early. As the Arab spring sweeps across the region, Middle Easterners seeking refuge for their cash are snapping up million-pound properties in the British capital.

Chinese individuals are growing in wealth and stature. With this rapid increase there is a growing need for them to diversify their wealth. Lower rents and property values in the UK has made London an increasingly interesting prospect.

From the outside, Carrick Villa looks like a perfect neighbour for the rest of the architecture fringing Regent’s Park in central London.
The villa may be just two storeys, detached and with four bedrooms, but it is at one with the terraces laid out nearly 200 years ago by John Nash.

Arab businessmen, some connected with Middle Eastern regimes toppled by popular uprisings in January and last month, are buying London “boltholes”.
London estate agents Kay & Co has sold two homes to Middle Eastern businessmen since a popular revolt in Tunisia triggered anti-government uprisings across the Middle East.

…has begun to cool, and prices have started to flatten out, the rental market continues to be extremely active, which is good news for buy-to-let landlords and investors. The rental market has significantly changed over the last two years.

International buyers account for a considerable proportion of those spending money in London on property, from Hampstead to Mayfair.
For centuries, London has been a magnet for incomers from all over the world. The 17th century brought Huguenots, Sephardic Jews and the Irish; the 18th saw influxes from the Americas; and the revolutions of the late 19th century brought refugees from across Europe.

Home values plummet throughout the country as mortgages dry up, with only London’s high-end real estate escaping the trend
A mortgage lending squeeze will result in property prices falling across Britain, but London’s most desirable residential districts will be least affected, analysts say.

Scope for capital appreciation and popularity among overseas investors drive demand for units in UK capital’s posh neighbourhoods.
Even the world’s top property markets have their ups and downs. Despite central London’s reputation as one of the safest property markets around, the wealthy residents and property owners of Mayfair and Knightsbridge in July experienced a phenomenon the rest of the world knows only too well: negative equity.

The London property market has long attracted buyers from around the world. If we take a look back to when the market last crashed in the 1990’s, the crash was much more drawn out than the price falls we have witnessed this time around.

Louise Beale interviews Camilla Dell for Bloomberg News, reporting on the use of buying agents to secure homes in the central London residential property market, where demand outstrips supply.

London has long been one of the world’s truly global centres. The financial powerhouse of Europe, the UK’s capital is home to some of the most prestigious real estate around and has been a consistent location of choice for investors in the Gulf looking to put their money into overseas property.

A Government shake-up of house price indices may make it easier for buyers and sellers to read the market and know what their house is worth.

The number of nationalities buying property in London has risen by two-thirds since 2008. The pound’s weakness enabled buyers from 51 nations to buy property in the British capital in June. Chinese and Vietnamese are among the new investors.

Despite a slowdown of the property market in many parts of the UK, there are always areas where competition for properties is more intense. London is the obvious example but there are others – anywhere with tight planning restrictions and where owners tend to hang onto their properties rather than selling them and ‘moving up the ladder’.

Buried beyond the wrought iron gates and tree-lined façades of mansions in fashionable locales of prime London lie the real gatekeepers of the ultra-wealthy: the guards hidden among the shadows; the microphones, pressure pads and sensor beams that criss-cross the gardens…

Investors in the stock market, or in assets such as art or wine, rarely hesitate to seek professional advice, so it is hard to understand why there are investors in the property market who fail to seek proper guidance – especially as it is likely to be one of the biggest financial transactions of their lifetime.

Summer is here, the much derided home information packs are gone, house prices are slowly returning to their 2007 peak and you have decided to put your home on the market. This time, however, it is different – you have recession wary and double-dip conscious buyers to contend with.

Something we have all learned over the last two years, and most recently with the election result, is that nothing is ever certain. The mantra ‘don’t put all your eggs in one basket’ is now perhaps more relevant than ever, particularly where money matters are concerned.

The question of what makes the best kind of investment is one that we are regularly asked by our clients – both domestic and overseas. In general our clients are inclined to favour new build on the basis that this is a style they are both familiar and comfortable with.

Looking back over 2009, despite the huge economic downturn, it was an unusually strong year for property prices. Prices rose substantially across the UK and recent Nationwide figures show the annual rate of growth has now risen to 8.6 per cent, up from 5.9 per cent in December — the highest rate of growth for two years.

Most homes are bought and sold on the open market, using an estate agent whose job it is to get as many serious viewers as possible through the door. Sellers put up with a stream of strangers – scrutinising the plaster, opening the cupboards and making comments about the decor – because they know they have to in order to achieve a sale, hopefully at a decent price.

The election could bring house sales to a halt at what is traditionally the busiest time of year. Graham Norwood offers tips for sellers and finds bargains for buyers.

Supremely wealthy, an Arab businessman is being shown round a mansion on The Bishops Avenue, the famous billionaire’s row in north London. It is an eye-watering property: it offers the ultimate in bespoke, knee-deep luxury, from the latest in security to lavish leisure facilities, intelligent domestic systems and, of course, a trophy location.

As a professional consultancy, our role is to guide our clients and managing expectations is an important part of this process. Some of our investment clients have a clear focus and vision of what they are trying to achieve; others are happy to be led and guided by us.

LONDON — A three-bedroom, 2,300-square-foot apartment recently went on the market in London’s fashionable Eaton Square and an Italian buyer immediately snapped it up for £5.65 million — a surprisingly quick sale in what has been a flat market.

Sit tight: prices aren’t likely to rise any time soon, although not all of us will fare badly. Graham Norwood predicts the winners and losers of the year ahead.

A large proportion of the client base of Black Brick Property Solutions, one of London’s leading independent buying agents, comes from the Middle East, and one issue the company regularly comes across is the fact that these buyers tend to have a total aversion to buying property with a short-lease, and will usually only consider properties that are freehold or a share of freehold.

Purchasing a property from a developer is never an easy thing. Jeremy Hazlehurst asks three experts for their buying advice…

Most people want the dust to have settled on their new home by Christmas. And this year there’s even more incentive to complete a move before December 25.

A surge in the capital’s prime central housing market is driven by overseas buyers taking advantage of the weak pound and low prices.

Despite recent excitement about price rises, the truth is that this seeming ‘improvement’ in the market is a symptom of a distinct lack of supply. On a day-to-day basis we are seeing the result of this unbalanced ratio between the number of buyers and the amount of housing stock available – one of which is the noted increase in sealed bid situations.

Britain’s curb on banking bonuses may stunt the recovery in London’s luxury-housing market by wiping out the windfalls that let buyers afford big mortgages, according to property brokers Knight Frank LLP and Savills Plc.

Luxury-home prices in central London rose 4 percent in the third quarter from the previous three months as buyers competed for fewer properties, Savills Plc said.

Residential property prices in the UK have bottomed out with all the signs pointing to a stabilisation, according to the latest review but a two tier market is emerging.

WHICH London neighbourhood contains the most fashionable street in the whole of Europe, according to Vogue? No, not swanky Knightsbridge, well-heeled Chelsea or even super-hip Dalston.

Adding extensions is a popular choice for those who need more space but don’t want to sell their house.
It will make your home more spacious, more easily sellable and possibly even more beautiful. An extension is one of the most valuable improvements you can make to your property, so long as you do it properly, accurately — and legally.

There have been mutterings this week that the house prices have already hit the bottom Nick Candy clearly things they have; estate agents in central London believe prices could have reached their lowest point as early as November last year. So does this mean we have all missed our chance to cash in on the downturn?

Improve, not move is the mantra of our recessionary times, especially for those with a Sarah Beeny-esque penchant for making bags of money from bricks and mortar. We are constantly assailed with advice about what to do to boost the value of our home, but what changes push prices down and make a property less attractive to a future would-be buyer?

The first six months of 2009 has brought mixed result for global property markets but with tentative signs of growing confidence there is talk of signs of recovery.

Overseas property buyers have rarely had it so good in Britain. Many are trawling London for bargains where developers have brought some very special homes on to the market.

Millions of us are glued each week to The Apprentice to see who will incur the wrath of Sir Alan.
For Camilla Dell, who runs London’s largest independent property-finding agency, Black Brick Property Solutions, watching the show is a reminder of why she started her own business.

Falling valuations and desperate owners all point to property bargains. But, Graham Norwood reports, canny buyers can cut the price further.

Phil Spencer’s home-finding firm has gone bust, developers have downed tools worldwide and The Apprentice hopefuls include an estate agent seeking a career change. It doesn’t sound an ideal time to try to make a profit from property, does it? Yet we may look back on spring 2009 as the moment when we should have acted.

Buyers with cash in hand are in the best position to take advantage of the current climate. ‘Vendors are more likely to accept a lower offer on their property from a cash buyer than a higher one that’s subject to obtaining a mortgage,’ says Camilla Dell of London buying agency Black Brick Property Solutions. ‘Cash buyers are king.’

THE news this week that Garrington – the property search firm owned by Phil Spencer of television’s Location, Location, Location fame – has gone into administration, might lead some to believe that the age of the buying agent is at an end. But that couldn’t be further from the truth.

London home sellers are accepting offers of up to 30 per cent below their asking prices, and Hong Kong buyers are among those taking advantage of the deep discounts and the added attraction of a collapse in the value of the British pound.

LONDON — After a go-go decade, Great Britain is suffering from a sudden, severe financial hangover. Now, however, the party has kicked into high gear for another group: foreign visitors and investors who are descending on London to take advantage of the plunge in the local currency and snap up high-end property, luxury cars and designer clothing at a discount.

Could the bottom of the market be in sight? For those ready to trade up, that dream home is fast becoming affordable – and canny house-hunters are out looking for bargains.

The dramatic slide of sterling against the euro and other currencies since the start of last year has created big winners and big losers in the world of residential property. In the former category are international buyers in the UK, and especially in London, who are combining falling prices with improved exchange rates to secure deals that cost them 40-50 per cent less in their own currencies than they would have a year ago.

Despite gloomy figures from many industry bodies, Black Brick are predicting that 2009 could present some tantalising opportunities.

Although it seems that the UK residential property market is in freefall, there remains a demand for prestige London properties, especially amongst international clients, says Camilla Dell, managing director of Black Brick Property Solutions. She outlines how private banks can benefit from working alongside property search agents to offer clients a complete package for their financial and property needs.

As women rise meteorically through the ranks in business, competing for the US Presidency, becoming Prime Minister of the UK and other countries, occupying senior posts in medicine, science, the literary arena, corporate business and indeed without limits in any field, we look at some of the successful women in the property world.

The Government’s stamp duty incentive to encourage first-time and low-paid buyers back to the housing market is one week old – and it may be working, up to a point. It is too early to judge whether there are already more buyers, but a few sellers are cutting asking prices to ensure that their properties fall inside the new threshold, where homes at £175,000 and below are exempt from stamp duty.

With property prices in London softening, City high net worths are using specialist search agents to find bargain properties – before they hit the market.

Throwing in a free Mercedes with the sale of a luxury penthouse is nothing new, but it is getting more common. Against the backdrop of a rapidly weakening market, developers are having to work harder than ever to sell – often resorting to incentives that if it took place in the City might raise eyebrows.

With the gap between the super-prime and mainstream markets widening, so too is the differential between property types, says a new study.
As the number of property transactions fall, the quality of property becomes ever more crucial. This focus on ‘best in class’ will play a major role over the coming months, with ‘average’ property forced into greater discounts than their higher quality counterparts.

Like Oxford’s spires, British fee-paying schools evoke notions of educational perfection. For many affluent non-Britons, names such as Eton and Harrow share a pedigree with buildings such as Buckingham Palace and St Paul’s cathedral: traditional British institutions that cannot be out-sourced to China.

NEVER has there been so much speculation about the construction of a block of flats as that surrounding One Hyde Park, London’s most expensive apartment complex.

To buy or not to buy? That is the question many Hong Kong investors watching the British property market’s slide are asking themselves.

Rich international purchasers continue to underpin the London residential property market, according to Black Brick LLP, a specialist search agent that often works with private banks to source property for clients.

Top developers, designers and architects carry as much cachet in the minds of luxury home buyers as top designer labels, and their creations have price tags to match.

“There’s more stock across every sector but good properties are still incredibly hard to find. These are apartments on a first floor or above in the best buildings, or houses on the most desirable side of the square or street in sought-after areas,”

Tax changes are creating an exodus of foreign residents. Jessie Hewiston meets one American who has decided to get up and go.
All over London, the bags are packed and the tickets are booked. The ‘For Sale signs’ have gone up and the removal vans are parked out the front. The non-doms are on the move.

First, take advantage of today’s buyer’s market, which may allow you time to view and revisit all properties in your price range.

London still has the most expensive real estate in the world, with top-whack properties going for twice the price here as in New York, Hong Kong and thriving Moscow, according to research by Hamptons International.

“Women are now arguably being paid as much as or more than men in the professional world. Successful female bankers, hedge fund managers and saleswomen – particularly women in property – are creating a new single woman status, “says Camilla Dell

 

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Black Brick is a leading, independent buying agency, providing expert advice to buyers in London, the Home Counties and the South East. As Buying Agents, we only ever act for the buyer, giving you an unfair advantage and putting you ahead of the competition when it comes to securing the right property.

We would be delighted to hear from you to discuss your own property requirements. For a non-obligatory consultation, please contact us:

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