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Hong Kong, UAE, and Indian buyers push prime London property market to busiest in over five years

Lucy Harley-McKeown
·2-min read
For sale sign
In Mayfair, London, apartments priced from £6m to £12m and houses up to £20m are being sought after by buyers. Photo: Getty

Prime Central London (PCL) residential property market is the busiest it has been for over five years, with buyers from Hong Kong, India and the UAE leading interest in buying luxury properties.

According to data from Dexters, a chartered surveyor and estate agent, the largest numbers of overseas buyers originate from Hong Kong, Singapore, the United Arab Emirates, India, America and Italy. These are cash buyers, with no need for mortgage financing.

Since the UK lockdown ended PCL sales agreed over £2m ($2.6m) from mid June to mid August 2020 were 85% up on the same period in 2019.

Alongside this, London market lettings transactions for values over £1,250 per week were up 41%, compared to the same period in 2019.

Domestic UK applicants are dominated by high-net-worth buyers and tenants working in finance and law.

The survey, which reviewed sales and lettings deals in Mayfair, Marylebone, Fitzrovia, Covent Garden, Westminster, Chelsea, Knightsbridge, South Kensington, Kensington, Notting Hill, Westbourne Grove and Hyde Park, showed buyers are looking for homes with outside space.

Survey found that across PCL apartments with large balconies or outside terraces priced from £850,000 up to £3m are in high buyer demand

Richard Page, marketing director at Dexters said: “Currently the PCL residential property market is the busiest it has been for over five years.

READ MORE: Short lets buoy London's rental market

“Due to the pent-up demand that surfaced after the lockdown and people choosing to holiday in the UK this year rather than overseas, there is a particularly strong market this summer.

Our offices are seeing that buyers are currently willing to pay a premium for homes that benefit from their own private entrance or offer a large terrace or garden.”

In Mayfair the value of the most desirable homes was significantly higher than other London addresses, with apartments priced from £6m to £12m and houses up to £20m being sought after by buyers.

PCL apartment purchasers are typically young couples in their early 30s to early 40s without children, or buyers in their mid-to-late 20s with funding from the “Bank of Mum and Dad,” Dexters said.

The data suggest that the government’s stamp duty holiday, aimed at revitalising the market following coronavirus lockdowns, is helping support the market in London.