Property news digest 28 Oct-3 Nov 2013

Winds of change sweeping through the London property market

That being a Londoner makes you live longer, is just one of the many reasons why exceptionally high and booming house prices haven’t scared us away from the capital, yet. Instead, a trend that started at the higher end of the premium house market is now spreading downwards – the “whisper sales”, or off-market property sales. It attracts sellers by providing them with anonymity and a minimal number of viewings, and the buyers pay for exclusivity.

Mere mortals haven’t been left out either, with Help to Buy scheme having ignited property ownership dreams. The other thing that has been ignited by the scheme is a fear of another property bubble, with a skyrocketing House Price Index as a strong indicator, not to mention the announcement that British lenders have approved 66,735 mortgages in September, the biggest monthly total since February 2008.

The £600,000 ceiling of Help to Buy means that potential buyers find themselves squeezed out of their beloved Islingtons, Claphams and Dulwiches of this world. The resulting overspills from these areas are raising the popularity of Hackney (31% price increase), Peckham (17.6%), Brixton (17.1%), and other up-and-coming London areas. Meanwhile the ultra-expensive (£1,000/sq ft and over) central London properties are being snatched up as investment by the Russian, Chinese and Middle Eastern super-rich according to an analysis by Deutsche Bank, prompting the UK government to consider the imposition of a new tax on wealthy foreign buyers.

London property serving as a new global reserve currency makes the idea of “lights-out London” not so far-fetched. Thankfully, at illustreets, we realise that nobody wants to live in a ghost-town, so when you explore an area, if it has many empty dwellings, we tell you; just look under the Land & Housing tab.

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Katya Koval

Co-Founder at illustreets
Katya is a law graduate working in technology in the financial industry. She has contributed to the design and the development of She gets excited about profound insights and disheartened by the shortage of time for books. She is always eager to see the good and dislikes criticism just for the sake of it. She loves food and thinks that Waitrose is a food museum.

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