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United Kingdom : Brexit opens the door to foreign investors in luxury property.

Currency volatility sparked by Junes Brexit vote could see overseas investors make major profits by continuing to invest and store their wealth in London luxury homes.

Sterling drop means overseas buyers can now secure prime homes at 10% discount; Negotiating a bargain now could see overseas buyers make further gains of 5 to 10 percent when the market recovers; Upturn in sales would boost the property industry, developers and the Treasury.

Currency volatility sparked by Junes Brexit vote could see overseas investors make major profits by continuing to invest and store their wealth in London luxury homes. Current market conditions are ripe for opportunistic foreign investors, which could create a welcome increase in the level of sales enquiries received by London developers and give a lift to the British property sector, as well as a boost for the Treasury, says Arcadis Mark Cleverly.

Since the result of the EU referendum was announced, sterling has fallen relative to the euro by 8 percent, and 9.5 percent against the US dollar with further falls forecast before the end of the year. Buyers from Europe, Asia, and the Middle East are now well placed to secure bargains in the London prime housing market by exploiting both a softening of property values and a favourable currency arbitrage.

Furthermore, with some Banks forecasting a recovery of sterling during 2017 and agents predicting some recovery of prime London house prices during 2018, those investing 2 million now may see their investments rise by as much as 250,000 in value.

Although the appetite for opportunistic investment will depend on forecasts of further depreciation of sterling in the short term, the London prime market could soon see another influx of foreign investment. This would provide a timely boost for the UK construction sector in the long term, particularly if increased competitiveness is also matched by government funding for infrastructure, helping to underpin confidence in the new build sector.

Mark Cleverly, Arcadis UK head of commercial development, said: The market volatility weve seen as a result of the Brexit vote is, perhaps ironically, going to re-open the luxury property market to overseas investors, as several of our clients have already reported a bounce in enquiries following the referendum. This influx of investment coming into the UK could boost British construction again in the future as well as giving shot in the arm to the Treasury through increasing stamp duty receipts.

For a market that, in some areas, has been stuttering for some time due to ongoing stamp duty hikes taking the steam out of buyer demand, the buying opportunity presented by recent events could be a big plus. More buyers means a more buoyant market which can only be good news for the industry.

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Publication:Mena Report
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Jul 8, 2016
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