Overseas Buying Power

Written by Andrew Ellinas LL.B.

Friday, 12 March 2010

The pound's plummeting value, down 25 per cent since the beginning of the financial crisis, is paradoxically good news for the central London property market.

Overseas buyers and investors are taking full advantage of their new buying power and are out in force, and the decline has also benefited the City boys who bill their international clients in dollars and euros but spend the money back home.

A Room With A View

Written by Andrew Ellinas LL.B.

Monday, 1 March 2010

It is views like this that makes Regent’s Park such a glorious place to live.  They are unique in central London, because the streets are so quiet. Apartments with views on Hyde Park also look out over major trunk routes.

This particular view is from the third floor balcony of an apartment in Cambridge Gate that Sandfords has just brought to the market. It is west-facing so the owners can relax with a glass of chilled something and watch the sun set.

Next morning, they can have breakfast on the even larger east-facing balcony and bask in the rising sun. What more could anyone want?  Property details

Office of Fair Trading Misses The Point

Written by Andrew Ellinas LL.B.

Monday, 1 March 2010

The OFT’s latest annual market study included a demand for the cost of selling property to come down.  I am all for that. But the OFT chooses the easy target and blames the cripplingly high cost of property transactions on estate agents commission.

Now, I am not going to say that estate agents have a moral right to a fat commission.  Far from it – commission rates are set by competition in a free market.  Furthermore, commission rates in the UK are generally extremely low – on the Continent, fees of six to ten per cent are commonplace.

A House Beautiful

Written by Andrew Ellinas LL.B.

Wednesday, 3 February 2010

Estate agents are notorious for going over the top in describing the houses they sell, though strangely the owners of the houses in question never tell us to tone our prose down.

But a house we have just been instructed to sell deserves all the superlatives I can throw into the brochure. It is truly fabulous and I would just love to live in it myself.

The house is in one of the prettiest locations on the planet--St Katharine's Precinct on the western side of Regent's Park. It is a little enclave of houses built round the Danish Church. It was designed in 1826 to look a bit like the quad of an Oxbridge college. Even the church looks like a miniature King’s College chapel.

Market Update

Written by Andrew Ellinas LL.B.

Tuesday, 2 February 2010

Well, the stamp duty holiday has ended and the world is still turning. In central London, of course, very few properties come into the lower stamp duty brackets so for us it was more of a long weekend than a proper holiday.

The Council of Mortgage Lenders reported that the amount lent on property nationally in December jumped by 14 per cent, which may reflect buyers attempting to push through their purchased before stamp duty went back up again. CML economist Paul Samter is quoted as saying that the January figures may well be boosted by buyers who failed to make the deadline but were too deep into the transaction to pull out.

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