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October 2019 Newsletter

Here is our latest round up of the current talking points in the London property market.

Europe’s giant – 22 Bishopsgate, when finished, will have 62 storeys, stand 912ft tall and will be Europe’s tallest office. It will overshadow the Gherkin, the Walkie-Talkie and the Cheesegrater. Building works are due to finish later this year and it is envisaged that the building will be fully occupied by 2024.

Power Station update – with all of phase 1, 90% of Phase 2 and 67% of Phase 3 already sold, Battersea Power Station has been a popular offering, with 50% of sales being to UK residents. Phase 3 is due to complete in 2021, when Apple is also due to move in. Elsewhere on the Nine Elms site, we can confirm that the Dutch Embassy has sold its site next to the American Embassy. The new owner, Dominvs, has planning for a hotel led scheme. (PW).

Equity Release on the rise – For many years equity release schemes have often been synonymous with costly schemes overseen by unregulated and at times unscrupulous advisors. As the industry is now regulated by the FCA, there has been an increase in more cost-effective schemes, which are becoming increasingly popular with our older clients. In brief, the over 55s who own their own properties or have a small mortgage can release between 19-50% of their property’s value. Under the new FCA rules, members of the Equity Release Council must abide by its “no equity guarantee” – borrowers and their heirs will never owe more than the value to their home, no matter how long they live. Interest rates on the average plan are 4.22%. (FT)

Sloane Street is to undergo a £40m revamp with new wider pavements, new seating and small public gardens. Works will commence in the Autumn and last up to 3 years. (ES)

Retirement homes on the increase – The capital has a shortage of quality retirement properties and with increasing numbers of retirees moving back into London there is no shortage of demand. One of the fastest growing age brackets for London are the over 60s which have increased by 21% since 2010. Two of the latest developments aimed at retirees are in Fulham and Kensington, built by Riverstone Living. They have plans to build a portfolio of 10 schemes in total. (PW & FT)

Hot Housing – The latest “Hot Housing Index” has just been released. Locations across the UK were ranked based on the assessment of several criteria including local amenities, crime, schooling and public transport. This year only three London locations came in the top 100. Wandsworth came highest at #20 in the overall rankings, up 3 spots from last year. The only other two London spots to make the top 100, which was headed by Aberdeen, Inverurie and Edinburgh, were Twickenham at #72 (down 28 spots from last year) and the City of London at #93 (up 14 spots from last year). (PW)

Ladywell & Brockley – we often mention the allure of south London for the under 35s looking to buy their first property, with or without help from the bank of Mum and Dad. Goldsmith’s College has made Peckham and East Dulwich prime spots in the last few years. Demand is now moving slightly further southeast to neighbouring Ladywell & Brockley. (Timeout)

We very much hope that you find this update concise and informative. Please do feel free to contact us if you would like to discuss any aspect of the London property market.

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Jane Wood
Founding partner