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Good question! 2020 is not a good year for the global economy, or for that matter the property market in London. That goes without saying. The Coronavirus or the Covid19 pandemic has been a major wealth destroyer, not only in the UK, but across the world.
How on earth is one supposed to sell property in London fast at such a time?
Well, it’s not easy, but certainly not impossible. London is after all the #1 city in Europe, with due respect to Berlin and Paris. There will always be a huge demand for properties in London from overseas investors, regardless of the economic circumstances.
Overseas investors have always been the movers and shakers of the City of London’s high-end property market. It is estimated they were responsible for 55 per cent of sales in some of the most expensive neighbourhoods of the city.
So where are overseas investors buying properties in London?
Pretty much everywhere in London, according to the Telegraph. But first, we must understand exactly who these overseas investors are and why they are buying.
Generally, overseas buyers fall into three categories.
#1. Wealthy immigrants who have recently moved to London and wish to settle down in the UK. Every fall in the property market is something they look forward to, as it allows them to buy a decent house or apartment in some of the most fancied areas of London at a price they feel comfortable with. They are usually immigrants from Russia, India, China, Brazil, South Africa and other emerging economies.
#2. Parents with children studying in schools and universities in the UK. These are generally highly successful business executives, media personalities, politicians, bureaucrats, celebrities, hedge fund managers or those from the upper echelons of the society, such as cash rich Arabs, Chinese, Russians and Indians.
#3: Sophisticated property investors from abroad who know the overseas property market inside out. They have earned a fortune by buying overseas properties at a low and selling at a high. They are the sort who take advantage of every fall in property prices. These cash rich investors have become very active post-Covid19, and have been buying properties across London, Paris, Berlin, Madrid and Barcelona. They pay cash up front and don’t take too long to complete the purchase if they like what they see.
Overseas investors like London because it is much easier to buy a property here than in, say, Paris or Sydney. The British government welcomes foreign investors and offers one of the most business friendly/investor friendly environments one can get anywhere in the world.
Further, real estate developers and financial institutions in the UK don’t mind going the extra distance to attract overseas investors. This is why London is seen as a safe haven in the overseas property market especially at a time when much of the world is struggling with the repercussions of Covid19 and the fallout on the global economy.
Which is why…
Demand has shot up. A top executive from Knight Frank, a major real estate company said, “Enquiry activity has been extraordinary. I’ve never been contacted by so many people that want to live outside London.”
“We’re probably seeing pent-up demand come to the market, quite a lot of people seeing now as an interesting time to buy and others viewing it as an interesting time to trade up the property ladder,” a real estate insider added.
“We have absolutely seen an uplift in business, but that could be things that were delayed. We had deals in the pipeline at the beginning of March and everything stopped at the end of March and those are kicking off again. Activity has returned to the market and I’m looking forward to seeing over the coming months the true reflection of what’s happening,” Ms. Atuksha Poonwassie, a London-based real estate professional explained.
Well, clearly you cannot do it yourself. Could a local estate agent do it for you? No, as they wouldn’t have the right connections that could get them within the hearing shot of cash rich overseas investors.
You should consider hiring the services of a reputable overseas property specialist with a massive international network, who has worked with such wealthy investors from abroad in the past. Do contact us to know more.