London’s prime central market is turning around at last according to the chief executive of Belgravia estate agency Henry & James.
James Bailey writes that after exchanging on four properties in December, the company agreed terms on two further properties on the first two working days of 2018.
“People are no longer sitting on the fence. We have received enquiries from a broad cross-section of buyers, both from Britain and overseas, including the USA and Italy” he says.
He says that although many analysts are not expecting a significant uplift in London property prices until 2020, the smart money is on investing now.
“One of the most striking features of the past twelve months is the way that, despite the continued Brexit discussions, the stock market has gone from strength to strength. The UK is still a safe haven and the central London housing market remains what it has been for years – a blue-chip investment” he says.
He says that although the increase in stamp duty on properties above around £937,000 - introduced in late 2014 and not reversed, despite lobbying - “investors are now resigned to the fact that stamp duty is a reality and not going to change.”
Bailey believes the same applies to Brexit. “Sensible buyers are not letting themselves be distracted by the political froth. In general, for many, life has moved on from Brexit” he claims.