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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

Prime London new build sales plummet even before SDLT surcharge

The latest figures from investment consultancy London Central Portfolio suggests new build sales have plummeted in prime areas of the capital - and that’s before the three per cent stamp duty surcharge being proposed if the Conservatives win the General Election.

New builds are often favoured by overseas buy to let investors because of their relatively low maintenance and higher level of amenities.

However, in prime central London the consultancy says that in the month of October: “Transactions fell a further 7.5 per cent over the month to 260 for the year, representing just 8.1 per cent of all sales.”

LCP says prices are on average down 8.6 per cent of new builds in prime central London, although it says that in theory this could reverse as major new schemes come to the market and set higher asking figures.

“Activity in prime central London appears on hold as Brexit gets pushed back again and political uncertainty prevails” suggests Naomi Heaton, chief executive of London Central Portfolio.

Contrast that with outside of London, where the new build sector is performing relatively strongly according to LCP data.

In October new  build prices increased on average by 0.5 per cent and transactions rose marginally by 0.4 per cent.

“Annually, this has led to a 5.8 per cent price increase and 4.7 per cent increase in sales. As a result, the new build share of the market has increased to 12.6 per cent with a price premium over old stock of 18.3 per cent. This has been buoyed by the ‘Help to Buy’ scheme which provides a mortgage top up for first time buyers” says LCP.

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