The London property market is hotly debated and reviewed to an extensive degree. It is a market that is examined inside and outside of London and many people have a very strong opinion on the property market in London. At Gareth James, we are London property market specialists and as estate agents, we know the difficulties that many people face in buying London property. This is why the intention of London Mayor Sadiq Khan to introduce a “first dibs” policy in London is extremely interesting.
A lot of people say that something has to be done to help people buy property in the capital. The main issue is what steps should be taken. There are many calls for more affordable housing to be introduced into the market but with private companies seeing the profits on offer for high-end property developments, you can see why these companies try to avoid that line of development.
You will find that many people don’t like the Government or local authorities interfering in the property market, but such is the state of the current market, you can see why there is need for regulation and assistance. With respect to the first dibs policy, it is proposed that it would run like this:
· The initial stage would see property being made available to Londoners
· The second stage would see property being made available to UK residents
· The third and final stage would see property being made available to everyone
It is important that there are clear rules and guidelines in place so the definitions for each stage are well known and adhered to, but this is certainly an interesting proposal. While there is a belief that foreign investors are snapping up expensive property in the capital for investment purposes, there are findings that suggest foreign buyers are operating at all levels of the London market.
An interview Sadiq Khan undertook with the Times suggested that more than 50% of properties priced between £200,000 and £500,000 were being purchased by foreign investors. There was also a separate story in the Daily Mail which suggests 70% of foreign investors have no intention of living in the London property they have purchased. This is far from being the only reason it is difficult for people to buy property in the capital, but it is a factor.
Whether this change goes far enough to have any impact on the local property market remains to be seen but there is a movement for changes in the market. There will obviously be people and parties that don’t agree with this step, believing that there are other ways in which the London property market can be invigorated.
At Gareth James, we are very interested in the proposals and the impact that they could have on the market. We also aim to stay in touch with the latest property news and developments, so if you are keen to follow this story, make sure you stay in touch with Gareth James.