In the past few years, London has become even more of a hotspot for overseas investors. Since the UK announced its planned departure from the European Union, we have seen a surge in overseas investors on a mission to get their hands on expensive properties in London, while on the other hand, many domestic buyers have shown less interest in the capital, with some even withdrawing before exchange. As the pound fell as a result of Brexit, foreign investors have been jumping at the opportunity to invest in the capital’s real estate market ever since. So, why exactly is London a property hotspot for overseas investors?
Is Most Property in London a Traditional Investment?
The trend of traditional investment opportunities is not set to go anywhere for the foreseeable future at least, and for many overseas investors, good areas such as Ealing are considered to be as profitable as always. In addition, many overseas purchases like to own a building that has some history attached to it, which is certainly the case with many properties in the capital city.
Has the Most Expensive Residential Property in London Become Cheaper?
In 2016, the fall of the pound against the Euro and the U.S. dollar, coupled with a reduction in the value of some of London’s most expensive properties, allowed buyers to purchase homes at around 50% fewer rates compared to just a few years before. In June 2019, surveys showed that, today, London is cheaper for ex-pats to live in compared to earlier – a change that is largely thanks to the fluctuation of currency and the strength of the UK economy despite Brexit. London now has a dominant share of U.S. corporate investment in European cities, which has led to a huge increase in demand for prime London property for relocating U.S entrepreneurs, business owners and employees – particularly those working in the technology sector.
Where Can You Find the Most Expensive Property in London?
There are several properties located in London that are among some of the most expensive homes in the world. While many of these have been snapped up by overseas investors, some are owned by anonymous homeowners or even celebrities. Most of these homes are in the prestigious areas of the capital.
Where is the Most Expensive Residential Property in London?
- One Hyde Park, 100, Knightsbridge: The most expensive property sold in 2018, a flat on this prestigious development was snapped up for an eye-watering £160m. This luxurious collection of homes offers a wide range of exclusive benefits to residents including a 24/7 concierge, complete access to Mandarin Oriental services, an on-site cinema and spa, a fully-equipped gym and a virtual experience room.
- Cresswell Place, Kensington and Chelsea: In one of the most prestigious and sought-after neighbourhoods in London, this five-bedroomed house sold for a massive £21.6m in April 2018. Kensington and Chelsea might be the smallest borough in London, yet the affluent area has the fourth-highest population density in the entire UK.
- The Belvedere, Hammersmith and Fulham: The Belvedere is an exclusive development with flats benefiting from private parking, a concierge, and local amenities just a short distance away. The development was built in 1986 and sits on the riverside in the Chelsea Harbour development. Close to the busy streets of Fulham and Chelsea and offering some of the best views of the Thames in the city, it’s no surprise that flats here go for up to £9.1m.
- Parkside, Merton: Being so close to Wimbledon Common, this area offers an almost-rural setting that becomes a hotspot for stars during tennis season. This is a freehold detached house situated in Parkside, the more historic part of this area and known as ‘millionaire’s row’ to locals. The detached home sold for a massive £15.25m and homes here sell for an average of £10m.
- Park Road, Richmond Upon Thames: On Park Road, a massive 6-bedroom detached house sold for £8.5m in 2018. Arguably the finest road in Richmond, Park Road has one of the enviable postcodes in London, right on the doorsteps of Friars Stile Road. The home balances stunning Victorian architecture with sleek modern interiors and a large, walled rear garden that’s rare to find in the capital.
- Warwick Square, City of Westminster: Constructed in the 1840s, Warwick Square is home to several Grade II listed buildings. Today, this historic square is a prime location in London, with a significant number of stunning period conversion apartments. Located in the upscale Pimlico area, homes in Warwick Square have reached up to a staggering £14m.
Britain’s Most Expensive Property in Mayfair, London – Who Owns It?
While overseas investors have certainly snapped up a lot of London’s most expensive real estate, the same cannot be said for the most expensive home in Britain, located in Mayfair. It was created by businessman John Caudwell, and at a staggering value of £250m, it’s a huge home that’s over double the size of the Royal Albert Hall.
Phones 4u founder, and famous for being the highest taxpayer in the UK, John Caudwell created the property by turning two mega-mansions in Mayfair into a one even bigger home. He bought Mayfair House in 2012 for £87m and embarked on a huge renovation project a few years later. The two houses have been knocked into one, and are set in a Portland stone building. There are eight floors, fifteen bedrooms, and a 120-capacity ballroom on the premises. There’s a ‘car stacker’ that can take eight cars straight from the street to storage at the simple press of a button, and the indoor pool has a cool volcanic lava installation. The Thai-themed dining room has a river flowing through its centre and 20,000 sheets of gold leaf were used throughout the luxurious interiors. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the renovation ran a staggering £55m over budget. The property is used primarily for the tycoon’s charitable foundation, Caudwell Children, which supports children with disabilities and their families.
Who Lives in the Most Expensive Home in London?
Although Mayfair House belongs to business tycoon John Caudwell, he does not live in the property. Instead, it is protected around-the-clock by a security team and used to throw charity balls, hold meetings, and throw gala evenings to raise money for his charitable foundation Caudwell Children. Caudwell told The Times that he ‘doesn’t need a house anything like that size’.
What’s the Most Expensive Property Sold in London?
While Mayfair House might have been valued as the most expensive home in the UK, another mansion purchased this year by a Chinese property tycoon comes in at a close second. Cheung Chung-kiu is the founder and chairman of property group CC Land, the company owner of the £1.15bn Cheesegrater skyscraper. Chung-kiu agreed to purchase a mega-mansion for a record $262m, which is around £205-£210m. At the time of purchase, the tycoon was considering whether to use the property as a single home for private client use or to convert it into a prestigious multi-unit apartment scheme in the city, which would create a luxury residential scheme valued at an estimated whopping £700m. The 62,000 square metre property is located on Rutland Gate, with views over Hyde Park. It has seven stories and was built in the 1980s. Previously, it was owned by Prince Sultan bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, the late former Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia. It has also been the home of the late Rafic Hariri, a billionaire and former prime minister of Lebanon.
What is the Most Expensive Property for Sale in London?
Since the national COVID-19 lockdown this year, a huge Grade II listed townhouse located in Mayfair, London, has been listed at the highest asking price in 2020 at a huge £54.5m. The home has six stories and spans a massive 14,500 square feet and was previously rented out for an astounding £27,500 per week. It was bought for just £1.7m in 2008 and is now selling for a staggering 32 times higher. This historic property was built in 1732, before being refurbished by Chelsea-born architect Ralph Knott in 1908. The home is not only in an enviable central London location, but it also has a massive twelve bedrooms, nine bathrooms, and a 73ft long indoor swimming pool which has a fitness studio, wellness centre, sauna, jacuzzi, and a private cinema.
Where’s the Most Expensive Rental Property in London?
The most expensive rental properties are found in the most prestigious boroughs of London including Westminster, where a five-bed penthouse has the priciest rental rate at a staggering £260,000 per month. Kensington and Chelsea, Camden, and Barnet are also home to some of the costliest rentals in London with prices exceeding the £100k per month mark.
How Much Is the Most Expensive Property to Rent in London?
Aside from the £260k per month penthouse in Westminster, you can find a seven-bed penthouse in Kensington and Chelsea at a staggering £174k per month. Camden offers an eight-bed detached house with a private swimming pool for £140,000 per month, or you can head to Barnet for a four-bed converted chapel in seven acres of land for £104,000 per month.
While overseas property investors have been more interested that ever in the capital in recent months, there’s still a lot of opportunity for domestic buyers. Get in touch to find out how we can help you invest in London property.