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What's Happening in Central London?

As we head further into the new year we can see the shape of the future property market and how it looks prior to May's election. Currently, the changed Stamp Duty levels will be absorbed by the market and do not really start to bite until you go north of about £2.5m. Most West End stock currently exists below this level anyway. The Capital Gains Tax for non-doms may provoke a few sales but I do not expect a rush. Our Pan-Asian desk reports that our oriental clients are now net sellers and I suspect that this is classic profit taking scenario common in all speculative markets after a long rise. All attention will be on the upcoming election. A left leaning government will most likely bring domestic and international attention onto further property taxes, while a right leaning government will bring attention towards our EU membership. My guess is that there will be a reappraisal of the council tax levels. Personally I cannot see the UK leaving the EU but when the subject of Scottish independence was the hot topic last year, many foreign investors sat on their hands till the debate was resolved. It is likely that while any debate on EU membership is centre stage there will be a similar effect until the outcome is clear. London PLC has not shut up shop by any means and the core reasons for owning and investing remain. Proper and realistic pricing is vital to attract sellers. We have not detected any bargain hunters but many of our buyers are cynical towards over ambitious pricing. Our first instructions of the New Year have been won in the face of much higher suggested levels from some of our less experienced competitors. I see 2015 as a year of two halves: the run up to the 7th May and the domestic and international response thereafter. It is going to be interesting.



As we head further into the new year we can see the shape of the future property market and how it looks prior to May's election.

Currently, the changed Stamp Duty levels will be absorbed by the market and do not really start to bite until you go north of about £2.5m. Most West End stock currently exists below this level anyway. The Capital Gains Tax for non-doms may provoke a few sales but I do not expect a rush. Our Pan-Asian desk reports that our oriental clients are now net sellers and I suspect that this is classic profit taking scenario common in all speculative markets after a long rise.

All attention will be on the upcoming election. A left leaning government will most likely bring domestic and international attention onto further property taxes, while a right leaning government will bring attention towards our EU membership. My guess is that there will be a reappraisal of the council tax levels.



Personally I cannot see the UK leaving the EU but when the subject of Scottish independence was the hot topic last year, many foreign investors sat on their hands till the debate was resolved. It is likely that while any debate on EU membership is centre stage there will be a similar effect until the outcome is clear.

London PLC has not shut up shop by any means and the core reasons for owning and investing remain. Proper and realistic pricing is vital to attract sellers. We have not detected any bargain hunters but many of our buyers are cynical towards over ambitious pricing. Our first instructions of the New Year have been won in the face of much higher suggested levels from some of our less experienced competitors.

I see 2015 as a year of two halves: the run up to the 7th May and the domestic and international response thereafter. It is going to be interesting.

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