While the world ground to a halt during the pandemic – and many people stayed put in travel terms – that didn’t stop foreign ownership in London increasing during 2021. Despite the impact of COVID-19, the British capital remained a very attractive proposition for buyers throughout the year last year – and that’s a trend that looks set to continue throughout 2022. Despite the fact that travel restrictions only began to lift at the end of the year last year, foreign ownership remained a key trend.
Figures rose during 2021
According to recent reports, £59.3 billion worth of property in London was under foreign ownership during 2021, which was an increase on the figures for 2020. In fact, the total value of homes in London owned by those who are residents overseas increased by around £6 billion even while the world was in the grip of a global pandemic. In 2020, around 81,872 properties in London were under foreign ownership but in 2021 this rose to 85,451. The increase in figures equates to around a 4% rise on the year before.
The pandemic did make an impact
Despite the obvious uptick in London properties under foreign ownership between 2020 and 2021 that’s not to say that the pandemic didn’t have any impact on the London property market. Activity was noticeably sluggish when COVID-19 first hit and while the rest of the country initially experienced a pandemic property boom, the London market did not react in the same way. However, it’s clear that over the past year this has begun to change, especially as foreign buyers returned in 2021. This resulted in an increase in the number of transactions being processed, as well as the value of transactions too.
The prime market attracts the most positive forecasts
Recent positive activity is set to continue, especially when it comes to the prime sector of the market. In 2022 alone, property values in London look set to rise by 8% – and by 2026 the increase will be more than 23%. As we look towards 2026/7, price growth in London is once again set to gather momentum and will outpace that seen in other markets around the country. Some of the richest buyers in the market, both foreign and domestic, are set to return to the London market and many will have pandemic profits to spend.
Some areas are more targeted than others
When it comes to foreign ownership of London properties there are some parts of the capital that tend to attract more interest than others. The City of Westminster borough is where you’ll find the bulk of these properties, as this is an area that covers some very desirable spots, from Mayfair to Belgravia. Here, some 12,000 homes were registered to owners with an overseas address in 2021.
Foreign ownership of properties in London increased significantly in 2021, despite the lingering impact of the pandemic. And the outlook for 2022 looks equally bright. Carpe Diem London is a trusted advisor within the UK property market, matching investors with great investment opportunities. Find out more about how Carpe Diem London’s real estate services can help you