Hong Kong & Chinese mainland buyers are now London’s biggest overseas resi-investors
Hong Kong and mainland Chinese investment in luxury Prime Central London residential property has soared to new levels, despite the global COVID-19 pandemic, reveal Beauchamp Estates accounting for 15% of international buyer home sales above £1mllion across PCL and 20% of deals above £10 million. The figures could to go higher with the proposed Hong Kong visa changes set to open the door to UK citizenship and further property investment for thousands more Hong Kongers.
Since the UK General Election of 12th December 2019 Beauchamp Estates have sold over £300 million worth of luxury London residential property to Hong Kong buyers in locations including Knightsbridge, Belgravia and Islington. In rank order Beauchamp Estates largest groups of overseas clients investing in London luxury property are Chinese/Hong Kong buyers followed by Russians and Indians.
Since the 2019 General Election there has been an increase in enquiries from Chinese and Hong kong buyers and last year the Office for National Statistics (ONS) data shows that Hong Kong and mainland Chinese buyers invested £7.69 billion in London property including over £750 million invested in residential property in the City of Westminster and the Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea.
Beauchamp Estates highlight that the ONS data shows that there are now some 218,975 properties in London owned by Chinese/HK buyers comprising 98,725 owned by Hong Kongers and 120,250 by mainland Chinese making London property the most popular investment destination for Chinese capital in the world.
Beauchamp Estates reveal that there are five distinct types of Chinese investors purchasing property in London. The first group are purchasing one and two bedroom new build rental-investment apartments priced up to £2 million in locations including Canary Wharf, the City, Islington and the River Thames in Battersea, Chelsea and Fulham. The investors are looking at a 3-5% yield and often purchase off-plan and in bulk in order to gain a price discount/advantage.
Beauchamp Estates highlight that the second group of buyers are affluent upper middle class Chinese and Hong Kong families typically spending between £5 million to £10 million for a London family home/luxury pied-a-terre in locations including St John’s Wood, Marylebone or Regent’s Park or £750,000 to £1.5 million for an apartment in Aldwych, Soho or Fitzrovia for their student offspring studying in London.
For these middle class families proximity to a good school or university is paramount and they like Marylebone and St John’s Wood because both are close to the Chinese Embassy at 49-51 Portland Place around which the Chinese political elite working in London are based.
The third buyer group are mainland China and Hong Kong’s super-wealthy business elite who will spend upwards of £15 million on a trophy property, typically something with a prestigious history or ultra-luxury design, located in London’s most prestigious addresses.