US Tenants Drive London’s Luxury Build-2-Rent Boom

Aston Chase has launched Blenheim Terrace, the first ultra-prime build-to-rent scheme in St John’s Wood, providing a terrace of luxurious five-bedroom townhouses, each 4,025 sqft in size, providing premium residences for affluent tenants. Driving this demand is a rising number of American banks, financiers and other corporates who are enhancing their presence in London in anticipation of a Post-Brexit USA-UK trade deal, and as a result, are renting and furnishing large houses and mansions in St John’s Wood.

With design and specification by award-winning London-Miami interior designer Natalie Miyar of Natalia Miyar Atelier the new build-to-rent scheme at Blenheim Terrace provides three newly constructed townhouses with contemporary interiors set in the heart of St John’s Wood. It is one of the first ultra-prime build-to-rent schemes to be launched in Central London.

Currently, the only new build houses available to rent in St John’s Wood, each townhouse provides 4,025 sqft of luxurious accommodation over lower ground, ground and three upper floors, with a passenger lift and staircase connecting all five floors. Each townhouse benefits from an abundance of outside living space including a rear patio garden, various terraces/patios, and ornamental balconies.

The townhouses comprise entrance hall, five-bedroom suites, each with ensuite bath/shower rooms, three reception rooms and a family kitchen/breakfast room with separate utility room, complete with ample built-in storage cupboards. The ensuite rooms have all the normal bathroom facilities, including a shower with shower glass panels to ensure that the design of the ensuite feels as luxurious as the rest of the townhouse.

The classically inspired townhouses have large rooms, high ceilings throughout and all the modern conveniences of a luxury home including comfort cooling, underfloor heating and state-of-the-art home entertainment and security CCTV/alarm system. Underfloor heating may be used by people who are looking to reduce their heating bills, as you won’t be heating the air, making it more comfortable to live. When it comes to this type of heating system, heat pumps with hydronic heating can be used to combine different elements with underfloor heating to significantly improve your heating.

In each townhouse the family kitchen, breakfast and living room is on the lower ground floor with a designer fully fitted kitchen with Oak woodstrip flooring, wood finish base units, white stone worktops and integrated appliances. They also come with Oak finished doors, similar to these Internal Glazed doors, which allow the rooms to benefit from natural light, making them homely and warm. It will also help to save electricity, as the natural light will pass through to all the rooms, meaning lights do not have to be on. This is also benefitted by having floor-to-ceiling glazed doors installed, allowing even more light to pass into each room. They also open onto the terraced patio garden which has been designed to provide an outside living/entertaining space.

The main reception room is on the ground floor with glazed doors opening onto a terrace overlooking the garden patio, the formal dining room/third reception room is also on this floor.

The principal bedroom suite has its own private floor on the first floor with the large bedroom benefitting from two sets of modern-style French doors opening onto ornamental balconies. There is an extensive walk-in dressing room lined on both sides with built in shelving and wardrobes and the suite is complete with a main bathroom with bespoke-design stone parquet floor, freestanding sculptural bath, walk-in shower room and twin vanity unit with fitted mirrors and feature wall lights.

The principal guest suite occupies the entire on the top (third) floor of the house and has two private rooftop terraces, walk-in dressing room and day room and ensuite bathroom. There are two further bedroom suites, both with ensuite bathrooms, on the second floor, with the fifth bedroom suite, with ensuite shower room, opening onto a private patio on the lower ground floor.

Aston Chase highlight that this is the first ultra-prime build-to-rent scheme to be launched in St John’s Wood and forecast that it will provide a blueprint for similar purpose-built luxury rental projects in the district in the future due to strong tenant demand.

Prior to the scheme even being completed, one of the three townhouses was rented off-plan to an American investment bank providing accommodation for an American financier and his family relocated from the USA. Now the second townhouse has been released to the market, with the final townhouse scheduled for a later launch.

Aston Chase highlight that the ultra-prime lettings market in St John’s Wood is buoyant at present. For the first six months of this year, lettings deals, for homes priced above £3,000 per week, are up 25% on last year. The highest demand is for properties priced from £4,000 to £10,000 per week, with tenants wanting large family houses of between 3,000 sqft to 6,000 sqft in size, ideally newly built or newly refurbished.

Aston Chase reveal that 50% of the tenants in the St John’s Wood premium lettings market are American expats, working in banking/finance in the City of London or Canary Wharf. The properties are often rented by the expat’s bank, financial organization, corporate employer or private equity firm’s name. The American tenants are typically aged in their mid-30s to early-50s, couple, with 2-3 young or teenaged children. Another 30% of ultra-prime tenants in St John’s Wood are from Europe, with the remaining tenants (10%) originating from non-EU countries.

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