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The London Report maps the trends of capital homeowners and tenants
4 August 2020
Following the 2019 General Election, the housing market enjoyed an early boost in confidence, with the sales market seeing steady growth for the first two months of 2020. The positive start was soon curtailed in the early days of lockdown, with the home sales sector put on hold due to government restrictions on surveys, mortgage valuations and physically moving house. Meanwhile people wanting to let homes could only view vacant properties.
The sector had reached a low point in April, but the property market could not remain inactive for long. Pent-up demand saw enquiries continuing during lockdown, while technology allowed for virtual viewings and helped keep customers informed. By May, both sales and lettings figures had surpassed the same period in 2019.
To make sure Londoners take advantage of a reset housing market and the changes that have recently been implemented, such as an increased stamp duty thresholds, The London Report by Foxtons has sought to gain insights into the behaviour of prospective capital homeowners and renters, ensuring exceptional service continues to meet customer needs.
The report covers numerous aspects of home ownership and renting, including the migration of Londoners within the capital. We’ve discovered a third of London buyers and tenants moved to a different area than they began their search in, with 42% of tenants moving more than 5 miles to their new rental home in 2019. Combined with looking at data about the trade-off between price per square foot and journey time to central London, moving further out of central London begins to look more appealing as a way of achieving a discount on a property.
While it may sound like an obvious point, understanding how far people are willing to travel allows us to inform both the Build to Sell and Build to Rent market on where their target buyers and tenants may currently be starting their property search. We can then source suitable tenants across London through our network of offices and match expectations, both for accommodation and affordability, to developments.
As reopening gathers pace, one way to establish key areas for residential growth in the capital is to look at the quantum factors of an area. Quantum factors are elements that increase an area’s appeal and include transport, infrastructure, employment opportunities, regeneration, emerging markets and green spaces. Areas currently benefitting from a successful combination of quantum factors include Wembley and Croydon. The report explores exactly how different London areas benefit from these often unique combinations of factors, and therefore where the capital’s hot spots for investment are.
Alongside looking at investment opportunities for future developments for both sales and lettings, The London Report looks at the existing Prime Central London market. Chris Sellwood, Director of Prime Sales and Lettings, discusses how, for some clients, there is a tipping point in the PCL market when renting makes better financial sense then renting.
With the property market open and getting up to speed once more we look forward to seeing how our findings in The London Report help us navigate the Build to Rent, New Homes, Prime Central London and the wider sales and lettings market.
The London Report draws on Foxtons’ own data – the most extensive of its kind for London property, Land Registry data and the experience of our senior team members. You can read in full The London Report here.