• Education to drive over £700 million of residential property purchases in prime central London over next 12-months

    10 September 2020

    Research released today by Knight Frank confirms that education will drive £702m of residential property purchases in prime central London over the next 12-months with buyers from Hong Kong likely to represent the fourth largest region of purchasers. 

    The Knight Frank Wealth Report 2020 confirmed that 21% of ultra-high-net-worth-individuals (UHNWIs) are planning to buy a home in the next year. The report confirmed the main reasons for the purchases are: to upgrade to a main residence; to permanently move to a new country and; for their children’s education. 

    Despite Covid-19, the prospects for university entrance in the coming 2020/21 academic year are strong. The latest research from The Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS), a UK-based organisation whose main role is to operate the application process for British universities – confirms a 1% growth in applicants holding a “conditional firm or unconditional firm offer for an immediate start in September”, with this figure including a 12% growth in applicants from outside the European Union.

    Liam Bailey, Global Head of Research at Knight Frank said: “Education has always been a key driver for residential property purchases in London, especially for students based overseas. Covid-19 may have altered the way clients’ view their children’s education as well as their property investments but the fact remains that the U.K. offers some of the best education in the world and this isn’t deterring clients from Hong Kong, looking to invest in prime London property for the children’s future. If we look at current pricing, currency movements, interest rates and the recent stamp duty cut – it is clear that the London market is offering the best buying opportunity for nearly a decade.”

    With a significant drive for education led property requirements, Knight Frank has identified the best locations in London to purchase a property – all within a 20-minute walking distance from university campuses and university buildings across the UK capital. The areas highlighted are deemed the most “accessible” locations for students to be based.

    Mei Wong, Executive Director, Head of International Residential Sales at Knight Frank said: With world-class education institutions, a stable economy, low interest rate, the UK property market consistently remains an attractive investment destination for Hong Kong buyers. UK is one of the world’s most popular destinations to study higher education, with more than *500,000 international students enrolling each year. Neighbourhoods in London, usually close to leading universities are very popular among Hong Kong investors. Interest in UK property is now higher compared with nine months ago, with about 30% more inquiries from potential buyer where most buyers have a budget of about £500,000 to £1m.”

    Hong Kong buyers represent around 4% of all purchases in central London and over the past 12-months have been the fourth largest purchaser of central London residential property after UK, Chinese Mainland and Russian buyers.

    Source:*The Universities and Colleges Admissions Service

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