London’s status as an international safe haven for investors has been no secret, with overseas buyers highly active in recent years. Recent reports have shown that British buyers are returning to the market in growing numbers, despite the common misconception that international investors outnumber locals.
An equally inaccurate misconception, though, is who is buying from abroad. While many believe that Russians are the biggest players, followed by buyers from the Middle East, Black Brick reveals that Africans are the most active, accounting for 43.7 per cent of their deals – ahead of Middle Eastern buyers (17.1 per cent) and Asian and UK buyers (10 per cent apiece).
Camilla Dell, Founder and Managing Partner of Black Brick, comments: “Africans have always had a big affinity with the UK and London. Over the last eight years, we have successfully acquired £236 million of residential property for African buyers from Nigeria, Kenya, Zambia, South Africa and Uganda.
“In particular, we’ve represented numerous buyers from Nigeria. Like a lot of our owner / occupier international clients, many wealthy Nigerians were educated in the UK and send their children to school here. Typically, Nigerians like gated, secure developments, as this is what they are used to back home, where most houses and apartments are located within secure compounds. Even though London is of course, much safer than Nigeria, they still prefer to be in secure developments, preferably with a 24 hour concierge or porter.”
In terms of location, for lower budgets, many Nigerians love new build developments such as Imperial Wharf, notes Dell, who reveals that the area is even known as “mini Lagos”.
“However, for our high net worth Nigerian clients, many prefer to explore new areas, and have privacy, so we have recently acquired high value properties in areas such as Belgravia and the SW3 part of Chelsea – 39 per cent of our Nigerian clients have bought in either SW3, SW10 or SW1, closely followed by 35 per cent buying in North West London postcodes such as NW8, NW6 and N2. In addition, 58 per cent of our Nigerian clients have been purchasing homes in London with the remaining 42% buying for investment.”
“The property market in London is time consuming, frustrating and difficult to navigate even for local buyers, hence the growing number of UK buyers within our client base,” she adds. “Our British clients tend to be busy executives from the financial services sector, who may have previously been looking for some time on their own, but have become increasingly disillusioned with not being able to find the right property, getting gazumped or having access to off market opportunities.”
Source: The Movechannel