Relaunched in May with virtual tours and full PPE viewing, a mini-boom is now predicted for the UK property industry thanks to a range of government initiatives, the Express reports. The main driving force behind record interest from buyers is a stamp duty holiday on the first £500,000 for homes in England and Northern Ireland, with similar initiatives in Scotland and Wales, with no tax on homes up to £250,000. Alan Cleary from OneSavings Bank says: "With the continued uncertainty around how the UK economy will recover from the pandemic, and the possibility of a second wave, [factors including further extensions to Help to Buy] will play a part in how the market shapes up in the coming months." The FT speculates regions catering to workers in more insecure jobs or to those who rely on high loan-to-value mortgages may see a fall in property prices.
Financial Times (20/08/2020) Daily Express (20/08/2020)
Property sales are up by 20% and average asking prices have risen by £10,000 in the four weeks since a cut in stamp duty, according to Bank of England data. Average asking prices are £30,000 higher and thousands more sales are being agreed each week than before the lockdown from March 27 to May 13. The number of sales per week is 65% higher than last year with average asking prices 14% higher. However, analysts believe the rise is a bubble, and the true effects of the economic crash are yet to arrive. Pablo Shah, a senior economist at the CEBR, says: "The stamp duty cut is propping up the market this summer but it won't be sufficient to negate the effect of the end of the furlough scheme and mortgage payment deferrals later this year."
The Times (14/08/2020)
First-time buyers are having to resort to increasingly complex mortgages as banks have become reluctant to offer loans to customers with smaller deposits. In the case of a joint borrower, sole proprietor loan, a parent contributes to monthly repayments but they are not named on the property deeds. In other cases parents can act as a guarantor to allow their children to take out a loan. Another option is a family offset mortgage, where the parent places cash into a linked savings account, reducing the interest charged to their children. It comes as Barclays is now the only big lender still offering Bank of Mum and Dad-style mortgages. Andrew Montlake, managing director of mortgage broker Coreco, said that banks are nervous of people relying on parental support to pay the mortgage.
The Sunday Telegraph (16/08/2020) The Sunday Times (16/08/2020)
A new neighbourhood in Silvertown, has been given the go-ahead by the Greater London Authority. Jules Pipe, London’s deputy mayor for planning, has given permission for Thameside West, a 5m sq ft residential-led, mixed-use development brought forward by Keystone London and GLA Land & Property, comprising 5,000 new homes, 205,000 sq ft of office space, and 75,400 sq ft of retail and leisure space. A master plan by Foster + Partners also includes 5.7 acres of public open space, including a new 4-acre riverside park, a new DLR station, a primary school, nursery, and other community facilities. The decision means that Keystone and GLAP can start on the development’s first phase, designed by John McAslan & Partners, comprising 401 mixed-tenure homes and 35,000 sq ft of workspace.
Property Week (06/08/2020) Building Design (10/08/2020) PBC Today (10/08/2020)
The first of 136 affordable homes at Wardian London, one of eight new landmark developments at Canary Wharf, have just gone on sale. The two-tower development on Marsh Wall, one standing 600 ft high, the other 558 ft, forms a vertical village of 624 homes; and, while the penthouse apartments have price tags as tall as their heights, a shared-ownership scheme means a quarter-share of an apartment can be had for as little as £150,250. Each has an open-plan layout, floor-to-ceiling windows to make the most of the views, and a private wraparound corner terrace or a balcony. The entire scheme has a botanical theme with a double-height lobby filled with exotic plants, flowers and trees. There are also glamorous greenhouse-style pocket gardens throughout the buildings, which developer EcoWorld Ballymore says were inspired by the glasshouses of Kew Gardens
B Daily (11/08/2020)
The newly-completed 10 Park Drive neighbourhood at Wood Wharf has welcomed its first 50 residents. Brian De’ath, director of residential sales at Canary Wharf Group, commented: “East London has seen a rise in popularity for a number of years and the gradual completion of Wood Wharf will only enhance its desirability”. Only 70 apartments remain for sale at the Stanton Williams-designed building.
Evening Standard (11/08/2020)