Knight Frank Thailand: Strong Baht Attracts Thai Investors to London’s Property Market

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Mr. Frank Khan, Executive Director and Head of Residential, Knight Frank Thailand, said that “Political uncertainty in the UK was moving closer to signing a withdrawal agreement by mid of October, and the UK will formally leave the EU on the 31st of January 2020. As the UK has to make a large amount of payments to the EU for years, the inevitable consequences of Brexit will apparently impact the UK financial sector, which is the core of the economy.”

He explained, “In the midst of which, this is the specific time for Thais to invest in the UK or London property either for speculative investment or personal living purposes because the Thai baht has continued to soar against the pound, appreciating more than many major regional currencies, hitting a six-year high. Meanwhile, asset values become cheaper and buyers can negotiate more favorable offers.”

Based on Knight Frank Research, the average selling prices in prime central London fell 3.9% in a one-year period to September 2019, the smallest decline in 12 months while the 3.5% decline in prime outer London was the most modest decline since May 2018.

Overall, uncertainty remains a watchword in the market. Average house price growth across the UK continues to be moderate, with a 1.3% increase in the year to September, compared to an annual rate of growth of 7.5% before the Brexit referendum.

Mr. Khan also said, “As for the UK investment in the year 2018 to 2019, the highest purchase rate was from Thai investors; they bought properties in London, which is the best alternative for them to invest as the above key takeaways attracted Thai buyers in particular, as well as those from Singapore and Hong Kong, who are waiting to invest in the UK and London. If we looked back for the last 4 to 5 years when Brexit happened, it showed that Thai buyers’ demand in UK property increased by 40 to 50% compared to previous years. Likewise, there was a significant increase of 80% after the stronger baht.”

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“Political uncertainty in the UK has continually generated more Thai property buyers primarily in prime locations, including Kensington, Knightsbridge, Holland Park, Belgravia and Harrods, with 60% of them buying for educational purposes to support their children’s study aboard and around 30 to 40% of that interested in speculative investment, down from the past 5 years with 90% educational determination. Obviously, international students are already an important portion of the market.”

He added, “In addition, demand for rentals continues to outpace supply and push up property prices in those areas as many residents turn to the rental market during this time — especially in Hammersmith, which is at the forefront of alternative choices with average rental values between 900 pounds to 950 pounds per week, increasing by 3 to 5% every year with net rental yields of 2.8 to 2.9%. While the average selling price is around 1.2 to 1.3 million pounds for 2 bedroom units and 1.5 to 1.6 million for 3 bedroom units, compared to neighboring areas, it is a more affordable place to live and is situated a few minutes away by train to central London.”

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คอนโดราม, Niche MONO รามคำแหง
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คอนโดราม, Niche MONO รามคำแหง