Direct Property News

May 18, 2018

International buyers seek new homes in former commercial districts of London

New research reveals how commercial districts in London such as Mayfair and St James’s are returning to their residential roots with demand for homes rising. The conversions of the US Navy headquarters and the Canadian High Commission, both on Grosvenor Square, back into residential use, are prime examples of the change, according to a new report from property consultants JLL. JLL is forecasting that the number of luxury homes being launched will grow by 9% by 2022. It says that once complete, Grosvenor Square could well become the most desirable residential address in the world. Mayfair and Park Lane already have some of the most expensive homes globally. Buyers are after large apartments in new developments […]
May 21, 2018

New to market house prices hit record high

The latest house price data released by Rightmove has revealed that prices of new-to-the-market property saw a 0.4% (+£1,228) rise this month. A modest increase by all accounts but enough to push the national average to a new record of £305,732. According to the figures, record monthly visits to Rightmove in March indicated a strong interest in property, though the subdued 1.6% annual rate of price increase warns that many buyers are increasingly price sensitive On average sellers are achieving 96.7% of their final asking price, a gap of just over £10,000 on the current national asking price, though this varies by region, location and property Russell Quirk, founder and CEO of, commented: “There is […]
May 25, 2018

Remortgage market grows in many parts of UK, latest data shows

The remortgage market in many parts of the UK has been growing, with new figures showing it was particularly strong in Wales, Scotland and London in the first quarter of 2018. In London remortgage activity reached its highest levels since the end of 2008 with the number of loans in this sector up by 4.1% compared to the same period in 2017. The figures from UK Finance also show that the amount of remortgaging at £4.67 billion was up by 7.6% year on year. Completed remortgages increased by 10.9% in Wales and the amount at £0.6 billion was up by 13.2% compared with the first three months of 2017. Overall levels reached a nine year high […]
May 29, 2018

Have you paid more stamp duty than needed?

HMRC has stated that at least 15,700 buyers overpaid stamp duty last year. Are you, or your buyers, making incorrect assumptions about purchase costs? Despite the high cost of stamp duty, some buyers and, surprisingly often, their professional advisors, are getting their tax calculations wrong, prompting would-be movers to hold back and others, HMRC has confirmed, to over-pay by tens of thousands. The Wilmslow branch of estate agents, Jackson-Stops, recently saved one well-heeled buyer several hundred thousand pounds in Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT), merely by pointing out one aspect of the current rules. Another nearly fell foul of a much more common misinterpretation, the clarification of which reduced their tax bill by £18,000 to £20,000. […]
May 30, 2018

Sales in central London’s prime property market expected to rise in 2018

The prime central London property market is still adjusting to the tax regime introduced more than three years ago but sales are expected to increase in 2018, the latest analysis shows. However, economic and political uncertainty is also continuing to affect the market, according to the report from real estate firm JLL. It expects some long time owners to put their properties on the market over the next 12 to 18 months. This will mark the start of a new, more active and acceptance phase for the sales market which is being encouraged by the fact that house prices increased by 0.3% in the first quarter of 2018, particularly two and three bedroom houses. The report […]
June 1, 2018

Activity improving at the very top end of the London housing market

Activity levels at the very top of the London property market have stabilised after a tumultuous few years, the latest analysis reveals. Sales in the super prime market with homes valued at £10 million plus have been underpinned in many cases by the release of pent-up demand, says the report from international real estate firm Knight Frank. The figures show that the number of new prospective super prime buyers registering in the first three months of 2018 was 7% higher than last year. And, although the number of transactions in the year to March was 9% lower than over the previous 12 months, this is an improvement compared to annual falls of more than 20% registered […]