London’s ‘super-prime’ property market rebounds to pre-Brexit levels

Jun 6, 2023

In the past year, over 160 luxury homes worth £10 million or more have been sold in London, totalling £3.1 billion in sales. This marks the highest number of sales since 2016, when Brexit caused hesitation among the global super-rich to invest in the UK’s “super-prime” market. Knight Frank, an estate agent, a data provider, analysed Land Registry data to reveal that London witnessed a weekly average of three such sales, with an average sale price of just over £19 million. This represents an increase from the previous year’s £2.5 billion spent on 144 properties. Despite recent events, London continues to hold a high reputation among global buyers, according to Paddy Dring, the global head of prime sales at Knight Frank.

Looking ahead, Dring anticipates a decline of at least 10% in super-prime sales over the next 12 months due to concerns among the global super-rich and their advisors regarding the possibility of the Labour Party winning the upcoming general election. The party has pledged to eliminate a tax loophole for non-domiciled individuals, which raises worries among the affluent. A report released last year revealed that non-doms residing in the UK with a permanent home abroad legally avoid paying over £3.2 billion in tax annually on at least £10.9 billion of offshore income.

Data analysis conducted by the University of Warwick and the London School of Economics indicates that 26,000 individuals granted non-dom tax status collect an average of £420,000 per year in unreported overseas income and capital gains. Recent discussions around the general election have started to influence conversations, particularly in Knightsbridge, where Knight Frank’s office is located, and where many high-priced properties are situated. Matters such as wealth and property taxation, as well as the status of non-doms, are expected to face increasing scrutiny.

Among the notable buyers in the past year was Swiss billionaire Ernesto Bertarelli, who purchased an 80-room mansion in Belgravia for £92 million. Kensington recorded the highest number of sales (£10m+) with 26, followed by Belgravia with 25, and Mayfair with 22. Notably, additional extravagant London properties have recently entered the market, including 2-8a Rutland Gate, a 45-room “private palace” overlooking Hyde Park, listed at £200 million. The Holme, a 40-bedroom villa within Regent’s Park, is also seeking offers in excess of £200 million.

According to sources, potential overseas buyers have shown interest in both 2-8a Rutland Gate and The Holme, visiting them on the same day.

The latest update source address that “2-8a Rutland Gate is in the process of being acquired by funds advised by the Family Office of Mr Cheung Chung-kiu”. Chung-kiu, better known as CK, is a Hong Kong-based billionaire who owns a string of property companies, including CC Land Holdings (where managed the Thames City development near Vauxhall). He owns part of the former Whiteleys department store in Bayswater and 122 Leadenhall, the triangular-shaped skyscraper in the City of London better known as the Cheesegrater and worth more than £1bn. However, CK was never the ultimate owner of 2-8A Rutland Gate. He appeared to be, according to Land Registry filings, just a frontman – but more of that later. In fact, the £200 million mansion is under constructed and redesign by one of the top interior designer firm which is also now owned by Chinese company headquarter based in Singapore. If you want to find out more about these, you are welcome to contact [email protected] for the design inspiration stories.

Thank you for reading, see you in my next news updates.

Source: The Guardian, 27/5/2023