Since the unexpected outright victory by the Conservative party last month, the London property market has started accelerating like never before.
What’s so special about London and why should Singaporeans invest? London is considered by many to be the centre of the financial world, with an illustrious history that spans centuries. It was the epicentre of the British Empire and still sits at the top of the global power food chain.
The UK is the 6th biggest economy on the planet and shares permanent seats on the UN security council with the likes of China and the USA. UK property law is unchanging and the trillions of dollars in private property that has been invested across the country tells a healthy success story. It should be noted that UK law provides statutes for Singapore law and in many other Commonwealth countries.
Greater London, settled by Romans over 2,000 years ago, is a city with a vast, diverse multi-cultural population — more than twice the size of Singapore. As the world’s leading centre for business and commerce and global economy “command centre”, London is a haven for those looking to buy-to-let investments.
More affordable, outer areas of the city, such as Edgware, Woolwich, Mitcham, Kingston-upon-Thames, and Bromley are rising year-on-year by up to 10-15% — according to the UK Land Registry’s published statistics for 2014-2015. One bedroom properties can start at £200,000 (S$400,000) and since the re-election of the government last month, a definite period of five years of stability in property markets beckons.
Judicious management means that you can rent your property all year round, and yields of up to 6% are possible in certain locations. Retaining a good company to look after your interests is vital to maintain those yields — as they will look after the letting agents and ensure that the property is in tiptop condition when being let — thus getting top dollar rental (or pound in this case.)
Well decorated and furnished flats spin off agents’ books in record time and those that have balconies, communal gardens, and secure parking are the first to go.
With Singapore’s property market still in free fall, overseas property purchases are clearly the way forward, but Singaporeans investing abroad need solid answers to the following 8 essential questions:
1. What is my budget?
2. Can I get finance?
3. What down payment will I have to make in cash?
4. What’s my yearly profit going to be?
5. Will my property go up in value?
6. What taxes will I have to pay?
7. Who’s going to look after the property for me?
8. How do I sell it when I want to?