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5 Things You Need to Know About the London Property Market Now

With Brexit postponed yet again, here are 5 things that property investors need to know about the London property market now. 

Another Brexit postponement is on the horizon. 

Last night, for the very first time, the House of Commons voted in favour of the Withdrawal Agreement Bill (the main Brexit legislation), after rejecting PM Boris Johnson’s second attempt to push through his new Brexit deal vote on Monday. However, MPs rejected the Parliamentary timetable to scrutinise the Bill in 3 days. A colossal Bill such as this typically takes weeks to pass Parliament, thus Mr Johnson’s plan to have Brexit done and dusted by 31 October was always a tough ask, to say the least. 

The Bill has now been paused and the EU has indicated that its acceptance of the UK’s request for another Brexit delay

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Manchester is No.1 AGAIN

Manchester remains the No.1 UK city on the Economist Intelligence Unit’s annual Global Liveability Survey for the 9th consecutive year, trumping London and underlining a continued demand by people to live and work there. 

Manchester has once again clinched this year’s No. 1 spot of Most Liveable City in the UK, for its ninth year running.

The Economist Intelligence Unit’s annual Global Liveability Survey rated 140 of the world’s largest cities based on factors such as education, social stability, education, infrastructure and access to healthcare. 

The survey paints a picture of the appeal and desirability of Manchester as a place to live and work. 

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How Vacancy Rates Affect Your UK Property Investment

UK property investment continues to remain on the radar of investors despite the shifting political landscape in the European continent. For behind all that Brexit brouhaha is a serious housing undersupply — a growing dilemma that continues to drive prices and rents in the UK property market. Which cities have the best rental growth? We examine the top cities in the UK and their corresponding vacancy rates.

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Misconception on Taxes on UK Property Investment

We always hear investment experts say, ‘Diversify, diversify, diversify!’

It’s easy for them to say that when they have a bank of knowledge available on where to plonk their pennies, right? They have people to study, review and discern the markets every day whilst regular people like you and me tread cautiously — because unlike them, we aren’t subject matter experts.

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What Does the UK Budget Have in Store for Property Investors?

The UK Autumn Budget proved that despite the government’s latest initiatives in addressing housing affordability for first home buyers, landlords remain pivotal to the supply of housing in the UK.

At a glance, the Autumn Budget (Oct 29) had good news for first-time house buyers in the reduction of stamp duty on jointly-owned property. The relief applies to homes of up to £500,000 and is in addition to the first-time buyer stamp duty exemption announced last year.

The Chancellor also declared that the government would allocate £500m for the Housing Infrastructure Fund to enable a further 650,000 homes to be built. This is on top of the previous pledge of 300,000 homes per year, on average, to raise housing supply by the mid-2020s.

Alongside the newly announced stamp duty relief for first home buyers, this is a laudable measure to alleviate housing unaffordability, yet there remains a lack in optimism where the issue of housing supply is concerned.

Landlords & Private Rental Sector: A Necessity to Solve UK Housing Woes

Historically, the UK has been plagued by a chronic shortage of housing. Not only had the government failed to meet its previous target of building 240,000 homes by 2016 (a target set in 2007), it had also changed Housing Ministers 16 times — more than 20 times faster than the average UK homeowner moves houses!

A research by Heriot-Watt University shows that the undersupply has become even more critical: England alone faces a backlog of 4 million houses.

UK house price and rental forecast 2018-2021 (CBRE)
UK house price and rental forecast 2018-2021 (CBRE)

More houses are needed to address homelessness as well as skyrocketing house prices and rents. And this is where the private rental sector comes in. Not only are landlords pivotal in ensuring the supply of rental housing for the growing number of young people unable to afford their own homes, they also provide flexibility for millennials who prefer to rent.

New research has shown that UK property remains a lucrative investment with 88% of landlords able to gain a profit, as the imbalance in supply and demand continue to drive rental prices.

Updated Incentives/Exemptions for Landlords

Investors and landlords can look forward to the following updates moving forward:

(a) PERSONAL ALLOWANCE

Landlords can claim an increased personal allowance amount of £12,500 off their taxes in 2019/20. The personal allowance is currently at £11,850.

(b) CGT ANNUAL EXEMPTION

The Capital Gains Tax (CGT) annual exemption will be increased from £11,700 in 2018/19 to £12,000 in 2019/20.

Potential SDLT surcharge

Some weeks ago, Prime Minister Theresa May announced the possibility of a Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) surcharge of 1% – 3% to be imposed on overseas landlords/ property buyers from Jan 2019.

The government has now revealed that it will propose a surcharge amounting to only 1% during the Budget, and that a consultation on the surcharge will be published in January. Stay tuned as we continue to monitor the news and provide updates in due course.

Interested to invest in UK property and be a landlord? Invest before the foreigner SDLT surcharge kicks in in 2019! Call us and make that smart choice today at (+65) 3163 8343 (Singapore), 03-2162 2260 (Malaysia). Or, email us at info@csiprop.com!

Find out more about Arden Gate, our latest Birmingham residential investment property in the Midlands. Birmingham has been voted the UK's fastest-growing city by PwC. Come meet our developer rep and learn about Birmingham's bullish property market.

Find out more about Arden Gate, our latest Birmingham residential investment property in the Midlands. Birmingham has been voted one of the UK’s fastest-growing city by PwC. Come meet our developer rep and learn about Birmingham’s bullish property market.

By Lydia Devadas
Edits & additions by Vivienne Pal

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