Move over candles, hello cars: this development comes with a goodie bag to die for
- Credit: Archant
Eye-catching offers help Muswell Hill’s newest development to fly off the shelf in the wake of stamp duty changes and political turbulence that’s shaking the foundations of the property market
They say the best things in life are free. So on top of the elation of moving into a brand new home in trendy north London ‘village’ Muswell Hill complete with stylish interiors and ample living space, those moving into Pinnacle N10 development are sure to be positively jumping for joy when receiving a free iPad, ceiling speaker with Sonos sound system and Renault Zoe electric car all for free. Oh, and stamp duty is all paid for.
Sound too good to be true? Jamm Living offered the sweet deal on its four bedroom townhouses and one, two and three bedroom apartments in its Muswell Hill development as part of its final launch weekend between 4th and 6th May. So is it all a ploy to lure house hunters into buying at a time when the market is standing on shaky political ground?
Tim Jackson, co-founder of Jamm Living/SAS Investments admits that the market has been plagued with uncertainty in the wake of political upheaval. “It’s a tentative market out there,” he says. “We’re pre election, we’re pre/post Brexit however you want to look at it, and at this time in the market, people are very nervous about where things are going and affordability is stretched.
“There’s no such thing as a dead cert any more, even if people are expecting no change, you never know. That always creates uncertainty, people think ‘I’ll just wait until after the election.’”
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However, it’s not a cynical tactic to lock in buyers now, insists Jackson. “It’s providing liquidity to the market,” he argues instead. In the wake of Stamp Duty increases in 2015, homeowners in the affluent postcodes of Muswell Hill and its neighbouring areas have been faced with paying higher rates of Stamp Duty Land Tax, which cannot be mortgaged, causing more caution when it comes to committing to purchasing property.
“When we bought the site nearly 5 years ago,” he notes, “nobody would have imagined we’d be looking at rates of up to 15 per cent on stamp duty. But that’s what we’re facing now and we’ve made the best of it.
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“What we decided to do was, do what no other developer is doing and actually give away useful items that you can’t necessarily afford to buy if you’re spending between £700,000 to £2 million on one of our properties,” explains Jackson.
“You can’t mortgage stamp duty, you can’t mortgage electric cars, and by offering those to give away it makes it much more affordable.” According to Savills’ most recent Prime London & Country Spotlight, the taxman hasn’t seen any reduction in Stamp Duty tax receipts from the top end of the market, but for those a little lower down the scale, the increases are cause for wary treading.
London Residential’s Spring Review 2017 reported that transactions were down 26 per cent on this time last year, in a reflection of the rush to beat stamp duty changes in 2016. 45 per cent of properties were reduced in price before sale in the first quarter of 2017, whilst there was a 15 per cent increase in time spent on the market before rental properties were let. The figures paint a picture of a market in a state of unrest, with buyers anxious to lock down transactions.
Jackson rubbishes claims that giving items away for free smells somewhat of desperation and has attracted negative press. “Is it negative being featured on BBC news? Well of course it’s not. If you think about it BBC London news at 10 o’clock got about two and a half million viewers so if only five of those viewers come and look at the site and one of them buys, well that’s advertising money can’t buy.”
Jamm Living is no longer offering the deal for future buyers going forward, but says it wouldn’t rule out sensible offers. Reflecting on the promotion at last weekend’s final launch event, Jackson is unreservedly positive.
“It’s been the most successful campaign we could ever have imagined,” he says. “We’ve had over 20,000 website clicks, which has resulted in about 400 enquiries via the website and phone. That’s a result of about realistically 100 viewings and we sold over that weekend alone six units; three houses and three flats.”
The site is due to be completed this week, with 70 per cent of the homes already sold, mainly off plan. There are currently five flats remaining of the 22 provided and only one townhouse.
Pinnacle N10 is the first new build scheme in central Muswell Hill for over 40 years. The homes feature smart home tech including audio visual and lighting systems, integrated speakers, and electric car charging points to some parking spaces, alongside green features such as low energy LED light fittings, photovoltaic panels and a heat recovery system, which circulates fresh air whilst extracting heat from recycled air.
The architecture has been designed by award winning pH+ and interiors feature European timber oak flooring in the living areas, oak entrance doors with feature lighting and thermostatic ‘rain’ showers. The kitchens include German fittings, Quartz stone worktops, energy efficient integrated appliances by Siemens and handle-less units by Alno of Wigmore Street. The houses and duplex apartment also benefit from a wine cooler. Pinnacle N10 is just a short walk from Muswell Hill Broadway.
If Pinnacle N10 is anything to go by, it appears that a goodie bag positively popping at the seams with high end goods is a must for those trying to shift stock that won’t budge in a politically fragile housing market. Developers take note: a candle won’t cut it.