North London property bucks trend for pre-election slowdown, as analysts predict an overall slump in prices for 2015
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Fears that the property market in north London would run out of steam in the run up to the general election have been overplayed, according to market analysts.
Despite the Centre for Economics and Business’s forecast of a 3.6 per cent drop in average house prices across the capital in 2015, it seems that the market in key areas of north London has remained buoyant in recent months, in line with CEBR predicted growth of 1.5 per cent across the UK for 2015.
Whilst the London-wide property market is set to cool over coming year, new figures from real estate firm JLL found the outlook remains bright for popular residential areas of north London, with St John’s Wood registering in the top three districts for volumes of sales since the start of the year.
Philip Green, director of Goldschmidt & Howland, who have offices in St John’s Wood and Hampstead said: “The spring market is a busy time for property sales and there’s always going to be people buying in good areas like St John’s Wood, even if people are apprehensive about the general election and the possibility of a mansion tax.”
“St John’s Wood has been accepted in recent years by overseas buyers who are looking for properties close to the excellent schools and universities around Regent’s Park and Hampstead.”
However, even though the market for homes in North London priced between £1million and £2million has remained cautiously optimistic, Mr Green said that the market for properties above £10million has completely slowed down in advance of the upcoming election amid concerns over the cost of the stamp duty rise and the possibility of a tax on homes over £2million.
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The CEBR revised up its expectations for nationwide growth in house prices to 1.5 per cent, from predicted decline of -0.6 per cent, pointing to a more positive outlook for homebuyers outside the capital.
Despite the CEBR’s forecast of a slowdown in the London market following the election, Jefferies investment bank has upgraded its rating of the UK property sector including the prime London market amid signs that activity in the pre-election housing market has been stronger than anticipated.
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Meanwhile, homebuyers in London have been buoyed by an increased appetite from banks to supply credit for new home purchases.
The Bank of England this week revealed data showing that the number of banks offering 90 per cent mortgages has risen for the first time in nine months.