Shortage in supply of new-built condominium pushes up demands in resale market

The sustainable growth of the Japan property market has been supported by a steadily growing population in the metropolitan areas. As such, the shortage in supply of new-built condominium is leading more people to turn their eyes towards relatively new condominiums in the resale market. The Japanese traditionally favor new-built housing, but the recent trends tell us that there has been a change in the people’s perceptions in the age of a building or property. Today, we will look at more insights of the recent trend in resale market.

 

Demand of housing remains strong

The population growth in metropolitan areas like Tokyo has been showing a steady increase. COVID-19 has changed our living and working styles in various ways, but the impact on housing demand is limited. Market observers commented that more people from the city central areas are moving to spacious houses in countryside because of working from home (WFH) was being introduced during the state of emergency in April 2020. Indeed, according to the survey by Tokyo Shoko Research survey, 56% of companies adopted WFH at the time. However, in August, the companies still continuing with WFH reduced to 34.40%.

Looking at the demographic movement in Tokyo, COVID-19 did affect the population movements, but not to the extent to call it as a population outflow. Indeed, demography by nationality showed the decrease in population was largely contributed by foreign residents returning back to their countries. As of August 1, Japanese population has increased by 58,114 comparing with January, while foreigner population has reduced by 4%.  

In the long term, population growth is still in an upward trend. On year on year basis, the Japanese population in metropolitan areas is increasing, despite the state of emergency was announced in April to May period disrupted the usual influx of people expected for every new school year and fiscal year starting in April.

Fortunately, real estate sales activity has sprung back to what it used to be before COVID-19. There is still a great demand for condominiums from the local owner occupiers and the decrease of foreigners do not seem to affect sales. When businesses resumed after the state of emergency, local buyers started actively looking for housing like before. On year on year basis, there were even more transactions in the resale market in August.

Shortage of supply in new-built condominiums

In recent years, the supply of new-built condominiums in Tokyo has been decreasing, despite of the growing population and housing demands. The choice limitations turned buyers to the resale market for secondary alternatives. Land acquisition has always been very competitive in the already developed central areas in Tokyo. As city urbanization continues, the shortage of supply in new-built properties is expected to push up the demands of resale apartments.

Properties below 20 years are actively sought after

New-built housing has always been the most preferred option for Japanese, because historically, houses in Japan were built by wood. It was believed that the newer the house, the better would be its durability. However, the situations are different today. With fewer new-built options and the advancement of superior construction qualities, resale apartments are generally now more accepted.

As more buyers opt for resale markets as a substitute for new-built apartments, it resulted in the majority of transaction volumes concentrated in the relatively new buildings with age below 20 years. In terms of the transaction ratio against the supply, the building aged between 6 to 10 years shows the highest demand last year, followed by those of 11 to 15 years, 16 to 20 years and 0 to 5 years.

Recommendation is up to 15 years old

The observations showed that transaction volume zone is within 20 years old and so, investing in property below15 years is the best recommendation with consideration of the exit timing as well. Although buildings of 20 years old might sound “old” for overseas investors, the locals feel differently. Although traditionally the Japanese adore new-built properties, nowadays more people are realizing that the construction qualities after the millennium 2000 have become excellent to provide strong durability. Especially properties from established developers are well-maintianed in very good conditions, which makes it no big difference to the new-built ones.

Many Japanese developers have their own prestige brand names for their condominiums. Therefore, they put in their utmost efforts in maintaining their quality and reputation. Often, the building management is by developer’s subsidiary company so as to make sure the same brand quality is achieved.

Because of the superior construction quality, it is unlikely that owners of such condominiums will need to pay substantial amounts for maintenance in the first 10 years. That is why many property management companies offers guarantee plans that cover minor repair costs, as there is not much pay out expected during this period of time.

After the first decade, some replacements of appliances like air-cons, dishwashers, water-heaters may be required due to service lifespans, but in general, the properties will look no inferior to new-built ones and are equally competitive in the markets.

 

Property price continues to grow in prime locations

Both resale and new-built condominiums in Tokyo have been on a steep price growth since 2013. The growth until 2016 were largely affected by the great expectations towards Tokyo Olympic game, which has brought significant impacts on the property markets not only in Tokyo central, but also to surrounding areas. The growth in the most recent couple years was due to more sustainable and rational factors. Good connectivity, prime locations, redevelopment and superior quality apartments are enjoying appreciation, whereas those properties without these factors are being left behind from the continuous growths.

The demand for a good property in terms of quality and location is expected to remain strong in central area, as working in office is still a daily norm for majority. The shortage of new home supply will still continue, as land acquisitions will remain competitive in prime locations, which in turn can push up values of the existing good properties. It is therefore a good opportunity to widen your options to consider resale properties with strong growth factors.

For more information, please contact us at +852 3759 0909 or email us at irp.hk@ap.jll.com or enquire now from here.

30 Oct 2020

The regeneration of Shoreditch in the East End ranks alongside Canary Wharf as one of London's great success stories of the 21st century so far, but its rise to prominence has been more rapid. The past decade has seen many of the world's best and brightest creatives relocating to be part of the emerging East London Tech City – nicknamed the 'Silicon Roundabout' as London's answer to Silicon Valley, and home to many of the same names, including the likes of Google, Facebook and Amazon among thousands of ambitious startups.

The explosive growth of Shoreditch has made available property scarce, and new residential developments are highly in demand by professionals and local and overseas property investors who are keen to capitalize on house price increases, set to be greater than in Central London. One of the most significant new residential projects entering the market this year is The Makers, a mixed-use development of 175 private residential units, exclusive amenities and a college, located off a quiet street with convenient access to Tech City and the London lifestyle.

 

Work-life balance in Shoreditch

Shoreditch has global appeal for creatives and tech-savvy entrepreneurs for its collaborative startup culture, business support facilities and excellent transport connections. London City Airport is just 26 minutes from Old Street station by train (four minutes' walk from The Makers), while Heathrow Airport is 50 minutes away. Journey times across London and South East England will be improved when Crossrail services begin at nearby Liverpool Street station in 2021, which will also give a boost to house prices and rents in the surrounding area.

Convenient transport links put other London experiences in easy reach, but there's no shortage of restaurants, bars, shops and cultural venues to serve the local community. From bargain hunting at Old Spitalfields Market to catching events at the Barbican and dining out in Islington, there's plenty to enjoy within walking distance. Shoreditch is also a remarkably green part of London, abundant with canalside parks and other recreational areas.

Families moving to Shoreditch with children will be pleased to know that it's in the capture area of some of the city's most prestigious schools, while higher education institutions such as King's College, Central St Martin's and the London School of Economics are within 30 minutes' travel. The development at The Makers also includes a co-located school, New Regent's College, which will provide state-of-the-art education for pupils aged 5 to 16.

 

Design-led luxury living

Tucked away behind busy City Road on the corner of Nile Street and Jasper Walk, The Makers is a collaborative project between established developers Londonewcastle, the London

Borough of Hackney and the Local Education Partnership. Avanti Architects were tasked with designing this new residential landmark, which draws inspiration from the surrounding architecture and rises 28 stories, including a 7-story podium block.

The interiors by Woods Bagot have a distinctly 1920s flavor, from the grand, double-height entrance lobby to the brass fixtures. Buyers can choose from studio flats, two or three-bedroom apartments or family duplexes and penthouses adding more premium finishes and furnishings. All residents will enjoy views over Canary Wharf, the City of London and the West End from their balcony or terrace, as well as use of private communal facilities including a gym and treatment room, screening room, lounges, garden terraces and a 24/7 concierge.

A number of units at The Makers are now available and ready for occupation. Buying before the end of March 2021 means overseas property investors can qualify for Stamp Duty and Land Tax (SDLT) relief, making a London property purchase more affordable. For more information about The Makers in Shoreditch and other residential properties in London, contact JLL International Residential at +852 3759 0909 or irp.hk@ap.jll.com.

 

13 Oct 2020

At the heart of East London Tech City, ascendant Shoreditch is a hotspot for commercial and residential investment

Shoreditch's long climb from Victorian slum to prime London property market isn't only a welcome challenge to Central London dominance, it also reflects the changing fortunes of the East End at large. Transformed by technology, Shoreditch is at the heart of the UK's leading digital cluster, the so-called 'Silicon Roundabout' that's home to the world's leading tech brands and countless ambitious startups.

With heavy public and private investment continuing to fuel growth in the years ahead, the Shoreditch property markets are among the fastest growing in London as businesses and professionals make their new homes in the East End. Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL) forecasts residential sales and rental price growth to outperform Central London in the coming years, contributing to East London being one of the UK's most important growth drivers by 2030.

A further boost in house prices is expected with the opening of the new high-speed Crossrail Elizabeth Line at nearby Liverpool Street, Moorgate and Whitechapel stations. Currently scheduled for 2021, Crossrail will improve journey times across London and to major airports, making a Shoreditch address even more attractive for international business, entrepreneurs and other professionals.

 

The rise of Tech City

Like London's financial center Canary Wharf and other regeneration success stories, Shoreditch has humble origins. In the 19th century it was the site of one of London's most notorious slums, but even back then, its artisan traders earned the area a reputation for creative enterprise.

Technology and media companies arrived at the end of the 20th century, but it wasn't until the 2008 global financial crisis forced older businesses to close that fresh blood could enter Shoreditch, taking advantage of its excellent transport connections and property discounts to establish a new innovation hub centered around Old Street station.

The last decade saw investment pour into the emerging East London Tech City, which became the world's third largest startup cluster after San Francisco and New York, with co-working spaces such as IDEALondon, TechHub and WeWork supporting small business growth and encouraging collaboration. Soon, the startups were joined by the likes of Amazon, Cisco, Facebook, Google and Intel, cementing Shoreditch as a leading technology center in Europe.

 

Old meets new

Even with the area's digital rebirth and growing wealth, many aspects of life in Shoreditch have remained resolutely unchanged. The historic markets of Brick Lane and nearby Spitalfields still draw the crowds, while traditional restaurants and independent boutiques sit side by side with contemporary coffee shops, microbreweries and Boxpark, the eye-catching pop-up container mall.

Convenient access to the London Underground and Overground puts the city center and Crossrail services from Liverpool Street just minutes away, including international connections to London Heathrow and City airports. Living in Shoreditch means having convenient access to all the British capital has to offer, from world-class schools and universities to iconic attractions and nightlife.

 

Modern city living

With demand high and supply limited for Shoreditch property in convenient locations close to stations and business facilities, developers are busy bringing high quality residential property onto the market with furnishings and services that will satisfy the discerning modern professional.

One of the stand-out new developments is The Makers, a collaboration between developer Londonewcastle and the London Borough of Hackney that offers 175 new homes, five-star resident amenities and a co-located college in a quiet residential area off City Road. A limited number of units have been made available for overseas property buyers who are eager to invest in one of London's best performing areas.

 

For more information about The Makers in Shoreditch and other residential properties in London, contact JLL International Residential at +852 3759 0909 or irp.hk@ap.jll.com.

 

07 Oct 2020

One of London's most central and significant regeneration projects, the £15 billion Nine Elms and Battersea development has transformed the UK capital's last major industrial estate into prime Zone 1 real estate. Planned to complete in 2025, the regeneration of Nine Elms will add around 20,000 new homes, offering overseas property investors the rare opportunity to purchase Central London property at lower prices than more established areas.

This mixed-use district will also feature 3.2 million square feet of new office space and 6.5 million square feet of retail, dining and leisure space, much of this in the refurbished Battersea Power Station that will soon be a new home for Apple and other prestigious global brands. New transport infrastructure will serve the district and connect it to the wider city, including a footbridge across the River Thames and two new stations extending the London Underground Northern Line.

Lexington Gardens at Nine Elms is the flagship residential development serving the new community, comprising three distinctive buildings in landscaped grounds amid the buzz of the international quarter. Lexington Gardens is a short walk from the new Nine Elms Underground station for journeys across London and convenient international connections.

 

International prestige with local flavor

The establishment of the new US Embassy and Apple's 500,000-square-foot campus at Battersea were early endorsements for this up-and-coming district, and other forward-thinking businesses have taken note. More than 70 percent of commercial space in the Power Station has already been leased ahead of the 2021 opening of the iconic London landmark, which will be home to more than 100 brands across technology, retail, food, leisure and other diverse industries.

As well as the boutiques and markets at Battersea's Circus West, the upscale department stores and Michelin-starred restaurants of Knightsbridge and Chelsea can be found directly across the river. The South Bank itself is one of London's leading culture hubs for sophisticated nights out, while other destinations such as the West End will be in easy reach once services begin from the new Underground stations next year.

Services from Nine Elms and Battersea Power Station will take 11 minutes to reach the City of London financial center and less than 50 minutes to London's three busiest airports. Students and families with children will also find a Nine Elms address convenient for accessing London's many prestigious schools and universities, including King's College, Imperial College and University College London.

 

Exceptional city living

Lexington Gardens at Nine Elms is part of the wider regeneration project, extending the South Bank and incorporating a stretch of the new Linear Park that runs from Battersea to Vauxhall. Green space and walkways connect its three eye-catching residential buildings, designed by RMA Architects to fuse London heritage with New York style.

This sophistication extends to the interiors. The latest phase at Lexington Gardens to launch, offers 126 private one, two and three-bedroom apartments with spacious living areas, a choice of stylish color palettes and full-height windows and a balcony or terrace overlooking the gardens and the River Thames. The luxury lifestyle is supported by a suite of exclusive resident amenities that includes a private gymnasium, media room, roof garden and 24-hour concierge service.

 

For more information about this opportunity and other residential properties in London, click here or contact JLL International Properties at +852 3759 0909 or irp.hk@ap.jll.com.

07 Oct 2020

The Portman Estate is investing more than £250m into fashionable Marylebone to create a new residential hotspot in the heart of London W1

 

London is consistently one of the most popular global cities for overseas property investment, and a prestigious Central London postcode is the gold standard for wealthy buyers and professionals who want the best of the city on their doorstep. Extensive regeneration continues to offer new opportunities to live and invest in London's most fashionable districts, among them Marylebone.

 

A stone's throw from Oxford Street and Mayfair, surrounded by Royal Parks and a popular boutique shopping and dining destination in its own right, Marylebone in the Borough of Westminster is one of the most central and best-connected areas of London. The residential sales and lettings markets in Marylebone have remained robust over the past few years, and Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL) expects growth to accelerate as the ongoing regeneration and forthcoming high-speed Crossrail services at nearby Paddington station draw more investment to the area.

 

Marylebone's transformation is centered on The Portman Estate, a mixed-use neighborhood covering 110 acres of prime Central London real estate that dates back to 1532. Working with some of London's most esteemed property developers, the Estate is investing more than £250m into Marylebone and surrounding areas over the next decade to improve living standards even further, bring more new and refurbished properties onto the market and ensure their long-term growth prospects.

 

Village in the city

Despite its central location, Marylebone has held on to its village charm, particularly among the Georgian architecture and independent retail streets of The Portman Estate. The wider Marylebone area is famous for its specialist stores and home to several Michelin-starred restaurants, making it a popular destination for discerning Londoners looking for a more authentic alternative to the global brands of nearby Oxford Street and Regent Street.

 

Part of London's artistic West End, Marylebone also has cultural experiences to entertain and inspire locals all year round, from the eclectic art exhibitions at The Wallace Collection to music recitals at the legendary Wigmore Hall. Nature lovers and families have two sprawling Royal Parks in walking distance – 350-acre Hyde Park and Regent's Park with its iconic zoo – and many of London's highest-rated schools, colleges and universities are just minutes away on the Underground, including King's College London, University College London, Imperial College London and the London School of Economics.

 

At the center of London's transport network, Marylebone is exceptionally well connected to all parts of London and further afield by local Tube stations such as Marble Arch and Edgware and nearby Paddington station, offering high-speed connections to financial district Canary Wharf in just 17 minutes and London Heathrow Airport in 34 minutes on the Crossrail Elizabeth Line. With the opening of Crossrail now delayed until the first half of 2022, investors in London property can still look forward to the anticipated rise in demand and house values once services begin.

 

Meticulous living spaces

Located in the west of The Portman Estate, TwentyFive is the new flagship residential development of the area that's already welcoming overseas investment. Developed by Native Land, TwentyFive offers 23 meticulous studios, one, two and three-bedroom lateral apartments and two lateral penthouses across eight floors. The mixed-use building also includes over 44,500 square feet of office space at OneThreeSix and four retail units, setting a new standard for high-end living and working locations in London.

 

Designed by architects Stiff + Trevillion, the eye-catching development makes the most of its stunning location with dual aspect views in most units and Juliet balconies for all. The spacious contemporary interiors by MSMR Architects use natural oak and stone, light color palettes and reflective surfaces to set a calm and airy atmosphere to help city dwellers unwind. Residents can also access a private gym, a pool and spa at the neighboring Marriot Hotel, concierge services, secure underground car parking and other amenities, alongside the perks of a central London W1 location.

 

For more information about this opportunity or other residential properties in London, click here or contact JLL International Residential at +852 3759 0909 or irp.hk@ap.jll.com.

 

10 Sep 2020

Strong fundamentals and new developments make Scotland's capital a compelling alternative for shrewd investors

High prices and competition for London property are causing more overseas buyers to explore other opportunities for UK residential investment. One of the most promising alternative markets is Edinburgh, Scotland's cosmopolitan capital that offers strong capital growth, a diverse economy and exceptional quality of life for residents.

In recent years, the Edinburgh housing market has proven to be one of the most robust in the UK. House prices grew by 6% from 2018 to 2019, according to data from HM Land Registry, exceeding London. Strong foundations in education, finance, innovation, technology, tourism and other sectors support a well-diversified economy, while the city's young, highly educated and affluent workforce maintains high demand for well-located Edinburgh property.

Housing demand and prices have also been kept high by a decade-long supply shortfall, although sale and rental values have remained consistent with income to keep demand sustainable. Constrained by a coastal location and an abundance of heritage buildings in its compact city center, opportunities for new development in Edinburgh have been limited, but this is changing with a number of recent projects opening up prime central locations for commercial and residential investment.

Ranging from minor projects of several units to high-profile residential developments in prestigious locations, the most notable of these is New Eidyn. Part of the £1 billion Edinburgh St James retail and leisure quarter that's currently transforming the New Town, this presents a rare opportunity to acquire property in a prominent position at the heart of a UK capital.

 

Business and education center

The UK's largest financial center outside London, and ranked among the top 50 worldwide by the Global Financial Centres Index, Edinburgh is also becoming increasingly known for its innovation and entrepreneurial culture, aided by local 'tech incubators' such as CivTech and CodeBase. Startups and established technology firms occupy around one third of office space in the city and contribute significantly towards the strong housing demand.

Edinburgh's growing tech scene benefits from the presence of four esteemed universities supplying highly skilled graduates, among them the University of Edinburgh, a QS world top 20 university and leader in computer science and informatics. With the most international students and second largest student population in the UK per capita, Edinburgh is on course to be the nation's most youthful city by 2027, offering an ideal renting demographic to landlords.

 

Most livable city

Besides its business and education credentials, Edinburgh is also renowned for its high quality of life. Frequently named the most livable, most walkable and most attractive city in the UK, among other accolades, it also boasts the most green space at 49%. Tourism and events are major pillars of the economy year-round, particularly during the month-long Edinburgh International Festival in August when the city's population doubles and the huge demand for temporary accommodation is a boon to property owners.

For local residents, Edinburgh offers the shopping, dining and lifestyle perks expected of a major city, soon to be boosted further by the opening of Edinburgh St James. This landmark development will include 85 designer stores and 30 cafes and restaurants over 1.7 million square feet in the heart of Edinburgh New Town, adjacent to a five-screen Everyman cinema, new W Edinburgh Hotel and shopping boutiques along Multrees Walk.

 

New Eidyn

Directly above the four commercial floors at Edinburgh St James, New Eidyn is a collection of 152 luxury homes spanning the fifth to eighth floors of the development. Ranging from 518 square foot studios to four-bedroom lateral apartments, duplexes and penthouses over 2,500 square feet, each residence will command captivating views over the historic city center out towards the Firth of Forth.

 

For more information about New Eidyn and other residential properties in Edinburgh and the UK, click here or contact JLL International Residential at +852 3759 0909 or irp.hk@ap.jll.com.

08 Sep 2020

New residential quarter in scenic Staines-upon-Thames offers the London lifestyle without the expensive price tag

London is still one of the most competitive markets for overseas property investment in 2020, especially for buyers who complete transactions before the 2% increase in stamp duty comes into effect next April. Investing in London property can be even more affordable when following the demand to outlying areas that balance cheaper prices and peaceful countryside living with convenient access to the city, such as Staines-upon-Thames.

This picturesque town on the River Thames is just 30 minutes from Central London, offering direct access to London's financial, cultural and education institutions for professionals and families. More than half of migration into the local area comes from London boroughs, contributing to a projected 24% increase in households by 2039. With 500 new homes required every year to meet this demand, and supply falling far short, house prices are expected to grow by 7.6% per annum from 2020 to 2024, according to Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL). Rental growth is forecast at 8.2% per annum over the same period.

Nick Whitten, JLL UK Head of Residential Research, explains: “We expect history to repeat itself with Greater London and South East locations performing the strongest as we emerge from the COVID-19 crisis, just as they did coming out of the Global Financial Crisis. Once the dust settles house prices and rents will begin to grow again from as soon as 2021 in locations with strong demand fundamentals such as Staines.”

Helping to meet the high demand from migrating Londoners and investors is Eden Grove, a new residential quarter in Staines-upon-Thames by leading UK developer Berkeley. A short walk from the main shopping streets and rail connections to London, and less than three miles from the UK's largest airport, Eden Grove is now welcoming overseas buyers looking for alternative London property.

 

The best of both worlds

On the edge of London's green belt, Staines-upon-Thames is surrounded by protected green space, from riverside paths and formal gardens to the open Surrey countryside. Some of England's most popular attractions are close by, including royal Windsor and Hampton Court Palace, celebrated sport grounds Ascot Racecourse and Twickenham, and the modern thrills of Thorpe Park theme park.

For families with children and other students, living in Staines-upon-Thames puts some of the UK's most prestigious education opportunities close at hand, from highly-rated local primary and secondary schools to notable colleges and universities. Eton College and Royal Holloway University are in the local area, while Imperial College, King's College London and the London School of Economics are less than an hour away.

The market town itself may be small, but it's not lacking in amenities. The historic high street offers an eclectic mix of global brands and independent boutiques, with dining options from Michelin-starred restaurants and gastropubs to international cuisine. As a business destination, Staines-upon-Thames ranks in the top 10% in the UK for economic growth potential, according to dataloft and UKCI, with more than 1,100 businesses opening since 2010. Global companies including bp, Bupa, Netflix and Salesforce have chosen the area for their local headquarters, drawn by its cheaper property prices and convenient access to London and Heathrow Airport.

 

Landscaped luxury living

The signature new residential development of Staines-upon-Thames, Eden Grove is an attractive collection of contemporary homes arranged as pavilions around a landscaped garden and central water feature. Oriented to maximize natural daylight, the spacious open-plan apartments are fitted out with the latest appliances and quality materials, available in a choice of stylish color palettes. Residents at Eden Grove will also have exclusive access to premium amenities rarely found in the local area, including a private gym, cinema and co-working space and a 24-hour concierge in the lobby.

 

For more information about Eden Grove and other residential properties in London, click here or contact JLL International Residential at +852 3759 0909 or irp.hk@ap.jll.com.

 

07 Sep 2020

LBS Properties launches luxury apartments surrounded by two acres of green space in one of Central London's best connected locations

 

London property markets have remained positive despite a difficult global year as the regeneration of prime locations in the British capital continues to create new opportunities for developers and overseas investment. Nowhere is this more evident than in Kings Cross, the former industrial backwater transformed into one of London's most popular destinations to live and work through the largest regeneration project in Europe.

Since 2001, the Kings Cross masterplan has created nothing less than a brand new area of Central London, complete with its own postcode (N1C). Once complete, the redevelopment will have added 50 new buildings, 200 homes, 20 new streets and 10 public squares alongside heritage buildings in 67 acres of Central London, 26 acres of which are committed to open space.

The transformation of this historic part of the city has created sought-after opportunities for residential investment from domestic and overseas property buyers as London's housing shortfall grows ever steeper. The most significant new development entering the international market is Grand Central Apartments, a new residential landmark by award-winning London property developer LBS Properties that offers residents the high life within walking distance of the city's best-connected transport hub.

 

Old meets new

The regeneration of Kings Cross continues to add new retail, dining and leisure venues to cater to its growing population, with the mix of independent boutiques, familiar global brands and famous restaurants that London residents have come to expect. Traditional markets and department stores share the streets with newcomers such as the attractive Coal Drops Yard, collecting more than 50 shopping and dining establishments in an alfresco setting.

Naturally for a Central London district, Kings Cross is steeped in heritage that can be seen in its many lovingly preserved buildings and historic institutions such as the British Museum, British Library and University College London, still operating today as foundations of the 'Knowledge Quarter.' This part of London has a strong tradition of creativity and innovation that's alive and well with the construction of Google's new UK headquarters and other leading tech firms such as Facebook, Samsung and Sony, all within walking distance of Grand Central Apartments.

Also a short walk away are the train stations for which King Cross is most renowned. Kings Cross itself – immortalized in Harry Potter – connects London to the wider UK with services to Edinburgh in the north and Cambridge to the east, while adjacent St. Pancras station connects to Paris and wider Europe on the Eurostar. Six Underground lines serve routes all over London, connecting to the major financial districts, universities and all five London airports in an hour or less.

 

Inspired by Kings Cross

The nearby stations were a major influence on award-winning architects Stiff + Trevillion when designing Grand Central Apartments. The development's signature slender tower incorporates the linear forms and materials of the railway to connect the newest landmark of Kings Cross to the site's industrial past, set within two acres of green spaces and public squares that contribute to the overall Kings Cross redevelopment.

Standing at the center, Grand Central Apartments offers 68 apartments and penthouses across 22 stories, commanding impressive views over the gardens, Kings Cross and wider Central London. All apartments benefit from high ceilings, a private balcony or winter garden and deluxe furnishings and fittings, with inspiring modern interiors by Honky Interior Architecture & Design. Residents will also have access to a private lounge in the lobby and a daytime concierge service to take care of all requests.

 

A limited number of one, two and three-bedroom apartments at Grand Central Apartments are now available for overseas property buyers in Hong Kong, with completion estimated from Q4 2022. For more information about this investment opportunity and other residential properties in London, click here or contact JLL Investments Limited at +852 3759 0909 or irp.hk@ap.jll.com.

 

01 Sep 2020

Europe's largest redevelopment project is also one of the most attractive areas to live, work and invest in London

 

London residential markets are still among the most competitive options for overseas property investors, according to new research by Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL). Despite the increased stamp duty on foreign transactions, purchasing property in London was found to be more affordable than other global hotspots such as Sydney, Singapore and Vancouver, with £73,750 (HK$748,166) transaction tax on a £1m property purchase (compared to £300,000 (HK$3.04m) in Hong Kong).

Investing in London property can be a tricky prospect however, because of the large discrepancies in house prices and yields between areas. As redevelopment continues to transform the British capital, it's important for buyers to keep track of the changing fortunes of London districts to make sure they're investing wisely. In the new decade, Kings Cross is going from strength to strength as one of the best prospects for Central London residential investment.

 

Strong performer

Occupying 67 acres of prime Central London real estate, Kings Cross has changed dramatically over the past two decades, from underused industrial zone and red light district to one of the inner city's most vibrant destinations with a thriving creative industry. As the regeneration continues to enhance the area's appeal, the population is expected to grow by 9% over the next decade, increasing demand for property in a city already struggling with a housing shortfall.

 

According to figures from JLL and Molior, new build property prices in King Cross increased by 106% from 2011 to 2019, compared to just 19% for London Zones 1 and 2 overall. Rents increased by 33% during the same period. JLL forecasts a further 13.9% house price growth and 11.9% rental growth over the next five years, outperforming Greater London as a whole.

 

Nick Whitten, JLL Head of UK Living Research, explains: “Kings Cross is a richly historic part of London which has undergone a phenomenal regeneration over the past 20 years with thousands of new homes built around several new public parks and squares. Kings Cross is proving to be a particularly attractive area to live in London with around 45% of homes in the area occupied by affluent young professionals.”

 

Knowledge Quarter

A focal point of the Kings Cross regeneration is the Knowledge Quarter, a district of innovation comprising more than 100 organizations in a one-mile radius, from cutting-edge medical research to leading global brands, most notably Google. Office rents in Kings Cross have doubled since Google opened its doors in 2013, attracting other high-profile names including Facebook, Samsung, Nike and Universal Music.

The regeneration is adding 1.8 million square feet of commercial space to Kings Cross for a total of 3.4m square feet of workspace in 19 new and refurbished buildings. Approximately 70,000 skilled workers live in and commute to Kings Cross every day, a number that's sure to grow in line with the booming tech sector.

Kings Cross is a natural fit for global organizations thanks to its excellent connectivity, soon to be enhanced further following £2.5bn of infrastructure investment. Kings Cross, St. Pancras and Euston train stations serve routes all over London, taking in all five London airports, as well as to the wider UK and mainland Europe via the Eurostar. Forthcoming Crossrail 2 and HS2 upgrades will add even more destinations and shorten journey times.

 

New neighborhoods

Along with commercial expansion, the Kings Cross redevelopment is adding new shopping and dining precincts, arts and culture venues, public spaces and 1,900 homes to make this emerging London hotspot a great place to live as well as work. There's also plenty of space to catch a breath, with 40% of the district (26 acres) designated as open space.

Contributing to this green space and sought-after housing is Grand Central Apartments, a new residential tower of luxury apartments and penthouses surrounded by two acres of gardens and public squares, within walking distance of Kings Cross and St. Pancras stations. Expected to complete from Q4 2022, selected units are now available for overseas property buyers looking to invest in this dynamic part of London.

 

For more information about Grand Central Apartments and other residential properties in London, click here or contact JLL Investments Limited at +852 3759 0909 or irp.hk@ap.jll.com.

01 Sep 2020

New neighborhoods and transport upgrades are making West London property a cost-effective alternative to Central London

Long overlooked by developers focused on the famous streets of Central London and the booming East End, West London is becoming an attractive alternative for living, working and investing in the UK capital.

More affordable than the prime London market, the redevelopment of well-connected areas such as Kew Bridge in Brentford is making the West a tempting prospect for local and overseas property buyers looking for long-term capital gains. Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL) forecasts 15% growth in West London property prices from 2018 to 2022, outperforming Central London and Greater London as a whole. Further growth is expected when Crossrail and HS2 services begin, improving connections across London and the wider UK and attracting more professionals looking for cheaper rents than central London districts.

£1.85 million has been invested in the regeneration of Kew Bridge and Brentford, a notably green part of London that's close to the Royal Botanic Gardens, the Golden Mile business district and many reputable schools and universities. The regeneration plan includes 1,700 new homes across several new residential districts along with new infrastructure and amenities to serve the growing community and boost property values further.

 

Great West Corridor

The local council's plan for Brentford and surrounding areas is to create a new mixed-use business and lifestyle quarter to draw attention and investment to West London. Along with a new transport interchange to connect existing overground routes to the new Crossrail and HS2 services at Old Oak Common station, Brentford's regeneration will include a new 17,250 capacity football stadium and a new riverside marina at Watermans Park.

As well as boosting the appeal of the area, these new facilities are expected to attract significant commercial and retail investment to Brentford, which is already a well-established business destination in West London. Many of the world's leading blue chip companies have based their London headquarters along the Golden Mile and Chiswick Business Park – Dell, Sony and the Walt Disney Company among them – employing more than 200,000 skilled workers.

For families, living in Kew and Brentford puts some of London's most prestigious schools, colleges and universities in easy reach. The University of West London has a Brentford campus and the local area has a wide selection of private and community schools rated 'Good' or 'Outstanding' by education regulator Ofsted. Other internationally renowned institutions such as King's College London, Imperial College London, University College London (UCL) and the University of Roehampton are within 45 minutes' travel.

Kew is a popular getaway for Londoners for its heritage sites and natural charms, from picturesque Kew Green and the UNESCO-listed Royal Botanic Gardens to the quirky boutiques of Kew Village. The sights of the city center are less than 30 minutes away by rail (shorter when Crossrail arrives) and it's less than 20 minutes' drive to London Heathrow Airport for travel overseas.

 

Verdo – Kew Bridge

The first of the new residential neighborhoods in Brentford to welcome investors is Verdo – Kew Bridge, a mixed residential and commercial district by EcoWorld London. A minute's walk from Kew Bridge station and close to Kew Village, Chiswick and the Golden Mile, this new development features luxurious apartments and a selection of shops, restaurants and community spaces surrounded by landscaping.

The latest phase at Verdo, Lily House, offers buyers a choice of studios and one, two or three-bedroom apartments, each featuring a private balcony or terrace, bespoke fittings and stylish contemporary interiors with a choice of color palettes. Residents have access to hotel-style private amenities including a lounge and dining suite, cinema, fully-equipped gym, podium garden and 24-hour concierge services.

A select number of units at Lily House are now available for overseas property buyers, with completion estimated from Q3 to Q4 2022. Investors based in Hong Kong who want to know more about this project can attend JLL's exhibition from Saturday 29 to Sunday 30 August.

 

Exhibition detail

Date: 29–30 August, 2020 (Sat–Sun)

Time: 11:00am – 6:00pm

Venue: 15/F, Entertainment Suite, The Landmark Mandarin Oriental, 15 Queen's Road Central, Central, Hong Kong

 

For more information about Verdo Kew Bridge and other residential properties in London, click here or contact JLL International Properties at +852 3759 0909 or irp.hk@ap.jll.com.

26 Aug 2020