November 11, 2021

After a stagnant 18 months during the Covid-19 pandemic, central London’s prime property market is showing clear signs of being back for good, with demand from wealthy buyers at the start of summer reportedly up 60 per cent on the same period in 2019. According to Edward Aldersley, CEO of prime property specialists Aldersley London, those looking to purchase ‘super prime’ property will be reaping the most benefits over the coming months.

They predicted earlier in 2021 that central London’s prime property market would fast become a buyers’ playground as the UK started to ‘reopen’. The fall in demand for property in the city’s prime postcodes from domestic owners, many of whom moved out to country residences to enjoy the extra space during locked down months, coupled with a lack of overseas buyers, meant that prices in many postcodes suffered a relatively sharp decline as a knock-on effect. This indicated that once the Covid vaccination roll-out began to take effect and life could begin to return to a level of normality, buyers will likely start to make moves again to take advantage of reduced prices across the market, prompting sealed bid scenarios on the most sought-after properties.

Typically popular with a higher ratio of overseas to domestic buyers than the majority of the UK, central London’s prime property market, particularly the super prime market (properties upwards of £10 million) has been slower to recover from the initial blow of the pandemic in Q2 2020. Whilst the average housing market has soared over the past 12-18 months, reaching record average house prices nationwide, prices in London’s prime markets are still lower than their previous peak. For buyers able to purchase within this market, this makes the market even more attractive.

Super prime property deals are now starting to recover—buyer activity has increased and in turn, house prices have also began on their upward trajectory with a first annual increase (albeit 0.5 per cent) according to Savills, since 2014. And with growth still modest, there is still plenty of scope for eagle-eyed buyers on the lookout for a good deal.

At Aldersley London, there has been an uplift in enquiries, having recently secured an exceptional property for one of their high net worth clients, valued at £13 million, on Wilton Place—one of Belgravia’s most sought after postcodes. Proving the demand and speed at which buyers, and sellers, are willing to move, they secured the property completely off-market and within a matter of weeks.

With the booster vaccination roll-out looking positive and overseas travel looking set to remain open both to and from the UK, this fares extremely well for the prospects of central London’s prime residential property market to continue its steady recovery. There is a pent-up demand amongst overseas buyers looking to invest in the UK market as one of the most regulated and “safe” havens for their wealth. If the UK remains open and the vaccination programmes continue to work, this “buyer’s playground” looks set to be one of the most popular in the coming months, well into 2022. And those who can buy super-prime are highly likely to find themselves reaping the biggest benefits in years to come.