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Stamp duty around the world

Stamp duty, so called because it was a tax levied on the legal transaction of documents, began in Spain in the 1600s. It soon spread across Europe as a legitimate means for authorities to raise funds. It was adopted in England in 1694 to support the king’s war effort against France. A similarly interesting historical fact is that an attempt to introduce stamp duty in America saw the outbreak of its war of independence from Britain. And that pretty much sums up how most people feel about stamp duty. Continue reading

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Surge in demand for one bedroom apartments in Hong Kong

Since we opened a Hong Kong office back in 1995, we have always had a keen interest in how the property market is performing there.  And we have witnessed a recent surge in demand for one bedroom apartments. It seems that last year’s trend for studio apartments has passed as buyers and investors now recognise the value of having more living space. Several developments are experiencing record demand and high sale prices for units in excess of 400sq ft. Continue reading

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Property investments by British expats on the rise

British expats, particularly those living in Asia, are heavily investing in the UK’s buy-to-let market. In our latest trip to Hong Kong, Singapore and Malaysia, at least 40% of the investors we met were British nationals considering buying London property and looking for rental advice or had already bought London property and wanted to employ our rental services. Continue reading

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Should a Hong Kong landlord choose to invest in Japan’s property market?

Hong Kong property investors are being torn between the lure of Japan’s property market and the UK’s. As prices in Hong Kong skyrocket, investors are considering markets further afield based on which location can offer them the best deal. We have already looked at whether Vietnam is the next property hotspot, now it’s Japan’s turn. What has the Land of the Rising Sun to offer? Continue reading

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The regeneration of Battersea Power Station

As an iconic and quintessentially British landmark, it is unsurprising that Battersea Power Station is attracting considerable attention from foreign investors. London has always been an international property hotspot however, it is good to see areas not historically known for their residential desirability being given an investment boost to attract residents. Continue reading

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Living and Renting at Beaufort Park

Tenants renting apartments in Colindale’s flagship property development, Beaufort Park, can be excused for taking a collective victory lap around the NW9 area in celebration of its continuing success. Back in 2009, when anywhere outside the innermost London districts was considered a risk, the sheer space around Colindale inspired a rare optimism. Then, when both the Metropolitan Police College and the Royal Air Force found themselves with more land than they needed, opportunity beckoned. The regeneration of these sites has subsequently allowed individuals and families priced out of Zone 1 and 2, to buy into a more affordable lifestyle and yet be at their desks in under half an hour. With Colindale Underground Station situated just a five minute walk away, the Northern Line has – and will continue to play – a major part in attracting further interest from corporate professionals to this rental hotspot. Continue reading

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Celebrity Moves- August 2017

The old saying goes that only death and taxes are certain and that all the rest is down to choices. Career decisions can be made more complicated when affairs of the heart take centre stage and celebrities aren’t immune to such difficulties. Indeed, major career breakthroughs can occur at a time when their personal lives are undergoing major changes. To put things in perspective: rock legends, Fleetwood Mac somehow managed to record their enduring masterpiece, “Rumours” while band members where going through multiple break ups, affairs and rehab. Creativity out of chaos, maybe? Continue reading

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The London rental market – August 2017

In many areas of London we continue to see a tenant’s market. There is a wide choice of properties available and applicants are negotiating when rents appear to be higher than average. And there are still plenty of good applicants searching for a rental home in London, and not just from notable international companies but also a strong UK talent base relocating to London for career progression.
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What’s on in London – August 2017

The last of the big summer dance music festivals roll out this August and Londoners will be out getting as much sun and pounding techno as they can handle. To some it’s an ideal way of keeping the continental holiday vibe going. To others it’s a great springboard for a late season getaway. Festivals are becoming more about catching up and making plans with friends than an end to themselves and that is generally a good thing. There’s no time for antisocial behaviour with all those good vibes flowing around.
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Micro heroes

London is following New York’s lead – with space at a premium and many young professionals looking to live and work in the city, micro homes are neatly filling the housing gap. Lettings Director Marc von Grundherr says: “It’s unsurprising that micro homes are becoming popular in London, smaller units means that tenants can enjoy prime central locations at lower costs.” Continue reading

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Is Vietnam the new property hotspot?

“Up-and-coming areas” or “property hotspots” are commonly used phrases for areas in cities that are experiencing renewed buyer interest. The same phrases can be applied to countries that have begun to attract the attention of the international property-buying community. Vietnam is the latest property hotspot and it’s proving very attractive to mainland Chinese investors and landlords as I saw for myself last year when I visited to meet new clients. Continue reading

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How Design Shanghai 2017 inspired global interior trends

Design Shanghai 2017 earlier this year saw the hot new interior trends coming out of China alongside master designers from the wider world. Leading Chinese design brands such as: Frank Chou Design Studio, Haostyle and MATSU took their place alongside established western design brands including: Cole & Son, Swarovski and DuPont Corian; while emerging and established artists showcased interactive installations and design work to delight and inspire. Continue reading

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Period Conversions v New Builds

When an American media executive was hunting for property in London recently, he expressed astonishment that anyone could even countenance a new build. Raised in Los Angeles, the oldest building in his neighbourhood was constructed in the mid-fifties and he craved the character and history of English period homes. His attitude reflects that of many in the Capital who see living in a period property as a way of maintaining links with a certain heritage and culture. Continue reading

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