Jones Lang LaSalle's International Property

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London's wealthiest areas a big attraction for overseas buyers

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 21 November, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 21 November, 2012, 3:18am

London home sellers increased asking prices for a third month in November as the wealthiest areas continued to lure overseas buyers, Rightmove said.

Prices increased 1.2 per cent to an average £483,709 (HK$5.95 million), the operator of Britain's biggest property website said. Properties in the capital's nine most expensive districts - where average prices exceed £600,000 - surged 3.4 per cent. Nationally, values fell 2.6 per cent.

"The prime central London property market continues to attract wealthy foreign buyers," said Miles Shipside, commercial director of Rightmove. "This is especially true in the hot spots of the City of Westminster, where a Mayfair or Belgravia address is a prerequisite for the world's wealthiest. The best of London is increasingly in 'international only' reach."

London's most expensive districts are attracting investors looking for safer investments, and luxury-home values are now 16 per cent higher than their previous peak in March 2008, according to property consultant firm Knight Frank. International buyers accounted for 41 per cent of London houses bought for at least £1 million in September.

London continues to buck the trend nationally. The decline in asking prices in England and Wales this month was the biggest in almost a year and left the average at £236,761. From a year earlier, national prices were up 2 per cent. London was up 8.8 per cent.