Knock Knock News: China's rich seek shelter, property millionaires rise, Canary Wharf's Maine event and budget pledge gets a roasting

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China's rich seek shelter: real estate agents in Britain are bracing themselves for a surge of new interest, with early signs that wealthy Chinese investors are seeking a safe haven from the turmoil in Shanghai's stock markets. Around 20% has been knocked off the value of Chinese shares since mid-June. In London, Alex Newall, managing director of super prime residential realtor Hanover Private Office estate agents said he had seen an increase in interest from Chinese investors at the top of the market, although no transactions yet. "They're wanting to try and park large sums of money – I'm talking from £25m [US$38.5m] to £150m," Newell said. "They're looking to park that capital into London homes."

Source: The Guardian

Property millionaires doubled: more than half a million people in Britain are now estimated to be "property millionaires" after the number doubled in three years. The total number of people living in houses worth more than £1 million now stands at 524,306 according to Zoopla's property rich list. There are now 10,958 streets where the average property price is more than £1 million. More than 4,700 of these are in London, around 3,700 in the South East, 121 in Scotland, 17 in Wales and just 53 in the North East. There are 13 streets in the capital the average prices is more than £10 million.

Source: Daily Telegraph

Crowdfunding to overheat the property market?: crowdfunding, the model of raising cash once limited to the likes of Kickstarter, has its eyes on a new investment opportunity, your home. Property Moose, The House Crowd and Property Partner are some of the new players in this burgeoning property tech (Proptech) space, with their eyes on flats and houses both in London and around Britain. Investors own a stake in the property, take a share of the monthly rent and at the end of a minimum term (usually 5 years) are given the opportunity to cash out if they wish (hopefully reaping profits as the value of the property rises). Property Partner has now bought 18 properties around the capital, raising £5m from some of the 40,000 ordinary investors on its platform.

Source: The Memo

Your own private island cheaper than the average London home: with London house-prices continually rising there may be a sunnier alternative for those with a spare bob or two; a private island might be the ultimate status symbol but 65 per cent are now on sale for less than £350,000. A growing band are renting islands rather than owning, giving them the freedom to island-hop according to the seasons. Knight Frank calls them "wealthy millennials", while Farhad Vladi, founder of Vladi Private Islands, who deals with many of the world's island sales, refers to them as the "Facebook generation who like the excitement of island living but not the responsibility of ownership". Sixty five per cent of private islands are on sale for less than $500,000, according to Knight Frank, and some are positively cheap if you don't mind forsaking the warm-watered idyll for something a little nippier on the toes and off the beaten track.

Source: Daily Telegraph

Canary Wharf's Maine event: homes worth a total of £140m in east London's latest residential tower block, in Canary Wharf, sold out in less than five hours – and it's not even built yet. International investors and first-time buyers queued down the road 36 hours before the official sales launch of Maine Tower in Canary Wharf as the allure of Crossrail continues to power a property boom in the east of the capital. The 230 apartments, which ranged in asking price from £350,000 to £1.25m, and will be completed in 2019, sold out in a single morning a fortnight ago, according to Galliard Homes, the builder behind the development. The sales completed last week but thee penthouses were held back for sale as is typical of developers.

Source: Daily Telegraph

Property agents slam tax relief restriction for landlords: a number of property agents have blasted a government move which will cut mortgage interest relief on buy-to-let homes. Chancellor George Osborne announced in the budget that relief will be cut to the basic rate of income tax - currently 20%. It will hit the ability of buy-to-let landlords to claim repayments back against their income, which has benefited larger landlords. Nicholas Leeming, chairman of estate agent group Jackson-Stops & Staff, said: "This a major blow to a sector that is heavily reliant on private investors and who provide a crucial supply of property to the private rental sector."

Source: Evening Standard

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