London Property Headlines (April 24th 2019)

Below we highlight the trending property headlines in London.

London records a high number of unsold units as the property market continues to plummet. Previously, new homes in London used to have buyers even before construction was completed. As of March 31, the borough of Tower Hamlets recorded the largest number of unsold property units followed by Greenwich. “Much of this stock is too expensive to qualify for government incentives such as Help-to-Buy, so normal people who want somewhere to live are not buying them,” said Tim Craine, founder of Molior London, a property research firm which has been compiling such data for a decade. This trend is also attributed to the series of property tax hikes, capital controls and Brexit uncertainty that has hit London’s high-end residential market. These events have discouraged investors and left property developers holding empty units that are too expensive for average Londoners. — BLOOMBERG

Properties under construction in London
Properties under construction in London

Newham is London’s most crowded borough. Using data from the London Datastore, the latest research by Ideal flatmate, a flat sharing platform found that a population of just under 350,000 people is reliant on just 112,628 homes in Newham. Simplified, the statistics suggest that there is roughly just one-third of property available for every one person that resides in Newham. There’s obviously a clear correlation between the amount you pay either to buy or rent and the space you get for your money, but for those of us that don’t live in the high-end bliss of prime central London, it’s actually quite dire reading when it comes to the ratio of property available to people that need a roof over their head,” stated Tom Gatzen, co-founder of ideal flatmate. — LONDON LOVES PROPERTY

Findings from the research by IdealFlatmate
Findings from the research

Major UK property portals make a decision to eliminate the ‘No DSS’ policy. This discriminatory policy is used by landlords in letting listings to depict that tenants who receive housing benefits cannot rent an advertised home. Chris Town, vice chair of the Residential Landlords Association, welcomed the move by Rightmove and Zoopla in addition to the government stating that ‘Landlords should not refuse someone solely because they are on benefits, and should consider prospective tenants on a case by case basis.’ “All tenants who are looking to rent a property deserve the chance to be fully assessed for their suitability and matched to a home that suits both their and the landlord’s circumstances,” Charlie Bryant, managing director of Zoopla added. Currently, The Work and Pensions Committee is conducting an investigation into the ‘No DSS’ discrimination claims in the housing sector. — PROPERTY WIRE

Londoners will have to wait to celebrate “Mortgage Freedom Day” – This day is based on annual research conducted by Halifax which offers a scope on home affordability in specific how much people earn against how much is spent on their mortgage. “If every penny earned this year went towards a mortgage payment, April 16th, 2019 would be the day that the average UK borrower could celebrate paying off their mortgage for the year.” Andy Bickers, mortgages director at Halifax stated. Londoners, however, will need to wait an extra two months (until June 20th) for their “Mortgage Freedom Day” with residents of Brent waiting longer (their “freedom” not arriving until September 5th.) — MIRROR

Residents of Bow Ranwell West estate in East London are taking legal action against Clarion Housing Group after each home received bills of up to £32,000 even after the payment of more than £3,000 a year for service and maintenance. The residents of the estate were presented with a legal payment notice of a collective bill amounting to £2 million. The estate residents argue that the repair work which comprises of electrical work, roof and floor fixing in addition to redecoration of communal areas and pipes would not have been expensive had appropriate maintenance done earlier. The housing group stated to the residents that it would take a percentage of their property if they failed to pay. A report published last month by the Commons housing committee championed for reforms to the leasehold system. — EVENING STANDARD

Written and curated by David Kuria. He is the uber-curious type. A travel and real estate enthusiast. In simplicity, he covers global real estate news from nearly every angle in addition to market movements in finance, the world economy, and other business trends.  Follow him on Twitter.