LONDON, June 1, 2011 /PRNewswire/ --
With overseas investors currently snapping up London properties, Anita Mehra and Marc von Grundherr, Directors of one of the largest lettings agents in London (http://www.brlets.co.uk/), Benham and Reeves Residential Lettings, have just returned from a tour of Gulf region and the Far East, where they met both seasoned investors expanding their property portfolios and those planning their first UK rental investment. And it seems that investors consider this to be the perfect time to buy a London property ( http://www.brlets.co.uk/), thanks to a unique combination of factors.
During the trip, which covered Abu Dhabi, Dubai, India, Kuala Lumpur, Singapore and Bangkok, Anita and Marc held one-to-one meetings with over 100 independent financial advisors, wealth management agents and individual investors and encountered an unprecedented level of interest. More than 60 investors also attended the firm's property investment seminar held in Kuala Lumpur and a radio station and local press interviewed Anita and Marc to talk about the benefits of property rentals in London.
"Current demand is fuelled by a number of factors," reports Anita. "The exchange rate is a driving force, making many homes 20% cheaper than in 2006. Strong rental demand is another, with London remaining a focal point for global corporations, attracting increasing numbers of overseas executives here on secondment."
"Adding to the demand for rental accommodation is the growing number of international students (around 285,000, some 25% more than two years ago), with many investors buying a property for their sons or daughters coming to London to study," explains Anita.
"The current shortage of rental accommodation (there are around 10 applicants for every available property) is prompting an increase in rents which have risen by over 10% in the last year. Properties are letting quickly, particularly in new developments like Pan Peninsula and The Landmark in Canary Wharf - and with shorter void periods landlords are seeing a steady increase in yields. Demand is also fuelled by continuing mortgage restrictions and a shortage of new homes being built meaning that young professionals are still forced to rent as they are unable to get onto the property ladder.
"And of course, London has traditionally been viewed as a safe haven for property investment, offering capital appreciation together with good rental yields. Its desirability has increased even further following the recent political turmoil in the Middle East."
"When buying an investment property, location is paramount," continues Anita. "Prime areas in Central London are red-hot, both new riverside developments like Imperial Wharf and Chelsea Bridge Wharf and traditional period conversions in exclusive areas such as Knightsbridge. And of course smaller units with easy access into the West End and City like Beaufort Park in North West London and the new Mojo building near the Olympic village remain highly sought after.
"But successful property investment relies as much on efficient letting and property management as on the right choice of property. Buyers are looking for an agent that combines experience with great service, and a detailed knowledge of London's rental hot-spots. Being able to provide services like furnishings and property refurbishment are a real bonus too.
"We advise clients not to sign up with the first agent they find and not to rely on Google to find someone. Talk to the agent directly. Ask the right questions. Do they have local offices, qualified staff and extensive lettings experience? Are they members of ARLA? Do they have an efficient property management department? Over 95% of global corporations insist that an executive's rental property is managed. In the last 10 years, the number of properties we manage has doubled so we know how highly clients value this service, particularly those who are resident overseas. Above all, do your research - well; agents who do both sales and lettings are not going to give you 100% focus on letting your property so finding the right letting agent is critical when it comes to successful property investment."
Established in 1956 in Hampstead, London, and now with 9 offices in the prime residential areas of London, (and overseas offices in Singapore, Hong Kong, Dubai, Delhi and Mumbai), Benham and Reeves Residential Lettings is recognised as one of London's largest, specialist lettings and property management agencies. To complement this, they also provide an interior design, refurbishment and furnishings service for London rental investment properties to landlords based worldwide.
Enquiries to: Tracie Lack Tel: +44(0)20-7433-6675 firstname.lastname@example.org http://www.brlets.co.uk
SOURCE Benham and Reeves Residential Lettings