Investors return to London in a stronger than expected first two quarters of the year.
London cashes in as investors look to stay away from the euro zone.
North American property buyers returned to London’s buoyant commercial real estate market during the first two quarters of 2011, as investors once again look favourably to British shores. This is according to property-services company CB Richard Ellis.
The U.K. commercial property market has always had an infinity with foreign investors, and London is usually the hub of financial transactions because of its size, transparency and liquidity.
Non-European buyers have always been vital for the European market. They invested €24 billion in commercial real estate in 2010 and the first half of 2011, with North American investors accounting for €3.1 billion of that. London received €5.1 billion of this, CB Richard Ellis claims.
London is also expected to benefit further throughout the last two quarters of 2011 with foreign investors who are looking to invest in the European market, but looking to stay away from the delicate euro zone situation.
Robert Hodges, managing director of Carlyle Group said: “The U.K. has been one of the most-active markets for our fund, as there is liquidity in the market, represented by the number of properties on the market, and a more realistic view of pricing compared with some Continental markets,”
“The exchange rate and low interest rates are favourable, and the fundamental longer-term growth prospects are encouraging,” he added.
However, the London’s oversupply problems means North American interest may not actually be sufficient to keep prices in London buoyant. In London there is currently some £5 billion of City real estate for sale but not all of it is deemed suitable or prime property for investment.