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Connecting Asian Investors to the UK

Child, Maternity and Retirement Benefits after Settlement in the UK

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1. Property Rights

If you buy a property in the UK, there are two types it may be, freehold or a leasehold.

A freehold means the property and the land it is situated on belongs to you absolutely. This ownership will pass on to your descendants forever, or until you sell the freehold. A leasehold means you own the property on the land but someone else owns the land itself. In the UK, the length of a leasehold is usually 99 or 125 years, however it can be for as long as 999 years. At the end of the lease, the property reverts back to the landowner, although a lease can be renewed for a small fee, or you can earn the right to purchase the freehold off the owner.

As well clear property rights, the UK’s political and economic stability, low crime rate, and lack of natural disasters means your property is relatively secure. The UK average housing rental rate is quite secure, between 5% to 10%, meaning the UK property market is world famous for preserving the value of your investment.

2. British real estate is relatively safe

The UK property market is still, despite claims to the contrary, one of the safest places to invest in property. This is because the UK has a long tradition as being the world’s financial centre and has the ability to attract the best and the brightest from around the world. Due to being of limited size, and strict statutory requirements regarding the administration of land, property is often is short supply and therefore commands a premium.

In the last decade, property prices in London have risen by around 70%, which is more than three times faster than the rest of the growth across the UK. The average price of a home in the UK is now £226,798 (2019) and £473,822 in London (2019).

Although there are predications of short-term price drops in the property market, there is expected to be a return to growth by 2020, with an overall increase of £33,000 expected in London over the next five years. This would bring the average property price of a house in London to over £500,000.

3.The high quality of house in the UK

The UK, as a long-established nation, has houses that date back over 900 years. There is even a church that has been in use for nearly 1500 years. However, a large majority of houses were built in the Victorian times, during the industrial revolution. These houses were built to house workers at the mills.

These days, the UK government still place great importance on the standards of house building, requiring strict rules to be followed and strong supervision. This results in quality houses which meet high standards of durability. Additionally, 80% of houses built in the UK are insured by NHBC for ten years once built. This gives even more security that an investment in a new house will be solid.

4. The demographic dividend continues

Britain has a growing population, rising from 62.5 million people in 2010 to 66.9 million in 2018. It is estimated the UK will reach a population of 70 million by 2026. London currently has a population of 8.8 million and is expected to grow to around 9.5 million by 2026.

The UK also has a large diverse range of nationals from around the world, such as:

  • Poland (831,000)
  • India (795,000)
  • Pakistan (503,000)
  • Ireland (382,000)
  • Germany (286,000)

This growing demand creates a demand for property. This demand is one that the UK is struggling to meet in terms of supply, which in turn pushes the prices of property up. In terms of commercial property, technology, media and telecoms have accounted for the largest number of new office tenants, especially in London.

5. Regional growth momentum is significant

Around the UK, there is also an increase in property prices. In the North-West for example, property prices are on average £160,811. This is expected to grow by 18.1% by 2024. This means there is an opportunity for a quick, yet high return on an investment.

Manchester has established itself as one of Europe’s fastest growing cities, and currently has around 2 million sq. ft of office space under construction, with big names planning to move the such as HPE, HMRC and Amazon. Additionally, there is the 1.1 million sq. ft Graphene Engineering Innovation Centre, which will be supported by a community of over 100,000 students.

6. Low interest rate mortgages

The UK currently has a 20-year fixed rate mortgage interest of around 3.22%. This is compared to China’s 5.02%, the USA’s 4.35% and Australia’s 4.39%.

Overseas investors can get mortgages from £250,000 to £100 million with terms from 3 months to 30 years. These can also be for interest only, meaning you only pay the interest until the point you can payback the whole amount.

7. English language, culture and education society

In addition to the benefits of the UK property market, the UK has many other attractions which make it ideal for an investor.

English is the second most spoken language in the world, behind Mandarin. However, it is the world’s leading widely spoken language, as Mandarin is mainly confined in China. This means that the chances are whomever you do business within the UK, no matter where in the world they are from, they will be able to understand at lease some basic English.

The UK is the 6th most visited country in the world, with 35.8 million visitors in 2018.The UK currently has 7 universities in the World’s Top 50 according to The Times, with Oxford and Cambridge taking the top two spots respectively, with the European Union only having 6 all altogether. The UK is also ranked 6th in the world in terms of educational systems according to Pearson – a British multinational publishing and education company.

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