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Foreign property investors cash in on Brexit vote


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- Emma Woollacott | AOL UK
Most of us would say that property is very expensive these days - but the majority of foreign buyers would disagree.

While we Brits are paying 6.23% more for our homes than in June last year, the fall in the pound since the Brexit vote means foreign investors are paying a great deal less than they were then.

See also: Boomtime for billionaires as mega-rich shrug off Brexit anxieties

See also: Will Brexit mean higher prices and worse quality in supermarkets?

Russians and South Africans in particular can really cash in on the decline in sterling, which has given them an effective discount of 21% on the price they had to pay before the referendum.

Meanwhile, Brazilian buyers are able to snap up properties for 17% less than before the vote, and Indians are seeing a 15% fall. Ironically, perhaps, EU nationals can now buy a home here for 16% less.

However, investors from Turkey and Argentina - both suffering big problems of their own - have been hit by price rises even bigger than we Brits.

On average, though, according to house-building investment platform Homegrown, the Brexit vote has been excellent news for overseas property investors.

A house that would have cost £1 million in a foreign currency a year ago will now only set them back by the equivalent of £841,000.

"Growth in the housing market has slowed over the last year but it's still growing on an annual basis and foreign demand is bound to be playing its part," says Homegrown founder Anthony Rushworth.

"Demand for housing has showed no sign of abating in Britain while many still struggle to get on the housing ladder, so it's vital the country addresses its chronic shortage of housing stock."

Despite the effective discount, some foreign investors are cautious about the British property market, perhaps fearing that the pound has still further to fall.

However, middle easterners have been keen to snap up properties, particularly in London, according to Galliard Homes.

"Since the fall of the pound after Brexit, investors from the Middle East have not hesitated to jump at the prime investment opportunities being offered by the British capital," its advisors say.

"Currently there are many property developers who can see that buyers and investors from the Middle East are enthusiastic about venturing into property outside of Prime Central London. Statons, an estate agent in North London, has noticed a steady increase in the number of enquiries from Middle Eastern investors throughout the second half of 2016."

The effective fall in price for foreign property investors from G20 countries

Russia: 20.8%

South Africa: 20.8%

Brazil: 17.4%

Australia: 16.1%

EU: 15.8%

India: 15.4%

Canada: 15.0%

Mexico: 14.0%

China: 13.2%

South Korea: 11.9%

Indonesia: 11.4%

Saudi Arabia: 10.6%

United States: 10.2%

Japan: 9.5%

Turkey: -6.6%

Argentina: -8.2%

UK property hotspots 2017 (according to Zoopla)

1/10
  • Edinburgh, Scotland

  • Croydon, Surrey
  • Central London
  • Glasgow, Scotland
  • Leicester, UK
  • Birmingham, England
  • Swansea, Wales
  • Reading, England
  • Milton Keynes, England
  • Coventry, England

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