London SE1 community website

Homes & Pub to be knocked down on Blackfriars Road

Join in these discussions today! Log in or register.
Current: 16 of 18
Monday 14 April 2014 11.44am
shaggy wrote:
of course they are not left empty - they are predominantly bought for a rental return so will be rented out. Howeever they are empty whilst being built so maybe there lies the confusion!
this is certainly so in Southwark, maybe only Mayfair being the exeption where they are bought as 3rd homes etc.

In a market with sharply rising prices (such as the one that we're in now) some landlords may be leaving properties empty as they intend to sell in the short term and would prefer to sell the flat as new and unencumbered by a lease. If you're going to sell in 6-12 months the work and expense of furnishing the flat would likely offset the yield generated from tenants (and the lived-in state of the flat may reduce your sales price), so it wouldn't surprise me to see a number of flats left empty at the moment.

That said, it is absolutely a short term issue, and once the market starts to stabilise, those investors will sell the flats to occupiers or investors seeking rental yield.
Monday 14 April 2014 11.59am
shaggy wrote:
of course they are not left empty - they are predominantly bought for a rental return so will be rented out. Howeever they are empty whilst being built so maybe there lies the confusion!
this is certainly so in Southwark, maybe only Mayfair being the exeption where they are bought as 3rd homes etc.

actually I think the preference of Chinese investors is NOT to rent out properties as they don't need the rental income. many are given over to their children to live in while studying in London. we are talking here about cash buys, not mortgages (buy-to-let or otherwise)
Monday 14 April 2014 12.16pm
boroughpaul wrote:
shaggy wrote:
of course they are not left empty - they are predominantly bought for a rental return so will be rented out. Howeever they are empty whilst being built so maybe there lies the confusion!
this is certainly so in Southwark, maybe only Mayfair being the exeption where they are bought as 3rd homes etc.

actually I think the preference of Chinese investors is NOT to rent out properties as they don't need the rental income. many are given over to their children to live in while studying in London. we are talking here about cash buys, not mortgages (buy-to-let or otherwise)

If their children are living in them while studying then they are occupied. Presumably they will sell them or rent them out once their children are done with their studies.

Housing investments rely on capital value gains and rental yield as sources of returns. If you don't rent out your property (other than for a few short-term reasons like the ones I'd mentioned above) you are restricting your returns. Over medium/long term all housing investors need rental income - and given that these foreign investors have the resources to make substantial overseas investments (and are therefore likely quite savvy) I just don't believe that there's some sort of "Chinese culture" to not rent out investment properties.

Check back in 5 years - my guess is that most of the new developments in SE1 will be occupied.
Monday 14 April 2014 12.20pm
and very few will be cash buys - you can get mortgages in Asia you know. Heard its quite advanced over there.
Monday 14 April 2014 1.34pm
i wasn't suggesting you can't...i am suggesting tat many of these purchases are cash deals as the Chinese in particular have significant amounts of readily available capital to invest without the need to mortgage their property
Tuesday 15 April 2014 9.49am
we did research on ONS Census 2011 and found Local Super Output Areas around Canary Wharf c.14% unoccupied. Much less this side of the river, more like 3%. All kinds of people snuck that research and used it (without credit of course). It might be that this absentee effect has spread into newer developments.

One way is just to watch a tall building (not too close of course!) and see if the lights go on because owners feel that these new homes are secure and don't put the auto light switches in. Pretty soon its very clear that a flat/s are not occupied. Maydew House is a good example.

The link between an investment property left empty and nationality might be possible using ONS 2011, I'll have a look when I'm bored. But it might only be EU / Non EU breakdown.

One reason Non EU overseas Chinese investors are mentioned, and Russian too, is because there are far too many reports of cash buying with no reason for all those reporters to make it up.

Cash is still very popular in many countries. And for China they have all kinds of controls on money and property so it makes perfect sense to stash some cash over here if they can, or in Oz etc. But they are doing nothing wrong as far as our laws go. It's our own fault.

A film I enjoyed was http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Taxing_Woman

Whichever way the cake is sliced up it is, for sure, that Londoners with the highest needs - and those we need the most like key and essential workers - are not occupying enough of these flats and again ONS could show something there using income, with profession and linked to tenure / age of property.

I expect ONS data could quite quickly show the link but Government would rather it was not made explicit so all we have is anecdotal evidence and journalistic evidence, journalistic evidence being acceptable by the Planning Inspector. So if it is OK for the quasi judge, then it should not be dismissed because it is not gold standard.

It has been popular for years for UK parents to buy a home for their students children to live when going to uni and now that Chinese are one of the biggest groups of students in London, along with other overseas groups that need non-EU visas, then there's no surprise their rationally doing the same thing faced with very high weekly student hall costs.

What has gone wrong is that we are not looking after "our own". Because we elect a bunch of people whose may aim in life is to further themselves, and do that with whoever is up for the ride.
Tuesday 15 April 2014 10.20am
I Google found these stories that may be of interest for the recent posters on this thread - some related numbers, charts and commentary.

http://www.economist.com/news/britain/21589442-why-influx-foreign-money-good-londons-property-market-live-and-let-buy

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2014-02-16/foreigners-bought-half-all-london-homes-selling-over-1-million
Tuesday 15 April 2014 11.38am
Turtmcfly wrote:
Ugly or not, 240 Blackfriars definitely is not a residential development. If it's left empty (and it won't be) it won't be on purpose. Were any homes (or pubs) knocked down to make way for it? If not, I can't see what relevance it has to this thread.

The relevance that this has to this thread is the damage to the quality of life that residents in QH have had to suffer for almost 3 years (noise, dust, littering, bad language, abuse of regulations i.e. flouting Sunday work restrictions) The ghastly granny flats that are attached to 240 totally block out any light that residents in the North Western corner of QH had. It is actually brighter in homes during the night with the light pollution than during the day.
Tuesday 15 April 2014 12.21pm
For general interest - re light
Southwark Residential Design Standards (Guidance)

Sadly, guidance. There is a diagram about sunlight etc.
Tuesday 15 April 2014 12.33pm
interesting to note that exactly the same situation is taking place in Sydney and some other places in Australia where Chinese money is buying up new build property in desirable (harbour side) locations and consequently sending house prices sky high. the dream of owning your own home, built into every Aussies DNA, is becoming more and more of a nightmare with massive political repercussions for whoever is in power. we could be heading down the same route
Current: 16 of 18

To post a message, please log in or register..
February at a glance
Keep up with SE1 news

We have three email newsletters for you to choose from:

We are part of
Independent Community News Network
Email newsletter

For the latest local news and events direct to your inbox every Monday, you need our weekly email newsletter SE1 Direct.

7,000+ locals read it every week. Can you afford to miss out?

Read the latest issue before signing up

Also on the forum
Views expressed in this discussion forum are those of the contributors and may not reflect the editorial policy of this website. Please read our terms and conditions