Entries by St. David Group

The UK Autumn Budget and the effects on the property market

The UK Chancellor’s Autumn Budget contained elements that will affect ‘buy to let’ owners of UK property. The Chancellor is trying to address the high cost of renting private accommodation and the chronic ongoing shortage of houses, particularly in London where nearly one third people rent rather than own the properties they live in.  As [...]

Is Brexit an opportunity? For some it is, for some it isn’t

The Brexit result took most commentators and analysts by surprise and, we must admit, us as well.   The bookmakers were expecting the Remain campaign to prevail, but the underlying discontent over issues such as immigration resulted in a vote that is going to impact the socio-economic structure of the UK in many ways.  Does this [...]

USA commercial property and its appeal to large and small investors

The USA commercial property sector performed well in 2016, but it is still under the radar for most Asia based investors who are missing out on some exceptional opportunities.  This is due to a variety of reasons including lack of awareness by investors and concerns over entering a large and diverse market for the first [...]

A consistent approach to an attractive sector

We have long advocated the attraction of a secure income stream and smaller properties: In December 2012 we sent out a property bulletin advocating HMOs (House in Multiple Occupation) which produce high rental returns In May 2014 our property bulletin highlighted the demand for smaller centrally located properties and the value they offered compared to [...]

Short term development projects: Do you need to like the location?

A remark often made to us by investors is that they have no interest in investing in, or may not like, a particular market.  Quite naturally, there are sometimes valid reasons for this. Just as some people won’t invest in pharmaceutical or technology shares because they think the sectors will under perform, some people will [...]

‘Investors dump new flats back on market’

London’s Evening Standard newspaper is required reading for many of the city’s residents and commuters heading home and further afield.   Its articles are, in general, unbiased and objective although it is always reminding its readers what a great city they live in.  With the price of London property rapidly becoming a political issue due to [...]

A secure income stream – peace of mind in turbulent times

Stock markets around the world are currently going through a degree of turmoil and analysts and commentators are undecided on what impact this will have on the world’s major economies.  Given the problems in China it is reasonable to expect more turmoil in the future. The economy there is now too large to be ignored [...]

A secure income stream – peace of mind in turbulent times

Stock markets around the world are currently going through a degree of turmoil and analysts and commentators are undecided on what impact this will have on the world’s major economies.  Given the problems in China it is reasonable to expect more turmoil in the future. The economy there is now too large to be ignored [...]

Changes to UK inheritance tax and the housing shortage

Many offshore investors have historically made use of company structures to avoid inheritance tax.   However, the UK government has recently decreed that from April 2017 property in the UK, whether directly or indirectly, held by foreign domiciled persons will be liable to UK inheritance tax   This means they look through the structure to see who [...]

The Costa del Sol or the major cities?

With the Spanish property market showing signs of recovery some of our readers have asked where in Spain they should buy and whether the oversupply in some areas will impact the recovery.   It is certainly true that there is still an oversupply of properties throughout Spain and this is likely to remain the case for [...]

New stamp duty rates in the UK

The UK government has changed the stamp duty rates in its Autumn budget statement.  The changes, which are effective immediately, have drawn positive responses from most commentators and analysts.  It certainly benefits buyers of lower valued properties and penalises buyers of properties valued at more than GBP937,500. Under the new rules, no tax will be [...]

Is Sotogrande the best residential development in southern Europe?

We have long had a policy that we will not offer properties to our clients unless we have seen them ourselves.   As we mentioned in a recent property bulletin, the Spanish property market is showing signs of recovery so Dan Wainwright, our UK director, and myself have just spent a week looking at opportunities in [...]

Spain – bottom of the market and set for recovery?

In August 2012 we commented on the Irish property market and the fact that all markets recover in time and Ireland would be no different. This has certainly been the case, with prices in Dublin having risen over 20% in the last year. The recovery has also spread to the rest of the country with [...]

Spain – bottom of the market and set for recovery?

In August 2012 we commented on the Irish property market and the fact that all markets recover in time and Ireland would be no different. This has certainly been the case, with prices in Dublin having risen over 20% in the last year. The recovery has also spread to the rest of the country with [...]

Do you want high income or high capital growth from your property investment?

The answer to the above question seems obvious – most investors want both. Whilst it is possible to achieve this in some emerging markets, such opportunities come with high risk. The currency, political stability, ownership entitlement, re-sale potential are all issues that affect the medium viability of emerging markets. Most investors we speak to are [...]

Walton – Pre-­development Land Investment

The Walton Group of Companies (Walton) is a multinational real estate investment and development group headquartered in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. Walton’s expertise encompasses the research, acquisition, planning, administration management and development of strategically located land in major North American growth corridors. For over 30 years, Walton has formed land­‐based real estate investments for individual and [...]

Student accommodation funds, liquidity and the benefits of direct ownership

Many investors have entered the student accommodation sector through managed funds. Some of the funds have performed well, others such as Mansion and Brandeaux have experienced serious liquidity problems. Nevertheless, the underlying assets, i.e. the student accommodation units, have preformed well with most operators experiencing 99% occupancy rates and healthy investment returns. When investors want [...]

Equity valuations and income

Has the world gone mad? A British take-away food company called Just Eat has just made its debut on the London Stock Exchange. It was valued at £1.5bn, which is over 100 times its last year’s underlying profit, and it went up 5% on its first day’s trading. We are not investment bankers, we are [...]

Refurbishment Service

For discerning investors and owner-occupiers we offer an unparalleled service for the purchase and refurbishment of quality central London properties. [portfolio_slideshow slideheight=200] Many investors see the attractions to buying a quality freehold house or an established apartment in one of London’s many quality buildings. Refurbishing such a property has many attractions including increasing its value [...]

Lettings and Management

We provide a comprehensive and professional management service for residential properties in London. We serve both local and overseas clients and cover all aspects of letting and managing a property. Our emphasis is on ensuring our clients ownership is a trouble free and profitable experience. Lettings service Our aim is to secure a suitable tenant [...]

UK government changes to impact on student accommodation sector

In his Autumn statement to the House of Commons, the UK’s Chancellor Mr. George Osborne, announced changes that are likely to have a major impact on the central London residential market and the student accommodation sector: 1. Overseas investors will have to pay capital gains tax from 2015 Many people had always thought that if [...]

“Buy land, they are not making it anymore”

It is hard disagree with the above quote. Ownership of strategically located land has always been, and always will be, a sound investment. It has stood the test of time and will continue to preserve and generate wealth for generations to come. So why don’t more investors take advantage of the current opportunities in the [...]

Why investors should use a search service for London property

There are always lots of exhibitions taking place in Hong Kong, Singapore, KL and elsewhere where the agents are supposedly offering the best opportunities in London. Of course, if there are four or five exhibitions there are four or five ‘best opportunities’. The following weekend there is another round of exhibitions with an equal number [...]

Is the Australian residential property market set to recover?

The Australian residential property market got off relatively lightly during the financial crisis of 2008/9 and surprised many people with its resilience. A recovery in 2010 raised hopes that the market would power on but 2011 saw price reductions and a lack of interest from overseas buyers as the strong Australian dollar deterred investment. As [...]

The UK residential market on the road to recovery

With the UK struggling economically, the housing sector there has surprised many people with its recovery this year. The Nationwide Building Society has reported that prices rose by 0.6% in August. This was due to an improvement in mortgage availability and a continued lack of homes to buy, according to figures from the UK’s biggest [...]

Exchange rates and the London property investment market

The London residential market certainly appeals to overseas property investment buyers and the reasons are fairly obvious: international business centre, tolerant society, stability and effervescent property prices. But what about the currency? For certain non-UK nationals the currency driver appears to dwarf other advantages. Leaving aside variations in figures according to source and interpretation, beneficial [...]

London Search Service

St. David provides a comprehensive search service, which includes identifying suitable investment properties, handling all aspects of the purchase and providing a professional lettings and management service. [portfolio_slideshow exclude_feature=true slideheight=200] The benefit to you in using our Property Search Service: [icon_list style="check"] By using the service you will have unrestricted access to a large range [...]

Growth returns to the USA market

In February of last year we released two Property Bulletins and it is worth reviewing them in the light of what is happening in the USA market. Property Bulletin – 4/2012 US market regains its lustre Florida: The state where the US housing slump started now shows the best potential, analysts say Jobs are coming [...]

Spanish property market – is now the time to invest there?

We are often asked whether now is the time to buy an investment property in Spain. The answer is not as straight-forward as many people think. Some astute investors, including large institutions, are looking at investing there and are driven by distressed prices, an attractive rental yield and a weak currency. One essential ingredient to [...]

The USA house market going from strength to strength

We have been saying it for some time now – the USA market is certainly recovering. U.S. home prices rose in March, marking the biggest annual increase in seven years, in the latest sign of strength for the recovering housing market. CoreLogic’s home price index jumped 1.9 percent from the previous month and accelerated by [...]

London Apartments

[portfolio_slideshow]   Off plan and existing properties The London market is continuing to perform strongly and is now regarded as a ‘safe haven’ for international investors. There is strong rental demand for apartments close to public transport, with yields varying from 4% to 6%.  Capital growth of 7% to 10% per annum may be expected. [...]

Is UK student accommodation an ideal property investment sector?

Student accommodation in the UK is experiencing sound growth as investors see it as a viable and profitable property investment sector. What was once the domain of the institutional investor is now being marketed to individual investors with investment levels starting from around GBP45,000. Many smaller investors have entered the sector, but is it simply [...]

San Francisco Bay Area – a great property investment market for 2013

The Bay Area housing market continued to improve as property investment location in 2012. The area enjoyed strong sales and rising sale prices fueled by increased demand, strained inventory, record-low mortgage rates and robust investor interest. The market’s performance in November reflects the improved performance. A total of 7,296 new and resale homes were sold [...]

London property investment – 2012 and into 2013

The central London market performed well as a property investment location in 2012 as international money continued to pour into the market. The consensus is that prices rose between 8% and 9% over the year. The market has certainly recovered since the crisis in 2008. It is now over 10% higher than the peak in [...]

House in Multiple Occupation – a sound property investment

A niche property investment sector in the UK that is often overlooked by investors is the HMO. A typical HMO comprises between five and twenty individually tenanted rooms. It is usually a large house which has been converted for the purpose. It will have one or more shared kitchens and may have shared bathrooms and [...]

Property investment – income or capital growth?

We are often asked by investors whether they should focus on rental income or capital growth when considering a property investment. The answer is very simple – it depends on whether you are confident that the capital growth product will perform at the level you expect it to. Some investors believe that while they are [...]

London market enjoys rising prices

The central London market continues to show why it is regarded as one of best property investment locations in the world. According to CBRE, prices for houses has risen by 6% over the last quarter and by 18% over the past year. The gap between Prime Central London and Greater London is expanding; average prices [...]

Expansion of our London property investment operation

We are pleased to announce that we are extending our London operation to be able to offer our full range of property investment services to European based investors. Our London office, which was set up in 1997 when Dan Wainwright our current UK Director joined us, has always focused on sourcing opportunities and offering an [...]

Manhattan confirms its appeal as a property investment market

The supply of new apartments for sale in Manhattan supports the fact it is a sound property investment market. Supply fell significantly last month, slipping 17.2% to 1,185 from August of last year. The result reinforces the belief that a lack of inventory will force prices higher across all segments of the market. “New development [...]

The Laurel

The Laurel at 400 East 67 offers the very best of upper east side condominiums.  Location, views, amenities and everything that Manhattan has to offer on your doorstep. For an update on the rental market in Manhattan please visit http://bloom.bg/JxnRwO and for full details including financial information and available units in 75 Wall Street please [...]

Student accommodation impresses property investment analysts

The UK student accommodation sector continues to impress property investment analysts and commentators. Good growth is expected over the medium term and the sector is gaining wide market acceptance. The introduction of higher university fees does not seem to have affected the market, with demand still out stripping supply (and likely to do so for [...]

Dublin property investment update

The Dublin property market has seen a surge in interest in the last six months from European buyers who are keen to snap up sound property investment opportunities there. This is a market that has received little publicity in Asia and is not on the property investment radar of most investors based in that region. [...]

Napa Valley – property investment on an upward trend

The residential sector in Napa Valley is opening up great property investment opportunities. A Californian real estate service, DataQuick, has estimated that in June prices in the greater San Francisco Bay Area were up by 10.4 % over the past twelve months. The good news for property investors entering the market now (but unfortunately not [...]

It is official – the US housing market has turned at last.

At least, according to the Wall Street Journal it has and that is great news as far as property investment is concerned. An article that was published in the WSJ on the 12th July opened with ‘The housing market has turned at last. The US finally has moved beyond attention-grabbing predictions from housing ‘experts’ that [...]

Major players enter the USA single family home market

The following article in its extended version was published by Bloomberg on the 3rd July. It highlights the fact that major institutional investors are now entering the single family home market. For more information on how to access this market please contact us. Blackstone Group LP, the biggest buyer of U.S. commercial real estate since [...]

Has The Housing Market Hit Its Bottom?

We have recently come across the following article which was written by Morgan Brennan of Forbes business news and financial information. It makes interesting reading, especially her comments on the Orlando and Miami markets. Has the U.S. housing market hit a bottom? Do we have further to go? When will a recovery start? These are [...]

Poinciana, Florida – a great place to live and invest in

As our clients will know, we are firm believers in the freehold house market in Orlando, Florida. Quality 3/4 bedroom homes with tenants in place and net rental yields of 4% plus p.a. can now be bought from under US$100,000. Poinciana is a quality residential area that offers a wonderful lifestyle for its residents. You [...]

Central London apartments – 10% discount

We are pleased to able to advise that we can now offer apartments in Silver Wharf, London E14. It is rare that we are able to say you can secure a genuine 10% discount to the current market/list price but this is certainly the case with Silver Wharf. There are only nine apartments available and [...]

UK Budget – major implications for some buyers

The UK government’s budget announcement last week has caused concern for both existing and prospective property owners. A lot of media comment was subsequently made on how high value properties would be severely affected. Unfortunately, a lot of Asian based buyers may also be affected by the announcement, in some cases quite dramatically. The UK [...]

New London project

As our regular readers would know we don’t offer new projects every week and we are very selective in terms of what we offer. We are pleased to be able to announce that we have identified a sound London opportunity which we can highly recommend. Renaissance is a newly completed residential development in Sydenham, London. [...]

Growing US confidence in housing recovery

The following article appeared in the South China Morning Post today and confirms the change in sentiment in the US towards the real estate market there. ‘Potential homebuyers and sellers are growing more confident that the US real estate market will begin to recover as soon as next year according to a Prudential Real Estate [...]

US renters are losing their leverage

Florida Realtors recently released the following which makes interesting reading; During the boom years of homebuying, property manager Charlie Biter used to offer new apartment tenants one or two months’ free rent as a lease enticement. Now, as rental demand continues to surge, no such offers are necessary. “Back then, everybody was being creative to [...]

Freehold houses in central London

I am in London over Chinese New Year talking to agents etc about the state of the residential sector. The one recurring theme is that there is a shortage of quality properties on the market. Heavy demand from overseas, and a little surprisingly, UK buyers means that well priced properties are selling quickly. Houses in [...]

London update

UK house prices are continuing to fall with few if any signs of the market improving. Hometrack has advised that the average cost of a home was down by over 2% over the previous year. Demand remains weak with mortgages difficult to obtain. The likelihood is that prices will be even lower next year and [...]

USA Update

A well respected, internationally known newspaper’s blog has just run the headline Housing Inventories Fall to New Four-Year Low in October The supporting article states; ‘The 2.12 million homes listed for sale in October was down by 3.5% from September and down by 21% from one year ago, according to data compiled by Realtor.com’ The [...]

Launch of new UK project

We have just launched our latest UK project – a care centre for complex needs patients suffering from Acquired Brian Injury, Autism, Parkinson’s etc. This is an opportunity to acquire a share of the freehold property and operating business of an established, profitable business run by a professional care centre group. Based on assumptions that [...]

Student accommodation in Perth

We have had a number of enquiries recently asking us about opportunities to invest in the Australian residential market. Apparently the strong Australian dollar is not deterring many of our investors who are taking the view the currency will remain strong for the foreseeable future and it is great market to invest in for the [...]

Walton International newscast

Channel News Asia has just broadcast a review of Walton’s operation and it certainly makes interesting viewing. It is worth noting that this is an independent production by a reputable news organisation. If you would like to watch the video this is the link; http://www.4shared.com/video/IhTbSdCV/MoneyMind180911.html

Growth prospects for the London market

There are many reputable agents operating in the London market and Savills certainly qualifies as one of the better ones. Over the years I have been particularly impressed by the standard of its research. The company doesn’t always say the market is perfect and now is the time to buy. In the past it has [...]