“If a Tory does not believe that private property is one of the main bulwarks of individual freedom, then he had better become a socialist and have done with it.”

The late Margaret Thatcher MP
Source: Daily Telegraph, 30 January 1975

Record Breaking March
The PCL (prime central London) market appreciates these wise words and the present Coalition Government should not look at immovable assets as easy taxation targets.

Overseas investment in prime residential property has been a valuable economic driver although current plans to tax capital gains are hard to argue as an asset class.

The Wetherell share of the Mayfair residential house and flat market in March was record breaking with over £100m of sales with 2/3rd at the prime top end of the market and over 80% to overseas purchasers.

New Acronym for New Tax
For those purchasing property in a company “envelope” the Annual Residential Property Tax (ARPT) has now been renamed “Annual Tax on Enveloped Dwellings” (ATED) and Government estimates that the new tax along with the SDLT rate of 15% and CGT extensions will generate around £70m in 2013/14.

Records are Made to be Broken
One significant sale was a large lateral apartment in Grosvenor Square on at an asking price of £15.95m which had competitive bidding up to £4,400 p.s.f.  This will bode well for the recent sale of the former US Naval Headquarters’ building three doors up which recently sold in excess of £250m for a 140,000 sq.ft. luxury development of prime sellable space.

Step Change
At the beginning of 2011 Grosvenor asked me to present to them a paper for the Board on residential values in Mayfair. I predicted that Mayfair was about to undergo a step change in values which were then around £2,500 p.s.f. for Grosvenor Square.

With values now well over £4,000 p.s.f. for comparable property the question now is what further increases will the Mayfair market experience?  This will be dependent on exchange rates, encouragement from Government for continued overseas investment and strengthening domestic market as more people buy into Mayfair as London’s No.1 area.

Write the Book
I have been so fascinated by “Step Change” that I have researched Mayfair history over 300 years and have identified 6 previous step changes and will be publishing my research shortly.  Book now for your collector’s copy!

80% Market Share
Data based on Q1 2013 sales of residential Mayfair property marketed and sold where Wetherell were instructed showed 80% market share for property over £5m and also for property up to £1m.  So whichever way you view the figures; Wetherell is The Mayfair Specialist.

New To Market
Grosvenor Square – South facing over the gardens and use of ballroom – £5m
South Audley Street – Period masterpiece newly framed – £6m
Culross Street – 3 windows across, immaculate freehold townhouse – £12.5m
Balfour Mews – Newly modernised 5 bedroom house – £4,250 p.w.
Hill Street – Bargain. Unfurnished 4 bed apartment – £1,200 p.w.