|Buyers Flock to Luxury Apartments on Hammersmith's Riverside|
Sales surge at new developments Fulham Reach and Queen's Wharf
New developments on Hammersmith's riverside appear to be bucking current trends. While other developments in the area are struggling to attract buyers, sales of apartments in Fulham Reach and Queen's Wharf accounted for around a half of all transactions in W6 during the final quarter of 2017.
Queen's Wharf in particular proved hugely popular with 46 sales recorded during these three months, including a penthouse which fetched £6,100,000.
That made it Hammersmith's third most expensive property. The only properties to achieve higher prices were two other penthouses in nearby Distillery Wharf within Fulham Reach - the most expensive of which went for £8,140,000 in 2015.
During the last three months of 2017, another penthouse at Fulham Reach's Faulkner House sold for £4,530,000.
A spokesperson for Queen's Wharf developer Mount Anvil says that one reason for its continued success is that local buyers as well as overseas investors have been attracted by its position, above the soon to open Riverside studios complex and offering unique views of the river and Hammersmith Bridge.
This spring, just one apartment remains for sale, a three bedroom, fifth floor penthouse pictured below, priced £2,700,000.
At nearby Fulham Reach meanwhile, developer St George is launching a new phase called Fairfax House this weekend, with prices starting at £800,000.
Hannah Hewett, Sales Manager at estate agency KFH Hammersmith says: "When there is uncertainty in the financial markets, investors look to gold as a safe haven. To a certain extent the same is true for property.
" While confidence is increasing across the Capital and motivated buyers are keen to secure homes, these buyers want the assurance of securing long-term value for money.
" Riverside properties can offer this value because of the consistent demand for homes by the water. Throw in the wonderful views and lifestyle they offer and you have a winning combination."
In general, the average price of terraced houses remained stable during this period, dropping by just 1.5% to £1,354,595.
However, when it came to flats, the average dropped by 6.1% to £985,939 - despite the surge in sales at the top of the market.
This was because prices at the other end appear to be levelling. During the period, the Land Registry recorded a healthy 19 sales with price tags under £400,000 and a number below the stamp duty threshold of £300,000 - very good news for young people in Hammersmith hoping to take their first steps onto the property ladder.
According to the Nationwide House Price Index, property values in London as a whole fell for the first time in eight years during 2017 down by half a percent. This made it the weakest performing region of the country for the first time since 2004.
Across the UK the price of the average home rose by 2.6% to £211,156 with low mortgage rates and healthy employment growth supporting price. However, prices were held back by mounting pressure on household incomes and declining consumer confidence. Demand from buy to let investors was also held back by stamp duty and tax changes during the year.
The RICS, the professional body for surveyors, is predicting a further though slight reduction in sales this year and further price declines in the London area. They are not expecting these to be significant because of the lack of supply.
RICS UK Market Survey has recently shown buyer enquires stalling, sales volumes stagnating and sentiment turning altogether more cautious as a result in the final quarter of the year. They say stock on estate agents books close to all-time lows.
Tarrant Parsons, RICS Economist, commented, "Following a pretty lacklustre finish to 2017, the indications are that momentum across the housing market will be lacking as 2018 gets underway. With several of the forces currently weighing on activity set to persist over the near term, it’s difficult to envisage a material step-up in impetus during the next twelve months. However, the fundamentals are not much changed from the end of 2017, so levels of activity should soften only marginally when compared to the year just ending. A real lack of stock coming onto the market remains one of the biggest challenges, while affordability constraints are increasingly curbing demand in some parts. Given these dynamics, price growth may fade to produce a virtually flat outturn for 2018.
"That said, despite the recent interest rate hike, mortgage rates are set to remain very favourable, with the prospect of further rises seemingly minimal over the coming year. Alongside this, government schemes such as help to buy should continue to provide some support to sales activity."
Source: Land Registry
March 16, 2018