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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

Chinese buy to let investors buoyed by Tory landslide

Reports from China suggest that property investors from that country - a staple in the buy to let market in many UK cities - are buoyed by the landslide Conservative victory in the General Election.

"Those foreign investors who watch UK politics believe the Conservative victory reaffirms the UK as a safe place to invest and an appealing place to live. Yes, the Conservative government has been chaotic and plagued by scandals, but it seems to stand for business-as-usual in many respects” explains Georg Chmiel, executive chairman of Chinese property portal Juwai.

He tells Letting Agent Today: "When it comes to the proposed three per cent additional foreign buyer stamp duty [proposed by the Conservatives during the election campaign] we think that is misguided and would cost the UK jobs in construction and housing. Our buyers seem on the whole to consider it more speculative than real at the moment. They also believe it is small compared to the punishment they might have received under a Labor government.”

He continues: “Chinese buying enquiries are near their highest point in two years and well above the long-term average for UK residential property. The annual rate of growth has dropped to near zero, but that's only because Q3 2018 was an unusually strong quarter.

"In Manchester and Liverpool, Chinese buying enquiries dropped nearly 30 per cent in Q3, but are still above the long-term average.

"Mainland Chinese account for 45 per cent of investor visas, the largest applicant group. The visa statistics show that mainland and Hong Kong Chinese haven't let Brexit or politics negatively shade their image of the UK. 

"They consider it an appealing place to live, invest and educate their children. The UK, with its excellent educational institutions, offers Chinese families the opportunity to feel they are giving their children the absolute best possible start in life.

“Many Chinese want to purchase in the UK not just for investment but for their own family’s use as a primary or second home. Education brings the largest number of buyers. London’s lifestyle as one of the world’s great capital cities is a huge draw.”

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