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Figures lift lid on growing foreign investment in UK property

A lettings agency claims foreign homeowners are sitting on £84.2 billion worth of property across England and Wales - but with most of it of course in London.

Benham and Reeves submitted a Freedom of Information request to the Land Registry to ascertain the number of properties across each area of England and Wales with the title registered to an overseas correspondence address, and combined the results with data on properties registered with an overseas company.

The research shows that there are an estimated 280,021 homes currently registered with an overseas correspondence address or to an overseas company across England and Wales. With the average house price across England and Wales now sitting at £300,636, that’s an estimated £84.2 billion. 


London is home to easily the highest number of foreign owned homes (103,425).

The City of Westminster sits top, where foreign owned property holds an estimated worth of £14.9 billion in the current market. 

In Kensington and Chelsea, the current market value of foreign owned homes is thought to be £12 billion with Tower Hamlets (£4.8 billion), Camden (£4.1 billion), Wandsworth (£3.8 billion), Hammersmith and Fulham (£3.3 billion), Hounslow (£2.3 billion), Lambeth (£2.3 billion) and Islington (£2.4 billion) also making the list. 

Buckinghamshire is the only area outside of London to feature in the top 10, sitting seventh overall, where foreign owned homes are estimated to hold a total market value of £3.2 billion.

Benham and Reeves director Marc von Grundherr says: “Foreign homeownership levels have climbed by 3,.2 per cent in the past year alone and the vast majority of this activity is individual buyers, rather than offshore entities. Certain nationalities like Hong Kongers remain the most prominent and London also remains the go to destination of choice. 

“However, foreign homeowners from all corners of the world account for a significant proportion of market value up and down the nation.

“Despite the current economic landscape, this interest has remained strong so far in 2023 and we expect that foreign buyers will continue to bring a much needed boost to an otherwise weary property market as the year progresses.

”It’s also important to note that a great deal of foreign interest comes by way of investment into the rental market and, with the government failing to address the housing crisis by delivering much needed housing stock, this investment provides vital homes for the nation’s tenants.”


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