Swings and Roundabouts

No, I’m not referencing the Barbican’s children’s play areas in the two gardens – one of which I can view out of my apartment windows - but the effects of the coronavirus on Barbican property prices.  Nationally, according to the data from those that collate it, property prices are rising across the country and reaching record levels.  But before Barbican flat owners start any premature celebrations, the increase in people now working from home is also meaning that there is a possibly accelerating trend towards moving out of central London to more leafy suburbia, or beyond.  This could well be … [Read more...]

Dormant but Defiant?

There now seems to be little doubt that the uncertainties over Brexit, and the latest delay in it coming about or not, have been creating ongoing uncertainty that is dampening the overall London property market, but perhaps not quite so evidently so in the Barbican.  Some areas are being affected more than others and anecdotal evidence suggests that properties in the City of London may be among the worst affected, although this is not so apparent here according to our local Estate Agents. The further delay to Crossrail’s opening, which is now likely to occur in 2021 at the earliest, will … [Read more...]

Barbican Flatwatch Summer 2019 – 50 Years and Still Going Strong

It is interesting to look back over prices of Barbican properties in the 15 or so years we have been publishing Barbican Life.  In our first issue in a feature with the rather anodyne title of Barbican Housing Market – it became Flat Watch in our second issue in Summer 2004 – we looked at pricing per square foot for asking prices for Barbican properties and came up with an average of £472 per square foot.  There was obviously something of a variation based on decorative order of the properties for sale and their location within the Estate with high elevation tower block properties commanding … [Read more...]

Flat Watch Spring 2019 – Are Brexit Doubts Being Overblown?

Brexit negotiations are dragging on and both major UK political parties seem to be in turmoil over a variety of potential outcomes .  The EU is seemingly staying intransigent on their negotiation stance, and with regard to the property sales situation in particular we might have expected the Barbican market to be in a state of limbo, or in decline.  But the estate agents which handle most of the Barbican property business seem to be uniformly reporting something of a pick-up in sales and excellent business in the lettings market.  The main problem they are reporting is a lack of … [Read more...]

Christmas Issue Barbican Flatwatch – Different Strokes

It’s amazing how the same piece of research can generate what appear to be totally different stories in the media.  It makes one wonder if all the accusations of ‘fake news’ which have been appearing sine President Trump came to power in the USA are actually due to differing interpretations of the same basic facts. The specific research I’m referring to here was put out by major estate agency Savills which generated seemingly totally contrasting headlines: “London prime property prices set to stagnate” trumpets the Financial Times while the rather less conservatively oriented Daily … [Read more...]

Flatwatch Autumn 2018 – Prices to Stabilise in 2019

  Of the local estate agents serving the Barbican and surrounding areas, Hurford Salvi Carr (HSC) always comes up with some interesting research on both the sales and lettings markets at half yearly intervals. The latest such research, published in August suggests that overall prices have come off around 4% in the first six months of 2018 – mainly due to Brexit uncertainty and the imposition of the new Stamp Duty Land Tax and second home levy making buy-to-let a less attractive option. It should be recognised that HSC covers a rather larger area than just the Barbican, which tends to … [Read more...]

Barbican Property Prices: Doldrums or Decline?- Flatwatch Summer 2018

We are seeing increasing evidence that property prices in London have been turning downwards - perhaps falling as much as 10% in the City of London according to some estimates. However even such a small area as the City hides a broad variety of price movements relating to area, property type, size and asking prices and what applies overall may not be an accurate representation of trends in very specific areas like the Barbican or for specific sizes of properties.. In general analysis of the housing market is seeing falling prices across the board ever since the Brexit referendum, but this … [Read more...]

Steady as she goes! – Flatwatch Spring 2018

The media has been suggesting, at the very least, a hiatus in property price increases in the London area, although it appears the principal price fall sufferers have been at the real high end of the market, and in the outer zones with Zone 1 properties perhaps less affected. Certainly, if one checks asking prices on the websites of those agencies specialising in Barbican properties, prices seem to be holding up pretty well. But – and there’s always a ‘but’ - if one talks to the agents there is an indication that Barbican flat pricing levels are at best flat and may even be turning down a … [Read more...]

Up or down? Mid to long term prospects remain positive

Are Barbican flat prices coming down or not?  Anecdotally it does appear that properties are taking longer to sell and some vendors have been reducing asking prices accordingly, but we see little sign of any serious general degradation in apartment values.  The froth may have come off the top of the asking price expectations, but this could be considered a dose of reality after some fairly spectacular increases.  Nevertheless, gone are the days, at least for the time being, of sealed bids and properties selling within hours of hitting the market.  The Barbican flat market goes though times … [Read more...]

SDLT impacting top end properties

In the last issue of Barbican Life we commented that the Barbican sales and lettings market was getting back to normal given all the uncertainty ahead of the June general election, the start of Brexit negotiations in July and the implementation of a new stamp duty range which has had the effect of making many Barbican sales more costly, given the high valuations of Barbican properties.  Also, as you will see in our Personal Finance column, being able to offset mortgage interest payments against buy-to-let income is gradually to be withdrawn which will affect this sector of the market. We … [Read more...]