International

Real estate in London and Monaco is affecting Britain’s market

The closing gaps between the two international markets

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There was a time in the not-so-distant past that the real estate property markets in
 Monaco and London were vastly different. Times change, and so does the
 real estate market. Today, the prime real estate markets in central London and 
Monaco look much more like twins, both with similar features, trends and buyer
 profiles, and they represent Europe’s leading locations for luxury property.

More alike than ever

new analysis by Pastor Real Estate, which has offices in both locations, found
 that both areas are experiencing a huge global demand that have raised property
 values due to their locations. According to Pastor Real Estate, buyers are attracted 
to them due to their political stability, their concentrations of hotels and shopping
 facilities, the real estate markets and beneficial tax regulations.

In recent years, the price gap between these two ultraluxurious locations has been
 shrinking. Currently, the average apartment price in Fontvieille, Monaco’s most
 expensive address, is valued at £3.43 million, while the equivalent apartment in
 Knightsbridge is valued at £3.27 million. Although Monaco still holds the lead in expense, prices in London have been steadily closing.

The report highlighted some of the most luxurious locations in both London and
 Monaco. In London, the report analyzed the areas of Mayfair, Marylebone, Knightsbridge, South Kensington, Belgravia, Westminster and Chelsea. In Monaco,
 the report focused on Fontvieille, Monte Carlo, Boulevard des Moulins/Saint Roman, 
La Condamine, Larvotto, Monaco-Ville and Jardin Exotique.

Both central London and Monaco are viewed by the world’s wealthiest as highly
 attractive due to their stability, the presence of highly popular royal dynasties, and 
their strong economies based on banking, finance, tourism, cultural facilities and
 commerce. In fact, many of the individuals who maintain a residence in one of these 
locations also maintain a second residence at the other location.

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Britain’s real estate market

Britain, like many countries such as the United States, struggled in recent years in
 the face of recession that drastically impacted many of the real estate markets
 around the country. Prices fell and many properties simply sat empty and unused
 as many — even people with wealth — held on to their money in the uncertain times. However, Britain has begun to pull out of the recession, and the real estate markets in central London have seen a boom in recent months as more and more wealthy individuals from all over the world look to maintain a residence in the famous city.

The recent boom has seen a change in the makeup of some of these high-end
 neighborhoods, as many foreign students from wealthy families and dignitaries are 
taking up residence as they attend school in London. For a time, the main
 demographic of many of the areas such as Mayfair was made up of investment
 bankers and wealthy financiers. Today, many of the areas are filled the young and
 the wealthy as they attend school but still demand a certain standard of living far 
above that of a typical university student.

“We have observed that certain areas tend to attract certain types of buyer. Both
 markets are extremely cosmopolitan with a strong Arabic influence in
 Knightsbridge and Boulevard des Moulins/Saint Roman, and a large English
 community in both Chelsea and Jardin Exotique,” says Susan Cohen, director at 
Pastor Real Estate.

The boom has also seen the prices in the areas skyrocket, which makes them unattainable by most individuals with substantial means. For example, London’s
 Knightsbridge currently runs approximately £65 per square foot, which creates a high rent price that is afforded only by those with substantial means.
 There is little doubt that there is a real estate windfall occurring in central London 
today. More and more of the world’s wealthiest are moving into the areas, which has created a market that is much more similar to Monaco’s market today than ever before.

Mariana Sarceda is a communications specialist who works in the real estate arena.

Email Mariana Sarceda.