Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

It's a Battle of the Nations as Eager Foreign Buyers Seek a Safe Haven; Diary of an Estate Agent

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

It's a Battle of the Nations as Eager Foreign Buyers Seek a Safe Haven; Diary of an Estate Agent

Article excerpt

MONDAY I arrive at my desk at 8am after sledging to work (so green/so Boris) and within five minutes the feeling in my fingers has returned. It's an exciting start to the week as we have three offers in excess of the asking price on a stunning flat just off Kensington Church Street, which we only launched a week ago.

The vendors' solicitor got all the paperwork ready prior to the property going on the market, which will enable us to keep the momentum and make sure there is no delay on our client's side when terms are agreed.

Two offers are from international buyers, indicating that the current economic picture hasn't affected foreigners' perception of London as a safe haven for investment, or their desire to keep equity here in something they can see and touch. We agree terms and our client is delighted -- he can now move out of London to a beautiful house near Guildford through our private property search agent.

TUESDAY Following a generous recommendation from a previous client, I am thrilled to be instructed on an impressive maisonette in Holland Park. It will no doubt attract a lot of interest as it has wonderful views and is just a short walk away from the entrance to the park. However, the flat is unloved and empty. We advise the client to furnish/dress the place, as the past three apartments that were dressed achieved above the asking price and were agreed on within a couple of weeks of marketing. Some excitement at the end of the day as a second appointment is arranged for an apartment that a number of potential purchasers have ruled out because of the bus noise from nearby Kensington High Street. It is perfect for this interested couple who want to experience the buzz and vibrancy of London. And they consider the property quite peaceful compared to their previous homes in New York and Shanghai.

WEDNESDAY On returning to the office I get a call from some charming Russian buyers who speak little English, and so we are all a little lost in translation. …

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