Wealthy Cash Buyers Show Growing Appetite for Prime London Real Estate

Savills reports a noteworthy surge in affluent cash buyers acquiring prestigious luxury homes in prime central London. While concerns over rising interest rates and heightened price sensitivity have triggered a perceived slowdown in the broader housing market this summer, Savills' residential agency team has witnessed a spike in transactions exceeding £10 million, particularly in prime central London's coveted neighborhoods like Kensington, Chelsea, Westminster, and Knightsbridge.

Well-heeled buyers at the upper echelons of the market, insulated from increasing borrowing costs, are opting for mortgage-free property purchases. This trend has led to a significant acceleration in deal closures, with many transactions now taking just four to six weeks, compared to the customary four to six months.

These transactions predominantly involve historic homes, meticulously maintained and situated in London's prime locations—often on the most sought-after streets and garden squares. The rarity of high-end properties in these enclaves has attracted both affluent international and UK-based cash buyers who are choosing to establish roots in the capital.


Recent high-value transactions, collectively totaling nearly £200 million, include:

  • Approximately £100 million in property sales in Kensington and Chelsea, encompassing an off-market family home in the Boltons Conservation Area, a recently renovated Chelsea residence, and a historically significant Grade II* listed building in South Kensington, boasting planning and listed building consent for a remarkable family residence.
  • Over £40 million worth of property transactions in Knightsbridge, featuring two properties on Knightsbridge garden squares, a lateral apartment in Knightsbridge, and a residence on a Belgravia garden square with refurbishment potential.
  • More than £50 million in Westminster, involving the sale of three houses in Queen Anne's Gate.


Anticipated sales on the horizon:

Interest remains robust, with recent agreements reached on properties in Mayfair, Belgravia, and Westminster, ranging from £12 million to £50 million each.

Savills Research reveals that 66% of Savills' prime central London sales between January and July this year were executed in cash, compared to 59% during the same period in 2022.

Alex Christian, Joint Head of The Private Office at Savills, noted, "We've observed a marked surge in the desire to invest in real estate, along with an encouraging uptick in international activity, despite headlines suggesting a market-wide summer deceleration. In the uppermost echelons of the market, cash buyers are selecting best-in-class properties, such as a beautifully reimagined house in Chelsea that artfully combines modern luxury with period charm."

Noel De Keyzer, Head of Savills Knightsbridge, added, "The recent string of historic trophy home sales in London's prime locations reflects an expanding appetite and growing buyer confidence. It underscores London's enduring allure on the global stage. From a trio of period houses on Queen Anne's Gate renowned for their Grade I listed architecture to residences on elegant garden squares unique to London, these sales underscore the remarkable resilience of London's high-end property market."

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