Affluent business people are turning to renting rather than buying, with several factors such as Brexit, stamp duty and contract work being cited as reasons not to buy, according to reports. Knight Frank estate agency said viewings on luxury London homes, which command rents of between £500 and £5,000 a week are up by almost 16 per cent on the same period last year.
The EU referendum had a knock-on effect as uncertainly has led to lower asking prices and a weaker pound, which can benefit foreign buyers. Speculators also feel that prices will fall further as Britain prepares to move out of Europe so potential buyers are playing the waiting game and will rent to see if prices will go any lower.
Last month banking and financial services company Societe Generale predicted the most expensive houses in London could fall by up to 50 per cent post-referendum. This could be a good time for buy-to-let investors to put their money in the high-end rental market because demand is high and is expected to stay buoyant for some time to come.
The number of homes worth £10 million or more which have been let to tenants in desirable parts of the Capital increased by one-third in the first three months of 2016, according to Knight Frank, while sales in that price range in these areas dropped by about 30 per cent.
Sports people are among the group of super ‘rentysomethings’ as short contracts or tournaments mean that buying is not an option. Specialist agency Tennis London has previously found homes near the All England club in Wimbledon for Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer as well as Serena and Venus Williams for the summer tournament.
But the really lucrative market is, not surprisingly, within the world of football. The summer transfer window is good news for high-end landlords and agents as players moving to the top Premier League clubs do not know how long their contracts will last.
Many are young players who have suddenly come into money and do not want to commit themselves to property ownership. They could be loaned out to another club or only spend a couple of years with a club. It makes sense for them to invest in buy-to-lets themselves, as has Robbie Fowler, but opt to rent their personal accommodation.
Chelsea players tend to look for homes near to their training ground in Cobham, Surrey; Spurs players opt for Hampstead; while Manchester City and United signings head to Cheshire, particularly in the golden triangle of Wilmslow, Mottram St Andrew and Alderley Edge.