Countrywide have said the current condition of the central London housing market is not purely down to stamp duty.
Since last year when George Osborne announced he would be reforming stamp duty, the high-end of the central London market has shown a reduced amount of transactions and price drops and this came before the surprise announcement of a stamp duty surcharge on second homes announced just last week by Osborne.
Yet, Countrywide’s research director, Johnny Morris, says: “The top end of the market would be just as bad if he hadn’t even touched stamp duty.”
Morris has indicated that his in belief international fears over China and other developing economies have dissuaded the British buyer who is able to afford a high-end London property, whilst the foreign investors have been hit by the strength of the pound which has made the capital’s homes appear over-priced.
He continues “Then there’s the natural cycle, Prices in prime central London in particular have had a strong run for many years – they were bound to fall back a little at some point.”