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Experience Invest

Estate Agents Demand More Transparency in the UK Real Estate Market

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Welcome back to the Experience Invest blog, where we discuss the latest trends in the residential market, student accommodation and care home investments.

This week there have been further calls to the UK Government to tighten its policy regarding property ownership by foreign investors. The demands are largely a response to the growing number of buyers from overseas who are entering the UK property market.

Real concerns are being raised by the property industry that the UK may be being used by some foreign buyers to hide wealth and assets.

What action will the UK take?

In July this year, the UK Government announced they would be launching a new policy dedicated to tackling money laundering in the UK real estate market. However the policy, which would make foreign and offshore ownership of property more transparent, is still in consultation.

According to an article published on the Property Wire website this week, the National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA) and Transparency International are calling for the Government’s plans to be fast-tracked.

From Russia with Cash

The UK property market attracts high-net-worth individuals from all over the world, and particularly from Russia, China and the Middle East. A recent Channel 4 documentary ‘From Russia with Cash’ investigated whether London’s property boom was being partly driven by overseas buyers laundering money.

The documentary, according to Mark Hayward, managing director of the NAEA, verified that “there is still not absolute clarity in relation to anti-money laundering among those in the property sector, despite the very clear legislation in place and regular training and updates from within the industry”.

Hayward commented: “It is now time to step up the level of scrutiny that the sector comes under to ensure that a small minority of agents do not support criminal activity and those that do are appropriately sanctioned.”

A Safe Haven for Investors

The UK is recognised by both domestic and foreign buyers as a ‘safe’ place to invest in a wide range of property assets. Prices in the UK have remained consistent, and have performed well over time, unlike the United States, Australia and the Middle East, which have seen larger fluctuations.

International residential and commercial property consultants Knight Frank predict the price of property in the UK will rise by 18.2 per cent between 2015 and 2019.

About Experience Invest

Experience Invest is a London-based independent property specialist working with clients across the UK and internationally. We focus on sourcing real estate opportunities across the UK. Our specialisms include residential investments, student property and care home investments. The company has been featured in The Telegraph, on Yahoo Finance, and by Reuters.

Experience Invest recently announced the launch of One Wolstenholme Square, a brand new residential development in the heart of Liverpool. If you are interested in finding out more about this exciting residential investment opportunity or would like to explore our full selection of buy-to-let opportunities please visit the website for full details.