Property News

London Continues to Attracts Russians Investors

Russia’s wealthiest individuals are keeping a firm grasp on the London luxury home market, accounting for 16% of all home purchases in the city’s most luxurious and expensive neighborhoods.

According to new reports, wealthy Russian investors accounted for more than 16% of home purchases in high-end London neighborhoods such as Kensington, Knightsbridge, Belgravia and Chelsea. In the fourth quarter of 2011, Russian’s actually increased their share in London’s luxury home market more than any other group.

Adam Challis, head of residential research at Hamptons International, said referring to the upcoming Russian presidential elections in March, “It’s a precaution against things going too far in the wrong direction. The very well-connected folk realized that there was going to be some serious political uncertainty and that they’re better off putting their money into London property.”

Prime Minister Putin faces the biggest challenge to his rule since coming to power 12 years ago after allegations of fraud in the Dec. 4 legislative elections sparked mass protests.

Overall, the fourth quarter numbers showed that British buyers accounted for 42% of all luxury home transactions, a 2% drop from the third quarter. Russian investors accounted for approximately 38% of home sales costing more than $15.76 in 2011. Middle East investors went from 15% in the third quarter to 16% in the fourth and Chinese investors dropped to 2% in the fourth quarter from 5% in the third quarter.