Managing an international property portfolio can be difficult. To find out how it can be easier, and to hear more about current buyer trends, Soho’s Eli McGeever hears from Chris Parsonage, Cofounder of Settio Property Experience.
About Settio: Through their core product, The Settio Experience, offers clients an all-inclusive fee structure for leasing and management in the United Kingdom. Their ultimate aim is to provide investors with a simpler, transparent offering, delivering immeasurable reassurance for their investment. They have a presence in the UK and Asia, to ensure their internationally based clients can always talk with someone about their investment.
EM: What are the key factors you have seen for investors buying in H1 2019?
CP: We have seen a big difference between the needs and wants of each buyer during the first two quarters of 2019! The difference we have witnessed is highly dependent on the region of the buyers. Factors such as the location or City they desire to buy within the UK, style of development, price, aspect, type, and settlement dates all vary in the level of importance between each region.
Before most of listed factors are considered however, each buyer has a primary reason for their purchase. Over the course of the past 6 months we have witnessed buyers from regions with political or economic uncertainty who consider the UK to be a prime region to maintain wealth security or stability. Some regions that are well educated on the UK market, are looking for areas with potential of good capital value over the course of the next 5 years, whilst others are on the lookout for a prize or trophy asset! All of which however, mention the weaker sterling, and a big factor for making either their entry to the market or continuing to grow their portfolio in the UK!
EM: How has the current events around BREXIT affect demand for UK property from Asia?
CP: We continue to see good levels of interest within the UK market. Having been in the industry for 10 years, there have been a multitude of macroenvironmental factors which have affected the property market, not to mention the global financial crisis of 2009, multiple general elections, and of course, more recently, Brexit. All of which are generally considered barriers to entry, however, as any opportunist will tell you, with uncertainty, provides opportunity.
The sterling has dropped to a two year low against the US Dollar, 15% below pre Brexit levels. Recently, NTT announced on Bloomberg they will base their headquarters in Britain, stating ‘ The global financial hub, the tech triangle between Oxford, Cambridge and London, and the UK’s open society are all contributing factors’. For the long term investor, this is clearly a golden opportunity.
As with any uncertainty in the market, there will be some that will see Brexit as a risk, and some that see it as an opportunity. We are definitely seeing an increase in appetite for UK property as the Brexit deadline nears – more so than at the start of 2019.
EM: How can investors ensure they maximise their return on investment?
CP: There has been a lot of fanfare about new and exciting locations, with a lot of focus on yield. Whilst yield is important, the location and developer should be equally considered. We’ve seen, yet again, another student accommodation scheme go belly up through poor developer experience and a flooded market / poor positioning of the building. Being on the other side of the world, it’s important to invest in a reputable developer, a location that will continue to attract tenants and a local team to manage the day to day of the property, ensuring long-term, stable returns.
At Settio we nurture, advise and support investors through this market, ensuring clients are well up to date with market knowledge and sentiment. There is a lot happening, and it’s more important than ever to take a keen interest in current affairs to both protect investment, but also seek risk adverse opportunities.
For more, contact Settio Property Experience
Settio Property Experience Singapore: +65 3158 8007
Settio Property Experience Uk (Manchester):+44 (0) 161 768 6287