London and UK residential property still sought after by South Africans

London property prices are still the highest of any city in the world, ahead of Hong Kong, Monaco and New York and other contenders for this “distinction” – but a small number of South Africans still own homes or offices there and some have added to their portfolio year by year. Many other non-Brits, particularly Americans and Middle East citizens from oil-rich countries are also enthusiastic London property owners.

Lanice Steward, MD of Anne Porter Knight Frank, the Cape Town real estate agency, says that a perusal of the stock list of Anne Porter Properties’ associate company, Knight Frank, will show that A Grade London property prices are roughly eight to twelve times higher than those of Cape Town’s CBD.

“This means that they are almost paying in pounds what we pay in rands,” said Steward.

“While such prices may seem prohibitively expensive it has to be pointed out that virtually every London property has proved a good investment for a decade or more: the Knight Frank report shows that there has for eight years been an average appreciation of 6,5% which is almost treble the UK inflation rate for the same period.”

Steward said that in her view rural property in the UK can also still represent an excellent buy.

“Because of our connection with Knight Frank we receive regular enquiries about rural property in France, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Greece and the Mediterranean Islands. It is worth pointing out that although UK country homes are higher priced, they are also usually in better condition and better equipped. The UK restoration and renovation trades are skilled and in recent years have been adept at upgrading country cottages, barns, stables, milking sheds and the like into dry, warm, tastefully decorated homes with every imaginable convenience.”

Most Knight Frank country property offerings, said Steward, are priced from about £2 to around £15 million but, she says, “At the lower end of the scale, i.e. for R20 to R30 million there are still some excellent properties to be had, especially in the outlying counties like Devon, Cornwall, Norfolk, Yorkshire, Suffolk, Hereford – and, of course, Wales and Scotland, where prices are quite reasonable”.

Such homes, she said, are usually linked in with good fishing and/or shooting and walking territory and these traditional UK pastimes continue to appeal to large numbers of high net worth individuals.

For further information contact Lanice Steward on 021 671 9120 or email

Article by: