Waterfront properties in the UK have long been popular and now new research has shown that the very best are priced as much as 81% higher than comparable inland homes. Whether it is a country house by a river, a one bedroomed flat by the sea or even a cottage adjacent to a loch, living by the sea is the ultimate lifestyle choice. Though, it’s not just British buyers competing for the very best as demand from overseas buyers continues to grow. Some 55% of international searches coming from Europe and a further 26% from North America.
Waterfront properties are thought of as very niche and therefore, desirable. They are a market in their own right, something that helps to underpin their high values. However, not all prime waterfront properties are equal, of course, and the premium does vary by location. The South West offers the most added value at up to a staggering 105% and the region is home to some of the country’s most expensive waterfront properties, with the likes of Salcombe, Rock, Sandbanks and St Mawes coming out on top.
That said, the most significant proportion of West Country buyers are looking to move out of London and the Home Counties bordering the M25. Somewhat surprisingly, there is also a lot of interest in luxury waterfront properties from the Midlands, stretching right the way down to the Bristol area.
In East Anglia, the very best waterside homes can command premiums of up to 51%, dipping slightly to 48% in the South East and 43% in Scotland. The sheer diverse nature of waterfront property across the UK attracts buyers from all walks and at all stages of life, whether they’re upsizing, downsizing or simply seeking a lifestyle change. It should also be remembered that international buyers also form an important part of the market, the appeal really is global, with buyers from the US, France, Spain and Germany proving popular.
A weaker pound following Brexit has also benefitted those buying in non-sterling with a notable increase in the volume of expats purchasing waterfront property in 2016/17 compared to the previous year being noticed.
More often than not, the view is held in higher regard than the actual property itself as you’re able to alter the property but not its outlook. It’s important to understand the buyer’s perspective and the lifestyle they are seeking and how they aim to match that with the property they are looking to buy.
Going ahead, the introduction of a higher rate of stamp duty for additional properties, including second homes in April 2016, has had an impact on a market where there has previously been a notable level of discretionary purchases.
Now, we’re more than a year away from said changes and the market has taken such additional costs in its stride, that said, the net result is that we are generally not experiencing an increase in sales. The changes to stamp duty on second homes seem to be keeping a lid on any upward price movements in the foreseeable.