The sales market in Mayfair has been subdued for much of the past two years as increases in stamp duty, the introduction of capital gains tax for foreign property owners plus the uncertainty surrounding Brexit have all made buyers more hesitant. Those buyers still in the market remain very price sensitive and are generally negotiating hard on asking prices while sellers are mainly prepared to hold out for their price and wait until the market recovers, unless they require a quick sale. Analysis of Land Registry data reveals the impact that this impasse has had on the Mayfair market, with 42% fewer sales in the first eight months of 2016 than the corresponding period in 2015.
Competition from the increasing number of newly built properties coming onto the market has also affected pricing. At the end of December 2016 there were 127 private units under construction and a further 383 with planning consent. As a result, the older portered blocks have become more difficult to sell as buyers are more attracted to brand new, fully serviced properties, even if they are more expensive.