More overseas than UK buyers for City offices

THE LEVEL of overseas ownership of City office properties has overtaken UK ownership for the first time. research by property group Development Securities has claimed.

According to new research by the developer and the University of Cambridge, foreign investors now own 52 per cent of the Square Mile’s office stock, growing from 25 per cent in the mid 1990s and eight per cent in 1980.

Development Securities said overseas buyers remain focused on prime City assets, which are seen to be of higher quality, offering better potential returns.

The average price spent by foreign buyers between 2008 and 2011 was £91m compared with £27m on the part of UK investors.

Germany remains the largest overseas investor with a 16 per cent share of ownership, followed by the US with 10 per cent and the Middle East which expanded to six per cent.