London’s ‘super-prime’ market was world leader in 2020

Super-prime sales resilient in 2020 due to domestic demand and the search for space.

Buyers dropped nearly US$4bn on $10m-plus properties in the UK capital in 2020, putting it ahead of traditional rivals New York and Hong Kong in the luxury real estate stakes.

The analysis by Knight Frank shows there were 201 super-prime transactions in London, averaging out at $18.6m apiece. Hong Kong saw 169; New York just 117.

New York’s super-prime market had a particularly tough year, what with the presidential election slowing things up and the impact of the Covid-19 lockdown between March and July. But while sales were down, the average price increased by 5% annually as buyers honed in on larger homes. Meanwhile, super-prime deals soared in US coastal hotspots, like Miami (89 at $10m-plus was more than double the previous year’s tally), LA and Palm Beach.

Worldwide, the super-prime spend totalled $19bn in 2020, which was 5% below the previous year’s figure. Overall volumes were only 1% lower, however.

Transactions over US$10m*
City20192020% Change
Hong Kong230169-28%
Los Angeles123155+26%
New York225117-48%
Palm Beach5089+78%
Source: Knight Frank Research. *Exchange rate calculated as at 31 December 2020

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