Chelsea has traditionally been a playground for the wealthy, but young and savvy American tech billionaires are the latest clientele to snap up properties in the exclusive London borough.
Like the number of European buyers and Russian oligarchs home buying in the capital is declining, there’s a new type of buyer in the city: Silicon Valley tech magnates looking to take advantage of the strong dollar and invest wisely in fortunes made during the pandemic.
Rupert des Forges, head of key developments in central London at Knight Frank, said “the bright young things of Silicon Valley” are driving the market for overseas buyers in the capital.
Des Forges told it The times“These are different from the American buyers of yesteryear, traditionally affluent middle-aged chief executives on the East Coast.”
A three-bedroom apartment in Cadogan Gardens, Chelsea, is on the market for a target price of £6,250,000
Young and savvy US tech billionaires are the latest clientele to gobble up property in London’s exclusive Chelsea district (file photo)
“Many of them made a lot of money during Covid and sometimes benefited from a hugely favorable exchange rate in 2022. The fortunes made at such a young age are remarkable.”
This hugely lucrative new client base also fuels competition among luxury real estate agents, who host glamorous events to attract potential clients.
Among them is Tedworth Property, which has an office near Sloane Square and hosts breakfast gatherings at upscale restaurants such as The Wolseley, Peloton rides and backgammon tournaments at the private members’ club 5 Hertford Street in Mayfair.
Private members’ club 5 Hertford Street in Mayfair is just one of the venues catering to wealthy clients
Simon Tollit, co-founder of Tedworth Property in 2017, said US buyers were “a really important part of the market,” and it’s not just tech tycoons, but also those in finance and commodities.
The profile of American buyers he sees are in their 30s and early 40s, adding, “They’re very normal, fairly understated, quite discreet.”
“They’re not gaudy or gaudy. The buyer’s style has changed. The wealth is there, it’s probably bigger now, but they’re more likely to arrive on a scooter than in a car with a driver.’
The share of real estate in the capital’s ‘prime’ market that has been bought by different nationalities
Mr Tollit said they are attracted to Chelsea and Kensington because ‘they like the rarity and grandeur’ of houses such as Eaton Square and Cadogan Gardens.
Properties for sale that are likely to attract the attention of these new clients include a three bedroom apartment in a Grade II listed red brick townhouse in Cadogan Gardens, Chelsea.
The house, close to the popular Chelsea hangouts of Sloane Square and King’s Road, is on the market with Tedworth Property for a target price of £6.25 million.
“They’re considering the areas that may have been considered more of ‘ancient traditional wealth’.
“Cadogan Gardens is a classic example,” he said, adding that the type of clients looking at the property were “ultra-high net worth, in their 30s and 40s, from New York and California.”
Meanwhile, Sotheby’s International Realty introduces newcomers to its auction business and helps its clients find luxury goods such as art, wine, watches and jewelry.
Among those who have recently bought property in London’s most exclusive areas is online gambling billionaire J Russell DeLeon, who bought a seven-bedroom property near Notting Hill in July.
The new influx of foreign buyers become the new Sloane Rangers, typically upper class, well-dressed, well-educated young socialites, living in the most expensive parts of the capital.
Sloane Rangers old and new: Princess Diana and Pippa Middleton are considered to fit the archetype, typically upper class, well-dressed, educated young socialites
Senseless presenter Alexander Armstrong and filmmaker Jemima Khan were also once considered typical of the high-living ‘Sloane Ranger’ set
The man who coined the term, Peter York, previously said the wealthy heiresses and heiresses popularized by the likes of Princess Diana and Pippa Middleton were in decline, giving way to super-rich oligarchs and foreign bankers.
Mr York claimed that the latest generation of Sloane Rangers are unlikely to be able to afford a home in the area after prices were pushed up by Russian, Indian and Chinese businessmen moving there.
But now figures show a shift in the number of US buyers snapping up homes in London’s most desirable areas.
Hamptons found that the proportion of US buyers in London’s most desirable neighborhoods had risen from two to seven percent of purchases over the past year, while the proportion of buyers in the EU had fallen from 13 to 12 percent, The Times added.
Meanwhile, St John’s Wood is a preferred location among those with young families, due to its proximity to an American private school.