Dirty money is ‘flooding’ UK property market – claim

Dirty cash is flooding the UK property market, the Financial Times has claimed.

The story appears more than two months after the C4 programme, From Russia With Cash, aired on TV, apparently showing estate agents trying to help a clearly dodgy Russian buyer with his purchases of London property.

The NAEA and RICS, whose members were apparently shown in the programme, are both investigating – but neither body has offered their conclusions or given a timeframe as to when their probes will be complete.

According to the FT story, agent Andrew Langton, of Aylesford International, said: “The bush telegraph is efficient in our business. We are being warned by others who are getting their knuckles rapped.”

The FT also says that while many estate agents believe “there is heightened scrutiny of the market, few believe any crackdown – whether real or threatened – will have an impact on property prices in the UK”.

Since the programme aired, David Cameron has instructed the Land Registry to publish a list of properties owned by offshore companies.

However, Private Eye has pretty well beaten them to it.

The satirical magazine has created a searchable map showing properties across Britain which were acquired by offshore companies between 2005 and July 2014.

It has used Land Registry data released under Freedom of Information laws, and then linking over 100,000 Land Registry title entries to specific addresses.

The map shows both leasehold and freehold properties, and who owns what and where. In Milton Keynes, for example, nearly £400m of property is owned by offshore businesses.


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