Dring is a one-firm man: he’s been at Knight Frank for over a quarter of a century now (and some of his clients have been with him just as long). Over that time he’s seen the rise (and fall) of international wealth and the varying destinations it has flowed to. Despite political and economic turbulence in the ‘challenging’ European markets, he says 2016 has been ‘better than anticipated’: ‘There’s a greater alignment now between buyers and sellers.’
Property sourcing has been in full swing throughout the year, with ‘a huge variety of buyers’: Scandinavian nations, America, and the ‘start of Asian interest’ in some European countries. It is a good time to invest: ‘The weight of buyers is still good and the market should remain liquid.’
Although Brexit tremors were felt across the region with the weakening of the pound, it hasn’t stopped the British from buying, as they make up roughly 40 per cent of buyers across Europe, Dring says. And the EU referendum didn’t impede transactions either: ‘We didn’t lose any deals as a direct result of Brexit, which was very good.’
With relatively stable market liquidity, he says ‘finance is still widely available’. ‘The levels of loans to value have inevitably become more cautious but I think you can still achieve 40 to 50 per cent subject to you satisfying various qualifications, which have become more stringent, more cautious.’
Although Dring told Spear’s previously that his ideal foreign destination to buy a home is the Mediterranean, the dollar’s recent strength has made New York a new favourite destination.