Benham & Reeves previews Barratt London’s latest phase at Millbrook Park

/ EdgeProp Singapore
October 23, 2020 8:00 AM SGT
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SINGAPORE (EDGEPROP) - Benham & Reeves moved to The Great Room co-working space at Raffles Hotel, Arcade, on Oct 1. The reasons were twofold. “We had originally explored moving into a serviced office when our lease was close to expiring,” says Doris Tan, regional director of Benham & Reeves. “When Covid struck, it proved timely to move to more flexible office space.”
The latest phase of Millbrook Park with 345 apartments and 10 houses by developer Barratt London (Photo; Barratt London)
Prior to that, the London-based real estate services firm was at Faber House on prime Orchard Road. Tan felt that The Great Room at Raffles Hotel best complemented Benham & Reeves’ business. “It is well-positioned and is an ideal venue for holding private events for our clients,” she says. “More importantly, we wanted to support local businesses.” It helped that Tan was acquainted with Jaelle Ang, co-founder and CEO of The Great Room.
Founded in 1958, Benham & Reeves is now owned by managing director Anita Mehra, who acquired the business in 1998. Over the past two decades, Mehra turned the firm into a leading lettings agency in London, with an international presence in Hong Kong, Singapore, Shanghai as well as Malaysia and India in recent years.
Having established the firm as a letting agency, Mehra acquired Benham & Reeves’ rights to the sales business only in February 2018. This was after another firm, Dexters acquired the sales business of Benham & Reeves and rebranded the firm. The Benham & Reeves sales and lettings business were split into two separate entities in 1976 by its previous owners, two brothers, Alan and Cyril Brown. They had acquired the firm in 1968.
Tan: The addition of the sales business has turned Benham & Reeves into a “one-stop shop”. You can buy London property through us, and we can help you furnish, let out, and manage the property, and resell later on (Photo: Samuel Isaac Chua/EdgeProp Singapore)

One-stop shop

Tan joined Benham & Reeves in April 2019 to focus on growing the sales business in Singapore. Prior to that, she was the regional director with property group Strawberry Star from 2017. Tan was also head of international residential project sales at JLL from 2011, after the New York Stock Exchange-listed real estate advisory firm had acquired King Sturge, a UK property consulting firm.
DST International, which Tan founded in 1998, specialised in international property sales and had been marketing UK properties in Singapore for King Sturge over the years. Hence, when JLL acquired King Sturge, it naturally acquired DST International as well.
Over the past two decades, Tan had been acquainted with Benham & Reeves, and in fact, had worked with the firm as its lettings associate. The lettings business in Singapore is headed by Lynne Geeves.
The addition of the sales business has turned Benham & Reeves into a “one-stop shop” says Tan: “You can buy London property through us, and we can help you furnish, let out, and manage the property, and resell later on.”
Road Park at Fulham - EDGEPROP SINGAPORE
Scale model of King’s Road Park at Fulham, London by Berkeley Group that was showcased at The Great Room on Oct 9-11 (Photo: Benhaam & Reeves)

Exclusive previews

Tan is in her element when marketing international properties. Within the first week of moving into The Great Room, Benham & Reeves showcased King’s Road Park at Fulham, London by Berkeley Group over a three-day period from Oct 9 to 11. Units were priced from GBP790,000 to GBP3.365 million ($1.4 million to $5.9 million). There were over 30 private appointments across the three days, according to Benham & Reeves.
Given the good response at the event, Benham & Reeves is previewing the latest block of apartments launched at Millbrook Park by Barratt London. Millbrook Park is located at Bittacy Hill, directly opposite the Mill Hill East underground station in Zone 4.
Envisioned as “a thriving sustainable community”, Millbrook Park is the gentrification of a former army barracks located at the heart of Barnet, a suburb in North West London, with a village-like setting. A master-planned development, Millbrook Park will have 2,240 residential apartments and houses developed in 15 phases by various renowned developers such as Barratt London, Taylor Wimpey North Thames, EcoWorld London and Joseph Homes.
Artist's impression of the living area of one of the apartments in the latest phase of Millbrook Park (Photo: Barratt London)
The development will include community facilities, such as the new Millbrook Park Primary School, which is now open, as well as almost 6ha of parks and open spaces. Top schools within the area include Hasmonean High School for Boys, Brampton College, and North London Grammar School. The Mount Mill Hill International School, part of the Mill Hill School Foundation, boasts Amy Winehouse as one of its famous alumni.
“The area has a nice village setting with a lot of open spaces and parks,” says Tan, who had visited Millbrook Park last November. From Mill Hill East Underground station, it is just a 25-minute train ride to Tottenham Court Road and 31 minutes to Waterloo. King’s Cross St Pancreas is just a 20-minute train ride from Millbrook Park, hence, it is accessible to those attending University College London or UCL.
It is located near the village of Mill Hill, and within easy access of parks such as Bittacy Hill Park and Dollis Brook, as well as near cricket grounds, the Frith Manor Equestrian Club, the exclusive Finchley Golf Club and the GBP24 million rejuvenated Allianz Park, homeground of the Saracens rugby team.
Waitrose supermarket is just a five-minute walk away, while a new Co-op superstore will open within Millbrook Park. Nearby are also Virgin Club and Mill Hill Broadway, with high street stores including Marks and Spencer, Boots as well as restaurants, cafes and pubs.
Dining and kitchen area of one of the apartments at Millbrook Park (Photo: Barratt London)

Embracing suburbia

“Since the Covid-19 outbreak, we see more people moving away from Central London to the suburbs, in search of more spacious apartments, places that are quieter, have more open grounds and located close to nature,” observes Tan. “At Millbrook Park, which is in Zone 4, you can enjoy the open space, parks and grounds, and it’s just a 20- to 25-minute train ride to the City.”
Covid-19 has also heightened parents’ concern for their children studying or planning to study in the UK. Some are opting to purchase apartments for their children instead of letting them live in shared accommodation to minimise the risk of infection, notes Tan. “I see more people buying one- and two-bedroom apartments for their children.”
The latest phase of Barratt London’s block of 49 apartments will be showcased by Benham & Reeves at The Great Room, Raffles Hotel Arcade, over the weekend of Oct 24-25. It is part of a total of 345 apartments and 10 houses by the developer, which is scheduled for completion next year.
Benham & Reeves’ Tan sees the property attracting young families and investors too, given its location, lifestyle offerings and amenities. “There’s room for capital and rental appreciation in the future,” she says.”
Artist's impression of the latest block of 49 apartments at Millbrook Park by Barratt London (Photo: Barratt London)

Buying ahead

The units in the latest block at Millbrook Park are a mix of one-bedroom apartments with sizes from 558 to 681 sq ft, and two-bedroom apartments from 750 to 885 sq ft. Prices start from GBP399,000 for a one-bedder. The price of the apartment, which has a 999-year lease, includes a parking space, which is a rarity in London, adds Tan.
She has noticed a pick-up in interest in UK property among Singaporean buyers since the second phase reopening after the “circuit breaker”. Part of the resurgence in overseas buying interest in the UK could be attributed to the Chancellor’s announcement in March that the government will hike stamp duty by another 2% for non-UK buyers from April 2021.
In Singapore, most of the buyers are likely to be in their late 30s to early 40s and seeking to purchase their first investment property in London as part of their “portfolio diversification”, notes Tan. “London is a perennial favourite among investors in Singapore.”
Check out the latest listings near: Raffles Hotel, Faber House, Orchard Road

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