No need to make a scene
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Stanmore Place, by St Edward. Agents: Preston Bennett, Knight Frank
It's like a tragedy that's been running in the West End for the past two years. Day after day our heroine, the property market, dies in dramatic fashion for an open-mouthed audience. Her performance is front-page news. Yet the following day she turns up for work at the theatre to go through it all over again.
Latest rumours of the death of the property market are as exaggerated as ever, says Trevor Abrahmsohn of north London agent Glentree. "Sales of new-build properties have been very active over the year and have only started to calm down during the summer holiday season.
"Most developments launched in the past year have been practically sold out, leaving the available stock within the schemes that have launched over the past few months.
"Undoubtedly there will be fewer and fewer new build properties available over the next six-to-nine-month period, since there were few start-up developments towards the end of 2008/beginning of 2009, due to the credit crunch. Therefore the supply is shrinking fast and, if you prefer new-build to existing stock, this is definitely the right time to buy.
"In the next four to six weeks we will get a better idea of the market trend, but whatever the demand, supply of new homes will be limited and will continue to be so over the next two years."
Development of new sites (mothballed for two years) has begun again and these will come to fruition in 18 months' to two years' time. Mr Abrahmsohn believes a more "normal, orderly" market in new homes will only be seen in 2012/13. The squeeze on public-sector pay and jobs will probably affect the more northerly parts of the UK and should not affect the south, or London in particular. He adds: "The hike in VAT probably will affect sentiment rather than anything else, so it is better to sell your property in the next three months and pay a lower rate of VAT on agent's fees than wait."
The second phase of apartments at the lakeside development on Honeypot Lane - Stanmore Place -will be launched this weekend. Albert Court offers one, two and three bedroom apartments. Stanmore Place is the first development by St Edward, a joint venture between Berkeley Homes and The Prudential. Paul Vallone of St Edward comments: "Stanmore Place delivers a high standard of new homes not seen in this area before, forming a thriving new community with a village feel in a relaxed lakeside environment."
Stanmore Place recently received a 2010 gold standard from the Building for Life scheme, which recognises commitment to high standards of building design and sustainable development.
Stanmore Place's waterside setting is accessed by a bridge over a lake boasting many resident ducks. Landscaped areas, cycle paths, a residents' gym and a children's play area give a community feel, while CCTV and a 24-hour concierge will provide security. The flats have open-plan living/dining areas; kitchens with quality integrated appliances and ample storage and bathrooms and en-suites with Villeroy & Boch sanitaryware, Hansgrohe chrome fittings and large porcelain tiles. Ground-floor apartments in Albert Court have access to private patio areas, while many upper apartments have timber decked balconies.