Foreign-Owned Uk Property

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 5:19 pm on 20th June 2013.

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Photo of Mark Prisk Mark Prisk The Minister for Housing 5:19 pm, 20th June 2013

I am going to try to answer the points raised by the Member who secured the debate, if I may.

A number of people have said—indeed, it has been mentioned in this debate—that perhaps the majority of homes owned by foreigners lie empty. We have looked at the evidence carefully and Jones Lang LaSalle says that the vast majority of international buyers—85%—let property once purchased. There is, therefore, a benefit in that homes built in response to that demand often—in 85% of cases—go on to be let.

The right hon. Member for Bermondsey and Old Southwark also asked whether wider research could be commissioned for London in particular and, having looked at his shopping list, I can see that he also wants some granularity. He will understand that this is a devolved matter in London, but I will certainly bring this issue to the Mayor’s attention to see what granularity is available beyond the conventions of the English housing survey and so on.