London Olympics 2012 and a property legacy

As we move towards the opening ceremony for the 2016 Olympic Games in Brazil what better time to look back on the London Olympics in 2012 and see how property prices have performed. A number of reports in the past have suggested that events such as the football World Cup have limited impact upon property prices but is this really the case?

Were some of the less fortunate boroughs of London under the spotlight for a fleeting moment and then forgotten? Did the government of the day follow through with promised investment in the region? These are just some of the questions answered in a recent report covering the property legacy left by the 2012 London Olympic Games.

London boroughs in the spotlight

Of the six Olympic boroughs which took a more active part in the London 2012 games all have seen a significant increase in property prices between July 2012 and May 2016. It is worth remembering that some of these boroughs had been starved of investment and property prices were significantly below the average for the region. The six boroughs in question are Hackney, Newham, Barking and Dagenham, Greenwich, Tower Hamlets and Waltham Forest.

The average price rise over the last four years is a staggering 64% which is 11.2% higher than the average across the 32 boroughs of London. This is a significant performance when you bear in mind many of these boroughs were seen as un-investable just a short time ago.

Best performing boroughs

The best performing property markets were in Waltham Forest (an increase of 76.6%), Hackney (66.9%), Newham (62.6%), Tower Hamlets (60.6%), Barking and Dagenham (59.9%) and Greenwich (57.5%). Even the worst performing borough, in the shape of Greenwich, saw property prices increase by nearly 60% over the four-year period – which in anybody’s book is not a bad performance!

It seems as though the London 2012 Olympics acted as a large catalyst for significant investment in some of London’s more run down boroughs. The regeneration of the six boroughs we have highlighted above has changed the lives of many and changed local property markets forever. The initial inward investment drew in more employers with employees increasing demand for housing in the region. There will have been an increase in not only the number of purchases but also the number of individuals and families looking for rented accommodation. However, the end result is a significant increase in local wealth and improvements in local amenities.

Will we see a flood of investment into Brazil?

At this moment in time Brazil is under something of a cloud with an array of political scandals and an economy which is struggling. Indeed a number of journalists have highlighted the enormous difference in living standards between those in the slum cities and those in the higher echelons of the elite. It would be unfair to suggest that Brazilian governments have not made progress on helping those most in need but more work certainly needs to be done.

We can only hope that the Olympic Games will highlight the positives of investing and living in Brazil but much will depend upon internal investment by the government. It is easy to forget that Brazil is a leading light in Latin America having worked extremely hard to claw its way back from near bankruptcy just a few years ago.

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