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Mayor of London urges developers to put Londoners first

Mayor of London Boris Johnson is urging developers to sign up to a new concordat which will give Londoners priority in the housing market.Mr Johnson yesterday (March 11th) lobbied investors and developers at the international property forum MIPIM in Cannes to help him fulfil his pledge to double house building, as well as providing more affordable homes for Londoners and funding major regeneration projects around the capital.Key developers across the UK are being contacted by the mayor and being asked to commit to selling homes to Londoners before, or at the same time as, they are made available to overseas buyers.The Major Developer Group, London First, London Chamber of Commerce and the Home Builders Federation have pledged their support for the Concordat, which has already been signed by 50 big and small developers in London. However, the mayor is keen for all developers to give their backing to the plans.While Mr Johnson is keen to ensure Londoners are able to afford properties in their local boroughs and live in close proximity to their work, he does not wish to deter international investors, who have contributed to the economic success of the city.Baroness Jo Valentine, chief executive of London First, which represents many of the capital’s biggest developers, welcomed the Mayoral Concordat. "Overseas buyers are an important part of the London property market - many purchase off-plans, playing a critical role in helping house builders fund the early stages of development," she said. "But there needs to be a level playing field and people in the UK should not be prevented from accessing property that comes onto the market."She added that many developers have been keen to put their names to the document because they already give Londoners the same opportunity to purchase property as other prospective buyers.Bank of England governor Mark Carney yesterday said he had no control over soaring prices in the capital because many people purchasing homes in London are cash buyers and the bank's policy tools can have no effect on them. 

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