London

London MP in call to stop homes being sold overseas

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Media captionDevelopers are increasingly looking to Asia to market their properties

A London MP has criticised attempts by developers to sell homes in the capital to overseas buyers.

Liberal Democrat MP Simon Hughes is urging the government to introduce new rules forcing developers to sell homes in the capital first.

Last year 7,000 new-build properties were sold in London, with more than 5,000 sold to overseas buyers.

The government says it wants to focus on delivering affordable homes, rather than introduce further regulation.

Bermondsey and Old Southwark MP Mr Hughes said the housing market is "failing Londoners".

He said: "I resent the fact that when we have such a housing crisis in London, and so much unmet demand, that so many of our homes are being marketed abroad and sold abroad before Londoners have a chance."

His comments came as apartments in a new development in Elephant and Castle were advertised for sale in Asia.

The derelict Heygate Estate in Southwark is being redeveloped into 3,000 apartments.

The first 200 homes will be ready by 2015.

Yolande Barnes, from Savills Research, which analyses property trends, said property developers are increasingly selling blocks of flats overseas.

She said: "Developers are targeting overseas markets because overseas purchasers are willing to buy before a scheme is completed.

"That's really important for funding a scheme that might otherwise not be built."

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