Walking tall


With the London property market failing to hit target housing quotas, and sites suitable for newbuild development at a premium, some developers are looking to the skies. Stephen Penn spoke to Joe Griffin from London Penthouse to ­find out how their company is embracing the high-rise life.

The air is fresher, and the views are spectacular. Living in the skies o­ffers a level of prestige that just cannot be rivalled by a mid-level home.

London Penthouse, a company that takes Airspace development to another level, launched with a mission to o­ffer Luxury Penthouse Living to a wider community – a lifestyle previously known for just the rich and the famous.

The team at London Penthouse know just how valuable space in the city is and they’re breaking the mould; constructing luxurious properties on the top of existing buildings, but without the lo y price-tag normally associated with such an investment, and developing in areas where this sort of lifestyle would not be accessible otherwise.

“Across the UK, especially in keynote cities like London, it can be diffcult to secure land to build residential units on,” explains Joe Griffin, founder of London Penthouse. “It quickly became clear to us that ‘the only way is up.’ A number of international cities have proven that by facilitating rooftop development, homes can be delivered without increasing the burden on land and vital areas of open space can be retained.”

Joe established his company with the ethos to unlock a niche market where thousands of new residential homes can be created. “Having over 50 years combined experience in building hundreds of properties on the ground, it made sense for us to break into rooftop development.” Joe says.

“This is a concept which benefits all of those involved - the freeholder of the building who receives a premium for selling their roof which is an asset they may not have realised they had, the existing leaseholders - as we provide extra funding to overhaul the common parts of the whole building which adds market value to the existing properties within the building, ‑ e end user of the penthouse, and us as developers for fulfilling our passion for creating high end residential accommodation on every project.”

Further to this, London Penthouse o­ffers a hands-on approach to the build, as well as a quick build time. They also have the capacity to manage all projects in house.

Each freeholder, explains Joe, receives an upfront cash payment for the development rights to their roof space – all other associated costs with planning, purchase, legal fees and the development process are covered by the company with no costs at all having to be picked up by the freeholders or leaseholders.

Joe says: “Not only this, but building penthouses can save all residents money in the long-term, as there are more properties to split bills with such as service charges.”

Business for the recently launched company is clearly booming, with 15 penthouses completed across four developments to date, with a further 15 kicking off­ in early 2019 and 20 more in planning.

Adds Joe: “Some freeholders don’t realise that they can sell their airspace and we can develop the airspace to fully occupied buildings without people having to move out of their homes, with minimal disturbance. We aim to raise awareness of the concept to let people know they can make money by selling a part of their building that previously had no value at all (the roof). We’re excited about the scope of projects in the pipeline. We hope to provide many more Penthouse Living opportunities to the capital and further afield.”

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