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London set to become the games capital of the world as Mayor of London invests £1.2M in Games London

28 March 2018

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan today committed a further £1.2m to Games London in support of the capital’s burgeoning games industry. The funding from the Greater London Authority guarantees a three-year programme of events and activities – including the annual London Games Festival – committed to generating revenue, supporting businesses, creating jobs and boosting skills and training.

The global games industry is worth over £100 billion per annum and the UK is the 5th largest video games market in terms of consumer revenues. UK games sales in 2017 generated a record £3.35bn, increasing 9.6 per cent on the previous year, and there...

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UNITED KINGDOM | Croatian Worker Restrictions Being Lifted and New Fees for All Immigration and Nationality

27 March 2018

First, the current work authorization requirements for Croatian workers in the UK will be lifted on June 30. Second, UK Visas & Immigration (UKVI) has published a new fee schedule which comes into effect April 6.

Croatian Workers – When Croatia joined the EU in 2013, the UK and other member states were able to place restrictions on labour market access for Croatian nationals for five years with the option to extend for an additional two years. Since that time, Croatian nationals have needed permission to work in the UK. With the lifting of restrictions on June 30, Croatian nationals will...

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New home-building deals revealed by UK government

23 March 2018

Funding has been announced to underwrite new residential developments in the UK. The deal is aimed at decreasing house prices and aiding those looking to get on the UK property ladder.

The British government announced a £218 million deal on Wednesday to underwrite new housing developments in Oxfordshire and the West Country.

Residential properties and infrastructure receives funding

Ministers also revealed the allocations shortlist for £4.1 billion of Housing Infrastructure Fund cash with 44 short-listed bids “subject to further assessment”. The fund is predicted to support the delivery of more than 400,000 homes by paying for infrastructure projects including roads, schools and medical...

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MINIMUM ENERGY EFFICIENCY STANDARDS

22 March 2018

As from the 1st April 2018 there will be a requirement for any properties rented out in the private rented sector to normally have a minimum energy performance rating of E on an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC). The regulations will come into force for new lets and renewals of tenancies with effect from 1st April 2018 and for all existing tenancies on 1st April 2020. It will be unlawful to rent a property which breaches the requirement for a minimum E rating, unless there is an applicable exemption. A civil penalty of up to £4,000 will be imposed for breaches....

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An agreement has been reached between the UK and the EU to ensure workers rights during the Brexit transitional period, which has been set to end at the close of 2020.

20 March 2018

European Union workers arriving in the UK during the transition period after Brexit will enjoy the same settlement rights as those already living in Britain, it was announced in Brussels on Monday.

Full residency rights for EU citizens during transition

The UK government had been suggesting restricted rights for those arriving after Britain’s exit in March next year but now Brexit Secretary David Davis and Michel Barnier, the chief EU negotiator, have agreed that full residency rights will be granted.

It was also agreed that the transition period will run until the end of 2020, not until March 2021 as the British had...

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UK teacher wins global best teacher prize

19 March 2018

A teacher from north London has been announced as winner of a competition to find the world’s best teacher.

Andria Zafirakou, who teaches art and textiles in a Brent secondary school, has won a prize worth $1m (£720,000).

She has spoken of the hardship and overcrowded housing conditions facing many of her pupils.

But in accepting the prize, she called for more support for the “power of the arts” in school, particularly for the “poorest communities”.

First UK winner Mrs Zafirakou becomes the first UK winner of the Global Teacher Prize, beating teachers nominated from more than 170 countries.

The prize, launched in 2015 by an...

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These are the best places to live in London 2018

16 March 2018

Bermondsey has overtaken Peckham to top a prestigious list of the best places to live in London.

The south-east London district was revealed as the capital’s most desirable location by the Sunday Times Best Places to Live Guide 2018.

Clapton, Herne Hill and Richmond were also among a total of ten London locations named by the guide as the best places to live in the UK this year.

“Bermondsey’s ranking as the best place to live in London reflects the rise of an area that epitomises the modern urban good life,” writes the guide.

“Its residents are typically young, affluent and often reside in...

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London beats New York as top real estate investment destination for Norway's massive sovereign wealth fund

14 March 2018

London has overtaken New York as the top real estate investment spot for Norway’s massive $1 trillion (£715bn) sovereign wealth fund.

The fund, which is one of the biggest investors in the UK and co-owns Regent Street, bought almost £200m worth of London property last year in partnership with the Queen’s Crown Estate.

These included a 25 per cent stake 10 Piccadilly worth £32.3m, a 25 per cent stake in 263-269 Oxford Street and 1-4 Princes Street for £30m, and 25 per cent of 20 Air Street for £112.5m.

At the end of 2017, London accounted for 22.8 per cent of Norway’s Global...

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London tops ranking for Europe’s most attractive city for businesses

13 March 2018

London is Europe’s best city for business and employees for the second year in a row, according to a survey by Colliers International.

The capital beat Paris, Madrid and Moscow to top the rankings, with Birmingham coming in fifth place in the rankings.

The Colliers International report assessed cities based on availability of talent, economic output and productivity, alongside other factors. London came high on the rankings due to the quality of the people working in its services sector.

Other UK cities performed well in the index, with Edinburgh and Manchester coming in seventh and tenth place respectively.

However, Colliers International warned that despite...

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The four essential things a buyer must get from their seller before completing

12 March 2018

When buying a home, make sure you know what to expect from the seller during the buying process.

  1. WHAT IS AN EPC?

The seller must provide you with an Energy Performance Certificate — or EPC — free of charge.

The EPC is produced by an accredited domestic energy assessor and lasts 10 years.

  1. DUTY OF DISCLOSURE

The rule of “buyer beware” applies but the seller must not fraudulently conceal known defects or reply dishonestly to pre-contract enquiries.

  1. PROTOCOL FORMS

Your solicitor will have provided you with copies of the property information form, the fittings and contents form, and, if you are buying a leasehold property, with...

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Brexit is the property sector’s chance to spur real investment

09 March 2018

The plans the Prime Minister announced on Monday to reduce bureaucracy and increase the supply of housing are welcome.

Equally welcome is her preparedness to consider the situation of each industry sector when determining the UK’s post Brexit regulatory framework.

As we leave the EU, now more than ever the UK needs policies which attract investment to build the houses, offices, and industrial facilities we badly require to support economic growth.

The government needs to be bold if we are to ensure we remain Europe’s primary destination for property investment. Brexit should be the spur to cut transaction costs, reduce taxes, jettison constricting...

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Getting careers back on track after caring commitments

06 March 2018

Delivered a year after it was first pledged in the 2017 spring budget, the £1.5million fund will offer grants to projects that help people to return to work in the private sector.

The government envisages the fund could help returners update their skills, provide other training and support businesses to increase employment opportunities for returners.

New government funding for reskilling after career breaks

Launched in the same week as International Women’s Day, 8 March, the funding is part of the government’s wider strategy to build an evidence base on what measures could help to close the gender pay gap.

Commenting on the launch,...

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Theresa May has proposed changing planning rules to encourage house building and boost UK housing supplies

05 March 2018

Prime Minister Theresa May announced plans to kick start England’s moribund house-building market by rewriting planning laws to make it easier for developments to be built.

She also threatened action against developers who were “hoarding” land by getting planning permission and then not building houses and, instead, hanging on to the land until its value increased.

Moving house building forward

Mrs May said the cost of housing in parts of the UK, both for ownership and rent, was reinforcing economic divisions and leading to growing social immobility, with workers – particularly in the public sector – unable to take jobs in certain parts...

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Sammie Woodnutt attends the IMA 2018 in Bangkok this week

02 March 2018

Here’s our wonderful global mobility operations manager, Samantha Woodnutt at the #imabangkok2018 this week.

We are thoroughly enjoying our stay at the Bangkok Marriott Marquis Queen’s Park and thanks to everyone for making this conference possible! A big thanks to Patricia!

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