The ‘Evening Standard’ reveals;
“Buying a London mansion is beyond the wildest dreams of virtually all of us. But even if we did, maintaining one might prove a far heavier burden than we had bargained for.
The basic day-to-day running costs of a large home in central London — including heating bills, cleaning, security and insurance — total more than £250,000 a year, according to research published today.
A lifestyle to match the glossy home pushes the annual bill for mansion owners to over £500,000 a year — more than the average cost of a London home. The new estimates come as global demand for London’s most luxurious homes hits a new high.
Sales of London properties worth £10 million or more were up 69 per cent in the first half of the year, according to Mayfair agents Beauchamp Estates and specialist property researchers Dataloft. Buyers have included Formula One boss Bernie Ecclestone, who paid £45 million for a Kensington home for his daughter Tamara in 2011, and serial mansion collectors Roman Abramovich and girlfriend Dasha Zhukova who lavished £25 million on a Cheyne Walk ‘stop-gap’ property in the same year.
The average cost of a 10,000 sq ft London mansion — about six times the size of a typical family home — is now £26.9 million.
But buying the mansion, including an average stamp duty bill of £1.88 million, is just the start of the financial burdens. Water and energy bills — estimated at £2 per sq ft — would come to £20,000 a year. The cost of security piles on another £50,000. A £400-a-week cleaner and a live-in housekeeper would set you back £20,000 and £30,000 respectively, according to the report.
Insurance premiums, based on 0.25 per cent of property value, would come to £67,250, while general maintenance and service charges could add another £60,000.
Top-band council tax of £2,143 in Kensington & Chelsea would be one of the smaller burdens. A part-time gardener charging £500 a month lifts the total over the £250,000 mark.
The report suggests the cost of buying and running a large London house means even multi-million divorce settlements may not cover the desired lifestyle.
Gary Hersham, managing director of Beauchamp Estates, said: “In the recent divorce case of Scot and Michelle Young, Michelle was seeking £300 million, of which £25 million was to be spent on a Belgravia mansion.
“Based on our findings, a lump sum of £31.98 million would have provided her with enough to acquire a London mansion and related lifestyle for 10 years. In the end she got £20 million.”