Horacio LeDon Real Estate, the boutique private real estate brokerage based in New York City, has opened a new office across the pond.
LeDon, the firm founder, has teamed up with former coworker May Wong to open a small office at 17 Elm Park Mansions on Park Walk in London’s Chelsea neighborhood. Wong, who is originally from London, is a partner in the business and will oversee the office when LeDon isn’t there.
When LeDon spoke with TRD, he had just returned from a globe-trotting business development expedition that took him to Russia, Kazakhstan and Abu Dhabi. During his travels, he said, many of the potential clients he met mentioned that they were interested in securing both New York City and London properties, he said.
High prices and rising taxes in the United Kingdom made the time seem right for a London office, he added: In March, the country’s “stamp duty,” a type of closing fee associated with property sales in the United Kingdom, was raised from 5 percent of the cost of a home over £2 million to 7 percent, causing some buyers to look for properties elsewhere.
The office’s primary function is to help LeDon do deals back home, he said, as buyers from Europe, the Middle East and Africa look to buy in New York City after being priced out of London. But he also hopes to sell some London pads to his preexisting international client base.
New York City prices “just really haven’t caught up with Hong Kong or Central London,” LeDon said, citing the recent sale of a penthouse at 1 Hyde Park in London for $220 million. “So when you hear about One57 — this seems cheap to some people.”