Peter Bill

Peter Bill

Peter Bill is a former property editor, journalist, columnist for the Evening Standard from 2007-15 and author of Planet Property. You can follow him on Twitter @peterproperty

  • Simon Clarke shutterstock_2199379329 Clicksbox PW160922

    New minister faces a hard road


    It feels like a time for reflection. I’ll draw a curtain over my gauche joke when confronted by the Queen as she visited the RICS headquarters in 1999 to celebrate the centenary of its George Street home. Let’s stick to political thoughts, given that a new administration is finding its ...

  • Google Palace

    Mighty monument to passing era


    In late May, it took half an hour to half-circle the unfinished 330m-long Google Plex at King’s Cross, including stops to gawk and wonder if this skinny, 11-storey landscraper will one day become an object of Ozymandian curiosity. Maybe a stop on the tourist trail?

  • PIC A View from garden terrace

    South Bank showdown


    Last month, Michael Gove deployed his Section 31 powers again – this time to stop the demolition of the ITV Studios on the South Bank. His actions have threatened to chill relations with the property industry and heated up the debate on what counts as carbon-saving development. Peter Bill reports

  • Offices_credit_shutterstock_Eleanor McMillan_1663884736

    Offices: abandon hope values


    Abandon hope value, all ye who seek to double or treble the size of your office block.

  • Michael Gove

    Beware of Mike the Merciless


    Mike the Merciless has been in action again. Last month, Michael Gove stun-gunned housebuilders into shelling out for cladding repairs.

  • Gove-shutterstock_1819409918-(2)-ITS-PW220422

    Time to un-trap blighted blocks


    It may seem churlish to ask Michael Gove to execute two further initiatives in favour of leaseholders trapped in blighted blocks. After all, look below at what the housing secretary has accomplished this month.

  • Sadiq in a hat 2016

    Sadiq Khan must open door to builders


    London mayor Sadiq Khan would rather sup with the devil than a developer, even though the latter might be able to help with a looming political liability: namely broken promises on affordable housing delivery.

  • planning 1

    Pinch from planning registers


    A tip for smaller landlords facing the forbidding prospect of spending £200/sq ft rejuvenating elderly office blocks in order to merit mandatory Energy Performance Rating ‘B’ by 2030.

  • Slide rule and documents

    Looking forward has more value


    Duodecimals allowed the ‘taker off’ to calculate area by multiplying feet and inches by feet and inches, measured by ivory scale rule off paper plans.

  • RICS flags

    RICS calls for primary valuation mechanism to shift off DCF method


    A RICS report has called for the ‘primary mechanism’ for valuing real estate to shift from estimating the ‘exchange price’ to values based on future income calculated using discounted cashflow (DCF).

  • Male business team

    Airing tricky questions on gender


    Last week a male principal at a public sector user of property services publicly admonished an agent for fielding an all-male team when pitching for work.

  • Michael Gove

    Planet Property is turning green


    The age-old development model rests on the bedrock of being able to build back better – and the bigger the better. But this assumption is being undermined by climate change concerns, amplified by COP26 this month.

  • single column pic from peter bill

    Time to peer into Pandora’s box


    Do you recall the Pandora Papers? A box opened on 3 October to reveal the names of those who owned at least 1,500 UK properties worth £4bn.

  • Harry Hyams

    A look back at the life of Centre Point's Harry Hyams


    Peter Bill reappraises the life of Centre Point’s Harry Hyams, a man more interested in collecting than developing. Those who knew the real Harry talk of the man once vilified as ‘the Howard Hughes of Property’.


    Three items of AOB for the RICS


    There are three items of ‘any other business’ before the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors fully embarks on Agenda for Change 2.0.

  • RICS flags

    Levitt’ll set RICS change agenda


    Five members of the RICS Governing Council (GC) are absorbing a 400-page report by Alison Levitt QC on the circumstances surrounding the sacking of four members of the institution’s management board in November 2019. This steering group will issue directions to the ruling body’s other 21 members.

  • Alconbury Peter Bill col

    From cold war to homes front


    Urban & Civic intends to double in size over the next five years. In January, the master-developer, founded by Nigel Hugill and Robin Butler in 2009, was bought for £506m by the Wellcome Trust. Peter Pereira Gray runs the trust’s £32bn portfolio, which gained 12.9% in value last year.

  • House of Fraser Fremlin Walk

    Bringing some sunshine into retail


    A Pharmacy2U vaccination centre popped up last week in a former Laura Ashley store in the Fremlin Walk shopping centre in Maidstone. The signage is pop-up, not permanent. But some feel an injection of outpatient treatment centres into shopping centres could inoculate some stores against death by Amazon.

  • Housing estate being built

    Planning Bill won’t change a thing


    To start, a diatribe on the dogma endangering the Planning Bill proposed in the Queen’s Speech last week.

  • Climate change

    Marketing won’t save the planet


    George Orwell said: “The slovenliness of our language makes it easier for us to have foolish thoughts.” Yes, and for others to read them. Everyone in real estate treats everyone else in the game as foolish, at least when it comes to trumpeting projects.

More by Peter Bill