LME Move and Cheap EPC Experts invests in new property services technology

Today market leading property services provider http://www.lmemove.com announced it’s investment in the latest real-time, interactive booking and messaging technology for it’s www.cheapepcexperts.co.uk website.Cheap EPC logo

Operations Director, Emma Stanley, said, ‘ We are thrilled to be able to offer clients the instant booking and messaging facility on Cheap EPC Experts. As the site interfaces with a mix of both landlords, letting agents and individual home owners we wanted to incorporate a technology that works for everyone’s needs.  This booking and messaging solution is powerful.’

The platform not only enables landlords, letting agents and home owners to instantly order gas safety certificates, electrical inspection condition reports, EPCs, RICS Home Buyer Reports and Surveys and other associated property services. Crucially it also empowers them to set their own time and date for LME Move contractors to attend. Landlords, letting agents and home owners also receive text/SMS and e-mail alerts at the time of booking and also a few hours before the appointment time.

Commenting on this specific aspect Emma continued, ‘This facility reduces no-shows and missed appointments and helps keep our clients up to date and on top of their lettings legal compliance in their busy lives. So far all of our customers love it.’

As a key feature of the technology the platform enables users to receive and send messages about their booking to the LME Move team, cancel or re-arrange their appointment times and request further guidance or help.

In closing LME Moves’ International Marketing Director said, ‘ Once we have trialed the technology for the supply of property services such as our Nottingham cheap EPCs on www.cheapepcexperts.co.uk we will be rolling the technology out to all of our other clients within our group of companies and trading sites. Our new build developers are particularly keen to start using it.’

For further information on the range of property services or platform please contact info@lmemove.com. To see the facility in action for ordering RICS Surveys, Gas Safety Certificates, Electrical Inspection Condition Reports and EPCs head over to www.cheapepcexperts.co.uk

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www.defymodels.com proud to support new home builders in reaching a whole new market

Today the premier European and UK based management company www.defymodels.com has announced that it is in talks with several new home developers to help them reach a brand new market of untapped consumers.defy-models-jpeg

Dedicated to championing wider representation of transgender/transsexual, intersex, gender queer and gender fluid individuals within mainstream media, www.defymodels.com is the first and only UK modelling management company to solely focus on representing differently gendered models and performers of all ethnicityages and body types.

Director of Scouting & Business Development for www.defymodels.com said,’We are thrilled to have been approached so early in our creation by these big name developers to help create their campaigns.

The fact that forward thinking developers are embracing our message about this poorly represented demographic with disposable income is refreshing. They truly understand both the social need and commercial value in featuring transgender and differently gendered people and their families.

We are proud to be instrumental in supplying our amazingly talented transgender models and actors to appear in future publications and media presentations. It is a long overdue win for both the models we represent and the transgender community as a whole.

As part of our advocacy we have ensured that our models will feature alongside traditional mainstream models within all of these developers’ marketing literature, advertisements and websites. We look forward to pushing our mainstream visibility mission forward, across all other industry sectors in 2017.’

www.defymodels.com was launched with a key goal of eliminating prejudice by increasing the visibility and positive representation of trans and differently gendered individuals throughout all sectors of mainstream media.

The company’s primary market is  European but will soon extend representation into Northern America and the Pacific Rim. The Defy Model Management Team has over 40 years experience of specifically championing transgender individuals. Interested developers can reach the team directly on:clients@defymodels.com or visit www.defymodels.com

Carrie’s Spanish Property Blog – Where would we invest a million euros in 2016?

View More: http://enroute.pass.us/lucasfoxWhere’s the hottest places to invest in Spain right now?

We think 2016 is going to be a very interesting year for the Spanish property market. The recovery is now well underway and gaining momentum, unemployment continues to fall and the economy is set to be the fastest growing of the “Big Four” euro economies over the next two years, according to the International Monetary Fund.

And, if you needed further convincing that 2016 is the year to invest in Spanish property, the OECD’s latest report on homes in Spain are currently undervalued by 26% makes for interesting reading:  www.telegraph.co.uk

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Hot tips

The average price for property sales at Lucas Fox during 2015 was around the 1 million Euro mark, and we expect that figure to be more or less the same during 2016. We thought it would be a useful exercise to ask our regional directors where they would spend the money. So if you are thinking of investing in a Spanish home in the next 12 months, take heed..

BarcelonaLucas Fox logo

“The so-called ‘Golden Square’ of Barcelona is a guaranteed location for property investment as it is highly sought after and located in the heart of the city centre.

Within this area, the prestigious main streets including Paseo de Gracia, Calle Balmes and Rambla Cataluña will never go out of fashion and currently still offer attractive prices, but they are beginning to gently increase since late 2014. We have some great New Development projects coming onto the market in and around these areas. I would purchase a couple of our apartments for sale on Calle Balmes 141 if I could. Ready-to-move-into and instant rental yield (5%)”

2– Karen Storms, Sales Manager Lucas Fox Barcelona

Beautiful renovated apartments in the heart of Barcelona’s Eixample district

Costa BravaCosta Brava LF

“I would invest 1 million Euros in a sea view property somewhere between Begur and Calella de Palafrugell. From an investment point of view, it is hard to go wrong. Prices have dropped by 30% – 40% over the past 8 years yet this beautiful stretch of coastline will always be in demand from wealthy local and international clients.

Furthermore there is very little new construction so supply will never outstrip demand.  There are plenty of re-sale properties on the market in prime locations with great sea views. Many require renovation so it’s worth keeping some budget aside to upgrade the property, personalise and add value”

3– Tom Maidment, Partner Lucas Fox Costa Brava

Charming south facing Costa Brava property to buy in Aiguablava with superb sea views

MaresmeBarcelona LF

“In today’s buyers market, if I had 1 million Euros to invest, I would focus on the one of the best locations of the Maresme Coast – Can Teixidó in Alella. This location is simply ideal, being conveniently located 15 miutes north of Barcelona city centre, a 5 minute drive to the new Hamelin-Laie International School and a short walk from El Masnou Marina.  The area offers fantastic Catalan and Spanish restaurants as well as pristine beaches, making this the perfect location to enjoy a “suburban” Mediterranean lifestyle!”

4– Rafael Rosendo, Director Lucas Fox Maresme

6-bedroom villa for sale, located in Can Teixido, Alella, a short distance from Hamelin-Laie International School and 15 minutes from Barcelona City

SitgesSiteges LF

“If I had 1 million Euros to spend in the Sitges area I think the best investment would be to buy a good plot of land somewhere close to town, with incredible sea views such as Vallpineda, Levantina, Montgavina or Can Girona.

Then I would build a beautiful contemporary home designed and styled to my own personal taste. Not only would you end up with the home of your dreams but it would also be a great investment as it would cost you almost half of what a similar finished build would cost!”

5– Rachel Haslam, Director Lucas Fox Sitges

Large plot of land with plans for a family home with great sea views in Vallpineda, Sitges

ValenciaValencia LF

“With 1 million Euros, I would purchase a renovated apartment within a Modernista building, located in the heart of the Pla del Remei, the most exclusive area in Valencia’s Eixample district and just steps from an iconic example of Valencian modernism, Colón Market.

It is one of the most sought after locations among foreign investors, whom quadrupled in number from 2011 to April 2014, elevating Valencia to 4th place nationally for foreign buyers. El Pla del Remei in particular, is ideal for those looking for a safe, good value long-term investment, and the exclusivity and tranquility that comes with living in the fashionable Eixample”

6– Juan Luis Herrero, Director Lucas Fox Valencia

Beautiful, bright apartment for sale, situated in a period building in the neighbourhood of El Pla del Remei in Valencia’s Eixample district

IbizaIbiza LF

“If I had 1 million Euros to invest in 2016, I would invest in an apartment somewhere along the ‘Golden Mile’ in Marina Botafoch, on the edge of Ibiza Town.

This strip is now THE summer destination and is heavily in demand with those who wish to rub shoulders with the world’s movers and shakers in renowned lavish establishments such as Lío, Heart, Cavalli, Cipriani, It and Pacha. Space is limited here and like Ibiza generally, prices are only going one way. Up!”

7– Jason Ham, Head of Business Development

Fantastic 3-bedroom duplex penthouse in Marina Botafoch, Ibiza Town, with stunning sea views

MadridMadrid lf

“With 1 million Euros, I would invest in a gem of an apartment to renovate in a classical building in Justicia, around Argensola and Plaza de Salesas. For this sum, you could buy a spacious property with plenty of character (200 – 225m2), situated in one of the most fashionable locations in the capital, next to boutiques and trendy restaurants, offering a superb lifestyle and future profit!”

8– Rod Jamieson, Director Lucas Fox Madrid

Luxury 4-bedroom apartment in the gorgeous area of Justicia, right in the centre of Madrid

Marbellamarbella lf

“If I had to choose a location in which to invest 1 million Euros, it would have to be Estepona Town along the beachfront – probably the fastest up-and-coming area on the Costa del Sol. It has been labeled ‘the most attractive town’ on the Costa del Sol thanks to the likes of its narrow cobblestone streets and typical white houses covered in colourful flowers. There are some 30 golf courses in the direct vicinity, a charming marina with a yacht club, restaurants, as well as a local fishing port. Malaga Airport, Marbella, Tarifa and Seville, Gibraltar (Airport) and even Africa can easily be reached from there”

9– Stephen Lahiri, Director Lucas Fox Marbella

Modern 3-bedroom villa close to the beach and amenities for sale off-plan in Estepona, 20 minutes from Puerto Banús

Carrie Frais is Head of Marketing & PR at Lucas Fox 

Do you have a question for Carrie? E-mail her here

Sign up for Spanish property updates from us here

 

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Buy or sell property sector businesses with LM Expert’s newest service launch

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LM Experts launches new property sector business sales and acquisitions service 

Following several months of consultancy and planning, January 2016 saw the unveiling of one of LM Experts newest service additions for property professionals.

The LM Experts property sector sales and acquisitions service is set to assist Directors of property related companies to locate opportunities to buy or sell Ltd Companies, business opportunities, property portfolios, client followings and associated property sector undertakings.4577380

Specialist property sector connections

Speaking at the launch in Rotherham last week LM Expert’s International Marketing Director said, ‘No matter what type of property professional you are; if you have properties or a business/client following that you are now seeking to expand or sell on you’ll want to talk to us. Our specialist service serves to utilise our deep industry connections to our clients’ maximum advantages. We can even put feelers out for clients seeking to start discussions with property professionals who may be in the market to invest or enter a merger.’

Every property sector catered for

The LM Experts sales and acquisition service gives direct access to LM Expert’s and LME Move’s large client base of nationwide landlords, investor clients, auction houses, letting and estate agents, IFAs and conveyancing solicitors. Crucially, the service brings all registered users alerts as to the latest business opportunities before they go out to mainstream markets or feature live on the ‘Acquire/Sell’ page of the LM Experts website and news portal.

Key benefits of the service:

  • No sale, no fee basis.
  • Confidential, NDA, assured service for buyers and sellers.
  • Optional facility to connect buyers/sellers with a choice of expert, commercial solicitors to assist/advise throughout transactions if required.
  • Business sales and acquisitions feature on LM Expert’s dedicated ‘Acquire/Sell’ website section and are also widely circulated to LM Expert’s registered list of genuine, interested property professionals via newsletters, Twitter feeds and partner websites.
  • Specialist market awareness/contacts maximises your chance of success, providing direct exposure to the exact target audience you seek.

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Prime opportunities to buy or sell property sector opportunities – be the first to know

Interested parties wishing to know more about the service or to advertise their interest in buying or selling a property related business should contact mark@lmexperts.co.uk in the strictest of confidence or complete the contact form on the main LM Experts website here

Read further information and view existing business sales and acquisition opportunities on the LM Experts Acquire/Sell page here

Further information about LM Experts and associated group of companies can be obtained from: mark@lmexperts.co.uk

 

LM Experts announces exclusive e-book, ‘How to survive the war on UK Buy-To-Let landlords

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Exclusive e-book: ‘How to survive the war on UK Buy-To-Let landlords’ coming soon from LM Experts

Today LM Experts announced that its exclusive e-book, ‘How to survive the war on UK Buy-To-Let landlords’ is scheduled to be made available for priority download to all registered LM Experts Executive Club members.

The insightful e-book and ‘must have’ insider guide pulls together expert views and survival tactics from some of the most well respected property and economic authorities around.  

Leading the way

International Marketing Director of LM Experts said, ‘We are excited and proud to announce our latest, forthcoming publication. Once again LM Experts, and associated Legal Marketing Experts group of companies, are paving the way in providing our landlords, property investors and letting agent clients with crucial support and information at the time when they need it most.’

The company has confirmed that the book will be made available to all property professionals but exclusive, priority access to download and access the information first will be given to LM Experts Executive Club members in advance of publication to a wider, general audience.

Free, Executive Club membership

Membership of the LM Experts Executive Club is totally free.34831551

Landlords, property investors, letting agents and other property professionals are now encouraged to register today to be the first to hear when the exclusive e-book, ‘ How to survive the war on UK Buy-To-Let landlords‘ is available to purchase and download.

Executive Club members also benefit from a wide range of marketing support deals and discounted property sector support services from group company www.lmemove.com including property compliance services, Right To Rent and Repair Reporting Apps, property maintenance packages and more. 

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Take steps to protect yourself

Protect your equity, learn how to safeguard your lifestyle and financial future and know where the property investment and economic markets may be headed next.

Join the LM Experts Executive Club here for free today, register your interest and receive access to the wide range of property support services and your exclusive LM Experts discount code entitling you to download the book first. 

Further information about LM Experts and associated group of companies can be obtained from: mark@lmexperts.co.uk

Coming soon – LME Move’s landlords’ Buy-To-Let mortgage & re-mortgage service

LME LogoLME Move to launch Buy-To-Let mortgage & re-mortgage assistance

Nationwide property services supplier and co-ordination hub LME Move has announced its intended collaboration with a well respected FCA authorised and regulated group of independent financial advisers and whole of market mortgage consultants earlier this week.

The agreement, when finalised later next month, will see LME Move become an appointed representative of the group and allow the company to introduce its landlord and property investor clients to obtain assistance and access to whole of market Buy-To-Let mortgages and re-mortgages deals.

Timing is everything

Commenting on the agreement LME Move’s Operations’ Director said, ‘With the ever increasing pressure on Buy-To-Let landlords from the recent swathe of rental sector reforms announced by George Osbourne many are considering the best course of action for their portfolios.

We have received numerous requests from our landlords and property investor clients for assistance with respect to mortgage and re-mortgage options.

When it comes to listening to and supporting our clients LME Move always goes one step further. Therefore we are pleased to announce this forthcoming agreement to provide yet another invaluable service for our landlord and property investor clients.’

Obtain assistance and be the first to know4504276

Interested landlords and property investors wishing to review their future or existing Buy-To-Let mortgage options can read more about the service on the LM Experts website here. They can also contact LME Move’s International Marketing Director directly via: mark@lmemove.com

Further information about LME Move’s full range of other nationwide property services for landlords, letting agents and property investors – including gas safety certificates, boiler services, electrical safety certificates, legionella risk assessments, smoke & CO alarms, RICs surveys, out of hours emergency property services and building, plumbing and electrical maintenance services can also be obtained from: mark@lmemove.com or by visiting www.lmemove.comLME Logo

 

Right To Rent App makes checks fair & simple for LME Move’s landlords & tenants alike

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LME Move clinches deal to bring innovative Right To Rent App to landlords and letting agents nationwide

Home Office LogoThe 1st of February 2016 marks a critical day for residential landlords throughout England. It is from this date onwards that all landlords will be legally responsible for checking that all new tenancies issued for their properties are only made to persons legally entitled to reside within England.

Failure to do so may result in offending landlords being hit by a £3,000 fine for every instance where an illegal tenant is found in-situ.

Legally required on all new tenancies across England as of 1st February 2016

The roll-out across England follows on from the pilot scheme trialled in the West Midlands during 2015. At the time the scheme brought controversial issues to light including worrying findings published in a report by the Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants, which found that landlords in the West Midlands were refusing lawful tenants as they became increasingly cautious about renting properties out to any tenant with identity documents with which they were not familiar.

As supporters of initiatives such as Leeds Empties and being one of the leading, ethically minded independent nationwide property services suppliers in the UK, www.lmemove.com was concerned to read about this outcome.  So much so that when LME Move started its own business planning for suitable Right To Rent solutions in late 2015 it made a concerted effort to ensure any such solution would not only make the checks quick and easy to do but also help reduce the chances of such adverse discriminating side-effects.

Cost effective, Home Office compliant, quick to use and multi-platform

Thankfully the search has borne fruit and LME Move has now sealed a deal with a cutting edge App developer to bring its quick and easy to use Right To Rent App to LME Move’s nationwide landlord and letting agent client base across England.

Speaking last week, LME Move’s Compliance Executive Sue Clear said, ‘We are thrilled to be working in collaboration with our App partners. We spent the best part of Autumn 2015 in talks with several providers to review potential Right To Rent solutions to bring to our clients.

What was important for us was:

  • cost effectiveness
  • accessibility via smartphone, tablet and PC
  • ease of use
  • ability to quickly scan and store time/date stamped evidence of document checks carried out to ensure our clients remain Home Office compliant.

However,  just as importantly the solution also had to possess the ability to quickly guide and support our clients – through a fast click, by click, process – to drill down the exact documents they should expect their specific tenants to be supplying to them out of the hundreds of various documents possible.’

6297298Simple and fair – the Right To Rent App that’s child’s play

The Right To Rent App is exactly that.

As Sue finished explaining, ‘The landlord or agent simply answers the step by step questions via the App about their specific tenants’ circumstances and the App guides the landlord or agent through the entire process and documentation in a matter of minutes.

It is our hope that not only will this help educate our landlord and agent clients as to the variety of documents but also help them avoid consciously or unconsciously erring on the side of caution and only issuing tenancies to tenants presenting more familiar, everyday documents.’

Prepare ahead of 1st February 2016 and find out more5292794

Interested landlords and agents searching for a Right To Rent solution can read more about the service on the LM Experts website here. They can also contact LME Move’s International Marketing Director directly for full product information, demonstration and pricing exclusive to LME Move via: mark@lmemove.com

Further information about LME Move’s full range of other nationwide property services for landlords, letting agents and property investors – including gas safety certificates, boiler services, electrical safety certificates, legionella risk assessments, smoke & CO alarms, RICs surveys, out of hours emergency property services and building, plumbing and electrical maintenance services can also be obtained from: mark@lmemove.com or by visiting www.lmemove.comLME Logo

Sue’s Rental Compliance Blog – January 2016 – Deregulation Dangers!

Sue Clear is Compliance Executive at www.lmemove.com

Sue Clear is Compliance Executive at http://www.lmemove.com

Landlords – do you know how to avoid falling foul of the Deregulation Act?

Happy New Year and welcome back to what I sense promises to be another full on year for the Lettings and wider property sector.

This month I thought I’d highlight several of the problems landlord’s can run into that are linked to the recently passed Deregulation Act, and how to best protect yourself from potential trouble ahead.

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Andy’s Auction Blog 18th January 2016 – Now’s the time to swerve the Stamp Duty hike

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Usually our first week of the New Year is a bit of a slow burner, with people taking their time to get back in the swing of things and start thinking about property again. From the moment we reopened on the 4th January, we have been inundated with frantic property buyers desperately trying to find their next purchase(s). We are receiving offers on houses within MINUTES of them going live on our website and our valuers can’t book them into the auction quickly enough.

So why the rush?

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Surrey’s property market is no Monkey business for Chinese buyers

Chinese new yearFebruary 8th marks the start of the new Chinese Year – The Year of the Monkey

  • Prime Surrey estate agent looks to the East as new buyers are attracted to Wentworth
  • New Chinese school coming to North Surrey

February is an important month for the Chinese. February 8th sees the start of the new Chinese Year – this year the naughty Monkey takes over from the staid Sheep.  The Chinese New Year also heralds the start of Golden Week in which many Chinese nationals take a week off, often overseas, to celebrate the start of their New Year.

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Sprinklers for converted and new Welsh homes affect landlords as of 1st January 2016

Welsh sprinklersA new law requiring that all new and converted homes in Wales be fitted with sprinklers has come into force, the first of its kind anywhere in the world.

CFOA Vice-President Dave Etheridge attended an event at the Welsh Senedd on January 12th to celebrate the introduction of the new law. The event was hosted by Ann Jones AM, who was one of the key drivers behind the campaign to see the legislation introduced.

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Affordability in the UK housing market has got worse and worse

Latest market view from not a yes mans economics

Embedded image permalinkYesterday I watched the UK Prime Minister David Cameron on BBC television as he made various claims about “affordable housing”.  The BBC itself summarised it thus.

“There should be both affordable housing for rent and to buy, Mr Cameron said, but “a shift towards more affordable housing to buy” was needed.

If this is to be the new government policy then it will represent an even larger U-Turn than the recent one on tax credits. This is because as I have covered frequently on here it has been government and Bank of England policy to drive house prices higher for quite some time now. Also along the way the Prime Minister contradicted the speech given by Chancellor George Osborne on Friday and which I analysed then.

I believe we are in the middle of a turnaround decade for Britain.

Mortgage terms are lengthening

This morning has seen a rather awkward development for the Prime Minister and it has been provided by research from the Halifax Building Society today which shows that mortgage terms are lengthening. From the Financial Times.

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Latest report from Kate Faulkner: Housing and Planning Bill: Good, bad and ugly!

Kate Faulkner

Kate Faulkner of Property Checklists

Latest report from Kate Faulkner: Housing and Planning Bill: Good, bad and ugly!

According to the government, the Housing & Planning Bill will “transform generation rent into generation buy”. Is there any truth to this claim? Well, I’ve taken a look at the impact this bill is really going to have – the good, bad and ugly bits!

So you can pretty quickly work out this isn’t something that intends to help tenants at all and, as such, also doesn’t help buy-to-let investors. But developers and first-time buyers can look forward to a steady run over the next few years.

And although more new builds being planned will help boost agents’ business, the likely loss of buy-to-let business and the continued expectation of a lack of stock for buyers and rents means they will continue to take the brunt of the government’s and local authorities’ lack of ability to provide enough homes for population of the UK.

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Could State Aid Law protect Buy-to-Let Landlords?

Stephen Daly Tax At Lincoln Ox

Stephen Daly of Tax at Lincoln Ox

The Guardian and The Telegraph have posted articles in the last week picking up the quandary of buy-to-let landlords. By a combination of changes in the summer budget and autumn statement, the previously lucrative venture whereby landlords would purchase property with the sole intention of renting has now been placed “in the red”. Landlords could previously claim tax relief on mortgage interest payments at the marginal rate, but from April 2017 to 2020, this will gradually be reduced to 20% (the ‘Clause 24’ change). “Wear and tear allowance” previously allowed landlords to deduct 10% from rental profits, but from April 2016 will only be granted for costs actually incurred. Meanwhile, George Osborne used the autumn statement to increase stamp duty on purchases of buy-to-let and second homes by 3%.

Landlords unsurprisingly are less than happy with the legislative changes. A group representing 250 landlords is seeking to launch a legal challenge by way of judicial review of the Finance (No. 2) Act 2015 enacting the ‘Clause 24’ change to mortgage relief (see: s. 24). As The Guardian reports, the group claims that the measure breaches Human Rights Law and EU Law, whilst The Telegraph reports the group as claiming that the move flouts “a long-established principle of taxation that expenses incurred wholly and exclusively for the purposes of the business are deductible when calculating the taxable profits”. It would seem from these statements that the claims pivot upon establishing that the new legislation breaches either Article 1, Protocol 1 of the European Convention on Human Rights (‘A1P1’), some common law right or EU State Aid Law. These are my rough guesses based upon very rough information. Although the former two will have little prospect of success in the courts, the latter EU Law point could well have some bite. This will be used as a springboard for a more general discussion about the development of EU State Aid Law

Excerpt kindly shared by Stephen Daly of taxatlincolnox. Read the full article

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Document warned Government before storms that homes at risk of flooding will double

Many of Britain’s flood defences are being abandoned or maintained to minimal levels because of government cuts that could leave almost twice as many households at “significant risk” within 20 years, according to a leaked document submitted to ministers.

The paper, written by the body representing all major organisations responsible for flood defences, was presented to ministers on 30 November last year – days before Cumbria was hit by the heaviest rainfall recorded in 24 hours in Britain.

It was then discussed by floods minister Rory Stewart and Oliver Letwin, the cabinet office minister leading the government’s flooding review.

The leaked document says: “We have had the five wettest years since 2000. TheEnvironment Agency’s funding for maintaining flood assets has fallen by 14%. Downward adjustments have also been made to intended revenue spending commitments.”

Excerpt of full article kindly shared by The Guardian. Read the full article.

Help to Buy helps more than 60,000 people onto the property ladder

Help To Buy LogoThe Help to Buy: Equity Loan scheme helped more than 60,000 people onto the property ladder in Q3 2015, according to the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG). Showing an annual increase of 4%, 81% of the purchases were made by first-time buyers, with 50,969 being first properties. Andy Frankish, NewHomes director at Mortgage Advice Bureau, said the scheme continues to reach its target audience of first-time buyers and commented on the new dedicated Help to Buy scheme for first-time buyers London.
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Merry Christmas from all at LM Experts – thought for the season

19180209Food for thought at the end of 2015…

With so much happening throughout 2015 that will affect landlords and the letting industry as a whole we think that this excerpt below, shared by leicsguaranteedrent and penned by Carolyn Uphill (Chairman of the NLA), is very apt food for thought.

Perhaps a good time to pause and reflect at the close of 2015…

“Welcome to our last newsletter of 2015

After the assaults on Buy to Let landlords in the Budget and Autumn Statement it would seem that the politicians have forgotten what we landlords know, which is that this Christmas millions of individuals and families alike will celebrate in warm, safe homes because an entrepreneurial person has chosen to invest their money to provide a roof over someone-else’s head.

So I wish you and your loved ones a happy and peaceful Christmas, safe in the knowledge that you have done some good, as well as, as prosperous a New Year as the new tax regime will allow!”

From all of us at LM Experts – we truly wish you all a safe and happy festive time and look forward to continuing to support you with breaking news, offers and marketing opportunities in 2016.

Merry Christmas!

Original copy kindly shared by Carolyn Uphill, Chairman of the NLA

Original excerpt kindly shared by leicsguaranteedrent

Landlord tax grab? Possible Judicial Review re legality of Clause 24 Finance Act 2015?

Researchers from a landlord tax campaign group, who joined forces via the Property118 online forum, believe they have located the source documents behind the discriminatory taxation policies targeting private landlords which are being implemented by Chancellor George Osborne.

The landlord tax grab, which will make the housing crisis worse, was proposed by David Kingman, a non-economist, in a deeply flawed report which he wrote in 2013, the year he left university with a degree in – Geography!

In the Summer Budget the Chancellor (a graduate in History) implemented a recommendation that was in a report from the Intergenerational Foundation, written by David Kingman.

Download the full report produced by David Kingman HERE

Excerpt kindly shared by Property118. Read the full article here

Why should you rent to DSS tenants?

Why should you rent to DSS tenants?

Make Ur Move LogoWith the rising number of people claiming benefits, there is a great demand for rental properties within the private sector. However, there are not many landlords prepared to consider DSS tenants, even if it means their properties will remain empty for another month(s) to come.

While there are concerns, which are stopping some landlords from letting to benefit claiming tenants, there are also advantages, for those landlords who are willing to put stereotypes aside.

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Lead Galaxy has launched the first ever student property investment comparison portal

Lead Galaxy has launched the first ever student property investment comparison portal.

Dedicated to the booming student housing sector, www.StudentProperty.Investments allows investors to search and compare dozens of student accommodation investment opportunities.

The site’s stripped down interface makes it easy to locate the newest and best opportunities in the sector. An innovative smart table allows investors to find and compare Student Property Portalproperties by yield, terms, buyback or starting prices. Results can quickly be filtered before making an enquiry about multiple listings with a single click. The intuitive, responsive design means that the site is available on the go on any mobile device, offering the most specialised information to the widest possible audience of international investors.

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Growing numbers of young professionals demand luxury city-centre living in Liverpool

Strand-Plaza-Liverpool-dining-1400x600Knight Frank’s latest Prime Country View report highlighted the rise of urban prime in the UK over the past decade. According to the report, prime property values in town and city markets have jumped 26% since 2005, compared to just 7% for rural properties. Whilst rural homes languish at 13% below their 2007 peak, prime city residences have now exceeded their former peak by 3%.
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Buy Genuine Luxury Swiss Watches - Huge Discounts from Heritage Watches

Feliz Navidad: Have yourself a sunny little Spanish Christmas!

  • 71% of festive holidaymakers are aged 51+ (Holiday Hypermarket)

  • Spanish house prices up 6.6% in a year (Spanish Registrars’ Association)

  • Average Christmas temperature in Spain of 12°C in December, with just 5 days of rain (Holiday Weather)

Feliz Navidad

There are many reasons to own a second home in Spain and at this time of year, with the weather closing in in the UK, one of the most tantalising Spanish draws is undoubtedly the weather. According to Holiday Weather, the Costa Blanca enjoys an average temperature of 12°C during December, with an average of just five rainy days in December, compared to an average of 17 days for the festive period in London.

But the weather isn’t the only reason that second home buyers look to Spain over the winter months, as Marc Pritchard, Sales and Marketing Director for leading Spanish homebuilder Taylor Wimpey España, explains…

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ONS latest house price index published

House Price Index, October 2015 coverage:

UK release date: 15 December 2015

Main findings

• UK house prices increased by 7.0% in the year to October 2015, up from 6.1% in the year to September 2015.

• House price annual inflation was 7.4% in England, 1.0% in Wales, 0.9% in Scotland and 10.3% in Northern Ireland.

• Annual house price increases in England were driven by an annual increase in the East (10.4%) and the South East (9.5%).

• Excluding London and the South East, UK house prices increased by 5.6% in the 12 months to October 2015.

• On a seasonally adjusted basis, average house prices increased by 0.8% between September and October 2015.

• In October 2015, prices paid by first-time buyers were 5.9% higher on average than in October 2014.

• For owner-occupiers (existing owners), prices increased by 7.4% for the same period.

• Average mix-adjusted house prices in October 2015 reached £300,000 in England and stood at £174,000 in Wales, £196,000 in Scotland and £158,000 in Northern Ireland

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3% surcharge on Scottish Land & Building Transaction Tax for second homes & buy-to-let

John Swinney announces move to match Chancellor George Osbourne

Scottish Saltire
In yesterday’s Budget, John Swinney, finance minister for Scotland, matched the move made by Chancellor George Osborne in his Autumn Statement and introduced a 3% surcharge on Land and Building Transaction Tax (LBTT, Scotland’s equivalent to stamp duty) for purchases of second homes and buy-to-let property.

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Bank of England could rein in the Buy To Let market

26814615The Bank’s governor, Mark Carney, said he was concerned about high levels of lending to landlords and that the Bank would take action. “There are a number of things happening … we are watching it closely and we will take action,” he told the FT. Mr Carney said the problem was that investors might sell their properties at the same time if house prices fell.

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Why war on Buy To Let market will make the housing crisis worse

The last six months have felt like a sustained assault on the very foundations of the buy-to-let market.

1671h0044Landlords sighed with relief at the Conservative victory in the General Election in May. Faced with the threat of rent controls from the Labour Party, they had looked forward to a government that accepted the importance of the rental market, and supported its development while properly targeting the crooks renting out sub-standard accommodation.
But these last six months have felt like a sustained assault on the very foundations of the buy-to-let market.

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Purple Bricks shares are now on the market

Purplebricks starts trading on London’s junior market under the ticker PURP.L.

Purple Bricks For Sale BoardShares are currently trading down on the AIM market, at 96.5p, down six per cent from an opening price of 104.5p. The 240m ordinary shares were placed at 100p each, with proceeds of £25m and giving the company a market cap of £240.3m.

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UK house prices to rise by 50 per cent, while rents will increase by more than 25 per cent

By 2025 the average UK house price will be £419,000.

Just when you thought the housing market couldn’t get hotter: the average London house price is set to reach £931,000 by 2025. UK house prices are set to rise by 50 per cent, while rents will increase by more than 25 per cent by 2025, according to the Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA) and National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA) joint housing 2025 report.

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Inflation is bubbling away in UK house prices

UK house price index is 18.7% higher than the pre-economic downturn peak of 200834831551

These are the two words which must not be mentioned along the lines of the rules of Fight Club in UK inflation measurement. We get to see why just by observing the numbers they provide.

On a seasonally adjusted basis, average house prices increased by 0.8% between September and October 2015……UK house prices increased by 7.0% in the year to October 2015, up from 6.1% in the year to September 2015.

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Don’t get burnt when buying, selling or inheriting property in Spain

A story about saving money and trouble when leaving or receiving an inheritance in Spain

Mr. Rainyday and Mr. Blueskies were catching up over a beer in Barcelona on a sunny Friday morning. Mr. Rainyday had barely taken a sip of his beer before he was on his pet topic — complaining about Spain, his and Mr. Blueskies’ adopted home as of a few years ago.

rainyday-negative

‘This time it’s dad’s flat in Andalucía. It’s over a year and a half since his funeral, and I’ve only just got it transferred to my name. Plus, it’s cost me a fortune. There’s no way it’d be such a hassle back home. It’s a total scam!’

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Carrie’s Spanish property blog – British buyers on the rise – December 2015

View More: http://enroute.pass.us/lucasfoxFeeling positive

We’re ending 2015 on an upbeat note with the news that sales of Spanish homes to both overseas and local buyers have risen significantly compared to 2014. Latest figures from both Lucas Fox’s in-house data and Colegio de Registradores www.registradores.org show a substantial increase in the number of transactions to Spanish and foreign investors, particularly by the British.

The Spanish economy is also at its healthiest for several years, growing at 3.4% from July to September 2014, the fastest annual rate since 2008.

British buyers on the rise

Our sales data – which primarily focuses on high end properties – indicate that the number of transactions by British buyers increased by a massive 26% across all our regions over the last 12 months, with Barcelona, Ibiza and the Costa Brava the areas most in demand.

Figures also show that the average purchase price by British buyers went down from 998,000 Euros in November 2014 to 847,000 Euros in November 2015 – a period when property prices were stabilizing.

New properties and high quality refurbished homes seem to be currently in most demand, with new developments in prime areas selling off-plan very fast and, in most cases, close to asking price.Lucas Fox Demand by nationality

Local demand also on the rise

Significantly, local demand is also on the rise. Sales at Lucas Fox to national buyers went up by 50% from November 2014 to November 2015. Our latest market reports http://www.lucasfox.com/updfiles/publications/market-reports-q1-q2-2015.pdf  also show that prices in Spain’s three key cities – Madrid, Barcelona and Valencia – are now slowly beginning to increase.

In all of these locations the improving market conditions are being driven by increasing levels of confidence amongst national buyers, something that is crucial for the market’s long term recovery. In almost all our markets, this renewed confidence, a strong economy and the Spanish banks’ willingness to offer competitive mortgages has brought new investors into the market and we are now seeing international buyers competing against local buyers to secure the best properties in the most desirable locations

Spanish mortgage rates close to zero

Recent Q3 data from the Spanish Property Registrars also indicate a rise in sales by national buyers – up by 16% to more than 80 thousand compared to the same period last year. It also showed that foreign sales were up by 20% to 12,535 during this 3-month period. Significantly, sales of homes to UK buyers more than doubled – up by 53% in the third quarter of 2015 over the same period in 2014, thanks to a unique combination of factors:

Lucas Fox Euribor evolutionThe last time the pound was above at 1.4  euros was in 2007 and it has been consistently so during 2015. According to Euribor, mortgage interest rates in Spain fell close to zero in November, representing yet another historic low. Euribor (the rate used to calculate most mortgage repayments in across Spain) fell month-on-month by 38% in November to 0.079 and by 76% year-on-year. Like house prices, mortgage rates have declined over the years and are now hovering far below their 2008 peak of 5.393%.

Our partners at Mortgage Direct mortgagedirectsl.com think that we are in for a prolonged period of low rates in the Eurozone. The economic climate is still very poor in many of the countries that make up the zone. They believe we may see small increments in the rate, once rates increase in other countries, such as the UK and the USA, but the circumstances are very different in the Eurozone and even in the UK and USA they are talking about prolonged periods of low rates.

Property registrars also showed that prices across Spain increased by 6.6% year on year in the third quarter of 2015 and 2.2% quarter on quarter, but compared to prices in other major European property investment hotspots, Spain continues to remain an extremely attractive option.

Roll on 2016!

Carrie Frais is Head of Marketing & PR at Lucas Fox 

Do you have a question for Carrie? E-mail her here

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Sue’s Compliance Blog December 2015 – £3000 fine? Ready for Right To Rent?

Avoid a £3000 fine.

Are you ready for Right To Rent?

Sue Clear

It’s been a busy time for landlords of late – new laws, regulations, tax changes coming out of the woodwork left, right and centre. It’s no wonder many smaller landlords wonder whether the Government has the knives out for them! That said, change happens and like all new things most of the fear comes from the unknown.

Once you know exactly what is involved you can set about getting on with business.

This month I’m focusing on the looming Right To Rent checks that from the 1st February 2016 ALL landlords (or letting agents acting on their behalf) are required to make on ALL tenants commencing a new rental contract.

So what is Right To Rent and what do you need to know / do?

About Right To RentGov. Logo

The view of many landlords is that Right To Rent is effectively the Government’s way of discharging some of its duties to check the legal immigration status of people within the UK. It is illegal to rent property to any person(s) who is/are not legally entitled to remain within the UK.

As of 1st February 2016, Right To Rent makes it a legal requirement that landlords or their agents must carry out a range of checks that a tenant or lodger can legally rent a residential property within the UK. Landlords who fail to do so (or ensure their letting agent has done so) can be fined up to £3000 if they rent their property to someone who isn’t allowed to stay in the UK.

A useful checking tool to walk you through the steps can be found here.

When?

So when must you carry out Right To Rent checks? The guidance states that these must take place within 28 days before the start of a new tenancy. Landlords must make checks for:

  • all adult tenants (aged 18 and over)
  • all types of tenancy agreements, written or oral

That said, tenants in some types of accommodation (such as social housing and care homes) won’t need to be checked. You can find the full guidance here

All landlords in England will have to make checks from 1 February 2016.

How do you make checks?

To remain within the law and avoid a potential £3000 fine landlords or letting agents acting on their behalf must:

  1. Check which adults will live at the rental property as their only or main home.
  2. See the original documents that allow the tenant to live in the UK.
  3. Check that the documents are genuine and belong to the tenant, with the tenant present.
  4. Make and keep copies of the documents and record the date you made the check.

Landlords can be fined up to £3,000 for renting a property to someone who isn’t allowed to stay in the UK.

With regards to checking the original documents, with the tenant(s) present. The Government has issued guidance stating that it will be acceptable to check via Skype or some other type of video link if a tenant is not able to attend a face to face meeting with the landlord or agents.

The full landlord’s guide to checking and list of all documents that are acceptable to comply with the Right To Rent checks can be found here.

How do you check that the property is used as the tenant’s only or main home?

Under the guidance, a property will usually be classed as a tenant’s only or main home if:

Check their original documents

The law is clear that landlords or their agents need to check that:

  • the documents are originals and belong to the tenant
  • the dates for the tenants’ right to stay in the UK haven’t expired
  • the photos on the documents look like the tenant
  • the dates of birth are the same in all documents (and are believable)
  • the documents aren’t too damaged or don’t look like they’ve been changed
  • if any names are different on documents, there are supporting documents to show why, eg marriage certificate or divorce decree

If the tenant is arranging their tenancy from overseas, landlords or their agents must see their original documents before they start living at the property.

You can read the full guidance on illegal immigrants and private rented accommodation here.

Make a copy of the documents

When landlords or agents copy the documents you must:

  • make a copy that can’t be changed, eg a photocopy
  • for passports, copy every page with the expiry date or applicant’s details (eg nationality, date of birth and photograph), including endorsements, eg a work visa or Certificate of Entitlement to the right of abode in the UK
  • copy both sides of biometric residence permits
  • make a complete copy of all other documents
  • record the date you made the copy

It’s vital that you keep copies of the tenant’s documents for the time they’re your tenants and for one year after. This allows you to evidence that you have discharged your duties fully under the new law.

Remember – make sure you follow data protection law to ensure that you are storing tenant’s data securely. Full guidance can be found here.

Additional checks

You must make a further check on a tenant if their permission to stay in the UK is time limited. Landlords or their agents can receive a fine (also known as a civil penalty) if they don’t do this.

You must make a further check either:

  • just before the expiry date of your tenant’s right to stay in the UK
  • within 12 months of your previous check

You won’t have to make a further check if your tenant doesn’t have any restrictions on their right to stay in the UK.

If your tenant doesn’t pass a further check

If you find that your tenant does not pass the original or subsequent checks then you must tell the Home Office. You might receive a civil penalty if you don’t if you find out that your tenant no longer has the right to rent or stay in the UK.

Landlords and agents can choose to evict tenants who do not have the right to remain in the UK if they want to. You must follow the rules for evicting tenants.

Where lodgers are concerned – you can choose to end your tenancy agreement with them. How much notice you give your lodger will depend on which type of tenancy they have with you.

Agents

The legal duty for carrying out Right To Rent checks rests with landlords. However, landlords can ask any agents that manage or let their property to carry out the check for them. If you are opting for this route then you should ensure that you have this agreement in writing. Letting agents are also advised to ensure that they have covered this understanding and agreement in writing to carry out the checks on a landlord’s behalf. Letting agents should carry out all of the steps above, including retaining copies of the documentation checked.

Sub-letting

This is a contentious issue. The Deregulation Act made it easier for tenants to sub-let a rental property. Technically, under Right To Rent if a tenant sub-lets the property without you knowing, then they are responsible for carrying out checks on any sub-tenants. Under this scenario they will then be liable for any civil penalties if they don’t carry out the checks correctly.

Phew…so as you can see, Right To Rent certainly adds a fair bit of extra administration work to the mix for landlords and agents. This is in addition to the new compliance laws introduced 1st October 2015 in England and Wales and 1st December 2015 in Scotland regarding the fitting of CO alarms – see my November blog post here. However as a responsible landlord or letting agent, with a little bit of careful forward planning now Right To Rent needn’t be a nightmare.

To help our clients further, LME Move is able to assist landlords and agents with the delivery of a Right To Rent administrative facility to ease the pain. Feel free to contact myself or one of our team if you’d like further information / advice.

Wishing you all a peaceful festive season and until 2016!

Sue

Sue Clear is Property Compliance Executive at LME Move.

Got a question for Sue or need further Right To Rent advice?

Get in touch with Sue and her colleagues here

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Andy’s Auction Blog – 7th December 2015

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Getting your skates on if you’ve been planning to buy at Auction

As the countdown to Christmas begins, and 2016 comes hurtling towards us, I, for one, can’t help but look back on this year and reflect on the great plans I had….but never quite got round to!

Like the gym I was going to join….

We all start a new year full of good intentions, motivated and with fire in our bellies about the goals we’ve got. If buying an investment property in 2015 was top of your list, chances are you attended your first auction to get a feel for how it all works. Perhaps you attended your first investment property seminar or bought and read the self-help book? So far, so good. Then, all of a sudden, its summer holidays, the kids are back to school, and it’s almost Christmas again. Where did the year go?

If you’re one of those people whose plan was to invest in a buy-to-let or investment property, but didn’t actually take the plunge, then now, more than ever, is the time to act. Walk the talk, pull your socks up, or better still, get your skates on now and buy before the newly announced Stamp Duty changes* hit hard in April 2016. If you buy at our next auction on 8th December, or, at a pinch our auction on 3rd February 2016, you could still complete on your purchase in time to avoid the proposed 3% surcharge on buy-to-let and second home purchases.

Think of it like this – the money you save by purchasing before the April 2016 deadline could cover the cost of a new kitchen or bathroom for your new property!

And don’t worry if it all sounds too quick to organise – that’s where I come in. I can guide you through the whole process, including arranging the finance, and make all the necessary arrangements for you to buy at auction. And, all being well, beat the Stamp Duty deadline.

Ten minutes before writing this blog, a client of mine, Mr Kamran, exchanged contracts on a property pre-auction. His week, running up to today, went like this:

DAY 1 First meeting with myself and our finance specialist, Rachel Carlin
DAY 2 Mortgage Approval in Principle received from Lender
DAY 3 Mortgage Valuation instructed
DAY 4 Mortgage Valuation conducted
DAY 5 Valuation Report received
DAY 6 Full Mortgage offer received and contracts exchanged

And Mr Kamran is not a seasoned property dealer – in fact, this is the first house he has ever bought. After reading my last blog, he gave me a call for a chat about buying at auction and, with his decisive approach and my help, backed up by the Edward Mellor network, Mr Kamran has bought himself a great property – in the space of a week – and he couldn’t be happier about it!

Here’s what he has to say about the experience:

“Having missed out on a couple of properties with local estate agents, I decided to look into auctions. After reading Andy’s blog that mentioned the success of a recent First Time Buyer at auction, I arranged to meet him to see if he could help me too.

Andy was great and talked me through the whole buying process and even though I was eager to buy the property as soon as possible, he made sure that I had everything in order first and didn’t take unnecessary risks. He also put me in touch with Rachel who is the Financial Advisor working with Edward Mellor Auctions. She arranged my mortgage really quickly, knowing that I was in a rush.

Having someone with Andy’s knowledge on hand everyday makes a huge difference and the whole process from meeting him to exchanging contracts (including getting a full mortgage offer) took less than a week. I can’t wait to get the keys now!

I would wholeheartedly recommend Andy and the team at Edward Mellor if you’re looking to buy property from auction.”

So, “get your skates on” and end the year on a high by buying at Auction on 8th December, or “get your ducks in a row” (see my last blog) for our next one on 3rd February and start 2016 with a bang (of the gavel!).

Andy Thompson is Auction Consultant at Edward Mellor 

0161 443 4740 / 07530 704234

Do you have a question for Andy? Why not e-mail him here.

 

Ben’s home staging blog – December 2015

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Empty properties lack soul…and salesBen Bambrough

This month I focus on the increasing popularity of home staging and more specifically how it can benefit developers, agents and investors.

There is not one property in the world that would not benefit from home staging. It is only now a realisation because this fact has been proven, simply by the reflection of the sales and marketing information we have coupled with the increasing popularity in home staging.

What do your empty properties say to buyers?

Empty properties not only lack soul, but they cannot define the space that a lived in property clearly illustrates. In the course of my work my number one objective is to visually sell the lifestyle that property can offer to a potential buyer.

Be it a sprawling penthouse apartment with the ultimate wow factor party room, the classic, warm family townhouse or the conveniently located two bed pied-de-terre, my job doesn’t change, it is to enhance and sell what a property is physically offering and we cross all boundaries. Essentially, a buyer is walking into their potential home and we help them to envisage themselves their lifestyle by creating that dream home. When they walk into a staged home, they see the way the property can work for them. An empty property is cold to view and more importantly, it resonates with echo sounds that don’t help your average buyer with visualising the home that they aspire to live in.

Seduction sells

A person’s home is pretty much their largest asset and purchase, so it’s vitally important to give the property every bit of opportunity to seduce the buyer into making the massive decision to pay for it. People are becoming more and more informed to the agents’ illustrations. With today’s online exposure to pictures and floor plans etc, it is even more important to present good visual images of what you are selling.

Twenty years ago, people walked into an estate agent and asked to go on a huge amount of viewings because the buyer couldn’t see much of what was available. Today, buyers do a lot of the legwork and preliminary research online before telling agents the properties they want to see. Viewings are critical, the potential buyer has already discounted a large amount of properties via a process of elimination online. If your property looks cold and empty online then you will already be doing your property a dis-service in its potential.

Variation for different markets

London encapsulates a diverse spectrum of property owners, which then has direct consequences on the wide ranges of architecture and styles from your very super-cool Notting Hill to the luxury tastes of those in the classic properties in the Bayswater areas. There is of course more space to work with in a penthouse suite compared to a smaller apartment, which targets two very different demographics. With this in mind, it’s better to have a few marketing suites that show the different finishes and options available to appeal to different markets with varying price points.

It’s therefore best to concurrently furnish a one or two bedroom apartment and a penthouse suite. We have just completed an apartment building with twelve flats where we initially furnished one marketing suite. It sold along with three or four others and as the people who had bought the marketing suite wanted to move in, we furnished the new marketing suite. The remaining sold leaving one apartment on the market and we moved out. Consequently, weeks passed and it remained on the market so we have just been called back in to stage the apartment. Had we originally furnished it, it would have almost certainly sold.

The choice of styles very much depends on the architecture of a building. Other developers who are selling a lot of space on plan will have a variation on schemes, it’s like selling the extras on a car and they can sell up with a choice of kitchen finishes, flooring and bathroom suites. With this in mind, it’s better to have two marketing suites that show the different finishes and options available.

Ben Bambrough is MD at London’s leading home stagers and property experts, bB Design House  

0845 680 1033

Do you have a question for Ben? Why not e-mail him here.

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Adam’s Sales & Rental Blog – December 2015

Negotiating Skills

leaders

Autumn Statement Thoughts

A healthy private rental sector is absolutely essential to the housing market, for those who either cannot or do not wish to buy. The plan in the Autumn statement to increase stamp duty by 3 per cent on the purchase of buy-to-let properties announced is disappointing, given the importance of privately rented property to this county’s housing needs, however I do not foresee it having a substantial impact.

Existing Landlords

Existing landlords will be unaffected and new investment will be considered alongside the returns available elsewhere.  With pension contributions heavily restricted, many will continue to invest in property. The lettings market will continue to see strong demand and if supply is further constrained, rents will rise, yields will increase, and investors will view 3 per cent extra stamp duty as insignificant.

Opportunities Abound For Investor’s Who Act Quickly

Since the stamp duty levy will not take effect until 1st April, it is likely we will see a rush of investors buying before then. Anyone who has been considering buying or selling an investment property must see this change as an opportunity to act quickly to complete their transaction before 1st April. Sales of leasehold properties can take an average of 12 to 16 weeks to complete from offer so it is possible, if the process begins now, to complete a transaction in time to save thousands of pounds.

Location, Location, Location

Buying the right property in the right location will be crucial to success, as will correctly calculating rental yields, tax liability and profitability. It is now more important than ever to consult a knowledgeable expert to make the right decisions at every stage.  It is imperative to give landlords expert guidance to help them meet the challenges they face and get the most from their investment property or portfolio, now and in the long-term.

If you are unsure of your options or require further information / guidance I will be delighted to assist.

Feel free to contact Adam Kingswood on 0115 926 4500 or adamkingswood@leaders.co.uk

You can also follow Adam on Twitter: @AdamKingswood

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Housing market shows no sign of slowing down into winter months

Ryder & Dutton

October was the fifth successive month in which there were more than 1000,000 residential property transactions, according to HMRC property transactions; a sign that the housing market shows no sign of slowing down as we enter the winter months.

Keys - door

Brian Murphy, head of lending at Mortgage Advice Bureau, said “demand from potential buyers remains high, with many taking advantage of the excellently priced mortgage rates available on the market”.

“Affordability has also benefited from an improving economic outlook, with low inflation and rising wages helping to offset house price rises, which have been more moderate compared to last year. The outlook is certainly positive for those who meet lenders’ criteria.”

Mortgage Advice Bureau.

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It’s a Hat Trick for Churchill Retirement Living

Churchill Award

Retirement housebuilder, Churchill Retirement Living is celebrating three major awards wins for the business.

The developer has been crowned ‘Most Outstanding Retirement Operator’ at the UK Over 50s Housing Awards. These awards recognise excellence within the retirement industry and the award is particularly special as it’s the seventh consecutive year Churchill has won.

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The year the world moved to Berlin!

Berlin25 years ago, the world watched in wonder as the first pieces of the Berlin wall came down and the broken city began a long healing process to make it whole once more. Now, no longer content to view this vibrant city from afar, it seems the world has decided to move to Berlin!

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10 years on, the overseas property market resets itself

  • PIdeal Homesortuguese property prices due to rise 5% p.a. for next 5 years (RICS/Ci)
  • Florida property values up 8.2% over past year (Zillow)
  • Portugal, Spain and Florida are hot picks for 2016 (Ideal Homes International)

Over the past decade, the landscape of the overseas property market has changed vastly. Property entrepreneur and Founding Director of Ideal Homes Portugal and Ideal Homes International Chris White has been selling property through the good times and the bad. After a turbulent 10 years, he believes the overseas property market has finally reset itself – and that now is the time to look to the future.

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Scottish landlords/agents – have you installed carbon monoxide (CO) alarms ready for 1st December 2015?

New guidance requiring private landlords in Scotland to install carbon monoxide (CO) alarms in all relevant rental properties will come into force on 1st December 2015.

Following the Housing (Scotland) Act (2014), which states that all private rental properties must contain “satisfactory provision for giving warning if carbon monoxide is present in a concentration that is hazardous to health”, the Private Rental Housing Panel has produced guidance that all landlords in Scotland will be required to follow from December this year.

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Brits face little choice when buying property

Homes Go fastThe total stock of property for sale falls in the UK is at an all time low putting severe pressure on prices that seem determined to spiral upwards. The average annual home price appreciation for England and Wales rises further to 7.3%, driven by lack of supply.

For those trying to get on the ladder it could be worthwhile to consider buying property overseas and use this as a base to move onto the UK property ladder.

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Kate Faulkner of Property Checklists view on the Autumn Statement

Kate Faulkner

Kate Faulkner of Property Checklists

The economy
Strong economic forecasts over the next five years for the country of growth between 2.3% and 2.5% are expected and are being driven in a healthy way via business investment and a growth in exports, not just consumer spending.

It’s estimated another one million jobs will be created over the next five years and even more good news is that job growth is already reaching areas outside of London such as the Midlands (3x rate of elsewhere) and the Northern Powerhouse, spreading the wealth across the country.

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Tessa Shepperson – why all the legal changes in the private rented sector?

Landlord LawNew legislation is a welcome attempt to deal with problems that have been affecting the private rented sector for years, but does it go far enough, asks Tessa Shepperson of Landlord Law.

After years of being told that the government had no intention of introducing further regulations, 
the private rented sector has been hit by 
a succession of legislative changes, with 
more on the way. Why is this?

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