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BarryM

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About BarryM

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  1. Gotcha! April Fool! I thought this was a bit of a give away.... ......she dismisses their skepticism with practiced confidence, honed through over a decade's experience of reading the London property press; “Recent advances in antibiotics means landlords' reservations about carpets in baths and loos are no longer supported by the facts”. "
  2. Latest trend in today - tenants want bathroom carpets. Industry experts advise Landlords to fit bathroom carpets - link here
  3. If you decide to rent a property you'll find landlords are being realistic about prices. I posted asking prices vs acheived prices for Notting Hill lettings for March, I hope you find it useful. To mis-quote Douglas Adams, asking an estate agent about the prospects for the property market is like asking a tea bag to predict the profit and loss account for PG Tips. So for my money, whether to sell or not depends on whether the security of being debt free is greater than the perceived risk in being priced out of the market in future. Given the growing uncertainties in the wider UK economy I know what I would do (and actually did, albeit in 2007).
  4. What I can't understand is why housing benefit is being paid out at levels that would make anyone renting and earning under 100K pa struggle. We receive several enquiries a day from couples with 350 pw / sharers with 450 pw/ and small families with 750 pw - all on HB.
  5. Once again I'm posting asking vs acheived prices for January 2009 (exc sat 31 jan). South Kensington Chelsea Lettings Brook Green & Fulham Lettings Continuing a trend that started over 12 months ago, smaller, relatively affordable properties are most in demand. Whilst there is some turnover in higher price ranges it is still patchy.
  6. http://www.chardblog.co.uk/2009/01/london-...tting-hill.html
  7. Asking prices vs acheived prices in Notting Hill/Kensington January 2009 to date (26/Jan 09) - link here source: Chard London Lettings
  8. My experience as a London estate agent now sorting out HIPs and EPCs the government kindly bestowed upon the market, any news of this government NOT intervening is likely to be good news. Or at least better than the alternative.
  9. If you have a property that you want to let to HB then PM me. I will pass your contact details to his company. They manage properties on behalf of LLs and pay a net rent to the LL. They then negotiate with the LA to house people in them. I can only imagine that with the coming increase in HB demands that budgets will have to be slashed. Sadly its people that have recently lost their jobs and were actually paying for this government profligacy that will be penalised.
  10. As a company we don't deal with HB applicants. The client I was referring to has a substantial portfolio of BTL property. We take care of the "posh stuff" (his words), he deals with the "sh/t" (his words again lol). From what he has told me there is no catch. Just find a nice big family with lots of kids and get busy with the paperwork. If you can't speak english it's OK, as the local authority have nice people to help you with that too. I think you might need about 8 kids or so to get the full 2k. Of course most investment bankers couldn't afford that many kids...... I'm meeting him over Christmas. Will let you know more!
  11. I agree, it's unsustainable and insulting to people in work and business paying tax and working 50+ hours a week to stay afloat. The top end of the corporate market is always vulnerable in a major downturn. We used to let a 4/5 bed family house in Kensington at circa 650-750 in mid 1990s. Today we get 1600+ pw on it. On vacate likely scenario is a longish void before the LL gets lucky or takes sharers at 800-1000pw. Decent double bedrooms for sharers make just over 200 pw at the moment.
  12. Sorry, no. It was 4000 pw. It's now under 1500. Landlords are getting more realistic. But there are scarcely more tenants looking to pay 1500 than 4000. I posted some observations on this a week or two ago. London Rental Market in Recession?
  13. Very little turnover for sales at those prices. Vendors at this level can afford to sit it out, and the market is not that price sensitive. We agreed just under 7m of sales last week (fri to fri) - the best for a couple of months now. Pre christmas rush maybe? Where vendors price to sell they are selling. This may be 25% off what they had expected. Lettings is still our main business. The trend to downsize is among bankers with money. Rents in Shepherds Bush are incredibly price sensitive. We have dozens registering for small studios at sub 220 pw and almost no stock at that level. Very few applicants with more to spend, and if they can they move to Notting Hill and South Ken/ Belgravia which remain busy. My personal view is local authorities need to reappraise housing benefit levels. Property to rent in these peripheral areas is otherwise likely to be affordable to those on benefits only. I spoke with a client last week, he's also a large social LL in West London. He's getting over 800 pw on family houses to HB claimants. You can't get that now from an expat family where the breadwinner is CEO of a 500 + employee UK sunsidiary!
  14. In a perverse way I'm starting to hope that it's Labour that win the next election. We seem to be so far down a one way street that the decisions that need to be made will be forced upon government. Government may exist only to ensure that lid is kept on civil society. My feeling is that no party will want to win it - as the decisions they are going to have to make may make them unelectable for decades. Am I wrong in thinking that govt spending on Wefare, Pensions, NHS, Education will need to be decimated (or even halved?) to start to balance the books? Will the minimum wage need to be abandoned?
  15. ^ Spot on S Ken is banker flatland and the majority of applicants here are bankers (approx 60% of these deals are bankers / hedge fund). They are going smaller - no longer looking for the bling pad, just a decent, well located one. That generally means a one bed flat. The price chipping on the one beds is normal in December and turnover is at least on par, especially with paucity, to date at least, of vacates. Tenants are choosing to stay put, and landlords are usually listening to our advice on price reductions to reflect current market value. BTW It's clear that the mid to higher end of the market is seriously over valued., we agreed a price reduction on a waterside flat in Fulham from an unrealistic 4000 pw to something under 1500 last week.
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