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About King_Nick

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    Property investor, developer.
  1. @RandomBear. Agree with this, I am seeing this alot in prime areas of London (Knightsbridge, Kensington etc), Estate agents have been listing property either bang on its market value or very close to, normally being bullish they'll price it up hoping it will stick but in most cases the offer will be withing 5-10% of the asking price. Of course in the current market, its a bit of a scam still, because there is no stock on the market, they're attracting lots of bits and people are competing I saw a four bedder go last week listed at £975k for over £1m. So they're still getting their fees paid, its just a good sales technique to get people to sign up.
  2. Sorry to hear that. Don't get too disillusioned, its January, which is slow at the best of times and the SE as mentioned has a real problem with supply at the moment, at least to estate agents anyway WIll very probably start to pick up again mid to late February and into Spring.
  3. You'll essentially be a landlord with a rental income from investments, yes you're liable to pay tax on these and capital gains if you sell. You need to get advice from an account/tax specialist on your particular situation. If its through a sole trader you'll still have to pay 40% if you go over the threshold if you want to draw out the funds personally. However, there is a plus side, which is that you can offset your costs against your income. You can put in all your investments, interest from finance, professional fees, your own time, your travel expenses and then you only pay taxes on the balance which you draw out as an income. Best to get professional advice rather than asking in a forum.
  4. Have you looked on mouseprice.co.uk and nethouseprice and tried to see what other properties in the street / area of similar size are selling for? Despite what the estate agents are saying you can get bargains I do it for a living but the vendor needs to be motivated to do so, which normally means they need to move quickly for some reason or another and your advantage is your not in a chain. If they're in no hurry to move and want to wait to the right offer, then you'll need to be fairly close to what they're looking for. Having an idea of what other properties are actually selling for can help you be realistic about this. There is nothing wrong with your making offers that are a bit under the market value, just be polite with the agent and then leave it out there and carry on your search. If they don't get any better offers they may come back to you. I guess the main thing is no one in any deal wants to feel like they're loosing out. As the cliche goes, the best deals are win/win. So of course no seller is going to want to sell a property for less than they paid and invested in it. So focus on the fact you're a first time buyer expecting a baby and talk about the budgets you have available which is more likely to be viewed with sympathy from the vendor and agent. If they feel that you have more money to spend but just looking for a bargain at their expense, then I guess you could understand why they'd be less interested in taking a hair cut on their property price. The trouble at the moment in most areas of the SE and London which works against you is a shortage of supply and increased demand, especially in the first time buyer market who have found access to funds harder to come by so there is pent up demand. Lots of people 'desperate' to get on the ladder, which makes it more of a sellers market. One thing to note: when an estate agent says 'the seller wont entertain an offer', request they make the offer anyway, they have no right to withhold an offer from the vendor, often times estate agents will do this motivated by their own commission which is a percentage of the selling price, let the vendor reject your offer not the EA. They're a thick skinned bunch, don't worry about hurting his/her feelings, just insure you're very polite and respectful in the way you deal with them. The worse that can happen is your offer is rejected.
  5. One other things, if you can try to get the exact size in square foot of this and like properties for sale or recently sold, then you can work out price per square foot averages. This is the most accurate way to work out 'market value', this will also help you work out a rough idea of how much extra an extension value might add for example. Say for arguments sake the other property that sold for £480k was 1,500 square feet, then you can work out the price per square foot at £320. If you added a roof extension which gave you a whole new floor adding 500 square feet. That is potentially £160k added to the value of the property.
  6. £420k? + £60K renovations makes the full market value of the full market value of another sale, that would make sense how they've come to list it at that price, personally I think a property that needs renovation should be going for less than that. Try to find out exactly what the vendors situation is, if with agents they'll be reluctant to say but ask anyway, be indirect if you need too. Find out if you can if they have had any other offers? If not, why not? If so, why did they fall through? How long has it been on the market? If its on with more than one agent, ring them both up and make inquiries and compare stories. You can also use websites like mouseprice.co.uk, nethouseprices.co.uk and home.co.uk to see how long the adverts have been online for. propertysnake.co.uk will also tell you if its been reduced online. The more info you have on that property the more angles you'll see to aid negotiating. If the vendors are distressed that gives you more power to negotiate, EVERYONE is looking for a quick sale, no one wants to get caught up in a long drawn out transaction, but some people are more desperate than others. Generally refereed to as motivated sellers. I.e. they could be in financial trouble, going through or recently divorced, have made an offer on another house and now in a chain unable to move until they can sell the current house (among other things). If they are motivated and they want to sell quickly, and you're in a position to move quickly that gives you power to offer a lower price as the value you bring is speed and a serious offer. Get on http://www.mouseprice.com/ (or similar if you haven't already) and try to get as many prices of the properties on the street as possible so you can get a real feel for the value, you may want to find similar properties in the surrounding area too. Who gave you the price for refurb, agents? General rule of thumb in my book is never take anything said to you from someone who is trying to sell something to you at face value without checking it (ESPECIALLY ESTATE AGENTS). As already mentioned, get a full surveyor report to see if its structurally sound, this is an increased cost upfront, but could save you in the long run and find out what needs to be done exactly. Then it is worth getting quotes from builders/professionals on costs so you know the true amount of money you need to invest ontop of purchase price, stamp duty and other fees/costs. I also agree about loft conversion, this will add value to the end product by increasing the square footage, the other thing to consider is a roof terrace (if you can get planning). If you were buying this as an investors, you'd want to be getting this for a price that including renovation work and costs you'd still make a profit. So if you can work out the total costs involved and you know what the conservative full market value is from other recent sales, then you can work back to the kind of price you want to pay. Hope that helps and good luck.
  7. Hey, Probably a bit late for you now. I rented before Christmas and looked in Barbican, Old Street and a few places around Docklands including PP. I also work as a property investors, so have done due diligence on PP before too for a client. The additional things like the gym and pool etc are easy to blag more money from renters, but you still might be better looking else where and working out the cost of paying for a gym is more or less. Its not free, the owners of properties pay for it in high service charges. I haven't done extensive work but my basic findings were lots of buy to let investors bought in that block, many off plan and the market values in November were often times lower than some of them paid off plan, we were offered a one bed £40k less than the guy had bought it for off plan, ouch, not a wise investment for him. And during the months I was looking for a rental (October to December) which were defined by very low stock levels in sales and rentals, that particular block always had flats for rent. Meaning there is potentially an over supply of flats. If landlords have had their property on the market for any length of time they're loosing money. Voids of rent are damaging for investors, so you should negotiate hard lower rent is better than no rent and covering their on mortgage and costs. Particularly in low seasons like December and January, these can be the best times to negotiate on rents as landlords don't want to get stuck over the holidays with no tenants. I got a one bed flat in EC2 for 375 from asking price of 410pw. 1 bed, 800sf with an office. The letting agent swore blind I wouldn't' get a flat let alone negotiate so I was quite chuffed to get a fully refurbished flat in a prime location for a fair amount under asking. I'd normally expect to offer £25-50pw less than its offered at, but this depends on how wel it was priced in the first place and the level of demand/competition, I got gazumped on a few properties in the Barbican centre, one of which went for over asking at about 430pw. In terms of finding out how much other people pay I don't think you can. Obviously with house sales you can check land registry but with rentals its more difficult I don't think its listed anywhere. I just monitored the market as much as I could bare for a while and you get a feeling. Befriends some letting agents too and after a while they'll tell you how much things went for. A 1 bed in a central location or a prime area of docklands is always going to be £350-450+pw. I haven't been inside PP but my thoughts were that the flash covered up that the apartments were generally small, they use 'marketing' tricks like using small furniture to make it feel more spacious but they're actualy cramped and the other 'benefits' are a bit of a diversion. I'd look at other areas in Docklands were you'll get much more space and value than those apartments. Also check out: http://www.mouseprice.com (search for rental adds, also shows you how many days on the market). http://www.nethouseprices.com/index.php?con=Search-Homes-To-Let http://www.home.co.uk/ (this often has the length of time properties have been on the market for gives you an idea of properties where the llord maybe eager to get a tenant). Hope you found something.
  8. Hi All, First post on these forums and I thought I'd dive straight in. I was actually searching for info on buy to let investments +2010 +Stratford and came up with a indexed post from 2006 in this very forum and I thought why not come in and have a chat. A friend of mine has bought property in East London, very close to the Olympic Village area, her investment strategy is a little simplistic for my liking and she only has one option which is capital growth because she bought at near to market value and the rental yield is low or zero after costs.The property is a two bed which is already refurbished, so no option to add value and sell. Recenlty over dinner as politley as possible I tried to let her know there was various potential pitfalls to her strategy, in fact the real truth is I see it as more of a gamble than an investment in her case. For my money I'd always want some yeild in an investment, even if its long term captical growth where the real value lies. Especially in this area, and here is why. My worry is that many pro/amatuer investor have speculated on this area, all the ingredient for long term capital growth are there I grant you. Massive investment in infrastructure, biggest park in Europe, sporting facilities etc, with all the long term benefits which come with it, buying property and waiting for capital growth in the long term can't go wrong. Its a logical argument. Here is what I suspect is likely to happen and I'm interested to hear others opinions: The Olympic Village will provide 17,000 beds for athletes and officials during the Olympic Games and 7,500 in the Paralympic Games. After 2012, it will leave the legacy of up to 3,500 new homes, many of which will be affordable, with the new communities supported by new parks, open space, community facilities and transport links. Source: london2012.com. I have personally seen large blocks recently built on Wick Lane where there is due to be a footbridge into the village, so there are now two large blocks on that street with several around the back of Hackney Wick, a couple of these are laying empty at the moment and not being offered for sale. Across the A12 on Tredgar Road, is another large estate of flats. And three other blocks being build as I type. Go south Down the A12 to the round a bout towards Startford and you'll find another recently completed block. From the round a bout up the high street to Stratford, there are loads of blocks completed and being build. Further down again by Bromley By Bow there are also blocks complete and in the process of being built. I have not been further East to the other side, so I am not sure if there is further residential developments that side but without finding the stats, its clear there are thousands of new homes/flats that have been built in the area over the past few years and in production now. If you search the renting ads you'll find there have been rooms for rent in these blocks almost constantly for months, giving a strong signal that many are owned by buy to let landlords (BTLL). Plus I am sure that many BTLL have bought up conversions and older housing in the area too. So with the release of all the Olympic residential developments, the new builds and existing property in the area which has been snapped up as investments there is literally going to be thousands of properties avaliable for rent in the area. I find it hard to imagine how this will not mean that after 2012 there is going to be a big over supply of rental accommodation onto the market, meaning downward pressure on rental yields and potential for BTLL to have property that is either making a loss over their costs or worse still void for months on end. Amateur investors who do not have sufficient yeilds to cover reduced rents, have not put money away to cover potential losses or can't cover them from other incomes maybe forced to sell, meaning they'll be increased supply of property for sale too. I would be surprised to think that demand will match supply in the short to medium term. Be interested to hear your thoughts on this? Cheers, Nick
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