UK Build to Rent

BPF pledges longer tenancies and higher market supply for Build to Rent

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The British Property Federation (BPF) has pledged to improve the rental market through the UK Build to Rent sector, which has the potential to become the major player in the sector over the next few years. In a move which housing minister Gavin Barwell has called “great news”, the BPF said it will make more homes available, as well as longer periods of tenancy. Drafted in line with the targets that were set out as part of the government’s latest white paper on housing, the pledge from the BPF and 20 major parties with an interest in the UK Build to Rent sector says it will “demonstrate the sector’s commitment to providing three-year tenancies and working with government to ensure the sector can play its part in rolling back 20 years of housing undersupply”. Two of the major benefits that will come from the pledge will include longer tenancies. This is something that the rental market will welcome in general, as it offers better security in the long term.     Now that people are more open to living in rental homes for longer periods, as opposed to simply seeing them as a stop gap until they can afford to buy, longer tenancies are preferable, because they allow people to see their rented property as a home. It’s something that has been on the cards for some time in rented homes, but a pledge from an organisation such as the BPF should help to make this a reality by normalising longer tenancies.   Ian Fletcher, the BPF’s director of real estate policy, said: “The Build-to-Rent sector welcomes the government’s multi-tenure ambitions for the housing market, as outlined in the recent Housing White Paper, and this pledge underlines one of the many benefits of the sector to government and the sector’s […]

More investors looking to offset tax changes by purchasing as 'company landlords'

More investors looking to offset tax changes by purchasing as ‘company landlords’

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Over the last couple of years, investors in the UK’s private rented sector have faced change after change in terms of the hoops they have to jump through in buying and maintaining stock. Time and again, the government has moved the goalposts for investors in rental property, adding higher taxes for purchasing and removing some of the benefits that come with being a buyer. However, the strength of the market means that landlords have not simply opted to back away from the thriving rented sector, and are instead continuing to look for new ways to invest that can save them money. One of the most popular tactics in this regard involves becoming a company landlord where investors register themselves as a limited company before buying. It’s a strategy that allows buyers to make their operation more tax efficient, and it has been increasing in popularity for some time. And although there were no savings to be made in last year’s Stamp Duty shake up, it’s believed that owners can save on the mortgage tax relief rules change that came into effect on April 6th 2017. This caused a swell in investment from buyers registered as limited companies in the early part of the year, and according to the latest report from Countrywide, as of the end of Quarter One of this year, 20 per cent of the homes to rent in the UK are now owned by company landlords as opposed to traditional individuals. It means that the volume of owners of UK rental property who purchased through a limited company has jumped to its highest level since records began in 2010, while the four per cent rise recorded in the first three months of this year represents the fastest climb experienced in the UK since it first started growing in […]

Buy to Rent

Regions overtake London in Build to Rent construction

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The number of Build to Rent homes under construction across the UK’s regions is nearly double that to London, says research from the British Property Federation (BPF). The sector – featuring purpose-built, professionally managed rented homes – is currently experiencing a boost in activity across the UK, with Manchester and Salford collectively home to the most new rented homes under construction outside of London. According to the BPF, this shows the first evidence of momentum for the Build to Rent sector outside the capital, which recently received proposed recognition in the National Planning Policy Framework, set out in the government’s Housing White Paper. The BPF said that the real estate industry has welcomed the government support, which, it added, should ensure that local authorities can better prepare for Build to Rent in their local plans. Although the regions are performing well, the research has shown that London continues to see the strongest long-term figures, with 38,648 Build to Rent homes either complete, under construction or in planning, compared to 31,176 in the regions. Investors driving the sector have found that achieving scale is a significant challenge, said the BPF. Its research has revealed that although there is room for real improvement, Build to Rent developments are typically increasing in size. The BPF added that a total of 24 developments currently in planning are set to deliver more than 500 new rented homes each, compared to completed developments, which, up until now, have mostly delivered under 100 homes each. Ian Fletcher, director of real estate policy at the BPF, said: “While the government now better recognises that we need a housing sector firing on all cylinders across the UK, our data is a timely reminder of Build to Rent’s contribution to solving the housing crisis. “This research will further professionalise the […]

Rental increases

How will tax changes affect the rental market in 2017?

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What will buy to let tax changes mean for landlords and renters? This year, the rental market in the UK is set to undergo yet another change, when in April, the government introduces its new rules on income tax relief, but how will it affect those buying in the UK, and do new statistics show a worrying lack of knowledge within the sector? The new changes set to affect investors in the rental market will largely centre around income tax. Essentially, those who own rental properties will no longer be able to deduct mortgage interest from their taxable income before submitting returns. It’s a move which may make it more expensive for those who own rental homes, with experts speculating that this could cause a negative effect in the sector, with a greater number of landlords raising rents to compensate. Read advice on the buy to let tax changes from 10 industry experts. Read more…  But how badly will buy to let landlords be affected? According to a newly published property investor survey from Mortgages for Business, around a third believe they will be affected under the new rules. Some 60 per cent believe that income tax rule changes will punish them and affect their income, while 29 per cent said that they do not believe they will suffer. One of the big questions, however, at the moment, is just how much do investors actually know about these changes? And is there still a problem in the sector with regards to knowledge about such new rules? The Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) recently published a study that suggests this is not the case. Despite the fact that the majority of people will have to at the very least seek advice and look at their own portfolios as the changes come […]

Government housing market white paper

Will more sheltered housing be needed as the government incentivises downsizing?

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A new government housing market white paper has announced that it will be looking to offer incentives to older people that would encourage them to move out of their family homes and into smaller accommodation in order to create a more fluid market, but could this create a new opportunity for investors? There has long been a trend in the UK of older people remaining in homes that are far too big for them, long after their families have grown up and flown the nest. This creates bottlenecks in the market where there is a lack of properties for people looking to move up the ladder to buy. Government housing market white paper The government has revealed that it will be looking to address this historic issue in its new housing white paper, read more here. Housing minister Gavin Barwell refused to give any in-depth details about what the incentives would mean for older residents, but he did tell ITV that the bringing back to market of an increased number of family homes is a major focus for the government moving forward. “We’ve got a lot of demographic change in the country and an increasing elderly population, so it’s not just about how many houses you build, but are you building the right kind of houses? If we can make it easier for elderly people to move it releases family homes that we’re desperate for. It’s a really interesting idea,” said Mr Barwell. One problem that will need to be addressed is just how the government plans to make its dream a reality. It’s expected that older people will be encouraged to move into retirement communities and sheltered housing as part of the move, but there are problems with severe shortages. Despite the aging population in the UK and the […]

Commercial property

Commercial property investment demand looks strong headed into 2017

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The Brexit vote that took place in mid-2016 was forecast to be a particularly negative decision for the UK, with many predicting that businesses would suffer as a result, and that the market as a whole would suffer in the long term thanks to lower sentiment from those who own and run companies. However, as the move to exit the EU comes closer and closer, the reality is that there has actually been little in the way of change when it comes to the business world. The economy did not contract as it had been expected to, and commercial property demand from new investors grew throughout the second half of 2016, which leaves the sector looking strong headed into 2017. According to data published by the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), in the last three months of the year, demand improved quarter-on-quarter across the UK commercial property sector, which was the second time in a row – both post-Brexit – that this had happened. Demand for commercial property As many as 21 per cent more respondents welcomed an increase rather than a fall in demand for commercial property in the final quarter of 2016. This was a rise of nine per cent in terms of positivity when compared to the three-month period that came before. It indicates that even as the market was edging closer to Theresa May’s proposed date of the end of March for Article 50 to be triggered, the UK’s businesses remain confident. And it’s not just domestically that this is the case either. The study from RICS shows that 27 per cent more respondents experienced a rise in demand from foreign investors in the final quarter of the year as well, showing that even without the backing of the EU in the future, the UK’s […]

Experience Invest Company Profile expands

Experience Invest Company Profile continues to expand

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Experience Invest company profile continues to expand The Experience Invest company profile expanded in 2016 to include another completed development by Opto Property Group. Chapel Street – a development of 87 en-suite and studio rooms designed for the student market – completed in Q3 2016. The development, which opened its doors to students at the start of the 2016/2017 academic year, is fully occupied and paying investors returns. Situated in Luton’s town centre and just a few minutes’ walk from the University of Bedfordshire, Chapel Street is in an ideal place for students who wish to experience all the town offers. Chapel Street is the second completed student development in Luton by Experience Invest. London Park House, which has been operational since Q3 2014, has been a popular choice for students and has achieved full occupancy since opening its doors just over two years ago. At the end of 2017, Experience Invest company profile will expand to include Opto Village in Luton. This flagship development will bring the company’s total number of student rooms in the town to around 800.   Experience Invest company profile Operating since 2004, Experience Invest has delivered many income generating property investments. Early in 2017, the company will launch a residential development in Luton named New Bedford House. The development will appeal to the town’s growing commuter population and will contain 54 one and two-bedroom apartment. Property prices in Luton outpaced the rest of the UK in 2016, with the average house price up 19.4%. The average house in Luton could be worth up to £48,000 more than the previous year according to data by the Halifax. New Bedford House will provide investors with an excellent opportunity to capitalise on rising house prices in Luton and to benefit from rental returns from a new-build property. […]

Property prices in Luton

Luton emerges as a UK property hotspot

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The latest data from Halifax has shown that Luton property prices increased by 19.4% in 2016, outpacing gains across the rest of the country. On average, properties in the town increased by £48,000 throughout the course of 2016. When compared to the national average of 7.5%, Luton property prices increased at an accelerated rate over the past 12 months. “Most of the areas that have seen the biggest house price rises during 2016 are either within close commuting distance of the capital or in outer London. Demand in these areas has risen as substantial property price rises in central London over the last few years have caused increasing numbers of people to seek property in more affordable areas,” Martin Ellis, Housing Economist with the Halifax. Commuter hotspot The town’s popularity as a London commuter hotspot has helped propel Luton property prices. High house prices in London has created and exodus of people who now see the value of choosing to live elsewhere instead. As Luton is just 22 minutes by train from Central London, commuters do not have to travel far to get more for their money. And it is not just commuters who are flocking to this commuter belt town. The University of Bedfordshire, which is ranked 64th in the UK by the Times Higher Education World University rankings, has seen a rise in students studying at its Luton campus. The town centre campus has witnessed an influx of private student developments pop up, as students increasingly understand the value of privately operated digs over HMOs.   New completed development in Luton The latest Experience Invest completed development is in Luton’s town centre. Chapel Street comprises 87 en-suite and studio apartments which have been specifically designed for the student market. Investors are receiving rental returns from this fully managed […]

The best regional investment hotspots for property

The best regional investment hotspots for property in 2017

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Investment in rental properties is one of the most popular ways to save for the future in this day and age. With returns of between five and eight per cent possible, and a rise in demand as fewer people opt to own a home year after year across the UK, it’s no surprise that rental investment is thriving across the country.   But investing is about more than simply buying a rental home and waiting for the money to start rolling in. You need to know where to invest, and why, to ensure you have the best chance of success. Here, we take a look at a few of the stars of the British rental market and why they make great places to invest in property. Northern Powerhouse   Without a shadow of a doubt, the Northern Powerhouse cities are some of the best to invest in at the moment away from London. With a focus on creating a thriving economy in the north and investment to back up those desires, it’s clear that places like Liverpool, Manchester, Leeds and Sheffield have the potential to bring investors in property therein strong returns for years to come.   The regeneration of Liverpool and the subsequent migration of more businesses there in the next few years is set to make the city a fantastic modern place to not only work, but also live. This is likely to bring an influx of young professionals to the city, who will be looking for purpose built rental properties that give them the lifestyle they want to lead.   It’s a similar story across the Powerhouse as well, with Manchester seeing a continued rise in media companies and Leeds’ rise in digital marketing industry standings both helping to bring more skilled young people to the region, […]

New 2017 Student Accommodation Investment Guide launched

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Experience Invest has released an online 2017 UK Student Accommodation Investment Guide aimed at investors looking to enter this high yielding property market. The guide, which is free and interactive, contains expert analysis of the sector’s performance in 2016 and looks at what investors can expect from the sector over the next 12 months. 2017 UK Student Accommodation Investment Guide launched “As we enter the New Year, many investors will review the performance of their current portfolio and will consider how it will fair in 2017. Student property is known as the UK’s best performing asset class and despite rising level of investment over the last 5 years, some investors still consider it as an alternative asset. “Our new 2017 UK Student Accommodation Investment Guide is filled with helpful information about the sector. It delves into the risks and the rewards and address the impact of Brexit on the sector. Every investor should read this guide before they purchase student property,” Jerald Solis, Acquisitions and Business Development Director at Experience Invest explains. Rise of the regions Investors have shunned London student property investments in favour of regional opportunities. According to data from Cushman & Wakefield, investors have been attracted to cheaper and higher yielding en-suites and studio apartments in regional cities with large student populations. The guide explains where investors should consider buying student property and why these areas are hotspots for investors. University towns and cities such as Manchester, Liverpool, Leeds, Newcastle, and Luton have all emerged as a popular choice for buyers looking to generate a rental return from this profitable asset class. Click here to access the guide…  The future of student property The future looks bright for the UK’s student property market. Despite upcoming Brexit talks and the government’s plan to trigger Article 50 in March, […]