Sometimes when you’re reading online, you don’t want to dig through reams of words to get to the point – you just want a bullet-point breakdown of the most important, essential things to consider.
This is going to be another eventful year in commercial property investment, particularly in the wake of the Housing White Paper 2017. There are set to be new opportunities, new restrictions and new factors to consider – so let’s explore 10 hot tips for buy-to-let property investing in 2017.
10 tips on how to invest in buy-to-let property:
1. Find more ways to borrow
You may find that it is going to be harder to borrow money in traditional ways this year, so when there is a commercial property deal you are keen to take advantage of, you may have to find more ways to borrow. Banks are likely to be less lenient with lending funds, but we predict that there will be more private financers, crowdfunding opportunities and other such methods of raising funds growing in popularity. Remember, even during tougher years, money doesn’t simply evaporate!
2. Embrace technology more
More buy to let property investors are running their entire portfolios from their smartphones, so if you don’t already, embrace technology more. The amount of apps to make your life easier is growing by the day, so take advantage of or investigate Rightmove, Zoopla, Bizzby, Checkatrade, Trello, Nest, Xero and Omnifocus.
3. Don’t fear Brexit
Don’t fear Brexit or use it as an excuse not to invest. The UK economy is the fastest-growing in the world and is in rude health, so until the decisions are made about the government’s exit strategy, just continue as normal.
4. Serviced accommodation
The buy-to-let property market is changing, being shaken up and disrupted. One of the biggest recent changes is the advent of websites such as Airbnb and more investors looking to investigate providing serviced accommodation. Bridging the gap between living accommodation and hotel stays, serviced accommodation is a growing market.
5. Limited company
We are looking at a year of buy-to-let property tax changes. Clause 24 will begin phasing in through 2017, and will eventually require landlords to pay full tax to the basic rate (20%) on rental income. This controversial development will see landlords seeking ways to reduce the tax they pay – so many will consider becoming a LTD company. While this will not be the answer for everyone, this will be particularly appealing to landlords wishing to reinvest their profits, due to the cumulative build of the money saved in tax over time.
6. Brownfield sites
Though there are no firm details yet, the Housing White Paper 2017 suggests that it may be easier to obtain planning permission for property deals on the UK’s brownfield sites starting this year. This could present some appealing opportunities for buy to let property developers, so it could be smart to research the presence of brownfield sites in your local area to source a lucrative commercial property deal.
7. New developments
Another change suggested in the Housing White Paper 2017 is that there may be imposed density requirements for new properties being built. For this reason, think carefully about how to use space to your best advantage in new developments.
8. Educate yourself
Educate yourself more! If you haven’t already, join a buy-to-let property network, attend events and property meets, read, listen to podcasts and audiobooks, watch more videos. You cannot inform yourself “too much”, so take advantage of all the free material available. For those wishing to take their knowledge to the next level, whatever stage you have already reached, Progressive Property offers everything from day events, through to intensive courses, and up to direct mentoring.
9. Tenancy fees
It is possible that tenancy fees may no longer be chargeable – particularly those that do not simply reflect charges incurred by letting agents. If the law changes and England becomes in line with Scotland, where tenancy fees were banned in 2012, it will be advisable to research the mechanisms used in Scotland to recover fees.
10. Commercial property
It is essential that a successful commercial property investor focuses their attention on the kind of tenant they want to appeal to, rather than allows vanity to decide which properties will offer the greatest prestige. Invest for income and consider the rental yield of any commercial property you invest in, rather than the apparent esteem of an area – you may be surprised at the opportunities you find.
What essential buy-to-letproperty investment tips do you have for this year? What can you tell us how to improve? Which is your favourite “how to” tip in the lists above?
To learn more great property tips, dive into the book Property Investing Secrets.