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THosken

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Profile Information

  • Location
    South East England
  • Areas I invest in
    Currently- nowhere
  • About me
    I did my degree in Film and Television Studies, I then went into agriculture which has since evolved into commercial development and letting.
  • Property investment interests
    Commercial letting and development. Residential Buy-to-let and HMOs.
  • My skills
    Very Organised and a keen user of systems. I have experience in planning developments as well as managing people and materials.
  • My goals
    I enjoy my work currently and see property as a challenging area to learn and work in. Long term I want to have a wide spread of buy-to-let investments, including student lets and HMOs. My dream is to donate a proportion of rental income to animal and wildlife charities around the world.
  • Interests outside property
    I enjoy keeping healthy with nice food and the gym as well as country walks with four legged friends.

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  1. It’s like you have crawled into my head on this subject and written everything I am thinking down! As you have rightly pointed out, there are so many considerations here, unique situations and complete irregularities. I too have Victorian terraced properties and I am sure many investors do. I see some properties with worse energy controls than mine, some achieving a C with only part double glazing… but mine only manage a D with all the things that can realistically be implemented without going to solid wall and floor insulation, which as you say is a huge cost for an investor. I am sure what will actually happen is a vastly watered down version of the proposal, as you suggest, making sure landlords have done all they reasonably can to improve the EPC of their properties. No doubt the admin costs will be huge and an external investigation launched into how the government could have done better. What amuses me is the proposed timing of these supposed new requirements, 2026… isn’t that the year we hit recession and property prices crash!? Not sure anyone will be asked to spend too much on insulating their house just as it has dropped in value by 10-15%… We will have to wait and see. In the meantime, I’m off to find a bent EPC man to get me that illusive C :p
  2. Hi Su, A good tip on working with vendors, this is always something I state to an agent, my flexibility. I have 2 single let properties in Crewe. The last one I let out was a year ago and I used BJB letting service, the head of letting (Steve) came across well and their costs were very reasonable compared to others. However, he turned out to be a poor communicator after he had rushed the property onto portals. I got lots of offers on the property but with each offer a different person would call me about it which caused a fair bit of unneeded confusion. Having accepted an applicant and proceeded I later found out from a social media search that she was clearly planning to move in with others when the tenancy was just in her name! I even called the NRLA advice line about this situation and as suspected they recommended pulling out, it hadn’t started well. Having called BJB to tell them this, the agent (Micheal) accused me of making someone homeless, the applicant was coming from their parents home, so not the case. Extremely unprofessional service. I am pleased to say that after all that we got a good tenant who has been in for a year now. Who do you plan to use to let your property? Will you use let only or management as well? I live in the South East and so like you I am investing from a distance. Best, Tristan
  3. Hello, I was wondering if anyone has experience of setting up a deed of trust in relation to property income or had it done for them? Situation: My partner and I (not married) own BTL property both jointly (joint tenants) and individually (no ltd co) My salary has increased to the point where adding on the rental income now makes me a higher rate tax payer, but my partner still has some ‘headroom’ in her salary to take on more of the rental income so we can both remain at the standard 20% rate. I have done a bit of reading online but am now slightly confused. On the face of it it all seems quite simple - completing a document (DOT) reallocating the split on the INCOME only as evidence to HMRC on our tax returns. But, reading on, some of these articles seem to say that a DOT changes the beneficial interest in the entire property, and as such the way income is distributed. The DOT sits behind the land registry title which jointly owned would be 50/50 but the DOT might say its 99/1 for example. Is this the case? Any advise more than welcome. Also, if anyone has been through this, how much did/should it cost to have a solicitor set up a DOT per property? Many thanks, Tristan
  4. Hello all, I come fresh from the NRLA webinar on energy efficiency in the PRS and I wanted to know what you fellow hubbers thought of the proposed changes to the EPC rating for rented property. It has been widely discussed that the minimum EPC rating for rented property will be upgraded from the current E to C by 2025/6 for all new tenancies and for all existing by 2028. Interestingly this date ties in well with the 18yr property cycle and if you go by that we should just about hit a recession by 2026. Will these energy targets be a contributing factor to a recession? Or simply be sidelined due to a recession? If the government continues with its plan to decarbonise the housing sector over the next decade - what action do you as a landlord plan to take? I have a few Victorian terraced properties with and EPC rating of D. Looking at the register the only way to get these to a C would be to install internal or external wall insulation at a cost of 4-14K. I am sure many people are in the same boat on this. If so I would like to hear from you - what do you plan to do? How would you look to fund these costs assuming no government grant? Saved rent? Refinancing to release capital? Not bother and sell up? If you plan on buying BTL property going forward, how will these proposed changes effect your decision to purchase a property? Would you still buy Victorian terraced property? Lots of questions these and looking forward to hearing your thoughts. Tristan
  5. Hi Mark, Thank you very much for this, I shall check it out and hopefully some better luck next time! All the best, Tristan
  6. Hello all, I was wondering if anyone out there is an independent letting/managing agent? What I mean by this is, just you working as self employed to manage and let a number of properties? I ask because I have always struggled with letting agents as I find them very casual, poor communicators and put simplest just plain unprofessional. Just my experience. I would be interested to know what qualifications I should consider and how best to get started out on my own? How to convince people to entrust me with their most valuable asset. I already manage my own residential properties as well as a few for the company I work for (not a letting agency) I also manage 30+ Business tenants who rent workshops and I project manage commercial developments as well. I am used to property and account management software and am in the process of developing a tenant portal for the tenancies I manage. I find the idea of being able to manage 10-20 residential properties from my iPad an exciting prospect and feel I could offer a great local service. I am aware it’s not as easy as people think. Any advice/thoughts would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance. Tristan
  7. Hello all, As we are nearly half way through the year I have been both reflecting on the last 6 months and thinking forward to the next. With the the freeze in the market over the last few months I feel as though we maybe experiencing a mini bounce with some pent up demand and a lack of supply. As the government continues to support business with the furlough scheme until the end of October a large part of the economy is still on ‘vacation’. An amusing analogy I have recently come across - ‘Restarting business from a standstill is tricky, you need to hope you have the money for rent, PAYE etc and that your customers are still there. It’s like flying into the airport back from holiday, hopefully the battery on your car hasn’t gone flat’ Will employment suffer post furlough scheme, and as a result will the housing market flatten or maybe even dip? This is linked to the Robs podcast chat on inflation/deflation and the real question being; How will people feel and how will they spend over the next 6 months? Thoughts/speculation welcome
  8. Hello, I have 1 property in Crewe and know other people that also have property there. I am sure they would agree with me that demand is good. In ‘normal’ times you could go onto Rightmove and see that property to rent listing oldest first wasn’t very old, this indicates high demand as property didn’t hang around for long. My property (2 bed terraced) let in less than a week of being on the market a year ago. I don’t know anyone with HMO’s in Crewe, but as this is your first investment I would recommend a single let. Recent times have proved how solid and reliable an investment a good old fashioned BTL is. Best of luck, Tristan
  9. Evening all, Just wondering if anyone has used the PropertyData website and if it was useful? I have come across the advert in the NRLA Magazine. I see you get 14 days free trial and would be particularly interested in the Live Maps and Local Data. Has anyone picked anything up they otherwise might not have when using the site? Thanks in advance Tristan
  10. You are quite right I completely overlooked the calculation at 5.5% my mistake I was too focused on an actual rate. You are right and it does make everything quite tight. In that case it would seem as though option 2 would be more desirable as it is more closely aligned with the goal of generating income whilst reducing borrowing and making for a less risky portfolio. Topslicing is interesting and I view it as a potential contributing factor in people getting things seriously wrong when they have a change in circumstance such as loosing their job. Thanks a lot for your advice
  11. Hi Stuart, thanks for your thoughts. 200k mortgage at 2.5% would be £417pcm in interest payments and with some lenders looking for the monthly rent to cover 145% of mortgage payments it should work. On a 5 year fixed (although this maybe too long) I don’t believe that calculation is used. A good point about values not increasing enough to make releasing equity a viable option, Im not sure it would be an issue as I believe the rent calculations do work. It could be down to strategy, option 1 would be for capital gains and option 2 more towards generating an income. But, at this point in the cycle would you even be looking in the south east for capital gains, are both income and potential gains more in the north? interesting...
  12. Hello all, Looking for thoughts/advice on this: Situation: main residence in the south east with a mortgage. Property value circa 285k equity circa 85k We want to relocate within the south east but closer to work and family. It’s likely our next main residence would cost circa 350k max. We have done some renovations on this property over the last 2 years and estimate a profit of about 15k within that 85k equity. I currently have 1 BTL property in the North West and our aim is to replace my partners income with rental income. Jointly we have cash savings of 60k Option 1: (assuming this is possible) raise a BTL mortgage on our current main residence. Assuming a 25% LTV that’s a borrowing of 200k @ 2.5% mortgage interest payments 5k pa rent 12k pa £600 pa insurance costs, self managing, and basic rate of tax that’s an annual profit of 4K (please let me know if I have missed anything here) This would leave us with just our own cash (60k) as a deposit for new home but paying stamp duty of £18k + buying fees we may only be able to put down a 10% deposit (35k) leaving a hefty monthly mortgage payment of around £1,100 on repayment of around 2.1% BUT meaning we could retain the asset aimed more towards capital growth than income. Option2: Sell current main residence and roll over the equity into new main residence meaning a personal mortgage of roughly £930 on repayment at 2.1% and use saved cash to purchase 2 more BTL properties in the North West at around 100k each and providing an annual profit of £5,640 (based on my current BTL figures) BUT any capital growth as a percentage would only be based on 200k of property rather than 285k. This is very much from a long term angle and in both options the property/properties would be held for 20+years. Over that period which option would be best? Just writing this down has certainly helped but some proper objective opinions would be great. As it’s currently our own home I realise their is an emotional element involved with my own opinion. Thanks in advance Tristan
  13. Hello all, Just wondering if anyone who manages there own properties in Crewe has any recommendations for a handyman? I need a man with a hand, or two, to unblock a patio drain. Very frustrating problem as the tenant can’t do it themselves. Hopefully an easy job but one which could be made awkward by the wrong person so reliable first hand recommendations only please. Thanks in advance
  14. Hello, I think if you are unsure of which letting agent to use make a call list of the agents in your chosen area. You can get this info from Zoopla and rightmove easily. Then just call them all and ask for their advice on the market in general, specific areas, property types etc you should get a feeling from this to which agents are helpful and most knowledgable. You would also benefit from starting a relationship early, then during your property search you could ping the links over to the letting agent and get their opinion on the property and how it might let and what it might let for. All this would be backed up by your own comparable research of course. Just my opinion but I have found that’s a good way to start. Good luck!
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