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  1. Agree with all of the above. Without wanting to re-state what other people have already suggested, top of my mind (that I actually force myself to write down in my own research) would be… Qualitative - Blurb about recent past of the local market i.e. for development projects, demand for rentals, tenant profile, periods of over supply/under supply, local employment market - Blurb about redevelopment / investment projects and honest appraisal about how far progressed / likely to happen they are (i.e. beyond the all positive spin and marketing hype that you see in brochures for new developments) - Blurb about economy inc. types of sectors of employment and employment opportunities, including specifics with names of blue chip employers present and future - Blurb about population trends inc. immediate metropolitan area and any other metropolitan boroughs within commutable distance - Blurb about transport links and commuter times from x commuter belt to city centre, and from city centre to London (if outside London) - Blub about universities, university population, quality of schooling - Area map with logical way of dividing up the areas of similar tenant profile/property prices (more granular than postcodes) including areas to avoid. Similar to what you already do in your location profiles in the magazine, but you could take it further with a few more details/overlays like tenant profile (student/young prof/single family let/multi family let etc), rental/property price range e.g. £ or ££ or £££ etc., overlay of schools, universities, blue chip employers, transport links, large offices, business parks, distribution centres, large apartment blocks, regeneration areas/projects, other landmark features, local council licensing areas if applicable Quantitative For the data driven nerds amongst us (who spend inordinate amounts of time looking for stats and then when found, even more time trying to understand what they are telling you) - ONS Gross Value Added (GVA) past, present and trends, inc. breakdown of the area that the GVA statistic covers (might be a lot broader than the above mentioned location map and not necessarily comparable between GVA regions) - ONS Gross Domestic Household Income (GDHI) same caveats as above - Population and population growth (e.g. Statista) - Unemployment rate - Addressable rental market (e.g. proportion of rentals) - Average house price (e.g. Hometrack, Nationwide, Zoopla, Halifax) - Average rental, cost of living inc. rental, purchasing power indices (e.g. Numbeo) - etc… you could almost plot this dimensions on your own index that aggregates various data points and compares with other areas. Very difficult to do but very powerful (and valuable to your readers) if done right! Happy to help with the project in any way, shape or form if useful Best, Simon
  2. I didn’t use a sourcing agent for this one (i.e. an agent compensated with a finder’s fee paid by the buyer). I did my own research on areas and then reached out to a tonne of marketing agents (i.e. compensated with commission by the developer) to find listings for new build apartments in those areas. It was quite a lot of work dealing with sales people who just want to do deals but after identifying the key players I was confident I had good coverage of available stock. I’ll give sourcing agents more of a try next time around, I know some are able to secure deals/bulk discounts that marketing agents don’t have. It just worked out well this time around that there happened to be stock available in my preferred location at the right time. DM me if you want names, happy to refer you to a few.
  3. Also looking in the Leeds area. How did you get on @amardeep sidhu?
  4. Hi @alexanderrw nice to hear from another Singapore based expat. There are quite a few of us on here, many more experienced than me! I'm just about to (fingers crossed) complete on my first BTL in Leeds using an expat mortgage so happy to trade stories. It's been a 4 month journey chatting with all number of so called expat advisors, marketing agents and mortgage brokers. But I can attest it is absolutely possible to (1) buy in an area of the UK you are not familiar with (I'm from Dorset and have never been to Leeds) and (2) do it from 7,000 miles away (if you've never been to the area, its pretty much immaterial how many miles away you are!), with the right amount of research of course!
  5. Thanks Derek, interesting read. Would be interested to hear stories of the claim and arbitration process. Haven't seen any yet...
  6. Anyone heard of this? I spotted it on a listing recently. From what I can gather it seems like an insurance based alternative to taking a 6 week deposit, where the tenant pays a non-refundable 1 week rent (insurance premium), in return for not having to put down a refundable (at risk) 6 week deposit. Meanwhile the landlord gets free rental/damage insurance cover for up to 8 weeks rent (where they previously only had 6 weeks and had to deal with deposit protection and arbitration etc.), and the agent takes a commission. In the event of a claim the company takes the role of final arbiter between tenant and landlord at no expense to the landlord. Sounds rational, assuming the economics of the business model are sustainable and you trust the claim/arbitration process. I’ve not gotten as far as reading the T’s and C’s. Anyone else come across this? https://reposit.co.uk/letting-agents/
  7. Great to hear lots of us in similar shoes. There should be an expat area of the forum, if not already? And a Singapore meetup :-)
  8. Hi @onkar, thanks. I did have a mortgage decision in principle at time of reservation. However, admittedly I knew practical completion was just around the corner and certainly not 4 months. I'll pin that on noob naivety. Reservation was beginning May, so by the agent's timeline exchange should be June and I expect practical completion in July. Now I know I can't exchange before mortgage offer, so it's not a question of risking the deposit but rather hoping the lender comes through in time and/or the vendor is lenient. I can't be the only buyer in this situation with the backlog of applications lenders must have at the moment (as @ahmed i says). Here's hoping!
  9. Thanks @ahmed i. No this is an off plan purchase coming to practical completion soon, so the vendor is a developer. The agent's terms and conditions stipulated a 28 day timeline to exchange from receipt of contract. I'm managing expectations on the agent side so I can only hope they are doing the same with the vendor.
  10. Hi there, I'm purchasing my first BTL. I have a mortgage decision in principle from my broker and put a reservation down. Conveyancing is underway and legals are with solicitor. I'm advised timeline for exchange of contracts (with deposit) is 28 days from receipt of contract from the vendor, which is in a few weeks time. Meanwhile the full application for my mortgage is underway, but taking a bit of time under present circumstances. Any advice on what I should do if I don't have the mortgage offer by the scheduled date of exchange? Thanks in advance!
  11. Hi @davida, I’m a first time investor and also an expat, in the process of arranging lending for my first investment. I second above, I think you’re going to need to find an expat lender to get your friend’s name on the title. It’s somewhat of a niche market but there are a handful of expat lenders and brokers out there who specialise in exactly this scenario. I think credit history will depend on the lender’s policy, some focus on personal affordability (income, credit etc.) while others hone in on rental valuation of the property. Let me know if you need any help with brokers who specialise in expat mortgages, they’re best placed to advise on lending options in your particular circumstances.
  12. Hi @rookiep, will have to be fully managed for me. I don’t have family or contacts in the growth cities I’m focussed on and I need to be as remote and hands off as possible. Early days for me because I’m still completing on my first but I did ring around lots of local estate agents when doing my initial due diligence and there are 2-3 I feel comfortable dealing with on the letting and management side. Let’s see... only time will tell! Would be interested to hear from other expats who manage out as well.
  13. P.S. @andy rafter one more in development in Kristall regeneration area I just saw, might be of interest to you
  14. Hey Stevie, I’m in a similar boat. Not in aviation and living in Singapore but am a first time investor none the less and doing it 100% remote. Also in low cost funds and want to supplement with property. About to go in for my first purchase, pending mortgage offer now. I’m weighting more towards capital growth so have picked slightly higher value properties in city centres at the sacrifice of yields. Good luck to you mate, would be interested to compare notes as we go. Where are you in the process with researching your first?
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