Tuesday, 30 December 2014

Why should you consider getting into buy to let in Canterbury


A recent article, when we spoke about the difference between Canterbury and Tonbridge property markets, produced a number emails and a couple of people popped by my offices for a chat about investing in buy to let.

Many people in our part of Kent, over the last few years, have seen the buy to let market become all about nest egg investment. It is fuelled by pitiful interest rates on building society savings. It reflects the fact that building society savings accounts are paying half a percent interest and pension returns are struggling to match expectations, turning more and more people into landlords to secure their future.  So what can you expect from your rental property investment?

In the short term, rental yields are important, and in Canterbury, the average annual yield is in the order of 3.5% to 4% per year. However, that is based on averages, and as most landlords in Canterbury tend to buy starter home homes, apartments and terraced houses, the majority of which are achieving 4.5% to 6.5% per year depending on location and price in the town.

In the long term though, the question of capital growth is as important, if not more important (because if you have great short term yields, but the value of the property doesn't keep up with the rest of the market, you will have an asset that in real terms is dropping). As we mentioned in a previous article, average property values in Canterbury currently stand at £296,300 and property values in Canterbury have risen by 18.8% in the last 5 years. On the other hand, property investment is a long term game, so I wanted to share with you the research I did for a couple of Canterbury landlords. Roll the clock back 10 years to 2004, the average value of a property in Canterbury was £177,300. 15 years to 1999 makes interesting reading, as the average Canterbury property value was only £91,020, 30 years (1984) makes it £28,570 and just for a bit of fun, we looked at 1964 at it was £3,300!

So, looking at it from another point of view, if one bought a Canterbury property in 1984 for £28,570, it would be worth £296,300 today; but if you had put that same £28,570 into the stock market in 1984 instead of buying a house in Canterbury, your shares today would be worth £168,900. Put the same £28,570 money in a Building Society account and you reinvested the interest back into the account, and your Building Society passbook would have £159,300. The difference gets larger when you realise that with the rental property you would have received in excess of £216,000 in rent over those 30 years, which you wouldn’t have received with the Building Society account!

If you would like to discuss my thoughts on the rental markets in Canterbury, feel free to pop into our offices on Watling Street, or pick up the phone or email me on david.anthony@martinco.com

Friday, 26 December 2014

Canterbury Property Market 2014



A number of landlords, who own property in Canterbury, have made contact with me recently asking for my thoughts on the future of the buy to let market in Canterbury. In previous articles, we have talked about Canterbury’s history of rents, property values, tenant demand and yields; all important matters for a landlord, but we haven’t discussed the future.

Property values are now 4.3% higher in Canterbury than they were a year ago. Good news all round, but when you consider property values in the city have previously dropped by 17.8% between February 2008 and April 2009, this is not as good as the media would have you believe.  It should be no great surprise to hear that Canterbury property values are starting to slow up as we head in to the New Year.  Property values in the city were growing at 1.3% a month in the Spring months of 2014, but in Autumn months they slowed down considerably to no more than 0.1% a month.

The reality is we have had nearly two years of decent market conditions in Canterbury (as values have increased by 14% in that timeframe) but now all that pent up demand is starting to fade. The big question moving forward is whether the Canterbury market will now be held back by affordability and restricted mortgage lending, and what long term impact this will have on the Canterbury property market.

Looking at the UK as a whole, because we can’t look at Canterbury in just its little own bubble, the recent rapid rise in house values in some parts of the UK in the early part of the year (especially in London where we were seeing rises of 2.5% to 3.5% a month in London property values), along with earnings growth that remain below inflation and the possibility of an interest rate rise over the coming months, appear to have tempered housing demand. This weakening in demand has led to a modest easing in both property price growth and sales. A moderation in growth looks likely into next year as supply and demand become increasingly better balanced.

Now with the General Election on the horizon, whichever Government takes power, they, along with the Bank of England, have a thorny job to do in balancing the expected rise in interest rates with the continued resurgence of the housing market, to ensure the property market doesn’t drop and drag down the economic recovery forcing people into selling their property at a loss.

However, back to Canterbury, long term property values which track peaks and troughs are more helpful to landlord investors. The real life questions I seem to be asked on an almost daily basis by landlords are:-

·        “Should I sell my property in Canterbury, or even buy another?”

·        “Is the time right to buy another buy to let property in Canterbury and if not Canterbury, where?”

·        “Are there any property bargains out there in Canterbury?”

Many other Canterbury landlords, both who are with us and many who are with other  Canterbury letting agents, like to pop in for a coffee to  discuss the Canterbury property market, how Canterbury compares with its closest rivals (Dover, Maidstone, Thanet and Herne Bay), and hopefully answer the three questions above. I don’t bite, I don’t do hard sell, I will just give you my honest and straight talking opinion.

In the meantime may I take this opportunity to wish you all a prosperous 2015.

Wednesday, 24 December 2014

Whitstable v Herne Bay - Clash of the titans?




On Tuesday, I met with a charming couple in Whitstable who asked me to take a look at their property on Island Wall with regard to rentals. As per usual, we started to discuss the local area and property values etc and they asked the question regarding property values in their location versus other areas, for example Herne Bay. I replied that property values in his area had exceeded all expectations and would of out-performed Herne Bay easily. Upon my return to the office, I decided to qualify my claim to ensure this was indeed the case. The results were very interesting.
For a degree of comparison, I decided to look at Island Wall, Whitstable compared with Central Parade, Herne Bay. OK, it's not a direct comparison, but at least we have reference point. The average value of a property in their post code on Island Wall was circa £413K, in comparison to £205K in Central Parade. Not an exact science, as the properties are different, i.e. houses v apartments etc. The next test was to take a look at the capital gains in both areas, over the past 1, 3 and 5 years and it was this set of data that proved to be of interest. Yes, I was right, Island Wall has exceeded Herne Bay in growth, but only marginal, as per the following stats.

Island Wall, Whitstable 

1 year  +6.47%         3 years   +16.73%        5 years    +15.37%

Central Parade, Herne Bay

1 year  +5.56%         3 years   +16.27%        5 years     +13.64%

The above just shows that although Island Wall has performed well, Central Parade in Herne Bay was not too far behind, which just goes to show that investors need to keep an open mind on areas to invest in, as there may well be other areas to take a look at.
Incidentally, the above figures also confirm my view of keeping an eye on Herne Bay!
Therefore, if you are considering buying a property for investment in the near future, I am always happy to give you my considered opinion on which investment to buy (or not as the case may be) to give you what you want for your investment (yield, capital growth or a bit of both). If you are a Landlord, new or old, pop in and see us at our offices on Watling Street for a chat or email me direct on david.anthony@martinco.com


 
 

Tuesday, 23 December 2014

Faversham - luxury 2 bed apartment - £235K

Yesterday, one of my Landlords called into the office (resting his legs from Christmas shopping.....) and we got chatting about a property that had caught his interest in his home town of Faversham. It's a 2 bed apartment in Court Street, which is on the market with Ward and Partners for £235K. From the pictures and description, it looks a great property, with a pretty high spec. He was keen to purchase the property and then rent it out. We started to bounce some figures about and the results were quite interesting.
 

Details: http://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-31695804.html?premiumA=true
 
I explained to him that yes, it was a 'fairly good' investment, but in comparison to Canterbury, the rental yield would not be too brilliant, i.e. circa £900 per month giving a yield of circa 4.60%. Whilst slightly disappointed, he then said it's not too much the yield, more about the capital gain over, say, the next 5 to 10 years and how would that compare, with say Canterbury, where he has a number of other properties.

We looked at the last 5 years between this area and CT1 in Canterbury and surprisingly, the capital growth in Faversham was better at 16.92% and 16.65% respectively. He then asked me to look at the past year and the results were even more surprising with this area of Faversham seeing an increase of 7.15%, compared to CT1 achieved a lower 5.90% in comparison.

All of this goes to show, that yields and capital growth will vary from area to area, and investors need to fully understand what their goal is.
 
Each Canterbury (and Faversham) landlord will have different needs and requirements in his or her property investment. We are able to give an objective and unbiased opinion on what (and what doesn't) make a good property investment. Knowing what has happened to values in different towns / cities, enables us to spot any trends or opportunities for buy to let landlords. If you would like to discuss my thoughts on the rental markets, feel free to pop through the door of our offices Watling Street or send me an email to david.anthony@martinco.com

Saturday, 20 December 2014

Faversham - walking distance to Station - Yield = 5.76%

After managing to grab those last minute items for Mrs A's Christmas stocking, I have managed to catch up and take a look at some of the properties that are still 'trickling' onto the pre-Christmas property market. I say 'trickling', as many agents are 'holding fire' until just after the Christmas break, where we should start to see greater activity.

This morning, we are back into Faversham (apologies to the Landlord who popped into the office this morning, who I sent scurrying off into the direction of Herne Bay......), where a one bedroom ground floor flat has just come onto the market.

As ever, these one bed properties are in great demand and should command a rental figure of circa £600 per month. The property is on the market with Ward & Partners at £125K, which will give you a yield of 5.76%, which is fab! From the description and the photos, this one is good to go and looks priced about right.


Take a look at http://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-47660236.html?premiumA=true and give the agent a call.


Should you wish to discuss any other specific properties or just a general chat re the current market, please feel free to contact me on 01227 455717 / canterbury@martinco.com or call in and see me at 23 Watling Street in Canterbury.

 

Wednesday, 17 December 2014

Canterbury vs Rochester property values – which City has performed the best?




One topic that I am always being asked about, both by existing landlords and new ones, is how one city’s property values have performed against another. When purchasing a buy-to-let property, there are two ways landlords make money through property letting - capital growth and rental income growth.
 
When a property increases in value over time, it is known as 'capital growth'. Capital growth, also known as capital appreciation, has been strong in recent times in both Rochester and Canterbury, but the value of property does go up as well as down, and of course the local conditions surrounding your property have a big effect. Rental income is what the tenant pays you - hopefully this will grow over time too. If you divide the annual rent into the value (or purchase price) of the property, this is your yield, or annual return.
A landlord of ours from Sittingbourne, who has a number of properties in both Canterbury and Rochester, asked me a few weeks ago about the difference between Canterbury and Rochester housing markets. I was quite surprised with my findings and wanted to share them with you.
The average property price in Canterbury is currently £296,300. In the last 3 months property values in Canterbury, according to my calculations, have risen by just over 3.3%  which starts to claw back the losses we experienced in the latter half of 2012 when values dipped by nearly 0.9%. That doesn’t sound a lot, but roll the clock back a few years and in 2009 values dropped 16.8% from the property values being achieved the year before. However, irrespective of the roller coaster prices we have seen in the City, they are still 22.2% higher than the 2009 slump (before you get the party hats on, we are only 0.4% higher than the 2007 peak!).
Rochester, has a slightly different story. Whilst in Canterbury, prices are 0.4% higher than the 2007 peak, Rochester’s property values are 1.1% lower from those 2007 peak prices.   However, Rochester property values over the last 12 months have risen more than Canterbury’s, in fact 36% proportionally more year on year compared to our own city.  Therefore, Rochester must be the better bet?
Well, not necessarily. The most important consideration when investing in property is to look at the medium to long-term.  Since 2005 an average property in Rochester has risen from £202,900 to £228,700, a rise of £25,800 or 12.7%. However, in Canterbury the average property has risen from £255,800 to £296,300 a rise of £40,500 or 15.8%. 
Each Canterbury (and Rochester) landlord will have different needs and requirements in his or her property investment. We are able to give an objective and unbiased opinion on what (and what doesn't) make a good property investment. Knowing what has happened to values in different cities, enables us to spot any trends or opportunities for buy to let landlords. If you would like to discuss my thoughts on the rental markets, feel free to pop through the door of our offices Watling Street or send me an email to david.anthony@martinco.com
 
 

Monday, 15 December 2014

Herne Bay - St Marys Court - Yield = 5.82%

This one is a bit of a puzzle for me........ A couple of months ago, I wrote about the property below, stating what a great property it was, it ticked all of the boxes etc  etc etc. Then 'lo and behold', it comes back onto the market again, which would indicate that either the sale has fallen through or it's just not sold....

Anyway, it's back on the market again with Kimber Woodward in Herne Bay at £165K.

Again, it looks great, as a) it's simply stunning, b) these properties are in great demand and finally c) it's got a great yield at 5.82%, with a rental figure of circa £800 per month.

For the rental market, such properties are always in great demand due to their location, i.e. close to the railway station, therefore great for professional commuting couples.

And its CHAIN FREE!!


Check it out at  http://tinyurl.com/mvzl64w and give them a call. You never know, the seller could be looking for a quick sale! 'Kerr ching!!!!'




Should you wish to discuss any other specific properties or just a general chat re the current market, please feel free to contact me on 01227 455717 / canterbury@martinco.com or call in and see me at 23 Watling Street in Canterbury.

5.47% yield in Faversham - Good investment property at the right price!

Morning 'prop pickers'! Despite the pre-Christmas 'lull' in the property market, it's good to see sellers 'dipping their toe' into the property market!

Today (and it's back to Faversham) this property has caught my attention, as it appears to tick all of the boxes for a good investment property, whether it's a 'starter' property for a first time Landlord or as an addition to an existing property portfolio.

It's been placed on the market today, by Miles & Barr in Faversham for £169,995, which is about right for such a property, although it's possible that a few thousand could be shaved off this figure. As ever, such properties are in great demand for couples and families and should rent out for circa £775 per month. Based upon these figures, this would give you a healthy yield of £5.47%.

From the interior photos it looks in good shape and does not appear to require any works before putting on the rental market.

Take a look at http://tinyurl.com/qj8hrzj and give them a call!


Should you wish to discuss any other specific properties or just a general chat re the current market, please feel free to contact me on 01227 455717 or call in and see me at 23 Watling Street in Canterbury.

Friday, 12 December 2014

6.26% yield - Student Let - Canterbury

As mentioned before, investment landlords often call in to see me to discuss potential investment properties. In most cases, the topic of student properties is discussed, due to the lure of the yield, which in the main is always higher than a professional let. Yes, the 'wear & tear' can be higher, but if handled well the return on investment will in most cases be higher.
 
My advice to any investment Landlord when it comes to student lets is quite simple, i.e. location, location, location. Yes, there are some tempting offers for student houses, which the lovely agent will tell you will let 10 times over every year, with a huge demand, 'streets are paved with gold' blah blah blah....Let me just say, it's a 'load of old tosh'. It's all about the location!
 
Therefore, the following property which I'm going to tell you about looks of interest. It's in St Peters Place and is on the market for £230K. The agent has indicated that it's achieving an annual of rent of £13,200 per annum, which would indicate a monthly rent £1200 per month, based upon an 11 months rental period which is fairly typical for a student property in the Canterbury area. This would give you a yield of 5.74%, based upon the 11 months or 6.26% based upon a 12 month let.
 
From the photographs it looks fairly decent, without too much to do, plus it comes with tenants 'till next June. This could have some implications, but a good agent can guide you through this.
 
Check it out at http://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-49526003.html and give the agent a call.
 



Should you wish to discuss any other specific properties or just a general chat re the current market, please feel free to contact me on 01227 455717 or call in and see me at 23 Watling Street in Canterbury.

Thursday, 11 December 2014

2 bedroom - Abbey Street - Faversham - Yielding 5.19% - 8% INCREASE IN VALUE IN ONE YEAR!

As we slowly venture towards Christmas, the market is just starting to slow down with a 'trickle' of properties coming onto the market. Whilst, in the main, the ones that I have seen aren't that exciting, this one this morning really caught my eye.
 
It's in the market town of Faversham and in one of the most sought after streets, i.e. Abbey Street. That's a couple of boxes ticked off already! It's on the market with Miles & Barr at £185K and with a rental of circa £800 per  month (minimum), this would offer a yield of 5.19%. Again, a couple more boxes ticked off, it's so far getting better and better!
 
Regular readers will know that whilst the rental yield is very important, as an investment property, it's really all about the capital growth over a period of time. Based upon the above, I thought that it would an interesting exercise to 'drill down' and take a look at the capital growth for this particular postcode compared to the whole of Faversham. In the past year ME13 7BN has seen a healthy growth of circa 8%, whilst Faversham as a town saw a modest growth over the past year of 6.58%. Finally, the property looks to be in  great decorative order. That's all the boxes ticked!!
 
Check it out at the following link and give the agent a call!!

http://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-49500779.html
 

 
 
Should you wish to discuss any other specific properties or just a general chat re the current market, please feel free to contact me on 01227 455717 or call in and see me at 23 Watling Street in Canterbury.

Canterbury – Battle of the Postcodes?

I was asked last week if postcodes make a difference to property values. Well in swanky West London, the difference between SW3 and SW10 can make values drop or rise by thousands, even millions of pounds. However, in our city of Canterbury, we don’t have many Russian Oligarchs and Saudi Prince’s buying our properties. However, after doing some investigating, I did find out some interesting info.
The main postcode areas of the City are CT1 and CT2, with the most of villages to the East being CT3 and the villages to the South and West CT4. The postcode with the best performing housing market over the last 12 months has been the Eastern villages in CT3, with average values rising by 11.52%. However, in second and third come CT2 and CT1, with rises of 9.72% and 8.97% respectively in the same 12 month period with CT4 seeing more modest, yet still healthy rises of 8.85%. Look back at the areas over a longer period though and the differences aren’t so great. Over the last 5 years, values in the CT3 have risen by 21.28%, CT1 with a close second at 20.37% and CT2 20.17% and in a very respectful fourth, CT4 at 19.27%.
However, property values are only half the story when it comes to property investment. The average yields tell a slightly different story. CT1 has current average yields, based on what is on the market now at 4.66%, whilst CT2 has current average yields of 3.88%. As we go into the villages, CT3 conforms with the norm in that yields tend to be lower in the villages with an average yield of just 3.18%, as property values in villages, especially nice ones, tend go up very quickly, but the rents don’t correspondingly go up as much and CT4 has an even lower yield of 3.02% (but again as property values in CT4 are 21.9% higher than CT3 but rents are only 15.9% higher that would account for the slightly lower yield).
Therefore, if you are considering buying a property for investment in the near future, I am always happy to give you my considered opinion on which property to buy (or not as the case may be) to give you what you want from your investment (yield, capital growth or a bit of both). If you are a landlord, new or old, pop in and see us at our offices on Watling Street for a chat or email me direct on david.anthony@martinco.com
 

Saturday, 6 December 2014

Great investment property in Faversham - only £135K with a yield of 5.33%

Regular readers will know my view on Faversham as being a great place to invest, due to it being a fab place to live, plus it's high demand by Tenants, both for local workers and City commuters.
 
This property has come onto the market in the last few days and looks to be one of those investment properties that ticks all the boxes. It's a one bed that has great character in South Road. It's on the market with Invicta for £135K and will rent out for circa £600 per month, which gives a yield of 5.33%.
 
Check it out at the following link and give them a call http://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-49340729.html
 
 

Should you wish to discuss any other specific properties or just a general chat re the current market, please feel free to contact me on 01227 455717 or call in and see me at 23 Watling Street in Canterbury.

Friday, 5 December 2014

Cracking yield of 7.16% in Sturry Road, Canterbury.

One of the regular requests that I receive from investment Landlords is what are the best type of properties to invest in. In the main, I reply, it's not so much about the type of property, but what is the best yield and what's, more importantly, in constant demand.
 
The above being the case, then 'budget' two bedroom apartments are always top of the list and when I say 'budget' I mean those that are sub £900.00 per month rent, which are great for sharers / students. One of the other great attractions of these properties are the room sizes, as they are far larger than a modern build.
 
Therefore, taking all of this into consideration, you can see why the property below caught my eye. It's on with Miles & Barr and they are looking for £147,500 and I would reckon that there's a deal to be made on that price. Let's take an example (this example is one of our two beds, within 100 metres of this property) of a monthly rental of £880.00 and this property gives you a cracking yield of 7.16%.
 
I suspect that the inside may need a bit of work, as there's no inside 'piccies', but generally the works should be fairly cosmetic.



Should you wish to discuss any other specific properties or just a general chat re the current market, please feel free to contact me on 01227 455717 or call in and see me at 23 Watling Street in Canterbury.

Christmas has come early in Herne Bay - 3 bed - Yielding 5.27%

Yesterday, I was having a discussion with one of our investment Landlords where the next area of interest would be for making his next investment. Despite him owning a number of properties in both Canterbury and Whitstable, I was trying to convince him to look slightly further afield to other surrounding areas, such as Faversham and Herne Bay. After looking at numerous permutations of properties from studio flats to 5 bedroom houses, I think that (after nearly 2 and a half hours.......) I managed to convince him to take a look! May I add that his wife was delighted with our length of discussions, as she went off Christmas shopping in Canterbury for a couple of hours 'without him moaning.........' (her words, not mine!!)
 
This morning, I phoned him back and said to him to take a look a property that has just come on the market, which proved my calculations correct. It's just come on the market with Amos Dawton & Finn in Herne Bay for £205K and its a 3 bed semi. As ever, these properties are in great demand by tenants and will rent out for a minimum of £900 per month, which will give you a return of 5.27%. Again, that's minimum, as if the rent was closer to £1000 per month, which is possible, then you're looking at close to 6%. Happy days!
 
Now here's the bonus, with the new Stamp Duty rates you make a saving of £450! That's Christmas sorted!
 
and give them a call for a viewing.
 

Should you wish to discuss any other specific properties or just a general chat re the current market, please feel free to contact me on 01227 455717 or call in and see me at 23 Watling Street in Canterbury.

Thursday, 4 December 2014

Stamp Duty Land Tax Changes - Autumn 2014

So all the Stamp Duty rates have changed? Confused? Here's a simple diagram which makes it all clear!








Family 4 bed house - Larch Close - Hersden - Yield 6%

Today, there's an interesting house that has come onto market which has caught my eye. It's of interest, as these properties don't come onto the market too often and are in good demand with families in the Hersden area.
 
It's on the market for £200K with Miles & Barr and looks like it's been reduced for a quick sale. I reckon that this is a 'repossession' due to the speed that the price has been dropped and the lender is possibly looking for a quick sale.

Check it out further at http://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-32907573.html


Based upon the asking price of £200K (and I still believe that there's a deal to be done to reduce even further!), you would expect a yield of about 6.00% for a monthly rent of circa £1000 per month, which is excellent!!

Give them a call for a viewing!

Should you wish to discuss any other specific properties or just a general chat re the current market, please feel free to contact me on 01227 455717 or call in and see me at 23 Watling Street in Canterbury.


Wednesday, 3 December 2014

Westgate– the place to buy a ‘buy to let’?



 
One of the final chunks of census data has recently been released by the Government, and for those of you who like to look at data, it is a treasure trove of information. Information is so important when making decisions on what (or not) to buy when investing in property. A few weeks ago, I was discussing the roads around St. Stephen’s and Hales Place. Today, I want to look at the area around the Cathedral going West into Westgate. The census data allows anyone to look at the data for housing estates or areas, but even better down to individual roads. Such information allows us to weigh up potential hotspots in the rental market and show potential landlords where there could be an opportunity.

There are 9,841 people living in 4,461 properties in the Westgate area. It is the home ownership percentages that really got me fascinated, as it is this information, tied in with our intimate knowledge of the market, where we can match tenant demand to an under supply of rental properties. In this area of the immediate City centre and Westgate, of those 4,461 households, 25.6% own their property without a mortgage (compared to the 35.5% Canterbury average) and additional 20.8% households own their property with a mortgage (again the Canterbury average is only slightly higher at 30.4% and that includes all the posh villages!).

However, the thing that interested me was the high level of private rented property. In the Westgate area, 34.2% (or be exact 1,527 households) are in the private rented sector (compared with the Canterbury average of 17.5%). With such excellent demand from homeowners and tenants, this could be the right area to purchase your next buy to let investment, especially as the some of the one bed apartments are achieving yields in the 5% to 6% region and Westgate values always perform well over the long term.

Therefore, if you are considering buying a property for investment in the near future, I am always happy to give you my considered opinion on which property to buy (or not as the case may be) to give you what you want from your investment. If you are a landlord, new or old, we’re certainly more than happy for you to pop in and see us at our offices on Watling Street for a chat or email me direct on david.anthony@martinco.com

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

What type of property in Canterbury sells the best?



Knowing how saleable a property is half the battle when deciding what (or not) to buy for your next property investment. Why?  Well because one day, you may need to sell that property. If you go into the purchase with open eyes, you know most of the risks and can barter the price accordingly if you have to. Bearing this in mind, last week, a couple from Blean popped into our offices to ask about investing in property. Their concern was if we have another property slump (and we will because that is what has happened to the British property market ever since the 1950’s), if they did need to sell, what type of property would be easier to sell. Now everything sells, even during a slump, but I did some research and followed up their query – I was actually quite surprised with the results.
A good guide to judge the saleability of property is the number of properties for sale, compared to the numbers that are sold, subject to contract. Now I carried out this comparison last week, so the numbers will be marginally different today, but of the 20,689 households in Canterbury there are 589 properties on the market for sale. Of those 589 properties, 281 properties are fully available on the open market waiting for a buyer and 308 have buyers and are sold subject to contract. That means 52.2% of property on the market has a buyer in Canterbury (interestingly, when I looked at Herne Bay, it has an identical percentage of property sold at 52.2% as well, whilst Whitstable is 55%).
However, delve deeper, and in Canterbury today, 58.3% of detached houses on the market have a buyer and great news for semi detached property owners, as 71.2% of them have buyers.  80 of the 167 terraced houses on the market now have buyers (making 52% sold stc). The properties that appear to be sticking though are apartments at a comparatively lower 42.6% and bungalows at 51.8%. 
I am always giving advice to my existing and new landlords in Canterbury on what to buy (or not as the case may be).  Having this detail of information at my finger tips, allows me to spot trends in the local market, which then enables to me to give the very best advice to my clients. I don't charge for that advice as I have plenty of opportunity to earn money by finding the best tenants for my landlords in the years to come on the investments I have advised on. 

Tuesday, 25 November 2014

Faversham - 1 bed - Yielding a healthy 5.52%

The markets has been fairly quiet in the last few weeks on the sales front, therefore I was pleasantly surprised when this little gem came on the market this morning on Rightmove.

It's located in the market town of Faversham and would make a cracking investment property, either as a first time investor or as a 'bolt on' to an existing portfolio.

The property is being placed on the market for £125K by Your Move. Judging by the photos / presentation, I would reckon that there's a deal to be done here, which should shave a couple of thousand off the asking price, which is where the money is made, i.e. at the buying stage, not at the selling!

Again, these properties are in great demand in the rental market and will rent out all day long at circa £575 per month. With such a rent, we would reckon on gaining a yield of circa 5.52%, which is somewhat better than what the bank / building societies are giving you on your savings these days.


Check it out at

 and give them a call!

 
 

Should you wish to discuss any other specific properties or just a general chat re the current market, please feel free to contact me on 01227 455717 or call in and see me at 23 Watling Street in Canterbury.

Friday, 21 November 2014

Investor alert - 6.55% - Herne Bay - only £110K

INVESTOR ALERT. This one has just come onto the market in Herne Bay and is a real corker! It's on with Kent Estate Agencies in Herne Bay and is being offered at £109,995. It's possible that there is a deal to be done, but even at this price it works well, yielding a cracking 6.55%. This yield is based upon a monthly rental of £600 per month.

As ever, such properties in Herne Bay are in great demand, especially these one beds and more importantly, it looks like a great finish, so it's good to go. Even more appealing is the 999 year lease. It just gets better and better!




Should you wish to discuss any other specific properties or just a general chat re the current market, please feel free to contact me on 01227 455717 or call in and see me at 23 Watling Street in Canterbury.

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Hales Place property market out-performs St. Stephens by 69%


 
 
I was talking to a couple last week, who are considering becoming landlords for the first time after they had come into some money, knowing the return they would get investing in the Bank would be rather poor. They live in one of those lovely three storey Victorian town houses on the edge of St. Dunstan’s. They were looking for advice as to what kind of property they should buy, but they particularly wanted it to be on their side of the City (West / North West of Canterbury’s city centre.

I initially looked at the detached houses in the St. Stephen’s area. The average value of a four bed detached property in the St. Stephen’s area is £438,800. The four beds rent on average for £1,351 per month, giving us an average yield of 3.69%. I then considered the Hales Place area further up St. Stephen’s hill on the right hand side. Semi-detached houses and town houses are worth on average £225,100 here and rent for around £1,174 per month, giving a much better yield of 6.26%, which is proportionally just over two thirds (or 69% to be precise) more than St. Stephen’s.  This is because Hales Place is very popular with the student population of the city considering its proximity to the University.  With student lettings rooms are rented on an individual basis, this gives a much higher return.  Therefore with yields of nearly double St. Stephen’s, surely this is the best place to invest your money in?

However, to judge a rental investment, you must consider the capital growth as well as the yield. Since 2001 the average Hales Place property has risen by 55.5%, whilst St. Stephen’s values, have risen by 110.5%. Ultimately, we found both areas to be a good investment depending on your own situation, but as you can see, Hales Place does offer better yields, but at the expense of better capital growth which St. Stephen’s offers.  

If you are a landlord, new or old, we’re certainly more than happy for you to pop in and see us at our offices on Watling Street for advice on where to buy in Canterbury or email me on david.anthony@martinco.com

Monday, 17 November 2014

Student let worth taking a look at, with a 6.35% yield potential

Readers of my blog will know my view on student properties within the Canterbury area, which quite simply is right place and right standard, i.e. as long as the property is in the right area and it's finished to a high standard, then there should be no problem in letting the property. In converse, if the property is in the wrong place and is in a poor state, then it won't rent. It's that simple.

Therefore, when I was looking through Rightmove this morning, this property caught my attention. At the moment, it ticks one box, i.e. right place and with a bit of TLC, the other box should be ticked!

It's on with Your Move at £170K, in Nethersole Close. It's a 3 bed apartment and should rent out to students at a minimum of £900 per month. This combination will deliver a yield of 6.35%. This being said, we are renting out a number of similar properties in the same area for £1100 per month. On this basis, the yield then moves to a very healthy 7.76% yield.


Check it out at http://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-49112870.html

Should you wish to discuss any other specific properties or just a general chat re the current market, please feel free to contact me on 01227 455717 or call in and see me at 23 Watling Street in Canterbury.

Wednesday, 12 November 2014

Canterbury vs Whitstable .. the tale of two very different property markets



I was talking to one of my landlords from Blean the other week, when we were looking over a few properties that he was considering to buy in Canterbury or Whitstable. As I cover both Canterbury and Whitstable from my office I was able to discuss the two places in depth. Over the last five to ten years I have noticed an interesting pattern in the house prices between these two places.   Property values have always been very similar between the two, but Canterbury has always been a more expensive town to buy in comparison to Whitstable, but depending on what type of property you buy, there are some fascinating differences.

A few weeks ago we said the average value of a property in Canterbury was £294,600 whilst in Whitstable, it was £301,700.  Interestingly, property values in Canterbury over the last year have increased by 9.2% but in Whitstable they have increased by an even more impressive 13.25%.  Currently that means that property values in Whitstable are 2.4% higher than Canterbury.  However, when you look deeper, things become even more interesting between the two. Terraced houses in Whitstable are 7.1% higher than Canterbury’s (£255,000 to £237,900), semi-detached properties are 4.1% higher in Whitstable compared to Canterbury (£262,700 to £252,100 respectively). Whilst flats are only 2.5% higher in Whitstable at £193,300 compared to Canterbury at £188,400. However, in Canterbury detached houses are in fact 16.4% higher in value at £458,200 compared to Whitstable’s £383,100. 

So why the big differences when it comes to looking at the two places as a whole? Well after investigating, it transpires that in Whitstable, there are 175.4% proportionally more detached houses than Canterbury. It is this greater supply of detached housing which means the average price is considerably lower in Whitstable compared to Canterbury.


These differing housing provisions in Canterbury and Whitstable just go to show that you need to know your marketplace and decide which is the right place for your money. If you are an existing landlord or one who is thinking of become one in Canterbury, don’t hesitate to pop by our offices on Watling Street in Canterbury or send me an email to david.anthony@martinco.com 

Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Are school's Canterbury's best kept secret?


 
 
A factor that is not always considered when purchasing an investment property is its locality to a top state school. However as recent research suggests, it could be a key factor in boosting your properties worth, as premiums for proximity to certain schools are reaching as high as 282%!


A recent survey of over 400 schools, indicated that families are putting education, in particular state school education, as a priority when buying a home. With many moving just a few miles away to enter the catchment area for their desired school. Studies show that an estimated 60% of families move to secure a quality education for their young. Proof in the pudding folks as we watched a 3 bedroom detached property in Canterbury let within hours and it let over the asking price. Yes, you guessed it, the family wanted the primary school!

The top 30 schools effect local house prices by an average of 10% of the properties worth. The results of the aforementioned survey, can only really examine the inflation in price in suburban areas, as the cost of city homes are subject to so many variables, it becomes hard to attribute changes to one factor. In turn the lowest performing 25% of schools are seeing a 19% drop in house prices, perhaps only further proof that well placed property is a ‘recession proof’ investment.

So as in investor in UK property, how can you make this news work for you? Although it could be argued that the data suggests only sale prices for homes are being effected, a rental opportunity can be an ideal alternative and an ideal investment. The thing to remember when viewing properties, is the proximity to the best schools in the county. If a property is within reasonable walking distance of a state school that has been rated ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ by Ofsted, then the value of the house should maintain. By offering a cheaper rental alternative, then you are catering for a proportion of parents that cannot afford to buy a house closer to the catchment area, but make the education of their young a priority.

It has been proven that parents are willing to pay three times the amount it would cost to send their child to private education, to move closer to a good state school. A staggering nine times the income of a British household. Which means that buyers are adding almost a third onto the average house price, if it is close to a good state school.

If you are investing in property close to a good school, then it is worth remembering that the flip side of your investment being valued against a neighbouring educational institute, is that development or change to this school could also cause your investment to change in value. Choose areas where there is a small possibility that large and unwanted low market developments will be built, altering the market and the school intake demand. It should be fairly easy to judge as large development is always less likely to occur in the more upmarket areas. Canterbury's biggest benefit is that it is relatively ring fenced by way of new developments.

The added bonus of this kind of property investment is that, if you no longer require lettings income and wish to make a cash return, demand for this kind of property means it never sits on the market for extended periods of time. With a little TLC, it’s wholly possible that a healthy return can be made quickly from this kind of ‘win-win’ investment.

Monday, 10 November 2014

Worth a look - 6% yield in Herne Bay

After a fairly quiet weekend on the property market, the following property has just been put on the market which is well worth a look.

It's been placed on the market at £129,950 with Wilbee & Sons and from the pictures, it looks OK, with nothing major to be concerned about. As ever, these are in good demand and should rent out for at least £650 pm. Therefore, with these figures, you will be looking at a yield of at least 6%. Also, there's no chain on this one, so the process should proceed fairly swiftly!

Check it out at http://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-46949023.html

 
Should you wish to discuss any other specific properties or just a general chat re the current market, please feel free to contact me on 01227 455717 or call in and see me at 23 Watling Street in Canterbury.

Thursday, 6 November 2014

5.79% yield in Herne Bay - looks fab!

Crikey, you can tell that winters arrived with a bang, with freezing temperatures and frosty windscreens, yet on this bright and sunny morning, the bargains still keep on coming!

This two bed apartment has just come on the market in Herne Bay with David Clarke. There were a couple of points that caught my eye, with the first being the price and the second being the excellent condition it appears to be in from the photographs.

Regular readers will know that these sort of properties are a firm favourite of mine, as they tick every box from an investment viewpoint. These are as follows, location, type of property, price, 'rentability' and yield. Therefore, with a price of £145K and the rent should be a minimum of £700 per month, the yield will be 5.59%. Give them a call !!

See further details at http://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-32445864.html?premiumA=true


Should you wish to discuss any other specific properties or just a general chat re the current market, please feel free to contact me on 01227 455717 or call in and see me at 23 Watling Street in Canterbury.

Wednesday, 5 November 2014

Canterbury census figures released

It seems a distant memory three years ago when we were filling in our Census Returns, but now the figures are beginning to be released, especially the statistics about property. The figures for each individual town and city have been released, so let’s look at the Canterbury City Council figures. In the city there are 60,771 households, just under two thirds of properties are owned, 66% to be precise (40,107 households) of which 21,578 don’t have a mortgage (lucky people!). Renting interests me and 10,665 householders rent their house (or 17.5% of households to be exact).

So, with just over a sixth of households being rented in the city (and the immediate villages), which is only just above the national average of 15.6%, where does that put Canterbury? For renting, Canterbury is in the top 25% of local authorities when it comes to renting (66th out of 347 authorities) but we are in the bottom 25% for social housing (Council Housing) at 222nd out of 347 local authorities.

So does that mean there is an oversupply of rental properties in Canterbury?..... quite the opposite! Demand continues to be good from quality tenants who are prepared a pay a decent rent, but only for a decent property (if you remember a few weeks back, I said the landlords in Canterbury, on average over the last year, achieved a total return of over 13.8% a year). If there were a glut of rental properties, there would be an oversupply of property to rent, driving prices down. In the lettings industry, it is recognised there will always be 5% of the rental market up for rent at any one time, which means there should be 533 properties to let today in Canterbury (5% of 10,665 as mentioned above) .. I am pleased to tell you there are only 350 as I write this article!

 Don’t get me wrong, tenants are more discerning in the properties they rent. Woodchip wallpaper and no central heating won’t cut the mustard anymore. However, present your Canterbury property to a good standard and price it right and you should do very well. If you are considering becoming a landlord or are an established landlord who is thinking of buying another property to rent out in Canterbury, please do your homework. Feel free to ask my opinion on what makes a 'decent property'. It's in my interest for you to buy the right property for you, not me. I don't charge for that opinion, because I hope you will recommend me to your friends, which in fact is the best compliment you can make.

Saturday, 1 November 2014

Faversham - 2 bedroom apartment - yielding 5.76%

As I sit here in the office, sweltering in this balmy winter heat, who would believe it's the 1st of November today. At this rate, I reckon we'll all be having barbecues on Boxing Day!!

OK, back to business......... this morning in my usual scan of the property portals, there were a number of properties that came on the market and again, one of them 'jumped' out at me as a good investment.

It's over in Faversham and has come onto the market with Your Move, at a price of £125K, which looks OK. Maybe a few thousand could be shaved off this with a bit of haggling....... and as ever, 2 bed apartments are in great demand and should rent swiftly with quality / fully referenced tenants. The rental figure should be circa £600 per month (possibly a bit more), which will give you a yield of 5.76% (at £600 per month), which is good. In addition, there's no chain with this one, so the buying process should also be fairly swift.

Check it out further at http://www.zoopla.co.uk/for-sale/details/34994866#3bQjsT2UrKbkWiy3.97 and give them a call.



Should you wish to discuss any other specific properties or just a general chat re the current market, please feel free to contact me on 01227 455717 or call in and see me at 23 Watling Street in Canterbury.

Friday, 31 October 2014

Investment alert - Herne Bay - yielding 6% on the rent!

At the moment, the 'bargains' appear to be coming from both Faversham and Herne Bay, as yet again another property has just come on the market in Herne Bay which is a real 'cracker'!!

It's just been put on the market with Miles & Barr and is being offered at £140K. As I have said many times before, such properties are in great demand by Tenants and the aspect that I love about this one, is it's location with great access to the Thanet Way. This makes it great for young professionals who lead busy lives and need to have such access.

The property looks great and would be ready to let from day one which is another tick in the box.

These will rent out at a minimum of £700 per month, which in return will give a yield of 6%, which is fab!

Check this one out at http://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-32836707.html



Should you wish to discuss any other specific properties or just a general chat re the current market, please feel free to contact me on 01227 455717 or call in and see me at 23 Watling Street in Canterbury.

Thursday, 30 October 2014

Faversham - just been reduced - yield 5.33%

We find ourselves back into Faversham for todays 'hot tip'. Interesting to note that in last Fridays Guardian, even they are saying 'Lets move to Faversham' (see the following article at  http://www.theguardian.com/money/2014/oct/24/lets-move-faversham-kent-tom-dyckhoff ) and even more interesting, their 'bargain of the week' has already sold!

Anyway, lets take a look at today's property bargain. It's located in Cyprus Road and has just been reduced down to £179,995 with Miles and Barr in Faversham. Again and very similar to the Guardian property mentioned above, these properties are in good demand. A good letting agent should get circa £800 per month for one of these properties, which would give an investment Landlord a yield of 5.33%.







Should you wish to discuss any other specific properties or just a general chat re the current market, please feel free to contact me on 01227 455717 or call in and see me at 23 Watling Street in Canterbury.