PropVestment launches Princess Road West : 35 Luxury Apartments in Leicester

PropVestment proudly presents the launch for sale to the public of 35 luxury apartments in the heart of Leicester.

Converting the former University of Leicester offices in to contemporary apartments, and retaining the character of period buildings in central Leicester.

For pricing and inquiries email: info@propvestment.com

 

Starting from £95,000

LOCATION

The site is strategically positioned in the heart of Leicester City. It falls under the authority of Leicester City Council.

The site is a few minutes’ walk to the railway station, De Montfort University, Leicester Royal Infirmary, University of Leicester and the pedestrianised Leicester Town Centre.

IBMs new offices that are creating 300 new job is a one-minute walk from the site.

Rail links from Leicester Station offer services to London St Pancras of just over an hour, and about 50 minutes to Birmingham.

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

development finance

Case Study: Can’t get development finance

We were approached recently by a landowner who had obtained planning permission on a parcel of her land, adjoining a business premises.

She had no development experience, and required help to raise the development finance and project manage the development.

Attempt 1

We approached the “usual” development lenders but were unsuccessful.
They were unwilling to lend to someone with no experience, and on a “small” £300k building contract.

Attempt 2

Then we secured lending based on PropVestments’ track record from one lender, to undertake the project as a joint venture. However this was the week leading to BREXIT, and so at the last minute even this lender pulled the plug.

Attempt 3

Another development lender, however their rates were comparable to bridge lending and to make matters worse, their lead time was 6-8 weeks for credit approval.

Solution: Non traditional Development Finance

Finally PropVestment arranged finance with a private bridge funder, with favourable rates and monies disbursed within a few days. To make matters even better, the bridge was structured like development finance with monitoring surveyor sign off in stages. This means the landowner does not have to pay the interest on the full amount like many other bridge loans.

The build process is well underway, a happy land owner, and solution provided in a tricky situation.

Development can be undertaken by anyone, with the right guidance and partners you can make a success of it. Do not be intimidated by rigid lenders and red tape.

PropVestment can help project manage, secure development finance and recommend contractors and property professionals. 

  • Do you have a plot of land which has development potential?
  • Do you need advise in how to maximise the potential value of your land?
  • Do you need help securing development finance?

We have experience and the professional network that can ease the stresses of property development and allow you to realise the returns hidden in your property.

Development finance

brexit uk property market

#Brexit Impact on UK Property Market

In light of the LEAVE decision from the EU referendum there may be effects on the UK property market.

The headlines:

The immediate impact has been market uncertainty, the FTSE has dropped approx. 10% since the decision was announced and major house builders like Taylor Wimpey, Permission, Barratts, and Berkley Homes have all lost between a third and half their value.

Further the sterling has dropped against the dollar from 1.50 to 1.30 and that is still falling.

Interest Rates

The EuroZone base rate is already negative and some experts are expecting the Bank of England to drop the UK base rate to zero to boost the economy and this may be further pushed in order to keep inflation low in the light of the currency falls which will impact the cost of imports.

The Bank of England will want to encourage investment in the economy therefore rates will remain low.

Supply

There has been an increase in construction activity over the past 24 months, buoyed by relaxation of some planning laws and extension of permitted development rights.

Although the market impact on large house builders, they will still want to complete projects, even if new project starts are delayed.

Demand

There are many factors that influence demand and attractiveness for housing in the UK that are not EU related, such as depth of skills, education, lifestyle and language. Further to this, supply is always below demand with an increase in the number of households and smaller family units. The affordable end of the market will continue to have the highest demand.

High end property, in particular may see an increase in demand as Dollar based Middle east and Asian investors will now consider the short term buying opportunities within the property market and look to acquire residential property priced above £1million. The currency correction more than compensates for the changes in stamp duty which had previously discouraged high value property transactions.

House Prices

House prices will depend on regional factors and differences. Some regions may see a correction some may stagnate; however it is too early to speculate specifics.

Rental Market

Rental market is linked to employment as well as affordability and ability of renters to become home owners. The rental market especially in London and the South East is also heavily influenced by migrant workers and students, depending on how working rights and students will be impacted will determine long term effects.

Lending

The measures in the budget in April already discourage buy to let purchases, therefore banks currently have more than the usual surplus to lend, this is reflective in the record low rates on the market.

Lenders may tighten criteria especially on rental expectation but overall lending should not be adversely effected in the short run.

Investment

Investment especially in buy to let has slowed since the introduction of measures in the budget, however with lower interest rates expected, as well as the drop in sterling, investing in the UK is now cheaper, together with the low savings rates in banks, property investment is by far the better investment.

Conclusion

Overall Article 50 will only be exercised after a new leader is elected and then after 24 months will Britain actually leave, therefore uncertainty may remain till then end of 2018, however not much else will change.

The UK Property market will remain resilient and still a strong place to invest.

S106 update: Exemption held for development sites with 10 or less units

The Court of Appeal ruling on the exemption of small residential sites (10 homes or fewer) from affordable homes obligations has been published on Monday 16th May 2016. 

Reading Borough Council and West Berkshire District Council quashed this Government policy, through winning a High Court ruling in July 2015.

However, today the government has won the legal challenge in the Court of Appeal. Consequently the Planning Policy Guidance text has been reinstated.

No affordable housing provision or contribution is therefore required for small scale developments, incorporating schemes of 10 or less units (five dwellings in designated rural areas), or a maximum gross floor space of 1,000 sq m. CIL contributions will still be required for these proposals where CIL has been adopted.

 

Definition from York University

Section 106 (S106) of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 allows a local planning authority (LPA) to enter into a legally-binding agreement or planning obligation, with a land developer over a related issue. The obligation is sometimes termed as a ‘Section 106 Agreement’.

Such agreements can cover almost any relevant issue and can include sums of money. Possible examples of S106 agreements could be:

• The developer will transfer ownership of an area of woodland to a LPA with a suitable fee to cover its future maintenance

• The local authority will restrict the development of an area of land, or permit only specified operations to be carried out on it in the future e.g., amenity use

• The developer will plant a specified number of trees and maintain them for a number of years

• The developer will create a nature reserve

S106 agreements can act as a main instrument for placing restrictions on the developers, often requiring them to minimise the impact on the local community and to carry out tasks, which will provide community benefits.

Stamp Duty rise won’t kill property investment

On the 1st of April 2016, the “Landlord Tax” or stamp duty surcharge comes into affect of a 3% surcharge for anyone buying a second home or an investment or buy to let property.

However what will be the impact for the property investor? Will it reduce prices or first time buyers? Will the extra cost be passed on to renters? Will the UK property market crash?

Today the ONS released statistics that property prices are rising 6.7% year on year in 2015, and that is 9.4% in the UK. So in effect and extra 3% is the same as if you delay the purchase of your property in London by 4 months, or alternatively you will cover the cost by the increase in prices within 4 months.

Stamp duty increaseWell this is not exactly the case as usually a buy to let investor puts in about 25% deposit, and stamp duty is not covered by the mortgage value, so really the buyer needs that much extra cash available.

In this case an investor may try to pass on the additional cost to the renter. This will be a completely possible strategy and the property market will allow it. However will this make up the difference. For example a residential property yielding 6%, there for a 3% stamp duty surcharge would mean 6 months rent. If the Landlord increases rents by say 10% then it will take 5 years to recover the surcharge.

But, and its a big but, with the FTSE being volatile and the interest rates not likely to rise anywhere near enough to compete with property, an investors best place to invest is still property.

In conclusion the stamp duty surcharge will not really put investors off, it will just increase rents and increase the tax revenue.  

Stamp duty

Do you want to avoid the stamp duty surcharge?

Look into other options for property investment. Contact us we have a number of opportunities where you can invest in property development deals, with profit shares or fixed incomes. Contact info@propvestment.com

 

Sources:

BBC Article

 

Office to residential conversionx

Office to Residential Conversion made permanent

The Prime Minister announced today that the Permitted Development Rights that enabled office to residential conversion without full planning permission is set to be made permanent. The scheme with initially ran from 2013 to May 2016 will be extended indefinitely.

In other boosts for house building today, the PM is also announcing that a temporary rule introduced in May 2013 allowing people to convert disused offices into homes without applying for planning permission will be made a permanent change – after almost 4,000 conversions were given the go ahead between April 2014 to June this year.

This is great news for potential buyers of homes as well as property developers and all professionals connected to the industry. It will mean an flood of new development sites to the market and an increase in available housing stock. This should start to be realised within 12 to 18 months, the usual length of time required to convert a building.

Office blocks are usually in inner city location or near transport links making them ideal locations for residential units. Perfect for young buyers who rely on these links. Furthermore converted building are typically cheaper than new builds and many often come with a character that new builds just do not.

We at PropVestment are actively looking for office sites to convert into residential units, please email nirav@propvestment.com.

Office to residential conversionx

CDM

CDM Regulations 2015

From 6th April 2015, the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2007 were replaced by the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015 (the “Regulations”).

The Regulations are intended to be less bureaucratic than the previous regulations and to improve the planning and management of projects from the start.

CDM changes

The Regulations brought about key changes, which include:

  • Introduction of Principal Designers to replace CDM Co-ordinators
  • Inclusion of domestic clients
  • Clients having to undertake more duties
  • Changes in notification thresholds
  • Requirement for all projects to have a written Construction Phase Plan
  • Abolition of the Approved Code of Practice
  • Contractors and designers are to ensure that they have the necessary skills, knowledge and experience to fulfil their roles and the person appointing them has to satisfy themselves of this also

CDM 2015 creates a new duty holder, the Principal Designer (PD) 

In many cases this will be the architect who on the majority of projects is appointed first by the client but not always. The HSE think that some designers will not want to take on the functions of the PD and many would not be capable of doing so for all but the smallest of projects.

The PD must be a designer as defined in the Regulations, i.e., anyone who as part of their business (a) prepares or modifies a design; or (b) arranges for, or instructs any person under their control to do so.
A “design” is widely defined to include specifications, bills of quantities and calculations prepared for the purposes of a design.

The HSE consider that “Chartered Surveyors and Technicians” are also “designers” under CDM 2015. Equally, anyone who selects a product for use or develops a detailed design which is then manufactured for a project is also treated as a designer according to the guidance.

A six-month transitional period is in place from 6 April – 6 October 2015.

What does this mean for current construction projects during this transitional period?

In this period, special provisions will apply before the Regulations take full effect across the board. Such provisions apply during the transitional period as follows:

  1. Projects where as at 6 April 2015, the Construction Phase has started, no CDM Co-ordinator is in place and where there is more than one contractor:
  • a Principal Designer may be appointed in writing by the Client (but this is not obligatory);
  • a Principal Contractor must be appointed in writing by the Client as soon as reasonably practicable;
  • the Principal Contractor must draw up a Construction Phase Plan, or make arrangements for one to be drawn up as soon as reasonably practicable;
  • where the Client has not appointed a Principal Designer, the Principal Contractor must also prepare the Health and Safety file as soon as reasonably practicable and ensure that it is reviewed, revised and updated from time to time;
  • where a Client has failed to appoint a Principal Contractor, in commercial projects, the Client must fulfil the duties of Principal Contractor and in domestic projects, the Principal Contractor is deemed to be the contractor “in control of the construction phase”.
  1. Projects where as at 6 April 2015, a CDM Co-ordinator has been appointed by the Client and where there is more than one contractor:
  • the CDM Co-ordinator appointment continues until a Principal Designer is appointed by the Client;
  • the deadline for the Client to appoint a Principal Designer is 6 October 2015 (unless the project comes to an end before that date);
  • until such appointment is made, the CDM Co-ordinator will take on additional duties as set out in Schedule 4(5) of the Regulations which largely cover the role of the intended Principal Designer;
  • where the Client fails to appoint a Principal Designer by 6 October 2015, the Client is to take on the responsibilities relating to the Health and Safety Plan and must assist the Principal Contractor in preparing the Construction Phase Plan.
  1. Projects with only one contractor:
  • there is no requirement for the appointment of a Principal Designer;
  • the contractor must draw up a Construction Phase Plan or make arrangements for one to be drawn up as soon as reasonably practicable.

Make sure you are CDM 2015 compliant. These regulation changes effect the smallest projects to the largest. At PropVestment we can advise and recommend professionals who can ensure you are compliant and can take on the Principal Designer role for you.

 

 

UK Property Lending now available

Mortgage approvals help property market activity

After a few years of stagnation in the UK property market due to lack of lending  it seems there is some light finally.

UK Property Mortgage LendingOn Thursday 20th June the Guardian reported:

Mortgage lending jumped 21% in May, the sharpest rise since October 2008, suggesting Britain’s housing market once again has a spring in its step.

The Council of Mortgage Lender’s gross lending figures, which reveal the value of loans advanced without taking into account repayments, showed £14.7bn of mortgages were taken out during May, up from £12.2bn in April. The figure was also 17% higher than the £12.6bn seen in May 2012, aided by government schemes to boost lending.

Does this mean the Funding for Lending and Help to Buy schemes are working?

PropVestment’s client have had experiences that surprisingly agree, however there seems to be discrepancies across lenders.

One client of ours had a mortgage approved in principle by Santander. He had good credit, was buying below value and was putting in 30% of the money himself too. After two months waiting for Santander to send a surveyor over to value the property, a job most of us could do using Land Registry and Zoopla data, Santander say they have had a re-think and do not need a surveyors report. Santander pulled the plug.

Fortunately this deal was not part of a chain, and the seller was understanding. However due to poor business practises Santander could cost the industry dearly.

Our client returned to us, we put him in touch with our favoured mortgage broker, who went to the Halifax. Halifax approved, surveyed and letter of offer within 7 days.

We were surprised at the speed of response of Halifax. Previously we have not had such good experiences with the government owned banks since the credit crunch. LloydsTSB part of the HBOS group has usually been responsive with Natwest and the RBS group being the worst. Our client’s experience and a few others we have heard with Santander now put them firmly on the unfavoured list.

Money talks in this industry, if lending is available without unnecessary hassle, any bank will gain a strong reputation and foothold in the market.

We welcome your thoughts on the topic of lending in the property market and inparticular perspectives from other parts of the country. Email info@PropVestment.com

If you are having trouble getting finance for your property, we have a great range of mortgage advisers that can assist you.

 

Lending holding back property investment in London

Stringent lending stopping property investment

Property Investment stopped by lending

It has been a long standing observation that one of the main reasons the UK property market is struggling is due to the lack of funding in the market place.

We have had a series of funding schemes proposed by the government and other institutions to encourage property investment. These include the likes of NewBuy, FirstBuy, and Funding For Lending.

Funding for Lending is the latest scheme to encourage lending where the banks can borrow cheaply provided they lend it out to the public, be it as mortgages or commercial lending.

FirstBuy and NewBuy is primarily restricted to new builds, which benefit constructors but represent a very small proportion of the property on the market.

Over the last few weeks at PropVestment we have been working on a deal for a young professional first time buyer. However we have it a brick wall with strict, inflexible, non-subjective lending criteria by all the major lenders.

*Due to confidentiality and to protect our exclusive property sources, details on this article will be disguised
 

The investment property

Property Investment in Elephant & CastleLOCATION – Elephant & Castle – Zone 1 – London

  • Elephant & Castle has £1.5 Billion being spent for regeneration.
  • 2 mins walk to the London Underground and Bus stations.
  • Opposite the famous “Strata Building”

 PROPERTY

 

2 Bed Duplex in Ex-council block, currently under full refurbishment.

  • Each leaseholder has spent almost £40k for new concierge, lifts, windows
  • Elephant & Castle - Property next to Strata20th floor with views of London, from the Gherkin, Canary Wharf, O2,  Shard, all the way to Crystal Palace.
  • Large Balcony. Full wall to wall windows across all rooms.
  • 118 Year Lease

Rental expectation – upto £1500 per month currently. PropVestment predicts this will hit £2000 in 5 years. Strata building demands this level for smaller compatibles.

Asking price – £220,000

Gross Yield is over 8%

If lending 75% Purchase Price, there for deposit £55,000
If mortgage at 4% repayment over 20 years £1011 installment per month
Surplus for Buyer after mortgage £5868 per annum.
10.7% return on cash invested annually

 

The First Time Buyer

  • Mid twenties
  • £50,000 savings, plus £10,000 promised contribution from family
  • £40,000 a year salary before bonus.
  • Over £2000 monthly saving after expenses
  • City working professional, currently living with parents
  • Buying either to stay in and share or rent out fully.

Why the banks won’t lend?

  •  Ex-council
  • Concrete & Steel Construction

If the councils have approved a £40 million refurbishment of the block, clearly there is no risk to the building. Considering most of the block is still council owned they would not put so much of their own money in an unsafe building.

Being Ex-council ensures that maintenance is always prompt and reasonably costed.

The banks have very little risk here because the rental will cover the mortgage repayment by 135%, the usual criteria for Buy to Lets is currently 125%.
The buyer has £2000 disposable income every month, for any major shortfall or unforseen circumstance.

PropVestment’s Thoughts

After all this and almost a model buyer, why are the banks not lending?
Banks are given cash via the Funding for Lending scheme and still are not making it available to the public.

By the banks not lending, we, as in property professionals, end up having to offer such properties to cash buyers from abroad.
Ideally we want young property owners from the UK, however due to the circumstances the only investors that can afford to pay full cash are foreigners. This means that the profits also get taken out and do not recirculate in the UK economy.

The government must do something to ensure banks lend to boost UK home grown property investment.

For any property investment advise, analysis, deals or thoughts, contact us today for a no obligation chat. Sharing thoughts and ideas is how we progress.

 

First time buyers face scarce supple due to council property

London’s housing problem for First Time Buyers

Why First Time Buyers find it hard to buy in London

  • High Prices
  • Shortage of Properties
  • Difficult lending
  • SOLUTION – Sell council properties in Zone 1 & 2

This article discusses the various issues in the London housing market, addressing high property prices, housing shortages and high rentals. Linking these factors to the reasons why first time buyers are facing an uphill struggle.

I have lived in London my whole life and professionally work in the property industry with my company PropVestment. The aim is to provide information, analysis and property related services for investors. From my experiences in this field and from living in London my whole I make some observations.

First Time Buyers Problem:

Too high prices and shortage of properties

First time buyers should be able to buy ex- councilThe first thing that caught my eye this week was an article titled “London councils breaking B&B stay limit for families” on the BBC News website. The main thing I understood from this article is that Westminster council has broken the law by not housing 134 families into housing and not B&Bs within 6 weeks. The main take on the article as reported is housing shortage.
However, why are there so many demanding housing in Westminster, arguable the most expensive borough. Surely if you are in need of accommodation you should take or be given where available and not be given location preferences.

Read more