Local property market information for the serious investor

Month: May 2018

Extra Funding Is Required for Affordable Homes in Edgware

In my blog about the Edgware Property Market I mostly only talk about two of the three main sectors of the local property market, the ‘private rented sector’ and the ‘owner occupier sector’. However, as I often stress when talking to my clients, one cannot forget the third sector, that being the ‘social housing sector’ (or council housing as some people call it).

In previous articles, I have spoken at length about the crisis in supply of property in Edgware (i.e. not enough property is being built), but in this article I want to talk about the other crisis – that of affordability. It is not just about the pure number of houses being built but also the equilibrium of tenure (ownership vs rented) and therein, the affordability of housing, which needs to be considered carefully for an efficient and effectual housing market.

An efficient and effectual housing market is in everyone’s interests, including Edgware homeowners and Edgware landlords, so let me explain ..

 

An average of only 359 Affordable Homes per year have been built by London Borough of Barnet Council in the last 9 years

The requirement for the provision of subsidised housing has been recognised since Victorian times. Even though private rents have not kept up with inflation since 2005 (meaning tenants are better off) it’s still a fact there are substantial numbers of low-income households in Edgware devoid of the money to allow them a decent standard of housing.

Usually, property in the social housing sector has had rents set at around half the going market rate and affordable shared home ownership has been the main source of new affordable housing yet, irrespective of the tenure, the local authority is simply not coming up with the numbers required. If the local authority isn’t building or finding these affordable homes, these Edgware tenants still need housing, and some tenants at the lower end of the market are falling foul of rogue landlords. Not good news for tenants and the vast majority of law abiding and decent Edgware landlords who are tarnished by the actions of those few rogue landlords, especially as I believe everyone has the right to a safe and decent home.

Be it Tory’s, Labour, SNP, Lib Dems, Greens etc, everyone needs to put party politics aside and start building enough homes and ensure that housing is affordable. Even though 2017 was one of the best years for new home building in the last decade (217,000 home built in 2017) overall new home building has been in decline for many years from the heady days of the early 1970s, when an average of 350,000 new homes were being built a year.  As you can see from the graph, we simply aren’t building enough ‘affordable’ homes in the area.

The blame cannot all be placed at the feet of the local authority as Council budgets nationally, according to Full-Fact, are 26% lower than they have been since 2010.

So, what does this mean for Edgware homeowners? Well, an undersupply of affordable homes will artificially keep rents and property prices high. That might sound good in the short term, but a large proportion of my Edgware landlords find their children are also priced out of the housing market. Also, whilst your Edgware home might be slightly higher in value, due to this lack of supply of homes at the bottom end of the market, as most people move up the market when they do move, the one you want to buy will be priced even higher.

Problems at the lower end of the property market will affect the middle and upper parts. There is no getting away from the fact that the Edgware housing market is all interlinked .. it’s not called the Property ‘Ladder’ for nothing!

If you are a landlord or thinking of becoming one for the first time, and you want to read more articles like this about the Edgware Property Market together with regular postings on what I consider the best buy to let deals in Edgware, out of the many of properties on the market, irrespective of which agent is selling it, then feel free to get in touch! Email me at Steve@benjaminstevens.co.uk

If you are in the area feel free to pop into the office we are based at 194 Station Road Edgware Middlesex HA8 7AT– the kettle is always on.

Don’t forget to visit the links below to view back dated deals and Edgware Property News.

Blog – http://www.benjaminstevens.co.uk/edgware-property-blog

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/BenjaminStevensEstateAgents

Twitter – https://twitter.com/BenjamStevensEA

Website – http://www.benjaminstevens.co.uk

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Edgware Property Market – Asking Prices Down 5.4% in the Last 12 Months

The average asking price of property in Edgware dropped by 5.4% or £33,460 compared to a year ago, taking the current average asking price to £582,754 compared with £616,214 this time last year.

The overall drop in asking prices is being put down to sellers being more realistic with their pricing and looking to benefit from the impending mortgage interest rate rises later in 2018. This is great news for first, second and third time buyers in Edgware starting their property hunting in the usually active spring market this year facing the opportunity of paying less for the property of their dreams. Even better news is that whilst first time buyers also have to pay less for their property, they also have the bonus of the Chancellor stopping Stamp Duty being paid by first time buyers! 

Looking at the different sectors of the Edgware property market, splitting it down into property types, one can see what is happening to each sector of the market with regard to their average asking prices now compared to a year ago. Firstly, looking at the Pound note amounts…

 

Interestingly, when one looks at the percentages, the most movement in average asking price pressure is in the terraced property type sector.

 

Now, I must stress this overall drop in the asking prices of Edgware property doesn’t necessarily mean the value of Edgware property is going down by the same amount.

Only time will tell if the current levels of Edgware asking prices is a correction of optimistic house sellers after a couple of months of enthusiastic asking price rises in the lead up to Christmas, or is it an initial sign that property values are slipping. To judge what is really happening to the Edgware property market, I believe these asking prices must be viewed in conjunction with both the values achieved and the length of time it takes to sell the property.

Also, these figures are averages, so it might also mean less expensive types of Edgware terraced, are on the market now, this dragging the average down, compared to a year ago.

One thought I would like to share with the Edgware homeowners and landlords wanting to sell their property, is the fact they need to be aware of the competition of other people selling their homes. One factor that could be contributing to a subdued demand for local property is the progressively strained buyer mortgage affordability (i.e. banks telling people they can only afford so much on a mortgage), meaning more and more buyers are hitting their maximum on the amount they are able to borrow on a mortgage sooner than they thought.

So, what does this all mean, especially for buy to let landlords in Edgware? During these months of flux, there could be some property bargains to be had. Lower asking prices mean you are buying in better yields and potential capital growth at the same time. Many Edgware landlords pick the phone up or email me with Rightmove links, asking my opinion on the BTL potential of property. I don’t charge for that service, so if you don’t want to miss out on such opinion, follow what they do and make contact … I don’t bite!

 

If you are a landlord or thinking of becoming one for the first time, and you want to read more articles like this about the Edgware Property Market together with regular postings on what I consider the best buy to let deals in Edgware, out of the many of properties on the market, irrespective of which agent is selling it, then feel free to get in touch! Email me at Steve@benjaminstevens.co.uk

If you are in the area feel free to pop into the office we are based at 194 Station Road Edgware Middlesex HA8 7AT– the kettle is always on.

Don’t forget to visit the links below to view back dated deals and Edgware Property News.

Blog – http://www.benjaminstevens.co.uk/edgware-property-blog

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/BenjaminStevensEstateAgents

Twitter – https://twitter.com/BenjamStevensEA

Website – http://www.benjaminstevens.co.uk

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£1,524 pcm – The Average Edgware Rent

The rents paid by Edgware tenants are now standing at £1,524 per calendar month (PCM), a rise of 2.35% year on year and 0.55% higher month on month.

However, this attention-grabbing monthly rent figure masks stark differences in the various different parts of the Edgware rental market.  Demand in Edgware for high quality family homes with two or three bedrooms in good catchment areas for schools remains really robust due to tenants wanting access to the schools.  Other influencing factors that make certain areas popular are the proximity to transport links. However, I have noticed a drop in demand (and thus rents achieved) for property where the landlord hasn’t kept the property fresh; in terms of decoration, carpets, replacement windows and poor heating.

So, what does all this mean for Edgware landlords and tenants?

With the new tax rules for landlords, many believed that the number of rental properties would narrow throughout 2017, as landlords sold up their Buy to let properties and looked to invest their money elsewhere, but evidently this hasn’t happened (yet).  Feasibly Edgware landlords are re-mortgaging their Edgware buy to let properties instead, as they still believe it’s a safer investment than looking, say at the stock market?

However, demand remained strong in 2017 for Edgware private rental properties, meaning the rents being achieved were at a decent level for landlords. Keeping your outgoings low is also an important consideration and so I looked on a well-known financial services comparison site this morning and found a High Street bank offering a 5-year fixed rate for Buy to let landlords with a 40% deposit/equity for 2.17% … I can remember (as I am sure many of my readers of this blog can) when mortgage rates were at 15% – this is cheap money!

Looking at property values in Edgware, over the last 12 months and specifically at the lower of the market where buy to let landlords tend to buy their rental properties.  Flats/apartments have fallen in value by 6.44% whilst terraced properties have risen by 2.17%.

Some Edgware landlords have seen the yields they are achieving remain squeezed.

However, most landlords can start to feel assured that as capital growth in Edgware remains at a more realistic figure (good for long term stability in the property market) and long-term rents are on the rise, the overall corresponding annual return on investment (Annual ROI being annual capital + annual yield) has stabilised in all areas and is now starting to grow.

With additional people seeing renting as a long-term option, even with the challenges of the new tax regime, Edgware landlords, with the support of a good advice and opinion, should continue to see renting as a good investment vehicle.

If you are a landlord or thinking of becoming one for the first time, and you want to read more articles like this about the Edgware Property Market together with regular postings on what I consider the best buy to let deals in Edgware, out of the many of properties on the market, irrespective of which agent is selling it, then feel free to get in touch! Email me at Steve@benjaminstevens.co.uk

If you are in the area feel free to pop into the office we are based at 194 Station Road Edgware Middlesex HA8 7AT– the kettle is always on.

Don’t forget to visit the links below to view back dated deals and Edgware Property News.

Blog – http://www.benjaminstevens.co.uk/edgware-property-blog

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/BenjaminStevensEstateAgents

Twitter – https://twitter.com/BenjamStevensEA

Website – http://www.benjaminstevens.co.uk

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Edgware Millennials Have Spent £199,648 On Rent By The Age of 35

The Millennials were born between the mid 1980’s and late 1990’s thus making them between the age of around 22 to late 30’s. They are the imaginative, artistic youngsters who grew up with the newest tech and computers and who are huge aficionados of music festivals, gourmet pizzas, emoji’s, selfies and old school nostalgia. Also known as Generation Rent, many Millennials have discovered that renting is a good choice for their shelter and accommodation needs without the hassle that comes from buying a home. Nonetheless, that is not the only reason they don’t buy property. When they should be concentrating on their profession, putting down roots and starting a family, Millennials are still going through the pressure and strain of student loan liabilities whilst, at the same time, finding it tough to pay rent.

The hot topic at the moment is the cost of renting, as both political parties have seen mileage in wooing these Millennial Generation Renters. The average rent in Edgware is currently £1,484 per month making this a big-ticket item on the monthly budget. I was inquisitive to find out exactly how much Edgware Millennials will spend on rent by the time they reach their mid 30’s. The average age people leave home in the UK is 22; so looking at an Edgware 22-year-old (or Millennial) who left home in 2005 then between 2005 and today that Edgware Millennial will have shelled out £199,648 in rent.

It’s no wonder local Millennials can’t afford to buy an Edgware home given their tremendous debt. This means younger Edgware Millennials will probably carry on renting for the foreseeable future, simply because the prospect of buying a home is not yet achievable.. that is until you look more deeply at the numbers…

Looking at the chart above, the average rent of an Edgware property in 2005 was £1,093 per month (pm)  … if it had risen by inflation, today, that would be £1,540 pm. As I have already mentioned in the article, today it only stands at £1,484 per month. Looking over the last 12 years, adding up all the differences between what the average actual rent was compared to what it should have been if rent had gone up by inflation, the average Edgware Millennial tenant would have paid £206,734.

This means that an average 35-year-old Edgware Millennial tenant, who has been renting since 2005, is better off by £7,086 when comparing the actual rent paid compared to what it would have been if it had risen by inflation. In a nutshell, tenants have done well due to the sub-inflation growth in rents.

In fact, if you recall I mentioned in an article a few weeks ago, the older Edgware Millennials are starting to use those savings and are gradually shifting towards home ownership. They are finally catching up with the British homeownership dream as Bank of Mum and Dad help with the deposit. Also, the scrapping of Stamp Duty from the Government starts to kick in together with the realisation that if the 5% mortgage deposit can be scrapped together (yes, 95% first time buyer mortgages have been available since 2009), it is still a lot cheaper to buy than rent, meaning this will unquestionably drive demand for Edgware homes for sale – good news for Edgware homeowners.

… and what does this mean for Edgware landlords?

Well the vast majority of younger Millennials are still renters and I foresee this to be the case for at least the next ten to fifteen years. Landlords will need to keep improving their properties to ensure they get the best tenants and they will see a much higher rent achieved. Millennials will pay top dollar for a top dollar property. It is important to do things correctly as making money won’t be as easy as it has been over the last twenty years.  With a greater number of properties on the market .. comes greater choice. Don’t buy the first thing you see, buy with your head as well as your heart … because as I promised a few weeks ago, the first rule of Buy To Let Investment ….. “You are not going to live in the property yourself”

If you are a landlord or thinking of becoming one for the first time, and you want to read more articles like this about the Edgware Property Market together with regular postings on what I consider the best buy to let deals in Edgware, out of the many of properties on the market, irrespective of which agent is selling it, then feel free to get in touch! Email me at Steve@benjaminstevens.co.uk

If you are in the area feel free to pop into the office we are based at 194 Station Road Edgware Middlesex HA8 7AT– the kettle is always on.

Don’t forget to visit the links below to view back dated deals and Edgware Property News.

Blog – http://www.benjaminstevens.co.uk/edgware-property-blog

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/BenjaminStevensEstateAgents

Twitter – https://twitter.com/BenjamStevensEA

Website – http://www.benjaminstevens.co.uk

Continue Reading