Best Property magazine FEB 2020 ISSUE 01
millionaire entrepreneur Alfie Best sunday times rich list company valuation reaches £700 million
M P B
actor & film producer Terry Stone talks about his latest movie and property in film
s w e i v r e t in inside this edition 2020 UK property heat maps
How to Develop Land and Build Successfully
international interior designer and self made millioniare Celia Sawyer swags it up
United Kingdom Real Estate Market Outlook 2020 CBRE DOWLOAD
FREE DOWNLOAD GUIDE
MEET THE BPM COLUMNISTS
TOP TEN UK PROPERTY TIPS AND ADVICE FOR PROPERTY INVESTORS
THE TOP 10 MISTKES THAT PROPERTY INVESTORS MAKE. READ THIS VALUEABLE GUIDE ON PAGE 14
GARETH HUGHES, NATALIE AND PAULA BAILEY, CELIA SAWYER & BRADLEY CHAPMAN
ALFIEBESTPROPERTYGROWTH.COM PROPERTY TRAINING | EVENTS | MAGAZINE | INVESTMENTS
Your 2020 property foundations
04 Alfie Best revelas how he built a ÂŁ700 million pound property empire
14 The top ten property mistakes property developers make
35 United Kingdom Real Estate Market Outlook 2020
07 Alfie's hot property tips
25 Health wealth and happiness the triangle of life
22 Exclsuive with Terry Stone international film producer and actor
09 Meet the columnists who write for Best Property Magazine
30 The business coaching column with Gareth Hughes
36 UK property heat map zones. Are you in a hotspot?
BPM/ FEB 2020
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welcome from the directors We are delighted to deliver the first edition of Best Property Magazine. We warmly welcome our new columnists, contributors and advertisers. As we move forward with each publication, we aim to bring you the latest news in and around the property sector as well as some cracking interviews with property portfolio holders and property based service providers. Our magazine will always remain informative and educational in terms of content. We have just one aim "TO INCREASE YOUR PROPERTY ASSET KNOWLEDGE AND WEALTH". We are always looking for new stories of property success, challenges and pure growth to feature inside each edition of the magazine. This is just the start for #TEAMBEST as we enter the publishing sector with passion and verve. Alfie Best Property Growth Academy and Best Property Magazine are always looking to recruit, train and retain talent. Perhaps your story will take you to new property success heights? Perhaps your company will enjoy a profitable affiliation with Alfie Best's Group of companies? At Alfie Best Property Growth we say "MAKE IT HAPPEN" Best Wishes Alfie & Bradley
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All right reserved 2020. Opinions expressed are solely those of the contributors. Best Property Magazine and all subsidiary publications in the UK & Europe are officially licensed exclusively by Alfie Best Property Growth LTD trading as BPM & Best Property Magazine. No part of this magazine may be reproduced or transmitted in any way with the written permission of the publisher.
2 BPM/ FEB 2020
sunday times rich list & multi millionaire entrepreneur Alfie Best company valuation reaches £700 million A GARAGE full of Bugatti cars, a private £3.6m helicopter and holidays in one of the 11 villas he owns in Barbados are just some of the ways Alfie Best likes to spend his £285m fortune.But life hasn't always been so luxurious for the 450th richest person in Britain. The Romany gypsy was born in a caravan by the roadside, left school at 12 to sell cars and earned £70 a week as a mobile phone salesman, while sleeping rough. Alfie is fast closing in on the Queen's £370m - and it turn outs his life is just as lavish. His core business, Wyldecrest Parks, has become the largest residential park operator in Europe with 450 employees, and he has grown his empire to include nightclubs, bars, golf clubs, gin, pies and upmarket holiday rentals.Alfie's entrepreneurial success has seen him rake in millions and he now enjoys a luxury lifestyle to suit. Lavish purchases include a £3.6m seven-seater helicopter and a £1.2m limited-edition six-wheel Mercedes G-Wagon pick-up truck.Also in the driveway is a £2.7m Bugatti Chiron, £2m Bugatti Veyron and £350,000 Rolls-Royce Dawn. Then comes the property.Alfie has a £8m townhouse in North London's Hampstead, an £8.5m Surrey mansion and a 360-acre farm in Hertfordshire worth £12m. That's before the Mayfair flat is taken into account too.He decks his homes out too - key items include a £110k sofa and £45k dining table and chairs and a £12k handmade copper gold bathtub imported from Indonesia. He even spent £180k just on the kitchen of his Hampstead home, with the room alone the size of an average flat.There is also a New York pad and 11 villas in Barbados which he rents out when he's not holidaying in them.
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Alfie is fast closing in on the Queen's £370m and it turn outs his life is just as lavish. Do you have any future plans for Wyldecrest Parks that will make them stand out above all of your competition? Wyldecrest Parks has achieved so much in such a short period of time, we have achieved the ISO 9001 certification plus Home Authority Agreements with Trading Standards and the Fire Department. These are ground-breaking in themselves as we are the only park home operator to achieve these benchmark accolades. Wyldecrest Parks is the UK’s largest residential mobile home park operator but also the largest mobile home park operator that has ever been!
Alfie is fast closing in on the Queen's £370m - and it turn outs his life is just as lavish. His core business, Wyldecrest Parks, has become the largest residential park operator in Europe with 450 employees, and he has grown his empire to include nightclubs, bars, golf clubs, gin, pies and upmarket holiday rentals.Alfie's entrepreneurial success has seen him rake in millions and he now enjoys a luxury lifestyle to suit.
We are currently purchasing new parks here in the UK and the USA and have our sights set on being the largest mobile home park operator in the world that has ever been. We are looking to change people’s lives in an innovative way offering a one-stop shop of park homes, finance and insurance for all our customer needs.
BPM / FEB 2020 4
TOP PROPERTY TIPS 1. DONT PANIC You will have plenty of opportunitie to buy properties and increase your portfolios. Don't panic because when you do you will make a mistake 2. SEARCH IN PLACES WHERE OTHERS DO NOT
millionaire entrepreneur alfie best unveils plans for £4.2million mobile home park in suffolk
"work hard or work smart but make sure you work"
There are so many places that you can look for property and more importantly the times that buy them. Even when you look at school holidays and religious holidays. There are times that less people in the market to buy will put you in the pricing best buy position. 3.LEARN TO NEGOTIATE Negotiation is key to being able to not only secure the deal that you want but at the price you need to pay for it. 4. THERE MUST BE A CLEAR PROFIT There must be a clear profit. If you cannot see a clear profit then your opportunity will present a potential risk to you. Knowing when to buy and how to buy is a skill that requires patience and dedication. 5. NEVER SELL APROPERTY Never sell a property uness there is a better deal in front of you and you need the money to complete it. You will always be able to find a way to oleverge up your asset in order to grow your portfolio 6. REPEAT STEP ONE Always double check your decisions before you finally make them. This will help you avoid costly mistakes
DREAM TO BE BIGGER
COLUMNISTS Natalie Bailey the confidence column. we all need more confidence
Paula Bailey confidence with property. do you have what it takes?
Gareth Hughes taking action with business coach gareth
Bradley Chapman how we learn and why we must keep learning
Celia Sawyer interior design with passion and flair. you have to see it to make it happen
Mishu Sidhoo theÂ jedi ofÂ marketing.can you feel the marketing force?
from property to marketing and beyond meet the best property magazine columnists. bringing you columns each month on property mindset, business growth, marketing and more
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The Top Ten biggest mistakes property investors make by Bradley Chapman alfiebestpropertygrowth.com
When does a mistake become a catastrophe? When it leaves you unable to recover at all, or facing a long period of financial hardship, stress and inconvenience. That’s something that’s all too common in the property world. Nor are mistakes confined to keen start-ups in this sector, who take a wrong turn. Even the most seasoned property investors have had their eye-rolling, sweaty palm or forehead on the desk moments! Multi-millionaire global property owner Alfie Best – who heads up the Property Growth Academy that bears his name – is the first to admit that mistakes can happen, They are ideal learning opportunities and a way to refocus your business activities in a more focused and profitable way. However, they are still to be avoided! Particularly mistakes in property investments which wipe out large capital amounts that you invest or which strangle your projected rental or resale income. As with all business transaction, it can take a great deal of behind the scenes effort and planning to make money ‘overnight’. That’s true of buy to let projects, new builds or property renovations. Property investment can reap considerable rewards, but it’s not a ‘get rich quick’ scheme! Whether you gain or get pain, all hinges on proper planning and having the right attitude and insights. Which Alfie Best can help you with. This is Alfie’s guide to the ten most common mistakes in property investment. Its true value is in showing you how to avoid them!
Lack of due digilance
Mistake: Buying property that looks great….on paper! This may sound common sense but it’s shocking how often it trips up even the most-savvy property investor. An opportunity that ticks many of the right boxes - or an auction lot that appears to be a shrewd investment - turns out to be a money pit. One of the biggest errors in judgement could be relying on the recommendation of a third party – such as an investment company .There is no substitute for your own research and checks to make sure that this opportunity is ‘golden’ and not the road to ruin. That includes doing credit checks on any involved parties and seeking evidence of their future prospects too. For example, that long term tenant you inherit. Knowing that they have been successful and reliable to date is no guarantee that your income stream is a ‘given’. If you need confirmation of this, ask the landlords who had big name brands such as Thomas Cook, Toys R Us, Mothercare and Debenhams bail on their properties! The same applies to buy to let residential properties. Auction houses see many homes returning back to them (to be sold at a loss) soon after an initial sale. The purchaser bought blindly without doing enough homework. Due diligence involves doing all the research and planning that’s covered later in this guide.
Thinking with your heart or using ‘gut’ instinct
Mistake: Letting sentiment or emotion infiltrate the business decision process. Even if a piece of property resonates with you on an emotional level, it doesn’t make it a wise investment. For example, you can experience a strong pull to buy properties in your home area to show ‘just how far you’ve come’ or out of nostalgia for your youth. Alternatively, a heart wrenching back story by the property’s current owner can warm you towards an investment than demands cold hard logic. One of the most common missteps in this category is acquiring buy to let properties because the existing tenants seem ‘nice’. This is a business deal, not a philanthropic activity. The only ‘nice’ tenant is one with the ability and willingness toadhere to their lease and pay rent unfailingly. There is a lot of talk about business instinct too – ‘I went ahead because it felt right’ or ‘It hit a cord with me.’ Some of those decisions could work out well. Many don’t. There is really no substitute for hard graft, proper research and carefully measured consideration!
g n i t t e g t o N s k c u d r u o y w o r in a
Mistake: Spending large sums on the right property in the wrong location, or the wrong property in the right location! Whether you are buying an existing property or commissioning a new build, there are physical as well as financial pitfalls that need to be considered; and considered hard! Letâ€™s use a new park home development as an example. You have a fabulous piece of land available, and your demographic profiling is sound. There are abundant people in the area who are reaching retirement age, and who should be attracted to buying a home on your site. The project goes ahead, only to discover that your potential buyers dry up. It turns out your park homes are too far away from community facilities such as shops and healthcare centres. Or, too close to factories, farms or lively residential areas. Another illustration of muddled thinking is building or renovating homes for families to buy, that arenâ€™t near schools. Or, creating apartments for young professionals, that bring with them a complicated commute or poor parking. The same potential for a property mismatch can happen with commercial buy to let deals too. An older office premises may look a wise investment, but not if a shiny new workspace is opening up close by, with better access. Look at investment opportunities from every angle. Then look again. Oh, and probably a third and fourth time too.
Investment with no end goal in mind
Mistake: Not using clear vision to develop your own expectations for this business project ;or understanding the expectations of your ‘customers’. When considering any kind of property investment, you need to be crystal clear on what you are trying to achieve. For instance, is your main aim: · · · · · · ·
Steady rental income from buy to let tenancies Renovation for immediate resale Resale in five, ten, twenty years Business investment for strong returns such as park homes Pension Investment Inheritance investment The sheer excitement of owning multiple properties!
Your motivation matters, as it sets the fabric of the deal. Knowing your long-term goal helps you to set the right arrangements in place from day one. From this point, you can also delve into the mindset of your potential tenants or buyers. What are they going to want from your property investment project and in what timescale? This is marketing 101 really. Making sure you know who your customers are, and that what you’re selling will ‘push all the right buttons’ for your target market. Just to reiterate, buying property swiftly – even on the recommendation of a trusted third party – carries serious and long term risks! Go into any deal with your eyes on the prize, and whether it is truly achievable and a profitable concept.
Poor financial planning
Mistake: One of the greatest things about property investment is that you can win big, by using borrowed money. One of the worst things about property investment is that you can get badly burnt, by using borrowed money. Even if you’re sinking your own nest egg into this deal, your financial planning must be pinpoint perfect. Too many people in this field create financial projections that are not based proper analysis. For example, the cost of clearing, cleaning and decorating a residential or commercial building between tenants needs to be factored into any financial projections. As does advertising its availability and covering ‘voids’ (see below). If the balance between your equity and your commercial mortgage is not right, a wise investment today could be a disaster in the making. For instance, if you have issues with occupancy or large unexpected bills for structural deficits, you may need to refinance your property investment. Leaving you with an income that drops below your mortgage repayment levels. Have you explored the impact of changes in the interest rate? Look carefully for any fees for early settlement, which could trap you into continued ownership or prevent you from restructuring your financial arrangements. Also, take into account whether the property’s running costs could fluctuate, such as from season to season or dependent on the type of tenant you attract.
Inadequate ‘void’ planning
Mistake: Working out affordability based on maximum occupancy or continued occupancy. What happens if your property is empty during gaps between tenancies? Or, in the initial start-up phase of a park home development or multi-occupant building? Having your projections based on ‘best case scenario’ carries serious risks. There’s no hard and fast rule. Though if you work on a 70/30 principle it can make sense of an investment. Your building or buy to let home is affordable if it can be fully occupied 70% of the time, raising enough revenue to cover the 30% void. This doesn’t just apply to the buy to let property sector. If you are considering building new homes or workplaces, or renovating existing properties to re-sell, you must be 100% confident that your buyers are lined up! Or, make sure you have reserves to fall back on if a sale takes time.
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The Top Ten biggest mistakes property investors make
by Alfie Best Property Growth
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Health, Wealth and Happiness: the triangle of life
the confidence column
In order to grow, you must be fed and watered. Plants need care, the right soil, the nutrients, sunshine, carbon dioxide and water. But not all plants grow in the same place though do they? You won't find a cactus in the rainforest. They all have different needs. Just like human beings thrive in different environments. Some people like the sunshine, some people like the snow, some love to be outdoors and others prefer to work on a computer. We all have different needs, interests and things which light us up. Which is amazing! Working on yourself, becoming more productive so you can get more done, in less time, grows your confidence by proxy! But if you are not consistent with this, nothing will stick. Consistency = success Feed yourself a great amount personal development in order to lead a more successful life and you will find that things change. The compound effect will kick in. Health, Wealth and Happiness are all interlinked. The healthier you are, the more energy you will have and the more effort you are able to put into your wealth creation activities. The more you do which makes you happy, the better your mood and the more money you will make. The more money you make, the more you can improve your health, have better quality nutrition and care. The more you can do to be happier will create more abundance in your life. They al linterlink! However, it’s not always easy staying focused and on the right path. Your mind can play tricks on you, to keep you safely within your comfort zone. The trouble with that is, whilst you remain safe and comfortable, you are not going to create any magic or see any change. So how do you remain consistent?
To do better and be better for others, you must first look inside, appreciate yourself, love yourself and do good things to keep you moving forward. When you know this, you’re better able to achieve your goals. What you do on a day to day basis shows you what your real priorities are. If you say you want to make more money but you’re wasting time binging Netflix, that shows your priorities are elsewhere. It’s the same with losing weight, if you’re still eating rubbish processed food and not making the time to exercise, it shows you that you have not prioritised your health.
Here's to your happiness
e i l a t a N ey l i a B
The first thing is to know WHY you want to change your life. What goals do you have? Why do you want to achieve them? This is going to be what helps to get you out of bed in the morning, what keeps you up late at night, doing the things others won’t, so you can live how most don’t. This can be a massive overarching reason (one of mine it to help combat loneliness by creating community #bettertogether) but it also needs to be something that is solely for YOU.
Bailey Enterprises wants to help combat the growing epidemic that is loneliness in the UK. We are doing this by building not only homes, but neighbourhood communities too. We have found that people are becoming more isolated and therefore lonely. We do not believe this is an adequate way to live. We are on a mission to ahelp bring back the old style community spirit of knowing your neighbours and a sense of unity and belonging. The more we speak with others about this vision we find that people agree and want to help too. There are a vast number of charities in the UK dedicated to combatting loneliness and itâ€™s such a shame that they are needed. This is across generations too, not just the elderly as they retire or children move away. There are a growing number of entrepreneurs and stay at home Mums, Dads and people who work or live alone who are affected. Having communal spaces on our developments where activities can take place and where neighbours can get together is very important to us, and the population. We want people to build a life together, because we are better together. Paula graduated with degrees in Law and HR and has an eye for detail. 20 years of experience in the corporate world as Head of HR brings team and project management, quality customer service and smooth operations â€“ skills that have transitioned over into her property world.
Bailey Enterprises Property
Paula and Natalie Bailey are a mum and daughter team who co-founded Bailey Enterprises Property and are on a mission!
The happiness and wellbeing of others has always been important to Paula. She continues to use these qualities to bring Bailey Enterprisesâ€™ goals of bringing community and belonging together on their developments. She enjoys travelling and spending time with her daughter and business partner, Natalie. Together they hold a portfolio of properties and operate a Serviced Accommodation business. Concentration now is on creating new developments and converting commercial property into residential, bringing disused buildings back to life to provide much needed new homes. Natalie has a long held entrepreneurial spirit which she unleashed after a number of years in events management. A very driven individual, she has managed a boxing gym and is a Certified Personal Trainer, keen to support people in their health, fitness and mental wellbeing needs. Natalie is a Confidence Coach, founding Gold Star Life, and loves helping people to lead successful lives, through health, wealth and happiness coaching and mentoring. Natalie has a real zest for life. She is an explorer and loves to travel, making new friends along the way. Sheâ€™s a podcast host, covering the most essential parts of personal development in the Confidence Mastery: Unlock Your Life podcast. She is keen to help people live happy and fulfilled lives. Having a strong network and connections is important to her and she wants to bring this to Bailey Enterprises' developments with the use of community space and facilities on site. Together with her business partner, Paula, they immersed themselves in property education and mentorship to enable this vision to become a reality.
Bailey EnterprisesBailey Enterprises wants to help combat the growing epidemic that is loneliness in the UK. We are doing this by building not only homes, but neighbourhood communities too. We have found that people are becoming more isolated and therefore lonely. We do not believe this is an adequate way to live. The days of just popping to your neighbourâ€™s for a cuppa are now rare and this is something we would like to help bring back. The more we speak with others about this vision we are finding that people agree and want to help too. There are a vast number of charities in the UK dedicated to combatting loneliness and itâ€™s such a shame that they are needed. This is across generation too, not just the elderly as they retire or children move away. There are a growing number of entrepreneurs and stay at home Mums, Dads and people who work or live alone. Having community spaces on our developments where activities can take place, co working environments and cafes where neighbours can get together is very important to us, and the population. We want people to build a life together, because we are better together. Please visit our facebook page for more information.If you have any questions, please donâ€™t hesitate to get in touch.
s b e
k o o
b e c a F
Bailey Enterprises Property LtdRegistered office: Devonshire House, 60 Goswell Road, London, EC1M 7AH
Every morning you have a choice: Continue to sleep with your dreams or wake up and chase them!
The Business Coaching Column
Stop waiting for the right time to begin a property business. There isn’t one. Stop waiting for the best time to start a business in general. There isn’t one. Stop waiting for the best time to start investing. There isn’t one. I know this, because I have been through the exact same thought process. Buying property, starting a business, leaving security is a leap of faith. Every business has the same chassis. The game changes but the rules stay the same. In my experience the business only ever grows to the level of the business owner. If you want to play at higher level, you need to start with you. Show me your friends and I’ll show you your future. There are only a handful of traits successful people have. One is they are utterly ruthless with their time. The next is they keep on learning. All the time. The great man, Jim Rohn, advocated reading a book a week. Bill Gates took this advice and became the richest man in the world. If you do that as an adult, how many thousands of books would you have read by the time you retire? What advantage would that give you over others? Warren Buffet reportedly spends 5-6 hours a day reading 5 different newspapers, and combs through 500 pages offinancial documents. Unsurprisingly, he recommends investors do the same. young Elon Musk read for ten hours a day before becoming the CEO of Tesla. Where you will be in five years, depends on the people to associate with, the books you read and the action you take.
Same with property, having only one or two properties on the go at any one time is a big mistake. When I say deal flow, it needs to be more like ten. Ten properties in your pipeline at any one time. If that is not the case, your business will be stuck. Ten leads, of those 5 will be good. Of those five, two won’t the right deals for you, one will fall through.
h t e r Ga hes g u H
In property, as with any business, deal flow is fundamental. You cannot have a successful business when the leads aren’t coming in at a high rate. Most business owners I speak to have two or three lead generation strategies. When, for a growing business, you need at least ten.
The Business Coaching Column
This leaves you with 2 good deals left. This is why only having two in your funnel is a bad idea for a growing business. ‘But Gareth, my conversion rate is 90%!’. Well, it shouldn’t be. A high conversion rate tells me there aren’t enough leads coming into your business. A low conversion rate suggests you are leaking business through a poor sales/acquisition process or strategy. This is the importance of measuring the numbers in your business. Not just the financials (they are important), but every number in your business. Behind every number is a decision, and the more information you can have the better the decision will be.
When I asked why, they said they weren’t worried, it was only a small dip and carried on. The next week, it was down again. This set off alarm bells. I questioned and dug a bit deeper this time. It turned out his sales reps weren’t selling as many insurance packages as they would normally expect. This had a small effect on the financials. Turns out, the script the sales reps were using needed tweaking. We were able to put in place a new script, and guess what? Sales went back up to their usual level. One more tweak, and they actually went up. Knowing every number in your business helps you to react quickly when you see problems. It allows you to track the performance of every part of your business so you are never caught out. I help frustrated business owners put in place systems like this ensure they can grow their business effectively, holding them to account and build a business that works, so they don’t have to.
"It Takes Great Discipline to Grow Your Business" 31 BPM/FEB 2020
The more numbers you know, the quicker you’ll spot problems. I’ll give you a real-life example. I have a client who sells holidays. One week, I noticed the Average Vale Sale was down. Only by a little, the business owner hadn’t really noticed.
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United Kingdom Real Estate Market Outlook 2020 THE ECONOMY CBRE’s annual UK Market Outlook report takes a comprehensive look at the prospects for real estate in the year ahead. We cover the economic backdrop, the investment outlook, and we examine the prospects for each of the main real estate sectors. In this year’s Outlook document we also take a more focused look at three of the big drivers of real estate trends in 2020 – politics, climate change and technology.
INVESTMENT A slower start to 2020 but GDP growth will gain momentum after Q2. With job creation slowing and uncertainty weighing down business investment, the UK economy will be increasingly reliant on consumer spending and increases in productivity to support economic growth. That said, despite the negatives (Brexit uncertainty, and international risks) there are some positives (labour market, rising real wages, and a fiscal boost) providing support to growth
REAL ESTATE SECTORS In 2020, the UK Real Estate community will become more sophisticated with their technology strategies. These matured a lot in 2019, but there will be a divergence between ‘the best’ and ‘the rest’ as larger firms take bolder steps than smaller firms can manage. To help manage this, stakeholder groups will increasingly articulate their tech requirements into three more manageable and distinct activities; analytics, management and experience
Get the full report HERE Maximising the value of our clients' real estate 36 BPM/FEB 2020
Free house selling advice from for the most money possible. What to do if your house won't sell. How to sell quickly and still get a good price PropCast is a weather report showing levels of 'buyer demand' in UK housing markets. The hotter your market the quicker & easier it should be to sell your home. CHECK OUT HOW HOT YOUR AREA IS
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How Do You Develop Land? Land development is altering the landscape in a number of ways such as: Changing landforms from a natural or semi-natural state for a purpose such as agriculture or housing Subdividing real estate into lots, typically for the purpose of building homes Real estate development or changing its purpose, for example by converting an unused factory complexd Development Securing a site to build and sell houses on brings about a unique set of challenges. The three most important property factors are location, location and location.
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Land Development Guidlines Finding the land in the first place Location is even more important when choosing a site as the quicker you sell the plots on the better, and the speed of sale can mean the difference between good profits and going out of business. When you are choosing a site, it is important that you try and anticipate every problem and deal with it before you buy the site. When you come to sell, solicitors are likely to raise the problem. You need to assume that your buyer will choose the most awkward and slowest solicitors in the country. You need to anticipate their every whim and pre-empt their questions. If your lawyer can produce a detailed pack about the property in which you have addressed every problem and found a solution, it will be tempting for the lawyer acting for your plot buyer to rely upon that. Hopefully, he/she will not be able to raise any additional questions as all problems will already have been covered.
Before you instruct your solicitor Before you even start the legal process, you need to think about a whole range of issues. It may be that you get your lawyer involved if one of these is a potential problem. Many of these points will be considered by your solicitor in any event, but they are the sort of thing that can stop you buying the plot in the first place, so the sooner you think about them, the better.
Rights of way and access to the site How will you get to and from the site? If it relies upon a right of way, you need to be sure that this will be sufficient to allow access to all the eventual owners of the plots. A right of way over a lane for one cottage will not automatically allow you to build 40 houses and use that right of way as the means of access for all the owners.
If the development is more than a few plots, you will certainly need to enter into some sort of road agreement with the Local Highways Authority. This will involve you satisfying them that the roads are built to a certain standard, so that they will eventually adopt them (i.e. take responsibility for them). This agreement will normally need to be backed by a bond - the bank will join in the agreement and guarantee that, should your company go into liquidation, it will pay for any necessary corrective works on the road.
Sewers and drainage This will generally be dealt with in much the same way as the roads - you will need to make sure that the relevant water authority will take over the maintenance of the sewers after they have been constructed. At the time of construction, it is also worth bearing in mind the route of the sewers on the individual plots - this may require additional rights to be put in all the transfer deeds, to allow them to run under adjacent plots.
Boundaries Having a development next to their property can frequently bring out the worst in people. You therefore need to be clear about where the boundaries are. If this is not clear, then meet the neighbours and try and agree where the boundaries are. It is worth doing this before you buy the land, as you want to make sure this sort of problem is sorted out by the seller, or that a reduction in the price is made to cover the cost of such negotiations.
Planning consent This will be your responsibility. Remember when dealing with the council that decisions frequently have to go before committee, and that this can take time. You may find it advantageous to visit the committee meetings to see what goes on.
The land itself You need to make sure the land is not on a flood plain (especially in view of the problems with this in recent years). You also need to make sure that the land is not contaminated. Trees can often be a problem on a new development - you will need to check which (if any) trees are affected by a tree preservation order. This information will be shown on your local authority search, but you may wish to check with the council at an early stage - this information could well affect the layout of the plots.
Survey You will need to instruct a surveyor to come out and value the site and advise on any particular areas about which you are concerned. Make it clear to the surveyor that you are intending to develop the site, and the number of plots you are intending to build.
Construction guarantee In order for you to sell the property on, you will need to be able to provide the buyer with some sort of security that it has been built properly. This will be in the form of a guarantee such as NHBC, Zurich, HAPM,or an architect's certificate. If it is the latter, the buyer's solicitor will often want to see details of the architect's insurance policy and be satisfied that it covers subsequent buyers. It is worth mentioning this to the architect at an early stage to make sure he or she doesn't charge any extra for having this level of cover.
Insurance Initially there will be little to insure on the land, but you will need to have insurance in place to ensure that all the properties are insured (for their rebuilding cost) up until the date they are sold.
The Purchase Itself
This follows the same steps as buying an individual property. Additional comments have been added to indicate important issues to consider because of the planned development.
STEP 1 Your solicitor will firstly contact the seller's solicitors and ask for an information pack about the property you are buying. This consists of: A copy of the title deeds, a contract a property information form (and, if it is leasehold, an additional property information form) a fixtures, fittings and contents form. It may take a while for the seller's solicitors to get hold of all this information. In addition, your solicitor will need to carry out local authority, water, and (if the property is in a mining area) mining searches. Searches are simply a list of questions about the property that are sent to the relevant authority. As it is a piece of land, the seller will not normally provide a property information form (as it deals with issues raised as a result of living at a property, it is not really relevant anyway), or a fixtures, fittings and contents form. Instead, your solicitor should raise some enquiries with the seller's solicitors about the land. These enquiries will chiefly deal with the issues mentioned above (such as boundaries, rights of way). Your solicitor may wish to wait until he or she receives the contract and copy of the deeds before raising these enquiries.
STEP 2-3 Step 2 The only other thing your solicitor will need before proceeding is a copy of your mortgage offer (if applicable). Once the firm has the contract, copy of the title deeds, property information form, fixtures, fittings and contents form, local authority search, water board search, mining search (if applicable), and mortgage offer (if applicable), you can move on to step three. Some of the key things your solicitor will be looking out for on the title deeds are: restrictive covenants limiting the number of properties that can be built on the land, rights of way across the land, and checking the seller owns what they are trying to sell to you. Step 3 Your solicitor will go through all the above documents with you and explain any problems there may be with the property (this can either be done face to face or by a written report on the property). Once you are satisfied that there are no major problems then you can sign the contract and let your solicitor have a deposit (if you are selling as well, then this is generally not needed, as your solicitor can use the one they will receive on your sale). You are then ready to exchange contracts. Before committing you to the purchase, it is a good idea (depending upon the size and complexity of the development) for your solicitor to visit the site to see if there are any particular issues that need to be dealt with. In addition, it is quite common for contracts to be exchanged conditionally upon receipt of satisfactory planning consent. This way, if the consent is refused, or if unreasonable conditions are imposed, then you can withdraw from the transaction even though contracts have been exchanged.
STEP 4-6 Step 4 Once the buyer and the seller are ready, a completion date (the moving date) will be agreed. Your solicitor will then exchange contracts (this simply means swapping the contract signed by the seller for one signed by the buyer - together with a deposit provided by the buyer). After contracts are exchanged, the contract is binding and neither party can withdraw without incurring massive expense (unless the exchange was conditional upon something, such as satisfactory planning consent). Step 5 On the completion date, your solicitor will hand over to the seller's solicitor the remainder of the purchase money and, in return, receive the transfer document and the title deeds. Step 6 Your solicitor must then, within 28 days, arrange for the payment of stamp duty (if appropriate) and, within two months of the completion date, apply to register the buyer's ownership at the Land Registry.
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Wlecome to BPM (Best Property Magazine). Our fully digitally interactive property magazine experience. We cover everthing from land to plann...
Published on Jan 6, 2020
Wlecome to BPM (Best Property Magazine). Our fully digitally interactive property magazine experience. We cover everthing from land to plann...