Ho l i d a y Co mp lexes stags.co.uk
Launceston 01392 680058
Meet the Stags Holiday Complexes team NICK SMITH Head of Holiday Complexes dept
CATHERINE BARNES Property negotiator
BEN STEPHENS Partner and valuer
BECKY SHEAVE Marketing manager
Taunton Yeovil Wellington
ello and welcome to a magazine that, I’m sure you’ll agree, is packed full of practical and informative advice for anyone planning to buy or sell a holiday complex this year. But first up, what is a holiday complex? Well, according to our definition here at Stags, it’s a property with more than three holiday letting units and (usually but not always) an owner’s property as well. Within that definition, you’ll find everything from a Georgian rectory with converted stables to a modern home with timber lodges. If you are looking for such a property in the West Country, or planning to sell one, then here at Stags we have a dedicated department to help you. With a wealth of experience and local knowledge right across Devon, Cornwall, west Dorset and west Somerset - not to mention our In 2017, we London office - we are ideally positioned to connect buyers achieved 99% and sellers and achieve great of the guide results for both. So how is the holiday complex property market price for our faring? The short answer is, very clients. The well indeed. In the past year, market is our average guide prices here at Stags were up 25% on 2016 and thriving viewings rose 15% in the same period. Last year, we achieved an average of 99% of the guide price for our clients. It’s fair to say, the market is thriving. In this edition we have a wealth of information, plus some wonderful properties for sale. Malcolm Bell of Visit Cornwall tells us about the future of selfcatering tourism (p12). Also sharing his expertise with us is Patrick Kielty of The Travel Chapter (p13), on boosting the revenue of your holiday complex. Whether you are buying or selling a holiday business, the tax implications are paramount. They have also changed a great deal just recently. Here to steer you through the maze is John Endacott (p8) author of the book ‘Furnished Holiday Lettings: a Tax Guide’. Above all, if you are thinking of buying or selling a holiday complex in 2018, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us here at Stags.
NICK SMITH Head of Holiday Complexes department, Stags
‘We found our dream property’ Catherine Barnes of Stags explains how buying a home with holiday accommodation through Stags has allowed one couple to change their lifestyle – for the better
fter 13 years of living in the Middle East, 18 months ago Melanie and Darren Barwick decided to make a huge lifestyle change and return to the UK with their two teenage daughters. Between Christmas 2016 and New Year they viewed Warden Farm in North Tawton, west Devon, which was being marketed by Stags Holiday Complexes department. The property consists of a fivebedroomed farmhouse on the edge of the village, with four holiday cottages, all set half an hour’s drive from Exeter. Buying a property in England while they still lived in the Middle East (and the owner lived in Eastern Europe!) meant that the conveyancing process needed
to be highly organised. Copious emails Darren adds: “We have plans for the and phone calls ensured matters were future as we have another building dealt with promptly and within three which could be converted into a months they were the new holiday cottage and we’re owners of Warden Farm. considering shepherd’s huts Darren and Melanie have on our land as well.” transformed the farmhouse So, has it all been ‘It’s fantastic worthwhile? “Our lives are with the help of an architect and have completed their 1000% different!” says to focus first season of the business. Melanie. “We’ve left very more on our intensive careers in Abu “We have spent a great deal of time making Dhabi and Dubai and now family and significant improvements it’s fantastic to focus more home, with to the cottages in terms of on our family and home furnishings, bedding and and with our business on no lengthy decoration,” says Melanie. our doorstep there’s no commute’ “Now we are ready to focus lengthy commute to work on the external works. We any more. It was definitely use an agency to market and handle the the right move for us to make.” lettings which works well due to their To book a stay at Warden Farm contact wider reach.” Melanie and Darren on 07508 185550
Finding your future home Make this the year you transform your work/ life balance by moving to a beautiful property that generates a healthy income. Here is just a small selection of the holiday complex properties for sale now with Stags. For our full range and further details please visit stags.co.uk 2. Somerton, Somerset Guide price ÂŁ900,000 This charming four-bedroomed period farmhouse with three cottages sits on the edge of a thriving village and comes with character features and a large garden. One of the cottages is attached to the main farmhouse and could be used as an annexe, a separate residential property for family members or as a holiday let. There are also two self-catering holiday cottages, wellmaintained gardens and stables with small paddock. EPC Band F.
3. Hartland, Devon Guide price ÂŁ1,050,000 The three holiday cottages that come with this property are rated 5-star. The ownerâ€™s accommodation is an attractive farmhouse with four/five bedrooms. This property is ideally placed for tourism, set in a rural location close to the rugged North Devon and Cornish coastline but just five minutes from the A39 North Atlantic Highway. The 10.5 acres include paddocks, gardens, an orchard, stables and farm buildings. EPC Band D.
With ten 5-star holiday cottages, this stunning property has great income potential 1. South Hams, Devon Guide price £3,000,000 Could you see yourself in this fivebedroomed Georgian farmhouse in the sought-after South Hams area of South Devon? With ten 5-star holiday cottages, this stunning property has great income potential and there is also planning permission for six shepherd’s huts for extra visitor accommodation. The excellent facilities include an indoor swimming pool, a full-size, all-weather tennis court and games room. Sited in a pretty hamlet, the property comes with about 10.8 acres which includes lakes, woodland and paddocks. EPC Band F.
4. Norton sub Hamdon, Somerset Guide price £1,495,000 This holiday business has been running successfully since the 1980s, with four holiday cottages and four apartments. The beautiful four-bedroomed owner’s home was built around 1900 from attractive local hamstone, which has a distinctive golden colour. The property is set in 6.7 acres of wonderful gardens and the grounds include the original mill leat pond, mill house and restored water wheel. EPC Band F.
5. Kings Nympton, Devon Guide price £1,825,000 Peacefully located in the friendly North Devon village of Kings Nympton, this impressive five bedroomed Grade II listed rectory comes with a spacious two-bedroomed annexe adjoining the main house, a stunning converted barn and five further holiday cottages in the grounds, all providing 5-star self-catering holiday accommodation. The grounds consist of 3.5 acres of mature and wellpresented gardens with a swimming pool. No EPC required.
6. Bodmin Moor, Cornwall Guide price £695,000 If you’re looking for an income and lifestyle opportunity, this property has great potential. The main home is a five-bedroomed bungalow with a studio annexe, set in extensive grounds, plus a field currently used informally for camping with six tents and ancillary buildings. The property is in a beautiful setting near the coast in North Cornwall, with wonderful valley views, all surrounded by farmland and beech trees. EPC Band F. 7
Tax: here’s what you need to know John Endacott is head of tax at PKF Francis Clark. Here is his expert advice on the tax implications of buying and selling a holiday complex
n the past few years, the government has pursued a policy of increasing taxes on residential property owners. This has been achieved by:
• • •
Increasing the tax on acquisition through higher rates of Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT). Restricting tax relief on borrowing costs for higher rate income tax payers. Having a higher rate of Capital Gains Tax (CGT) on sale.
All of these measures are aimed at the owners of residential property, although if a property has a letting income, that can make a difference. The result is something of a tax minefield for purchasers of holiday letting businesses, especially when buying multiple unit holiday complexes. The tax rules for SDLT, CGT, VAT and income tax are all different and the newness of the rules means that they are often poorly understood. This isn’t helpful to those trying to invest in a large property purchase. However, as a general principle, it is important to: •
Establish whether the business will meet the criteria for the special holiday letting Furnished Holiday Lets (FHL) rules. Determine whether the property is ‘residential’ or ‘non-residential’ for Stamp Duty Land Tax purposes and, if it is ‘residential’, then can any SDLT reliefs be claimed?
If the FHL rules apply, then there is no loan interest restriction for higher rate income tax payers, so mortgage interest and other borrowing costs should be relievable in full, as long as there is no personal use. Further, the rate of Capital 8
Gains Tax on sale can be 10% instead of 28%. In order to qualify for the Furnished Holiday Let rules, it is necessary for the letting units to be available for short term letting for 30 weeks a year and longer term letting is restricted during this time. The units must be actually let for at least 15 weeks in a year although it is possible to average actual occupation across the units. While an average occupancy of 15 weeks a year for a mature business should not be too challenging, this can be very difficult to achieve on a start-up complex or in a geographically remote location and, if so, then the FHL rules would not apply. That’s the rub – if you don’t qualify for the FHL rules then the business is taxed the same way as a buy-to-let landlord – no capital allowances on capital expenditure, restricted tax relief on interest costs and less flexibility on profit sharing by a married couple. Good due diligence on likely occupancy levels is therefore essential. Regardless of whether the business will meet the FHL rules, it is also important to understand the SDLT due (and probstags.co.uk
ably get some specialist advice on it). A complex costing £1.5m would generate a SDLT liability of £138,750 if taxed at residential rates, but £64,500 if taxed at non-residential rates – a massive difference and both scenarios are possible, depending on the facts. Residential SDLT rates are higher than non-residential rates. Further, if a home is being bought together with other residential properties, then the higher rates of residential SDLT apply, which include the 3% surcharge – even if it is replacing another home. Where this is the case, the subsidiary dwelling exemption should be considered, as should multiple dwellings relief. If the £1.5m purchase comprised five residential dwellings, then the SDLT due would fall to £70,000 if multiple dwellings relief is claimed. There are huge differences in the SDLT that can be payable when buying a holiday complex so it is important to fully investigate the position. John Endacott, author of ‘Furnished Holiday Lettings: A Tax Guide’ firstname.lastname@example.org
The journey to a successful sale Simon Forman, Associate Partner and manager of Stags’ Barnstaple office, explains what to expect when you market your holiday complex with Stags
hen you ask Stags to sell your holiday business, you will benefit from the expertise of our dedicated Holiday Complexes department, based in Exeter. In addition you will also have support and marketing from the Stags office that is nearest to your property. With 21 offices right across the West Country, from Yeovil in Somerset to Truro in Cornwall, you are in safe hands. As the manager of our Barnstaple office, I am often involved in sales of holiday complexes right across North Devon. When Stags is invited to value a holiday complex, Nick Smith, who heads up the Stags Holiday Complexes department, contacts the manager of the nearest Stags office to the property, and both of us visit for the valuation. This is because we need to consider both the holiday business and the bricks-and-mortar value of the buildings. We also look at potential planning gains or the possibility of dividing the property into smaller lots to sell individually. Some holiday complexes may also offer aspects which could appeal to other potential markets – such as equestrian,
buyers who may have an interest in the for example. Therefore, on the basis main house and/or other components of that ‘two heads are better than one’, we work with prospective vendors to devise the property. We frequently analyse the viewings of such properties and find that a strategy which ensures that they get the best possible value for their property. approximately 50% of enquiries come Another important reason for us visiting from buyers specifically looking for a together is to ensure that holiday complex and 50% are both of us have been buyers with different interests. party to discussions from There are situations in which the outset and therefore it is a good idea to divide understand the vendor’s We devise a holiday complexes into lots in motivation and what their order to improve its saleability. strategy with Often this results not only in goals are. Once instructed, the local the vendors achieving sales where they Stags office sends along at were not possible previously, which ensures but also produces a better least two further members of staff to the property in they get the financial return overall. order that they too have out that 2017 was best possible Ittheturned seen what is being sold. most successful year The local office shares value for their Stags has ever enjoyed in the commission with terms of the sale of holiday property the Holiday Complexes complexes in the area I cover, North Devon. And what of the department when the future? Well, as I write this, 2018 has property is sold, so we therefore have already got off to an active start and I every incentive to ensure a successful am confident this will be another recordoutcome. breaking year ahead for holiday complex The property will appear under the sales in the West Country. ‘Residential’ as well as ‘Holiday Complexes’ section of the firm’s website Simon Forman, 01271 322833, and on portals such as Rightmove. This email@example.com means that we capture enquiries from stags.co.uk
A picture-perfect property Nick Smith of Stags looks back on selling a superb home and business on the West Country coast
ack in June 2017, Stags was delighted to bring Widmouth House and Farm Cottages to the market at a guide price of £2,900,000. Set in a magical location on the North Devon coast with its own private beach, this property is so charming it was used as a film location in the 1990s for a television adaptation of one of Enid Blyton’s stories. The five-bedroomed home comes with 11 holiday cottages, which let for up to £1,735 a week each in peak season. The grounds include a boathouse and former coastguard’s lookout – perfect for spotting pirates and smugglers! Here at Stags Holiday Complexes department, we used our extensive contacts to market this unique property, with coverage in The Sunday Times, Devon Life, Cornwall Life and Somerset Life and, of course, online and in social media. Buyers right across the UK were intrigued by Widmouth House and we received numerous requests to view. Within the first month we had an offer, within three months a sale was agreed and the new owners moved in to their wonderful home in November 2017. 10
The grounds include a boathouse and former coastguardâ€™s lookout â€“ perfect for spotting pirates and smugglers!
Self-catering in Cornwall: what happens next? Cornwall’s holiday market is on the up. Here, Malcolm Bell, head of Visit Cornwall, looks to the future for the self-catering industry in this beautiful county
ornwall attracts 4.5 million visitors every year. The county pulls on the heartstrings and has people falling headover-heels in love with the place. In fact, visit once and it’s almost guaranteed that you’ll be back. Our latest survey for Visit Cornwall found that an astonishing 90% of visitors have been at least once before and that, for almost half of those, a second Cornwall fix is needed within twelve months of the first. Cornwall has also been named the UK’s favourite holiday destination for the past nine years running and, behind London, is one the country’s most well-known brands among overseas travellers. People love it. And the most popular way to stay in Cornwall? In self-catering accommodation. The likes of cottages, apartments, barn conversions, lodges and houses attract 40% of all visits to Cornwall. It’s unsurprising, really. Having a key to your own front door while on holiday resonates with the essence of Cornwall. Self-catering offers freedom and space - the very 12
reasons that people are drawn to Cornwall in the first place. From whole families renting a sprawling apartment to couples picking an intimate cottage perched on the harbourside, self-catering accommodation provides our visitors with huge choice. Here is a look at what’s hot in the holiday trends this year, and beyond:
Families and large groups of friends are increasingly choosing to holiday together. Babysitters are on tap, costs are shared and there are more hands to make light work of mundane jobs such as stacking the dishwasher, that you don’t really want to think about while on holiday. Self-catering properties are normally much more spacious than hotel rooms, they are very social and often have large communal living spaces.
People come to Cornwall to explore. They want to get under its skin, enjoy a taste of life as a local and discover hidden gems. Experiential holidays are booming and self-catering stags.co.uk
accommodation is a natural pairing with this tourism trend.
EVERYTHING-THOUGHT-OF, MINIMUM-HASSLE HOLIDAYS For visitors travelling with children, the thought of packing up toys, wellies, highchairs and cots can be enough to put them off holidaying at all. The joy of self-catering accommodation is that it takes much of the hassle out being away from home - increasingly everything is ready and waiting to be used on arrival.
VALUE FOR MONEY
Savvy travellers are increasingly switching on to the fact that self-catering accommodation can work out as exceptionally good value, particularly for large groups. Per person, per night, the costs can be surprisingly affordable compared to serviced counterparts, even for top-of-the-range, luxurious holiday rentals. For more information and advice on renting your self-catering holiday property, visit visitcornwall.com/ industry or call 01208 811152
ways to get the most out of holiday letting
Now is a great time to be running a holiday letting business, says Patrick Kielty of holiday rental experts holidaycottages. co.uk. Here, he shares insider knowledge to help maximise your profits in 2018 – and beyond
ationally, one in four holidaymakers now choose self-catering accommodation and this is set to grow. According to Mintel Group Ltd, by 2022 an estimated 930,000 more trips will be taken each year in the UK - that’s 18,000 a week. Here are my top three tips to make the most of this opportunity.
Extend your season The South West performs well during the peak season, even if the British weather doesn’t always deliver quite at the same level! However, I am now seeing the season extend beyond the traditional school holidays. Beaches are busy well into autumn as more and more people embrace the great outdoors. Investing in features such as a wood burner can add appeal to your property during the cooler months. Dog walkers brave the elements all year round, so being dog-friendly will help, too. Co-promote with local events such as St Piran’s Day in Cornwall (March) or the Clovelly Herring Festival (November).
Embrace future trends As the self-catering sector grows, we will be welcoming new visitors to the market. The younger generation and guests migrating from other sectors (in particular the hotel sector) often have different requirements to the traditional Price accordingly self-catering holidaymaker. Some owners increase Two areas where I am already prices by a fixed percentseeing distinct changes are age year on year. But if you a) the flexibility of stays and successful in selling Over the past weren’t b) an increasing demand for certain weeks, it’s unlikely three years luxury. you will be more successful Over the past three years I by putting the prices up. I have seen have seen demand for short Conversely, if your peak demand for weeks were snapped up, breaks grow by 200%. In 2017, our 5-star properties short breaks maybe they weren’t priced earned an average 29.7% high enough? With 24/7 growing by more revenue than other booking you see demand alproperties of a comparable most instantly and can react 200% size. When people book, accordingly, offering deals to they are searching not only fill voids or increasing prices by location but also by what features the if you see a spike in enquiries. property has to offer. Once deemed a luxury, items like wifi, ensuite bathrooms For help with your bookings, call and even hot tubs can be expected as 01237 426791, email joinus@holistandard and could put visitors off a daycottages.co.uk or visit holidayproperty if not offered. cottages.co.uk
You can be sure to sell well through Stags Here at Stags, our dedicated Holiday Complexes department has a wealth of experience in marketing tourism accommodation properties across the West Country. Our sale highlights in 2017 included these wonderful properties, which all found new owners through Stags 1. North Cornwall This property was originally a working farm and included a watermill, which operated until the 1950s. The attractive courtyard of traditional buildings has been converted into four holiday cottages and there is a spacious and well-presented four bedroom farmhouse. There are 7.5 acres of 2. East Cornwall In June 2017 Stags listed this extremely pretty holiday cottage complex on the edge of Bodmin Moor, set within beautifully stocked and mature gardens. The three holiday cottages are all rated Visit England 4* Gold and there is also a characterful owner’s residence. Several prospective buyers were quick to arrange a viewing and within the first month of marketing a sale was agreed off a guide price of £860,000 to the fourth person to view the property.
landscaped gardens, grounds and paddocks, with delightful views. The property also comes with excellent equestrian facilities including American barn-style stables. This holiday complex sold off a guide price of £1,385,000 to a buyer from the South West in early 2018.
3. North Devon Stags was delighted with the sale of this five-bedroomed farmhouse, threebedroomed annexe and four holiday cottages on an organic farm in North Devon. The peaceful valley location with land, extensive outbuildings and a 1.5 acre fishing lake caught the eye of a couple wishing to relocate from the South East. Their offer on the guide price of £1,350,000 was made within the first month of marketing and the sale went through in May 2017.
4. North Devon This nine-bedroomed Victorian manor house dates from the mid-19th century and was built by a merchant with trading connections in nearby Bideford. Tucked away in a private parkland location, the property includes five holiday cottages, outdoor swimming pool, pool house and office complex, tennis court, outbuildings and just over eight acres. Within three months of going to market a sale was agreed off a guide price of ÂŁ1,600,000.
5. North Devon In recent years, there has been a programme of modernisation for this farmhouse and holiday cottages and the complex now provides extremely comfortable accommodation. The three-bedroomed farmhouse and holiday cottages are set in around seven acres including a field with solar panels and a plantation of 2,000 willows to sustain wood burners. Stags received five offers on the property and it sold off a guide price of ÂŁ825,000 in December 2017 to a buyer from the South West.
6. Mid Devon This beautiful Grade II listed thatched Devon longhouse dates back to the 17th century and was originally part of a 250 acre estate owned by the Earl of Portsmouth. Full of charm and period features, the six-bedroomed property sits in about 14.5 acres with superb, far-reaching rural views. The five holiday cottages are rated 4* and 5* and there is an indoor pool, too. It sold in December 2017 to a buyer from the South East off a guide price of ÂŁ1,750,000.
questions to ask before selling your holiday business
Ben Stephens, partner in Stags, runs the company’s Truro office. Here is his advice on what you need to consider when putting your holiday complex on the market
he key to achieving the very best possible price for your holiday cottage complex and ensuring that the conveyancing process runs as smoothly as possible is to plan ahead – after all, the longer the process takes, the more likely a sale is to fall through. The sale is likely to involve a team of professional advisors – estate agent, solicitor and accountant as the bare minimum. I would encourage you to liaise early with all three to avoid any unexpected surprises. A health check on the property by your solicitor is not a bad idea – forewarned is forearmed.
Are all necessary planning consents, building regulations and licences in place? Stags recently advised clients where it was discovered that an Agricultural Occupancy Restriction was in place. Subsequently, Stags Planning Department applied for and achieved a Certificate of Lawful Existing Use or Development, enabling the noncompliance with this restriction to be lawful. This exercise will undoubtedly increase the final price achieved and extend the market.
Are there any restrictive covenants in place that restrict the use of the property in any way either now or in the future? I know of one recent sale that was thwarted by a covenant restricting a commercial use of the property, despite it being a long-standing holiday let.
Have you got all the documents you have relating to the property, no matter how trivial you think they are? Not having them ready could result in delays. Examples include: FENSA certificates for windows, gas safety certificates, electrical installation certificates, boiler service records, private water test certificate and remedial work guarantees.
Are all necessary rights of way clear and, if necessary, indemnity policies sourced? Everyone likes a clear access to their property or a solution to any unusual scenarios. The existence and location of any public right of way will be an important factor for most buyers
Is the business in as good health as possible? Make sure that your website is optimised, you have an active social media presence and three years of accounts. A vendor who knows the business well is a confidence-giver.
Are you up-to-date with all the taxation liabilities for the property? Run everything past your accountant and ensure that you are fully briefed on taxation liabilities. Here at Stags, our professional services staff can advise on any necessary valuations or other issues. Unusual scenarios can sometimes be exposed - only recently, a sale of a holiday complex included two newly-constructed holiday cottages where there were VAT implications.
Insuring your holiday complex? Mark Lavington of holiday letting insurance specialist Boshers, based in Devon, knows what you need to consider when insuring your holiday cottage business DON’T FORGET HOWEVER MANY (OR FEW) BOOKINGS YOU TAKE, YOU ARE RUNNING A BUSINESS
You may have an annexe, a stable or barn conversion, a gate house or even shepherd’s huts in a paddock that you intend to let out. If the accommodation is within the grounds of your home, be sure to make your home insurer aware of what you are planning. Insurance companies often do not like businesses being run from residential premises and you risk invalidating your existing cover. Seeking advice from a holiday letting insurance specialist will help you get the right cover for both your holiday accommodation business and your home. MAKE SURE YOU HAVE THE RIGHT LIABILITY COVER
Inviting paying guests into your holiday accommodation puts you at risk of visitors having an accident or other mishap which could be deemed your fault. For this reason, it is vital that you have a sufficient amount of Public Liability cover. If you have a hot tub or swimming pool there are also risks, including wa-
ter-borne diseases such as Legionellosis policy may contain conditions that you need to follow. (also known as Legionnaire’s disease), so check you also have specific cover PROTECT YOUR INCOME, NOT JUST for this. You may employ gardeners, YOUR ASSETS maintenance and housekeeping staff. If you do, it is a legal requirement for you Make sure your policy covers all poto have Employer’s Liability tential bookings lost, not just insurance. Remember, pre-booked holidays. Your even if you are directing property may be unavailable the work of self-employed for a sustained period in the contractors or employing Your holiday event of a major loss such as friends to work on your a fire, flood or burst pipe, so it property property, you will still need is key to protect your income. this cover. may be HEED GUIDANCE IF YOU ARE PROVIDING FACILITIES TO YOUR GUESTS
unavailable for a sustained period after a fire, flood or burst pipe
Many owners provide facilities such as outdoor play equipment, a swimming pool, sauna or hot tubs. Equally we see pet corners, fishing lakes and sometimes accommodation used as a wedding venue. To protect yourself and your guests, risk assess your additional facilities, provide instruction leaflets and refer to RoSPA safety guidelines. Remember to inspect equipment regularly. Declare all facilities to your insurers and be aware that your stags.co.uk
GET THE RIGHT ADVICE
It’s a good idea to seek specialist insurance advice for your holiday accommodation business. Our holiday letting insurance team at Boshers specialises in insurance for holiday cottage complexes and individual holiday homes across the UK. We have been arranging this specialist type of insurance for more than 25 years and can help make sure you have the right cover for your needs. For additional tips and information on holiday letting visit boshers.co.uk/ blog or call Boshers on 01237 429444 17
Planning for success If you’re thinking of making improvements to a holiday property, then planning will be key to the success of your investment. Here, Alister King-Smith of Stags’ Planning Services department and Nick Smith of Stags’ Holiday Complex department explain how to make the planning process work for your holiday business
or the majority of holiday complex or investment units but the site itself buyers, a handsome house with generates income for the owner from four cottages in a rural location rep- lease payments. resents their ideal purchase. However, From a buyer’s point of view, Indio Lake there is also a very strong market sector offers access to a healthy turnover from of buyers who are more focused on the the operating company. However, prireturn on their investment. For them, marily we find that buyers are interested planning potential to expand the holiday in developing further units on site, to sell business is a major draw. off to private owners. The blossoming holiday Greenways Valley Holiday lodge and static caravan Park near Torrington in North market is a good example Devon is currently on sale of this and often the poswith Stags at £775,000. sibility of adding units on a There is a three-bedroomed The potential owner’s bungalow, nine chasite will be a major factor in whether a buyer decides it lets, eight static caravans and to invest in is the project for them. two lodges on the seven acre and expand site, with most of these units Often, such buyers purchase the freehold of the business run as holiday lets. The poa lodge or caravan park tential to expand the business is also a where the properties have is a major draw. already been sold off to If you’re a holiday complex major draw individuals. These buyers considering expanding for would-be owner will usually not live at their your existing operation, it is purchasers site and may employ an almost certain that planning on-site manager or be permission will be required. able to manage the site This is particularly the case remotely. The business income comes for new buildings and/or change of use from the lease or license that is sold to of land or existing buildings. The same the individual lodge owners. is true if you are thinking about removA good example of this business model ing planning restrictions prior to selling is Indio Lake in south Devon. This site a holiday complex to help enhance its of more than eight acres has two holivalue and saleability. day apartments and 12 luxury lodges. At best, the current planning system in These lodges have been sold off to this country appears confusing and, at private owners as either second homes other times, it can appear downright 18
obstructive. However, with a few clear objectives it is possible to simplify matters. These considerations are: • Is what I want to do compliant with local and national planning policy? If not, can I modify proposals to fit? • Is my site especially sensitive? Are any buildings listed, is the area designated as a protected landscape, is it ecologically sensitive? • What impacts will my development create, such as traffic, landscape and noise? What can I do to address these impacts? Of course the devil is in the detail and the implications of each aspect will vary from business to business. The way that your case is presented to the planning department can have a significant impact on its prospects of success. Early engagement with a planning professional can identify the right strategy for you. Here at Stags our planning services team can offer support at all stages of the planning process, tailored to your situation. This can range from simply setting you on the right path through to full support, culminating in the planning decision that will transform your holiday business. Alister King-Smith, Head of Planning Services 01392 439046 firstname.lastname@example.org; Nick Smith, Head of Holiday Complexes Department, 01392 680058 email@example.com
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