As December faded away and the calendar clicked slowly around to 2015 (so long, 2014!), there was a flurry of activity in the property sector. First of all, the Government announced a new starter home initiative, offering 100,000 first-time buyers new homes with a 20% discount; then it was revealed that the annual rise in UK house prices has slowed — yet prices have still gone up faster than the general cost of living. Banks, meanwhile, launched a flurry of mortgage deals fixed for 10 years at record low rates.
The level of supply in the private rental sector is showing signs of improvement, according to Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA). However, despite an increase in available buy-to-let properties on the market, consumers will still face fierce competition for rental property as the level of demand remains high.
Properties face higher risks of damage during the winter months than they do in the warmer and lighter seasons. With this in mind, the Association of Residential Lettings Agents (ARLA) highlights steps landlords can take to mitigate associated risks and avoid costly surprises, while providing a good standard of accommodation for tenants.
BEWARE Landlords in the Birmingham, Walsall, Sandwell, Dudley and Wolverhampton areas, from December 1st, it is your responsibility to ensure that any tenant you rent to, has the right to be in the UK, by checking their immigration status. Failure to identify anyone occupying your home, whether the tenant or not, can result in fines of up to £3000 per occupant.
Is it us, or is housing getting extremely political? There was Ed Miliband on ITV recently defending his mansion tax to singer Myleene Klass (we didn't just dream that, did we?); while Labour MP Emily Thornberry was forced to resign after tweeting a picture of a house in Rochester (actually Strood, as it turned out) draped in the English flag. And housing policy has certainly been marked as a major issue in the run-up to the General Election on May 7 by all major parties.
A reduction in supply of rental property available; across the UK agents have reported a massive increase in tenant demand for the third quarter in a row resulting in the third and largest successive rise since the figures started to rise. At the same time many landlords are putting their properties on the market – recent ARLA report confirms.
NLA report Amateur Landlords reach 70% of the Private Rented Sector. Here at Lawson’s, we are finding a larger number of landlord enquiring about our Buy to let and property acquisitions, as they are looking to invest in property again, in many cases after taking a bit of a break from buying property, so we wanted to see if this was a nationwide trend.
In the month of July Lawson’s in Chapel Ash reported an unprecedented result as they received 41 tenant applications on 24 properties that they let in the month receiving multiple applications from more than one set of tenants wishing to rent the property.