The Great British Summer Holidays

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August is working out to be a fairly quiet month. Lots of people are on holiday although I prefer to go away when the weather is worse here. One of my estate agent contacts told me yesterday that they had this month on track for being the busiest sales of the year so I can’t really work it out. We’ve certainly seen a drop in action although there’s a real top quality property come through in Somerset which warrants some attention and there is still one in Berkshire that’s looking promising. There’s no real way of knowing where the properties will come from especially if they are sourced online. What we want to do is set up a system that allows people to choose their own area in the country so we can direct the properties that come for that area to those people. That’s a long way down the line especially when we’re so busy on the internet side of the business, we just can’t afford the time.

The networking meeting will all fire up again in September so that’ll spur on the business as everyone starts to get back in the swing of things. Another big portfolio came in last week but it’s an old one that’s doing the rounds again and sometimes we waste time when people present us with things that we’ve seen before. I don’t suspect for a minute that they know they are trying to sell something that everyone has seen before as they are either new to the business or the deals are new to them. A lot of the times the prices of deals that won’t move actually go up because more people are involved in them trying to take a percentage out of it. The less people involved with a sale the better for everyone. Directly sourced deals are the most lucrative. Our internet business has now started building area specific sourcing websites for property investors to target their local market as a priority.

I’ve been dealing with quite a few novice investors who really never seem to be satisfied with opportunities and end up missing deals. As they go so quick people have to be able to make the decision to buy on a minutes notice because there are lots of others out there wanting the same thing. It’s strange when you look at the overall picture because the market seems to contradict itself. On one side we have the individual deals that get swept up in minutes and on the other we have the bigger potentially more lucrative deals that hang around and become really expensive. Either there is a lack of funding in the higher end of the market or there is a lot of cash sitting around at the bottom end and I suspect it’s the latter especially during the holiday season. I’ve tried to contact a few big players and they’re all away enjoying themselves. After a month in Bali earlier in the year and a week in Cyprus I’m looking at December for my next big break. I might squeeze one in November too.

That’s one of the beauties of being a property investor though; it gives you the time freedom to do what you want to do when you want to do it. There are few businesses that can actually claim to give you the same freedom providing we organise it properly. Getting your business set up right from the beginning can be a dilemma. A few years ago setting up a limited company gave the best advantages now working as a sole trader is more beneficial. It’s the exit strategy that makes all the difference, how much tax are you going to pay when you come to sell them or do you sell the business as one? There is no substitute for proper professional advice upfront and getting the right strategy is part of getting the business to work right. We have to work the way that would make the most sense not only in terms of the business but also getting the right things that we enjoy doing most. Any business where you have to do jobs you don’t want to do will be hard work. Maybe that’s why so many people are on holiday.

Always be aware of seasonal lulls, you might want to go away yourself.

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