Property Search

The word at the networking events is that the property search is getting harder at this time of year presumably because more people are riding the storm or the investors simply don’t know how to negotiate a deal. A good property search can all be done on the computer these days using many of the well-known websites by typing in search property for the criteria wanted. In the olden days it was more a case of walking or cycling the streets and knocking on doors to find out who owned which particular house. There are different cases for using the search property facility such as finding out which house or flat has been on the market longest. These are the very places active investors look for as they are likely to get the best deal particularly if they can speak to the vendor direct. Estate agents can only do a property search of what they or their associates have on the books whereas the big sites with their search property facility can look across the whole market and narrow down to certain areas. It’s all part of the research and due diligence needed when looking to invest. Some sources are able to secure properties in certain areas by doing the leg work for you. We wouldn’t recommend it replaces the due diligence but for anyone who struggles in their property search it is an alternative.

Finding the deals are one thing, making them stack up in today’s hard financial market is quite another matter. Virtually everyone is now working with lease options where you are able to secure the property for very little finance and have the right but not the obligation to purchase the property within the time of the lease. The principal came from the commercial market and is now becoming far more regular within the residential scope as less people want to borrow traditionally and the lenders have made the criteria so hard. Using alternatives without lending is a power you have the right to use simply by deciding to. They could be storing up trouble for the future but it’s likely that those who have secured them up to date won’t lose out by them in the long term. These kinds of deals really need to be carried out directly with the vendor rather than through agents. There are better opportunities with agents now than ever before. We suspect that the rich pickings particularly in London will come around February or March next year once all the Olympic money has been spent and the Christmas and New Year bill s come rolling in. Savvy investors will be doing a search property check then on the houses that are with more than one agent as this would be clear indications of the vendors need to sell.

There is no doubt that the best opportunities come from direct working with the vendors but finding those people and negotiating a win/win situation is no easy matter. Using the services of an established packaging company can ease the problem for many, but then the areas may not be where you want to build your portfolio, particularly if you are self-managing as the more local a property the easier it will generally be. Real investors tend to not want to self-manage as their time is better spent finding more deals. One of the hardest practicalities is matching areas of buyers and sellers properties on a one to one basis. There are many tips for negotiating with vendors but being able to give an honest service where trust and rapport can be built has to rank highly. No one wants to sell their house for less than the market value but who knows what a property is worth now? Any house is only worth what someone is prepared to pay for it and surveyors are down valuing many places in the region of ten per cent to cover their own backs.

So for tuned up investors the search property facility on web sites is a better way to get deals to work on the numbers but unless they know the area they can still struggle as one house in a particular street could be a disaster whilst a couple of streets away the same place could be a raving success. Knowing the area of investment is another important factor and for companies like us we need to have people on the ground in as many areas as possible who know the accommodation and the types of people who frequent those types of houses. Obviously we can narrow down possibilities by buying in strong student demand areas or obvious young professional territory but it’s then between zones that can be the big problems or the most profitable.

There are lots of ways of making a profit with property and one of the quickest is to refurbish and sell on. With the traditional purchase procedures you are restricted from selling a mortgaged property for six months which is not an unduly long time and in the meantime it could be tenanted provided it can achieve a good rent. One of the best means of making a good return is to buy a renovation project and actually live in it whilst working on it. This way there is no liability to tax as the money you make is from your personal residence. Not everyone likes living in a building site though and as you progress one property will not be enough unless you are working on a grand scale. At some point you will need to get onto the property search, if you advertise and get more opportunities than you can handle then bring them to us and we’ll find a good home for them and a good commission for you. The deals are most definitely out there, the finance might be hard but there is nothing we can’t get over if we have the right mind-set or the right connections.

Always search property on websites using property search facilities.

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