How to Profit from Property


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Having recently learnt that the decision has been made not to offer the tax benefits associated with putting residential property in SIPPS, it is worth reminding ourselves of the long term objective of property investment.

Regardless of whether you put residential property into a SIPP, you should remember that on average, historical figures show that property doubles in value every 10-15 years. So if someone said that you could double or even triple your money in some cases, even if it took longer that this, then you would still consider investing wouldn’t you even if it wasn’t within your personal pension. Plus, you can still put commercial property into a SIPP so you still have the opportunity of mixing your investments which every good property investor would be doing.

How to make £166,500 in 15 years

According to research from the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR), the average cost of a home in the UK could be £300,000 by the year 2020. Currently that figure stands at around £157,000 in 2005 which represents an increase over the next 15 years of 91%.

This figure of £300,000 is achieved by the economic forecaster basing its prediction on the ever increasing population compared to a slower production of house building. As with many commodities, it is the result of lower supply and higher demand that will push up these prices.

With buy to let residential investment property, the maximum loan you can apply for is 85%. Based on an average value property in 2005 of £157,000 this would require you to put down a deposit of 15% £23,550 subject to valuation and rental cover which can vary between 115% to 130% in most cases.

Potentially over the next 15 years, this one investment could realize a return of £166,550. This is based on selling the property at £300,000 less the loan of 85% of the property value in 2005.

Over previous years there have been times when property has declined in value and other times where it has signifcantly increased in value but a good property investor will clearly see the benefits in both a rising and declining market and will utilize the facilities of a good buy to let mortgage provider to assist in this.

For example:

During a rising market, a property investor may decide to use this window of opportunity to release some of that equity realized in the value of the property, to use for additional property investment. However, the property investor is less likely to use that capital released during a rising market. Instead, the landlord will wait until the market has re-stablised itself or experiencing a decline. At this point, they will then use this window of opportunity to purchase lower priced property and the circle continues. That is why property investors are in it for the long term and why they see the market as being profitable to them in all conditions. And when you consider that property prices only need to increase by an average of 4.4% year on year, it is easy to see why this type of investment is so achievable.

Successful property investors will do a lot of research on areas that they believe will become property hotspots and areas which are less likely to perform. There are many areas experiencing high levels of growth and financial investment with a lot of regeneration programmes in place or planned in the future. Even by simply monitoring publications such as Construction News can give a good indication of where new commercial premises are being built which can be a good indicator of new businesses moving to the area which it turn can lead to an increase in demand for property locally.

It is the general consensus that interest rates have stablised and there is even speculation of a drop but either way, they have been steady for a good number of months now. Slower capital growth does result in buyers having to put more effort into managing and developing their portfolios. And more importantly making a profit from property. Buying property at discounted prices can be done but you must do your homework to make sure they are genuine discounts and incentives. And don’t forget that in a slowing market, vendors will be more likely to listen to your offers. Albeit if they are a bit cheeky. In particular, you can use the negative press that is often surrounded by the property market to your advantage. For example when the media are circulating stories of a dropping property market, then vendors are even more keen to listen to your offers.

How to Get Started in Buy to Let

  • Do as much research as you can. You can even get some free publications including Free Buy to Let Guides. Click Here for more information.

  • Find out what properties are selling for. A good way of doing this is by contacting estate agents and researching on the internet. A good way is to look at property house price websites.

  • What is the level of demand for rental properties in the area.

  • What type of property is most in demand. For example, if it is a university city, then the demand for shared student accommodation may be much higher than property for professional sharers.

  • Find out what rent is being achieved on those properties and the likely time to get the property let out. Speak to letting agents and local businesses that may be letting properties already in the area.

  • Raising deposits for your investment properties, may be easier than you think by releasing equity from any of your existing properties.

    So how Do you know if you have bought a good investment

    Well there is always an element of risk but providing you follow the main logic you should eliminate most of them. It is also important to make sure you continue to review your buy to let mortgage funding on a regular basis as this can have a big impact on your success and cash flow. As we have said above, the property market can rise as well as fall so providing that you have some cash funds in the bank to help you through any tougher market conditions then you could reap the rewards in years to come. But it’s important that you calculate these carefully into your projections to ensure that whatever funding you may need to input into the investment property that it will be outweighed by the eventual gain.

    Providing that you are buying a good quality property in a good area with strong rental demand then it’s worth considering. Don’t just buy a property because it is cheap. You might buy a property at a very discounted price, but if you can’t let it, you could find yourself covering the buy to let mortgage payments for months to come which will see a big dent in your profits. Find out why it is cheap. Is there an increase in crime in the area, have plans been submitted for a large industrial unit to be built behind the garden etc, etc. Do your research. And don’t be afraid to develop a property for profit. Buying at the right price, in the right area and doing the right renovation on the property, can also see you return a decent profit. Re-financing the property on completion and letting it out could give you the best of both worlds.

    Having taken into account all the considerations above, to calculate if it is a good investment, you need to ensure that your annual rental income exceeds the cost of your monthly buy to let mortgage repayments and maintenance costs. And it is more likely that your annual rental income will be stronger if you select an investment property in area with a strong and growing rental demand as it is less likely that you will experience rental voids and be supplementing the monthly buy to let repayments.

    So in conclusion the property market is likely to remain a prime choice for property investors as long as they are will to commit to the long term.

    Jennifer Tweed is the founder of, one of the UK's first property portals dedicated to all types of investment property for sale and everything you should need for your sale and purchase. Learn more about buy to let .

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