What Makes The House Crowd Different?

What Makes The House Crowd Different?

Property crowdfunding is a fast growing industry within the investment and savings sector. Inspired by our model and our success as the first property crowdfunding platform in the world, many imitators have emerged to challenge the crown.

Yet, despite the increasingly competitive industry, we continue to be the best crowdfunding platform of all (officially!) So what’s the secret to our success?

Most people will tell you that the way to differentiate yourself within your market is simply to be different. But any old idiot can be different – you’ve got to back up your uniqueness with solid foundations.

We stand out from the crowd because we are expert at what we do and we do it with complete transparency. Investors appreciate the low minimum invest level, investment security is high, and the opportunities for diversification within the asset class are excellent.

Besides all that, we still have to provide a compelling reason for people to get behind us. And that is precisely what The House Crowd has done.

The First And Still The Best

We have always defined ourselves as original thought-leaders. Because we were the first property crowdfunding platform, it goes without saying that we know a good deal of everything there is to know about the industry – after all, we invented it. But, moreover, we are at the forefront when it comes to anticipating, identifying, and reacting to changing circumstances to ensure we meet investors’ needs.

Frazer: The Face of The House Crowd

Besides our obvious expertise, there is also a recognisable face at the forefront of The House Crowd as a brand. That face, of course, is Frazer. It is Frazer’s vision that gave birth to the property crowdfunding model, and his story is one that is as human as it is inspirational.

From his Manchester rave culture adolescence, to his career as a music lawyer, through to a range of entrepreneurial projects, and the eventual dawning of property crowdfunding, Frazer has lived a varied and vibrant life.

The hard work, skills, and knowledge it took him to get The House Crowd off the ground, legally permissible, and into the public eye are a testament to the power of labour and perseverance. To know that there is a man who has a lifelong passion for entrepreneurial spirit is an appealing and assuring concept for people searching for the right hands into which to trust their investment.

Hard work and skills may have been what got The House Crowd off the ground, but part of Frazer’s continued popularity is his honest and sometimes forthright way of communicating. He is a character who has always questioned the status quo, famously leaving his glamorous career in law after being told that ‘love is not a word lawyers use’ by his boss. Never afraid to swim against the tide, it’s both Frazer’s boldness and his intuition for what works that breed confidence from others.

By equal measure, he owns up to his investment mistakes; he shares and clearly articulates how he endeavours not to make the same mistake again. These are rare qualities in most leaders.

Swimming Against The Tide

It is Frazer’s questioning of the status quo that has fed the originality of The House Crowd’s manifesto.

The company has always been about democratising property investment, opening the doors to people from all walks of life. Regardless of how much or how little somebody has to invest, our policy has always been the same: we treat everyone with the same openness, attention, and we care for their money as if it were our own.

Our honesty and transparency differentiate us from the faceless competition, who despite adopting our innovative model, still slump through the dark ages when it comes to their attitude to investors. To us, our investors are all equal, and are welcomed in as though we were a family (if that’s not too trite an analogy).

These are the reasons we are different, and the reasons why we continue to lead the way in the property crowdfunding space. As we continue to grow and evolve our model with the changing shape of property in this era of uncertainty, we are adamant that we will never let go of these factors which make us so unique and special. We hope you will join us on the journey.

May 2017 – Monthly Property Development Update

May 2017

Here is a round-up of our latest developments and how they are progressing with accompanying and sometimes interesting photos.

HCD2 – No. 10 Alderley Edge

We are very pleased to announce that we have, this week, won the planning appeals for Alderley Edge (and were awarded full costs). We also already have two parties keen to reserve two of the apartments.

HCD1 – Regent Street

We have received reservation deposits on another three properties at Regent Street.  Assuming all of them go through we will have just two plots remaining – and we have some serious interest in at least one of those. It’s taken quite a bit longer to sell these properties than expected, but we have learned some valuable lessons along the way and they are now selling well.

HCP156 – Station Road Marple

All the issues with the flooding to the cellar have been dealt with and it is now a fully habitable space with flooring.  Our very own Diane (what would we do without her!) has been busy maintaining the lawn and mountaineering up step ladders to trim the hedges in order to keep the property looking attractive to viewers. We recently appointed a new sales agent who is generating a fair amount of interest in the property.  The new photos look great on Rightmove and we had several viewings last week. We await further developments – fingers crossed this property will sell soon as it deserves to be lived in and loved.

HCD5 – Bank Chambers

Our Bank Chambers development of nine apartments is in the heart of thriving up-and-coming Stockport. The roof has now been removed and thankfully no unforeseen horrors were exposed (which is always a danger when converting an old building).  New windows have been fitted and other work is progressing smoothly.

There are still some issues to try and sort out with the conservation officer regarding our plans for the additional apartments on the ground floor, and we are hoping to have some positive news on this shortly (though there are never any guarantees when dealing with council officials who can rather suddenly move the goal posts!)

HCD10 – Bollin Heights

Full planning has been granted for stage two of this development and we are now in the process of applying for stage 3 of the planning permission which involves adding an extension to the rear of the building. We have also have found a personal training company who are keen to set up and operate the fitness studio, and we expect the apartments to be ready for purchasers to move into by October 2017. The sales agents continue to receive strong interest in the remaining apartments.

HCD4 – Gratrix Park

We had a slight issue recently with the drainage on part of the site which has caused minor delays, and we had to create a ‘soak-away’ under the road after negotiation with the council who decided they weren’t going to pay for it – joy. This has created additional and unexpected costs, but everything else is progressing well. We anticipate the show house and the first few units will be complete by early July 2017.

HCD3 – The Woodlands

We had a few problems with the council towards the start of the year, but everything is now resolved. The foundations for the first tranche of houses have been laid and work is progressing at a decent pace. Interest from local Yorkshire home buyers (who have to date been somewhat sceptical about the idea of buying off-plan) has started growing as potential buyers can now see the site developing and taking shape. Our priority is to get the show home ready as quickly as possible to aid off-plan sales.

 HCD13 – Coppenhall Way

We have exchanged contracts and the pre-completion conditions should be finished this week so that we can start clearing the site and ‘breaking ground’ before the end of the month.

HCD7 – Brundred Farm Prestbury:

No change – we are still waiting on the outcome of the planning appeal.

Don’t forget, if you need any help with the investment process, or have any questions, you can call our client account team, Nigel or Damian, on 0161 667 4264.

Register Now for more Info

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April Peer To Peer & Development Performance Stats

April 2017 Summary P2P & Development Stats

April 2017 summary and monthly statistics can be seen below.

Bridging Loans 30/04/2017
  Net
Total Amount Lent £15,590,670
Total Returns Paid £592,835
No of Loans 44
No of Loans Repaid 19
Average Loan Period 10
Investor Capital Lost 0%
Average Loan Size £339,606
Average Loan to Value 70%
Average Interest Rate Paid 8.94%

 

Development Loans 30/04/2017
  Net
Total Amount Lent £11,010,571
Total Returns Paid £146,212
No of Loans 17
No of Loans Repaid 6
Average Loan Period 10
Investor Capital Lost 0%
Average Loan Size £647,681
Average Loan to Value N/A
Average Interest Rate Paid 9.74%

You can find all our latest investments by clicking here.


View our Property Investments

Performance Statistics: April 2017

Performance Statistics: April 2017

The figures are now in for our performance statistics from last month. You will see below our summary figures from the dividend, interest and capital payments made in April 2017. You can also see our total cumulative returns from 2013, which you may also find helpful to know.

April 2017

  • Projects paid out against = 22
  • Total value of dividends and interest paid = £166,123.59
  • Total value of capital repaid = £589,400 (1 x development capital, 1 x bridging loan & 2 x HCP projects)
  • Total number of investors paid = 769

Total for 2017 So Far

  • Projects paid out against = 86
  • Total value of dividends and interest paid = £540,219.42
  • Total value of capital repaid = £3,471,307.39
  • Total number of investors paid = 2,483

Cumulative (from January 2013)

  • Project paid out against = 520
  • Total value of dividends and interest paid = £1,675,844.42
  • Total value of capital repaid = £8,477,027.39
  • Total number of investors paid = 10,981

To find out more about investing with The House Crowd, you can register with us by clicking on the purple button below. Alternatively, take a look at our current property investment opportunities by clicking the blue button! Either way, we’re always here to answer your questions in any way we can.

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View our Property Investments

 

Frazer’s Book Is The Number 1 Bestseller!

As you’re probably aware by now, Frazer has written another book called ‘The Alternative Guide To Property Investment’ which is all about how you can use crowdfunding to build your property portfolio and a better financial future for you and your family.

The book was available for pre-order yesterday, and he already managed to top the charts for real estate, personal finance and investing, making it a bestseller!

You can order the book off Amazon here

Here are some of the reviews so far…

“Frazer has written this book using common English words which are spoken by most people every day, which makes this book a joy to read. It is almost like a modern courtroom drama with the various points discussed, analysed, the evidence being carefully considered as the reader is guided through this book with short chapters, and a complete lack of waffle or flannel (if you prefer). I wished that Frazer had written this book 5 years earlier!”

John Miller (crowdfunding investor)

“An invaluable and enlightening insight for your financial future’’

Nigel Beverley (crowdfunding investor)

“This book shows how I can secure my family’s future through property investment, whilst avoiding the usual hurdles. It gives me peace of mind that crowdfunding platforms exist and, more importantly, that they are run by real property experts.”

Gareth Clements (crowdfunding investor)

“I‘m retired and always looking for the best way to boost my income each year. This guide is essential reading for anyone who wants to control their own investment decisions. Why didn’t someone tell me about this brilliant alternative form of investment before now.”

Paul Stallard (crowdfunding investor)

“Frazer’s book about property crowdfunding gives a fascinating outline of his history over a wide range of ‘job’ experiences which led to the creation of his crowd-sharing property business (I think its success must stem from him earning money from ‘magic’ shows in his early teens, coupled with the rigorous training of a law degree.)

As for the main part of the book, I read it with much interest (non-monetary!) – it was very thorough – and when I had finished it, I felt that I had no questions left to ask about property crowdfunding! It also reinforced my opinion that ‘I had done the right thing’ in putting some of my pennies into such a scheme!”

Dr. Philip Briggs (crowdfunding investor)

Residential v Commercial Property Investment

Residential v Commercial Property Investment

This is an excerpt from Chapter 6, ‘Residential versus Commercial Property Investment’, of Frazer’s upcoming book, The Alternative Guide To Property Investment. You can register your interest in pre-ordering the book by clicking on the button at the bottom of this post.

We have discussed the residential property investment sector at some length, but commercial property can be an excellent addition to a healthy investment portfolio if you are looking for consistent, steady yields alongside a decent level of growth.

Commercial real estate has shown long-term positive performance, with combined annual returns averaging around 9% depending on the area and type of property.

The steady and predictable cash stream potentially afforded by rental income from commercial property translates to possible protection against volatility in financial markets.

Here are some reasons why investors may find commercial property attractive:

  • Historically strong returns – With an average annual return of about 9% over a 20-year period commercial real estate has performed well historically.
  • Rental income from stable commercial properties means a potential steady and predictable cash stream (translating into possible protection and diversification during financial market volatility).
  • Beneficial taxation – When structured properly, commercial property can offer investors a number of tax benefits.
  • A hedge against inflation – A potentially important factor for your portfolio, since property normally benefits from inflation.
  • Ability to leverage your capital – As with residential property you can obtain mortgages and potentially multiply your ROCE (return on capital employed).
  • Diversification – There is no direct correlation with the stock market and you can further diversify within the asset class itself.

These are some of the different types of commercial property into which you can invest and spread your risk:

  • Office property (either prime or secondary);
  • Industrial property: Warehouse and manufacturing units; heavy manufacturing; light assembly; ‘flex’ warehouses (mixed industrial/office space); and bulk warehouses, like distribution centres.;
  • Retail: Individual shops,takeaways, shopping centres, etc.;
  • Multi-unit apartment buildings/HMOs: Although providing homes, these are treated as commercial premises;
  • Self-storage: Self-contained units rented to tenants for storage of material items, usually on a monthly basis;
  • Hotels: Bed and breakfast, small boutique hotels or big-name establishments.

However, property investors when they start investing seem to prefer residential, perhaps understandably, as it falls more easily within their knowledge base and comfort zone.

The philosophical difference between residential and commercial is that when you invest in residential property, you are essentially transacting with individuals – it is a much more personal transaction especially as people will be living in your property and making it their home.


To read more about why to invest in property, you can click below to register your interest in the book. Fill in your details, and once the book is released, we will send you more information.

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Capital Growth v Cash Flow

Capital Growth v Cash Flow

This is an excerpt from Chapter 5, ‘Capital Growth versus Cash Flow’ of Frazer’s upcoming book, The Alternative Guide To Property Investment. You can register your interest in pre-ordering the book by clicking on the button at the bottom of this post.

Capital growth is a very powerful concept. As Albert Einstein once said, compound capital growth is the eighth wonder of the world.

What compound growth means is that if an asset worth £100,000 increases in value by 10% a year it will only take eight years for that asset to be worth more than double its original value. In ten years it will be worth around £259,000. And that’s without leverage.

Imagine that you’re back in 1996. You have £16,000 to invest, but you’re not sure what to do with it. Your stockbroker tells you one thing, your financial adviser tells you another, and your bank manager – of course – reckons you should stick it in the bank for a rainy day.

Instead, you decide to use that £16,000 as a deposit on an £80,000 buy-to-let property in London (that was the average house price in London just 20 years ago).

Two decades on, the average London property is worth over £488,000.

That means, provided you covered your mortgage payments and costs with rental income, your £16,000 has turned into £408,000 profit. Now there may well have been various incidental costs to take into account but, I think it’s fair to say, you would still have done many times better than if you had put that money into a pension or kept it in the bank.

It’s not possible to make the benefits of property investment any clearer than that.

It is, in my opinion, far and away the best investment you can make. Imagine that property only did half as well as this over the next ten years. It would still be likely to produce several times the returns of any other asset class.

Because of the power of compound growth, many people think property is all about capital growth, and that aspect is certainly what helps make it an attractive investment. And the fact that you can leverage purchases and obtain, for example, an 80% LTV mortgage multiplies the rate at which your capital can grow at astonishing rates.

Nonetheless, many people have come unstuck by leveraging highly and speculating on capital growth. They have then found themselves in an unsustainable position having to subsidise mortgage payments as the rental income has not been sufficient to cover their financial outgoings on the property.

You may be able to support one property at £200 a month whilst you wait for it to increase in value, but how many more of those could you afford?

However, if all your properties at least ‘wash their face’ and produce a small profit from rental income, you can support as many of them as you can buy – and benefit from the capital growth in all of them.


To read more about why to invest in property, you can click below to register your interest in the book. Fill in your details, and once the book is released, we will send you more information.

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April – Monthly Property Development Update

April 2017

Here is a round-up of our latest developments and how they are progressing, with pictures available on the links below the descriptions.

HCD10 – Bollin Heights

Work is progressing on schedule and the show apartment is now complete and looks great.

We have applied for planning permission for phase 2, and expect a positive decision on 8th May as it is not contentious.

Sales proceeds are now £300,000 over what was anticipated.

Click here to see latest photos

HCD5 – Bank Chambers

Work is now well underway and proceeding apace. The conservation officer has signed off on all works for the top two floors. Discussions regarding the extra apartments on the ground floor are ongoing.

Click here to see latest photos

HCD4 – Gratrix Park

This development is progressing well with no issues. Sales are strong with 12 units reserved, and we have increased prices slightly.

Click here to see latest photos

HCD3 – The Woodlands

Work has now started after all the council’s issues have been resolved. We are working to get the show home and on-site sales office built ASAP to aid sales. Although the start of works has been significantly delayed, the contractors should be able to make up most of the time lost and will do so once enough confirmed sales have been made.

Click here to see latest photos

HCD2 – 10 Congleton Road, Alderley Edge

Work is proceeding apace with no problems. We will be raising money for the final stage next month (May 2017).

Click here to see latest photos

HCD1 – Regent St

Unfortunately, the expected bulk sale fell through. We have changed agents and improved marketing and have decided to drop the price in the hopes of attracting interest. There are no confirmed sales on the remaining 5 as yet, although there are various interested parties.

HCP156 – 103 Station Road, Marple

The cellar and all other remedial works have now been completed and the property will be going back on the market ASAP.  The cellar is now a habitable space.

Click here to see latest photos

HCD7 – Brundred Farm

Following the rejection of our planning application despite the planners recommending it, our purchase option has been extended for 8 months. The planning appeal is being prepared and will be submitted imminently.

Don’t forget, if you need any help with the investment process, you can call our client account team on 0161 667 4264. 

 

Register Now for more Info

View our Property Investments

 

Establishing Your Own Investment Criteria

Establishing Your Own Investment Criteria

This is an excerpt from Chapter 4, ‘Establishing Your Own Investment Criteria’, of Frazer’s upcoming book, The Alternative Guide To Property Investment. You can register your interest in pre-ordering the book by clicking on the button at the bottom of this post.

We held a dinner for our top-20 investors recently and I think it’s fair to say that just about everybody had different reasons for investing and slightly different criteria for choosing what to invest in.

Before investing any money, you need to consider what you want to achieve. Do you want to sit back and let your investment grow in value (e.g. stamps or wine or a pension fund, if you still think that’s a good idea) or do you want to generate an income (e.g. shares or property)?

Or perhaps a mix of the two?

Do you solely want to provide for your retirement and reinvest any income generated or do you need to earn an immediate income from your investments?

Are you prepared to risk all your capital on the same sort of investment or do you want to make some ultra-safe investments and speculate with a certain portion of your money on riskier but potentially more lucrative investments?

These are just a few of the questions you should ask yourself as the answers will help formulate your own investment criteria. If you have decided that you want to invest some of your capital into property, then the two most significant decisions you need to make are whether you want the emphasis to be on capital growth or cash flow and whether you want to make commercial or residential property investments.


To read more about establishing your own investment criteria, you can click below to register your interest in the book. Fill in your details, and once the book is released, we will send you more information.

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The House Crowd Reviews Show How Great We Really Are!

The House Crowd Reviews Show How Great We Really Are!

We already know that we’re the best property crowdfunding platform in the business. And so does the industry, if our recent Crowdfunding Platform of the Year award from Property Wire is anything to go by (it is). But what do our investors think? Well, The House Crowd reviews on TrustPilot from our investors are pretty positive as well!

We boast an ‘Excellent’ rating on TrustPilot, with 9.2 stars out of 10 overall from investors who’ve reviewed us. Scrolling down the page, we were thrilled to see five out of five from all reviewers, which gave us a real sense of pride. Among the top reviews featured, we are described as ‘absolutely amazing’, ‘helpful’, ‘one of the best online investment programs I have come across’, and ‘professional, courteous and slightly irreverent’. That sounds like us, alright!

Our Top The House Crowd Reviews

Just to save you clicking and scrolling around, we’ve saved some of the best snippets from our favourite The House Crowd reviews on TrustPilot for you to take a look at.


“I have invested for several years now (with a large amount of £££’s) and am VERY happy with the returns. Relatives who I have encouraged to join are also extremely happy.” – Marios Michael


“I have been using the house crowd now for over two years and have found no issues at all in my dealings with them. All contact has been professional, courteous and slightly irreverent, which I find to my taste in an otherwise dry area.” – Trevor


“We’ve been using THC for several years now, over a number of differing project types. Generally speaking THC provide an excellent service with good returns and thus far have fulfilled all of our expectations.” – Ron Stolle


“I really like the total transparency of the House Crowd operation. You have access to all the information about every project. The variety of projects on offer is quite amazing too. Returns may seem high at first glance but when you look at the careful research that has gone into each project, it is clear these returns are achievable.” – Phil Rigby


“THC offer the ability to spread investment risk and their management team do all the hard work whilst gaining significant improvements on the average returns from direct investment.

“THC are a friendly, well-managed company providing a first class service people interested in property investment. Crowdfunding is not just the future, it is now!” – Kevin Jarvis


“The House Crowd is an easy way of getting property exposure with a strong return profile for an all equity investment. Diversification is easier than direct BTL since you have other crowd members contributing too.” – James

We could go on (and on!) sharing these great The House Crowd reviews with you, but we think you get the picture. We’ve always known we offer outstanding service and investment options, but to have this fed back in such positive ways by our investors reminds us what a good job we are doing. As we continue to grow and offer more investment products, we’ll be sure to continue putting our investors first, and keeping up the volume of positive investment experiences for everyone who invests with us.