The difficulties of taking that 1st step onto the UK housing ladder

Regardless of the struggles prospective homeowners are currently facing to secure a mortgage and find the right property at the right value, it is safe to say that most British households, as has long been the case, aspire to own their own home. However, the financial woes of the past few years have, understandably, created a more risk-averse public, which is something the current Government is now looking to address.

The Government is rolling-out a range of measures through equity finance instruments that limit risk, improve affordability and fund home buying, with the aim of boosting first time buyer confidence. Schemes like First Buy, which provides affordable new build housing to first-time buyers with a 5% deposit, are intended to share risk amongst the funders and buyer, as well as being of little or no burden to the public purse.

Another market-based product with comparable supposed benefits is a new partnership based mortgage aimed at middle-income households able to stump up a 20% deposit. This product involves an equity stake injection to lessen the risk of negative equity and, trusting that price increases remain limited, should reduce mortgage payments below those of a traditional mortgage scheme.

Clearly, some steps are being taken by those in power to address buyer-reluctance and stabilise the market. However, it is yet to be seen whether the relatively small number of incentives being introduced can achieve the right blend of risk, price, debt and target consumers to spark the intended revival of buyer confidence.

At The House Crowd we offer a solution for buyers struggling to raise a deposit for their ideal home. For as little as £1,000, our crowdfunding property investment model provides a minimum annual return of 6%, in addition to a share of house sale profits – ideal for growing your deposit.

The House Crowd is a brand new concept in property investment which allows people to invest small amounts via crowdfunding (for more information on the process, visit www.http://thehousecrowd.com/thehousecrowd//how-it-works/). We are committed to breathing life into empty, rundown properties whilst giving investors great returns on their investments (for more information about us, visit www.http://thehousecrowd.com/thehousecrowd//about/our-manifesto/). If you’ve read enough and want to invest now, visit www.http://thehousecrowd.com/thehousecrowd//invest-in-property/).

Higher or Lower – Getting your asking price right

There are various factors influencing the value of a property, from location, age and size, through to things like heating, windows and appliances. In short, it is fair to say each property is wholly individual. With this in mind, the valuation system used by Estate Agents, usually calculated from recent sale prices of similar properties in the area, is not an exact science and can also be subject to Estate Agent “inflation”.

Sellers, who genuinely believe their property has been incorrectly valued, at either end of the scale, should consider the following points before approaching their estate agent:

-          The recent sale prices of similar properties in your area don’t always tell the full story. Your property may be on a corner with a bigger garden, have newer double-glazing or more modern appliances within, equally, the recently sold properties may have these advantages. Ask yourself objectively, does the current value give a fair assessment of these factors?

-          If you believe your property is undervalued, as is quite often the case, consider that sometimes beginning with a below market price could generate more interest and result in a higher sale price, than if the asking price was higher to begin with.

-          It is widely speculated that setting your property price just below a round number will attract more potential buyers than setting the asking price at the round number itself. Think £199,950, instead of £200,000, this may explain an Estate Agents valuation of your property.

-          Costs involved with buying a property include Chartered Surveyor fees and stamp duty fees amongst others. Bear in mind the percentage of stamp duty that must be paid increases with property prices, so you may attract more buyers by setting your asking price below a stamp duty threshold – for example at £249,950 rather than £250,000.

The House Crowd is a brand new concept in property investment which allows people to invest small amounts via crowdfunding (for more information on the process, visit www.http://thehousecrowd.com/thehousecrowd//how-it-works/). We are committed to breathing life into empty, rundown properties whilst giving investors great returns on their investments (for more information about us, visit www.http://thehousecrowd.com/thehousecrowd//about/our-manifesto/). If you’ve read enough and want to invest now, visit www.http://thehousecrowd.com/thehousecrowd//invest-in-property/).

Top presentation tips for selling your home – Part 1

With years of property buying experience, we have come across houses for sale presented in outstanding, average and downright terrible conditions. In a buyer’s market, it is crucial for sellers to present their property in its best light to stand out from other options and receive bids close to their valuation. Below is the first part of our easy-to-implement top tips for maximising your chances of selling:

  • Always clear clutter. It’s incredible how many properties we’ve viewed which are stunning on the outside, but reminiscent of a bombsite inside. Whilst some prospective buyers have the ability to look past mess and imagine rooms as a blank canvas, clutter always makes rooms feel smaller, which could be a defining factor on whether you receive an offer.
  • Decorating rooms with neutral colours might not be what movers will stick with, but it enables them to envision your house as their home. Your brightly painted walls and patterned wallpapers need to go as they carry far too much of your own personal touch.
  • How many times have you looked at an over-grown lawn with derision, without paying any attention to the property it belongs to? Your green space doesn’t need to be reminiscent of an English Country Garden, but pruning hedges, cutting the grass and planting tasteful, understated flowers can help your property standout against other houses on the street and possible competition.

The House Crowd is a brand new concept in property investment which allows people to invest small amounts via crowdfunding (for more information on the process, visit www.http://thehousecrowd.com/thehousecrowd//how-it-works/). We are committed to breathing life into empty, rundown properties whilst giving investors great returns on their investments (for more information about us, visit www.http://thehousecrowd.com/thehousecrowd//about/our-manifesto/). If you’ve read enough and want to invest now, visit www.http://thehousecrowd.com/thehousecrowd//invest-in-property/).

Buy to Let Property Boost in Manchester

Could the bright lights of London finally be fading, as tenants search to avoid the high premiums of renting in the capital and instead look to Manchester, a city close to our hearts?

The buy-to-let market in Manchester has become increasingly popular over the last 12 months, with a 1.7% increase in rents making it a great area for investment. And it’s no wonder the city is becoming a big draw, with its dynamic centre offering great culture, a rich architectural legacy, excellent transport links, lovely canals and home to the brand new BBC… the list is endless!

If the Manchester market is looking enticing to you, and you have aspirations of becoming a savvy investor but don’t have the capital to stump up for a 25% deposit or you’re struggling to find a buy-tolet mortgage product, then fear not, with The House Crowd, you can still get a piece of the action.

Here at The House Crowd, we take the hassle out of property investment and more importantly the burden of being a landlord, by finding great investment properties, in areas of good rental demand that produce high property investment net yields.  We then add value through refurbishing empty and run down properties, and then sell them on, leaving you to reap the rewards.

The House Crowd is a brand new concept in property investment which allows people to invest small amounts via crowdfunding (for more information on the process, visit www.http://thehousecrowd.com/thehousecrowd//how-it-works/). We are committed to breathing life into empty, rundown properties whilst giving investors great returns on their investments (for more information about us, visit www.http://thehousecrowd.com/thehousecrowd//about/our-manifesto/). If you’ve read enough and want to invest now, visit www.http://thehousecrowd.com/thehousecrowd//invest-in-property/).

Let ‘Us’ Do The Property Investment Work For You

If you’re considering entering the buy-to-let property investment  market for the first time, and taking on the title of ‘landlord’ there is a raft of things you need to consider before jumping in; the property price, the structure of the building and the amount of rooms, to name but a few, however one not to be ignored is location. Kirsty and Phil have a point – location is everything!

The location can make a real difference to your rental return; new landlords may find that tenancy agreements are signed quicker if they can attract tenants to a region where there are plenty of opportunities. Consider facilities, such as transport links, shops, gyms and cinemas, not forgetting institutions such as hospitals, a university campus or a really good school down the road.

Here at The House Crowd, we do the homework for you, taking the hassle out of property investment and the burden of being a landlord, by finding great investment properties, in areas of good rental demand that produce high property investment net yields.  We then add value  through refurbishing empty properties therefore breathing new life into them and then selling them on.

Our unique crowdfunding model, opens property investment to the masses, by using just a small amount of capital. So if you’re weighing up the options and considering becoming a landlord, why not invest in The House Crowd and let us carry the weight of property investment on our  shoulders rather than yours.

The House Crowd is a brand new concept in property investment which allows people to invest small amounts via crowdfunding (for more information on the process, visit www.http://thehousecrowd.com/thehousecrowd//how-it-works/). We are committed to breathing life into empty, rundown properties whilst giving investors great returns on their investments (for more information about us, visit www.http://thehousecrowd.com/thehousecrowd//about/our-manifesto/). If you’ve read enough and want to invest now, visit www.http://thehousecrowd.com/thehousecrowd//invest-in-property/)

The Latest News On Buy To Let Mortgages

Buy To Let Mortgage News

There are only 20% of the number of Buy To Let mortgage products available compared with the number on offer five years ago. There are now 411 Buy To Let deals on the market, compared with 2,265 just five years ago, according to a report by Moneyfacts.

Rachel Springall, spokesperson for Business Moneyfacts, said:

“As interest rates have fallen for Buy to Let deals, product availability and therefore choice has also dropped a staggering 82 per cent in five years.”

Of course, whilst we don’t like to see landlords being unable to build their property portfolio, the fact that so few Buy To Let mortgages are available is another reason why our investors find The House Crowd model, which requires no need for banks or mortgages, so attractive.

The Buy To Let Mortgage Can Rest In Peace

With fewer people able to raise the funds to invest in Buy To Let, the property crowdfunding model that we offer allows an in-road into the potentially lucrative world of property investment for more people.

Building a diverse portfolio, as we know all too well, is the key to a successful investment strategy. For property investors, this used to mean having access to either a lot of up-front cash, or easy access to bank finance, in order to afford multiple properties. With property crowdfunding, however, an investor can spread their investment across several Buy To Let properties (for example), potentially mitigating their risk whilst having a share in multiple investment properties.

More people are wising up to what property crowdfunding can offer as a viable alternative to outright Buy To Let investment, particularly whilst mortgage lending is so dry in this area.

Enter The House Crowd!

At The House Crowd, we are proud to be democratising property investment in the face of such trying times. We can only see the property crowdfunding model continuing to gather significant momentum over the next few years, and signs are already showing potential for the model to cause serious positive disruption to the sluggish market.

To find out more about investing with property crowdfunding, go ahead and register with The House Crowd by clicking on the purple button below. Either that, or check out our range of current investment opportunities by clicking on the blue button instead!

Register Now for more Info

View our Property Investments

Either way, we look forward to welcoming you into The House Crowd family with open arms. Do remember, we are here to answer any questions and queries you may have without putting any pressure on you to invest. 

 

Streets paved with Gold

As Britain goes Olympic crazy, and the torch continues its route through many a village, town, river and city, we thought it an appropriate time to share with you some quirky statistics we read recently in the news, in light of the looming Olympics.

Research from property website Zoopla.co.uk, found that when it comes to property prices, they really are ranked in the same order as they would appear on the Olympic medal podium – Gold, Silver and Bronze. The survey revealed that having Gold, Silver or Bronze in your property’s address, truly does affect the property’s value.

Those with a street name containing the word ‘Gold’ currently stands at £280,114, compared to £224,786 for streets with ‘Silver’ in the name and £198,537 for those with ‘Bronze’ in the title. You could say some of Britain’s most expensive houses, truly are pebbledashed with gold!! Furthermore, the gold names are not only more expensive but they are also much rarer, as there are only 61 streets with ‘Gold’ in the address, compared to a staggering 559 streets lined with ‘Silver’ across the UK.

In this current climate, stepping on the property ladder takes as much determination and effort as winning an Olympic medal. However, fear not, at The House Crowd you can get a foot on the property ladder from as little as £1,000 and see an excellent return on your property investment.

The House Crowd is a brand new concept in property investment which allows people to invest small amounts via crowdfunding (for more information on the process, visit http://thehousecrowd.com/thehousecrowd/how-it-works/). We are committed to breathing life into empty, rundown properties whilst giving investors great returns on their investments (for more information about us, visit http://thehousecrowd.com/thehousecrowd/about/our-manifesto/). If you’ve read enough and want to invest now, visit http://thehousecrowd.com/thehousecrowd/invest-in-property/).

The changing face of property

You don’t need to be a property expert to spot the differences between new build properties and those which have stood firm for decades. With modernity comes change however, but what continues to monopolise the changing face of property is the level of home ownership.

According to research compiled by Lloyds TSB, since reaching a peak of 71% in 2003, owner occupation has been on the decline, while the private rented sector is on the rise.  Worryingly, the proportion of social or council housing stands at just 18%, falling from a peak of 32% in 1981. This may explain why the waiting list for council properties continues to grow throughout the UK.

We think these figures are a travesty! While we know there is high demand for rental properties (just remember those council house waiting lists!), we also know there is demand for quality, affordable housing to purchase. Which is where we come in! As a property investment group which aims, not only to create strong returns for our investors, but to make positive contributions to the communities within which we operate, we are on a campaign to breathe life back into old properties, and by default, the communities which they often blight.

Breathing New Life Into Below Market Value (BMV) Properties

We purchase BMV properties which are often uninhabitable at the point of purchase, and regenerate them into attractive homes before either selling them on, often to those seeking that illusive step onto the property ladder, or rent them out providing affordable housing in areas that are often desperately short of housing.  And all of which still provides an excellent return on investment for our investors – what could be better!

 

The House Crowd is a brand new concept in property investment which allows people to invest small amounts via crowdfunding (for more information on the process, visit http://thehousecrowd.com/thehousecrowd/how-it-works/). We are committed to breathing life into empty, rundown properties whilst giving investors great returns on their investments (for more information about us, visit http://thehousecrowd.com/thehousecrowd/about/our-manifesto/). If you’ve read enough and want to invest now, visit http://thehousecrowd.com/thehousecrowd/invest-in-property/).

Are London Property Prices Falling?

As is often the case, our capital is the matriarchal figure around which the rest of us follow. It is deemed by many to be the best tourist destination, the best place to find top notch restaurants, and generally the best place to live.

However, while for years it has defied the house price falls seen throughout the rest of the UK, recent reports from the ONS suggest London is now leading the way when it comes to plummeting house prices. Visit http://www.guardian.co.uk/money/2012/may/23/london-house-prices-catch-cold for the full article.

Whether or not this news means we should all be wary and expect the same elsewhere in Britain, for investors with The House Crowd it is irrelevant as their investments are not reliant on property prices increasing – our property investment strategies are much more effective than that!

 The House Crowd is a brand new concept in property investment which allows people to invest small amounts via crowdfunding (for more information on the process, visit our how it works page). We are committed to breathing life into empty, rundown properties whilst giving investors great returns on their investments (for more information about us, please look at our manifesto page). If you’ve read enough and want to invest now, go to our invest with The House Crowd page).

Do You Need To Be An Olympic Hurdler?

Eying up the hurdles that now face buy to let investments in this current climate  – daunting. You may need to be an Olympic  hurdler to overcome them and invest in property successfully.  The main top five which stop many are as follows:

  1. Deposits are now as much as 25% to – larger cash injection.
  2. Valuations are not meeting sell price – more cash to find.
  3. There are now large fees on arranging a mortgage – more cash.
  4. Standard Variable rates are not in line with the base rate – who is winning here!!
  5. Legal fees and all associated fees – more cash.

Let us take an £85K house that is on the market – and you get it for £80K (well done you may think). Based on a 20% deposit that is £16K to find for the deposit. Now along comes the valuer and he or she reckons that the property is only worth £75k and the mortgage company will only lend you £60K to buy the house – leaving you out of pocket another £5K! The mortgage company says that they have a great rate at 4.99% (4.49 points above the current base rate) and they want to charge £2K for the honour of giving you such a high rate. (who is benefiting there then!) The associated legal fees are a variable but  on these type of buy to let investments you should set aside another £1K. When you get your tenant in, you have the usual expenses of which are obviously a variable – but are time consuming and are by no means hassle free.

You will still need to shell out £24K.

£16K deposit

£5K shortfall due to valuation

£2K for a mortgage arrangement fee

£1K legal fees

Not particularly attractive – a fundamental reason for an alternative option!!!!!

Check our FAQs at The House Crowd http://thehousecrowd.com/thehousecrowd/faqs/