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/).

Prize Draw: Introduce A Friend And Win A £1000 Share In The House Crowd

Prize Draw: Introduce A Friend And Win A £1000 Share In The House Crowd

We are pleased to announce the launch of our prize draw, where you can win a £1,000 share in a House Crowd project, including the annual 6% dividend and 50% share of profits on sale. It is quite literally the prize that keeps on giving!

Entry to the prize draw is completely free of charge. To be eligible, all you have to do is recommend The House Crowd to a friend or family member, send us the names of those people, and if they invest you will automatically be entered into the prize draw!

Alternatively, if you prefer, just copy us on the emails you send out to your prospective crowd funders. Please do not send out hundreds of emails to every Tom, Dick and Harry. Only invite people you know well and think might be interested in what The House Crowd offers. We will conduct a draw every six months and announce the winner in The House Crowd newsletter. The first prize draw will take place in April 2013… Ready, Set, Recommend!

Please ensure all correspondence for the competition and requests for the friends and family email template are directed to [email protected]

Property crowdfunding is now taking the investment world by storm, following our brave debut onto the scene in 2012. We were the first (and continue to be the best) platform for property crowdfunding.

We are proud to offer better returns on investment than many other investment models, and allow people previously locked out of the property market to benefit from the lucrative world of property investment. What’s more, we’re helping bring much-needed new homes across the Greater Manchester area.

For more information on the process of getting involved with property crowdfunding, visit our Crowdfunding Process page.

We are committed to breathing life into empty, rundown properties whilst giving investors great returns on their investments.

To find out more about getting great returns on investment with The House Crowd, start by getting to know us here.

Better Returns On Investment Than The Big Four Banks

Better Returns On Investment Than The Big Four Banks

One of the many advantages of investing in The House Crowd is the fact that we’re all in it together with collective interests, meaning that, unlike the banks of late, we are straightforward, transparent and honest with you about your investment.

But, how do we compare to banks in terms of financial returns?

Well, top performing bank rates taken from MoneySupermarket.com show you can expect a 2.6% annual return on an easy access no bonus account, a 3.2% annual return on an easy access with bonus account and a 3.85% annual return on a 3-year fixed rate bond.

Compare these figures to our bricks and mortar secured minimum annual return of 6%, plus a share of profits upon sale, and the more attractive investment option is really quite clear.

Update: Figures correct at time of writing. And our returns on investment are even better now than they were when this article was originally written in 2012.

Add an ethical purpose, regular updates and the ability to spread your risk to the excellent financial incentives, and we think you’ll see why so many people have already joined The House Crowd.

Property crowdfunding is now taking the investment world by storm, following our brave debut onto the scene in 2012. We offer better returns on investment than many other investment models, and allow people previously locked out of the property market to benefit from the lucrative world of property investment. What’s more, we’re helping bring much-needed new homes across the Greater Manchester area.

For more information on the process of getting involved with property crowdfunding, visit our Crowdfunding Process page.

We are committed to breathing life into empty, rundown properties whilst giving investors great returns on their investments.

To find out more about getting great returns on investment with The House Crowd, start by getting to know us here.

Top presentation tips for selling your home – part 2

Below is the second installment of our easy-to-implement top tips for maximising your chances of selling:

  • Temporarily removing family photos is an important and often overlooked piece of advice for those looking to sell. Home buyers, especially those buying for the first time, need to feel like they could belong in a property before they will put an offer in. Prominent family photos can have a negative influence on this process.
  • If you have pets, make sure you fully remove the smell by airing out your home and remove all hair – some viewers may have allergies. It can even be worth asking an honest friend or family member to visit your house to scrutinise, as over time you become accustomed to the smell of your own home and pets, good or bad!
  • Introducing light, preferably by removing any net curtains or blinds and moving large furniture away from windows, is essential. An immaculately tidied house can go to waste if poorly-lit. Be sure to focus lighting in areas you want to draw attention to – for example any exposed brick, impressive fireplaces or period features.
  •  Although not directly an action to improve presentation, choosing your estate agent well is vital to selling your property as they have huge influence over a viewer. Taking your time to select an estate agent who will present the positives and potential of your property to the best of their ability is crucial. You can go some way to making sure an estate agent is doing your home justice by providing them with a simple room-by-room guide to the strongest must-mention features of the property.

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/).

Property Investment Project Update 003

If you’re a member, you will have already received our latest property investment information announcing that House Crowd Project 003, on Old Lane, Little Hulton is on the market for sale. Hooray!!!

The property was purchased this year in May for £39,000 and after £15,000 of refurbishment costs, a great deal of blood, sweat and tears – Ok,  maybe not the blood part, and some major issues (all resolved now!) it has been given a new lease of life and is currently on the market and expected to sell for £72,000, an estimated 25% ROI after costs. Not bad hey!

When dealing with property – especially with repossessed property – there are plenty of problems and setbacks. Of course, if it was easy, everyone would be doing it, and that’s why we are here – to deal with the problems that inevitably arise and let you get on with your life free of the hassle.

You can see before and after pictures of Old Lane on our Facebook page – We’ve also added a few snaps of our very own Managing Director, Frazer Fearnhead, sleeves rolled up, getting his hands dirty, applying the finishing touches to the house.

 

 

Tips for successfully gaining planning permission – part I

Here at The House Crowd, we believe that well planned and properly implemented home improvements are a great method for increasing the value of residential property. Clearly, we are not the only ones with this outlook, as in the past year alone, almost 200,000 UK homeowners have applied for permission to alter or enhance their properties.

The Government recently announced it will press forward its plans to relax red tape restrictions and other, unnecessary bureaucracy from planning, making it simpler to carry out property modifications – great news! However, as these intentions are not yet set in stone, below we have provided the first instalment of our top tips for maximising your chances of gaining planning permission in the interim:

  • Carry out comprehensive research on the latest rules and regulations. It is important to know what you are doing, as it is worryingly easy to break planning laws unintentionally. Consulting a qualified architect or approaching your local council should help ensure you stay on the right side of the law. Builders, regardless of their likely good intentions, are an impartial party and shouldn’t be entirely relied upon.
  • Another advantage of doing your research is that you can actually make some significant modifications to a property without needing permission. Planning exempt developments include increasingly popular, small basement conversions and some rear extensions.

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/).

UK mortgage lending famine harms worse off the most

Figures from the price comparison website Moneysupermarket have revealed the number of mortgages available to borrowers with a 10% deposit is down by more than a quarter in the last year, whilst bank loans supporting buyers with a 5% deposit have dropped by a third in the last six months.

Moneysupermarket’s findings make for uncomfortable reading as stagnant salaries and a lack of job opportunities for those starting out mean more and more people are struggling to save a significant deposit.

It is conceivable that first-time buyers with a 5% deposit may be forced to completely put off the thought of buying until they have at least a 10% deposit saved – or secured parental assistance. There are currently only 28 loan options available to those with a 5% deposit and, in truth, many of these will carry unrealistic qualification criteria. This desperate situation has arisen despite the government and banks recently introducing an £80 billion ‘Funding for Lending Scheme’, designed to boost lending to households and businesses.

The House Crowd offers an alternative solution for first-time buyers struggling to raise a deposit for their first home. For as little as £1000, our straightforward and transparent crowdfunding property investment model provides a typical 12 – 14% return – ideal for growing your deposit in order to take your first step onto the  property ladder.

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/).

Can you blame people for thinking differently?

Moneyfacts reveals that there has been a considerable fall in buy-to-let property investment mortgages, the number of products now available is less than a fifth of those on offer five years ago. There are now 411 prime product buy-to-let deals compared with 459 a year ago and a staggering 2,265 five years ago. The average variable rate on a buy-to-let mortgage, today is 4.53%, compared with 6.23% five years ago, while the average fixed rate of 5.03% today compares with 6.03% five years ago.

Rachel Springall, spokesperson for Business Moneyfacts, said: “As interest rates have fallen for buy-to-let deals, product availability and therefore choice have also dropped a staggering 82% in five years.” She said that competition today is “focused around the price of a few products rather than a wide selection of products, which allow for other considerations such as service and additional benefits”. With such a reduction in selection of products to help property investors, obviously restricting the access to property as a form of investment, do you blame people for looking for alternatives? We at The House Crowd offer a solution to this problem negating all those hurdles faced by investors – our crowdfunding method of property investment offers a process where all participants have a  share in the profits -  with traditional methods of investing no longer working, why not join us in thinking differently!

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/).

Regulations and red tape – all in a day’s work for landlords!

Almost daily, there are doom and gloom reports about the UK’s property market; on Friday it was all about ‘regulatory overload’ for letting agents and landlords which has led to a driving up of rents for tenants. Indeed, as I was typing this, another headline pops up in my inbox, suggesting the number of renters in severe arrears tops 100,000, which supports the theory I’ve just mentioned.

According to the Residential Landlords Association, there are over 100 individual pieces of legislation and regulations containing around 400 individual measures affecting the private rental sector. Some of these rules date back to the 1700s which begs the question, are they even still relevant?

At a time when the economy is in meltdown, the cost of living has risen and unemployment has reached epidemic proportions, surely these examples of red tape should be brought into the 21st century, reflecting the reality of the market today, rather than how it was in 1730? Perhaps then, tenants and landlords would be better off all around.  Surely it’s time for a change if nothing else.

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/).