Thursday, 14 February 2019

Warrington Tenant’s Deposits held total £5,232,771



With the Government preparing to control tenant’s deposits at five weeks rent, Warrington landlords will soon only be protected in the event of a single month of unpaid rental-arrears, at a time when Universal Credit has seen some rent arrears quadrupling and that’s before you consider damage to the property or solicitor costs.
It can’t be disputed that the deposits Warrington tenants have to save for, certainly raises the cost of renting, putting another nail in the coffin of the dream of home ownership for many Warrington renters whilst at the same time, those same deposits being unable to provide Warrington landlords with a decent level of protection against unpaid rent or damage to the property.
In fact, the total of all the tenants’ deposits in
Warrington, deposited or protected, is £5,232,771

When you consider the value of all the privately rented properties in Warrington total £1,776,554,416, the need for decent landlord insurance to ensure you are adequately covered as a Warrington landlord is vital.
However, I want to consider the point of view of the Warrington tenant.  Several housing charities believe spending more than a third of someone’s salary on rent as exorbitant, yet for the tenants they find themselves in that very position.  I feel especially sorry for the Warrington youngsters in their 20’s who want to rent a place for themselves, as they face having to pay out the rent and try and save for a deposit for a home.
The average 22 to 29-year-old in Warrington spends 27% of their typical salary on a one bed rental property
….and 33% of their salary for a 2-bed home in Warrington.

40 years ago, British people who rented spent an average of 10% of their salary on rent, and only 14% in London.  Looking in even greater detail, according to the ONS, over the past 60 years the proportion of total spending on all housing (renting and mortgages) has doubled from 9% in the late 1950’s to 18% today.  Whilst on the other hand, the proportion of total expenditure on food has halved (33% to 16%), as has the proportion of total spending on clothing (10% to 5%) ... it’s a case of swings and roundabouts!
Yet landlords also face costs that need to be covered from rents including mortgages, landlord insurance (especially the need for the often-inadequate deposits to cover the loss of rent and damage), maintenance and licensing.  In fact, rents in the last 10 years have failed to keep up with UK inflation, so in real terms, landlords are worse off when it comes to their rental returns (although they have gained on the increase in Warrington property values – but that is only realised when a property sells).
There are a small handful of Warrington landlords selling some/or all of their rental portfolio as their portfolios become less economically viable with the recent tax changes for buy to let landlords, which will result in fewer properties available to rent.
However, this will reduce the supply and availability of Warrington rental properties, meaning rents will rise (classic textbook supply and demand), thus landlords return and yields will rise.  Yet, because tenants still can’t afford to save the deposit for a home (as we discussed above) and we are all living longer, the demand for rental properties across Warrington will continue to grow in the next twenty to thirty years as we turn to more European ways where the norm is to rent rather than buy in the 20’s and 30’s age range. This will mean new buy-to-let landlords will be attracted into the market, buy properties for the rental market in Warrington and enjoy those higher yields and returns … isn’t it interesting that things mostly always go full circle?

If you are looking for an agent that is well established, professional and communicative, then contact us to find out how we can get the best out of your investment property.


Email me on manoj@hamletwarrington.co.uk or call on 01925 235338. If you are in the area, feel free to pop into the office – we are based on G5, Warrington Business Park, Long Lane, WA2 8TX. There is plenty of free parking and the kettle is always on.


Thursday, 31 January 2019

Warrington Homeowners 97% More Likely To Live in a Home with 3+ Bedrooms than those that Privately Rent



The conventional way of categorising property in Britain is to look at the number of bedrooms rather than its size in square metres (square feet for those of you over 50!). My intuition tells me that homeowners and tenants are happy to pay for more space. It’s quite obvious, the more bedrooms a house or apartment has, the bigger the property is likely to be. And it’s not only the tangible additional bedrooms, but those properties with those additional bedrooms tend to have larger (and more) reception (living) rooms. However, if you think about it, this isn’t so surprising given that properties with more bedrooms would typically accommodate more people and therefore require larger reception rooms.

In todays Warrington property market, the Warrington homeowners and Warrington landlords I talk to are always asking me which attributes and features are likely to make their property comparatively more attractive and which ones may detract from the price. Over time buyers’ and tenants’ wants and needs have changed.

In Warrington, location is still the No. 1 factor affecting the value of property, and a property in the best neighbourhoods can achieve a price almost 50% higher than a similar house in an ‘average’ area. Nevertheless, after location, the next characteristic that has a significant influence on the desirability, and thus price, of property is the number of bedrooms and the type (i.e. Detached/Semi/Terraced/Flat).

The number of bedrooms for owner-occupiers very much depends on the size of the family and the budget, whilst Warrington landlords have to consider the investment opportunity. In this article, I have analysed Warrington’s housing stock into bedrooms and tenure. Initially looking at Warrington homeowners..


  
And now the Private rented sector …



It can quite clearly be seen that Warrington owner-occupiers tend to occupy the larger properties with more bedrooms. This would be expected due to the demographic of homeowners and people that privately rent.

However, this shows there could be opportunities for Warrington buy to let landlords to purchase larger properties with more bedrooms to attract tenants requiring properties with more bedrooms. However, before you all go buying larger 4 bed and 5 bed mansions to rent them out, a lot of bigger properties in Warrington don’t make financial sense when it comes to buy to let.

For numerous years Warrington buy to let landlords have been the lone buyers at the smaller one and two bed starter homes of the market, as they have been lured by elevated tenant demand and eye-catching returns. Some Warrington landlords believe their window of opportunity has started to close with the new tax regime for landlords, whilst it already appears to be opening wider for first time buyers. This is great news for first time buyers .. but one final note for Warrington landlords .. all is not lost .. you can still pick up bargains, you just need to be a lot more savvy and do your homework ..one source of such information with articles like this is the Warrington Property Market Blog 


If you are looking for an agent that is well established, professional and communicative, then contact us to find out how we can get the best out of your investment property.

Email me on manoj@hamletwarrington.co.uk or call on 01925 235338. If you are in the area, feel free to pop into the office – we are based on G5, Warrington Business Park, Long Lane, WA2 8TX. There is plenty of free parking and the kettle is always on.

Thursday, 17 January 2019

Warrington Homeowners Have Made an Annual Profit Of £5,149 Since the Millennium





As we go full steam ahead into 2019, it’s certain that the Warrington housing market in 2018 was a little more restrained than 2016 and 2017 and I believe this will continue into 2019. Property ownership is a medium to long term investment so, looking at the long-term, the average Warrington homeowner, having owned their property since the Millennium, has seen its value rise by more than 152%.

This is important, as house prices are a national obsession and tied into the health of the UK economy as a whole. The preponderance of that historical gain in Warrington property values has come from the growth in Warrington property values, while some of it will have been enhanced by extending, modernising or developing their Warrington home.
Taking a look at the different property types in Warrington, and the profit made by each type, makes interesting reading.. 
 


However, we can’t forget there has been just over 60% inflation over those 18 years, which eats into the ‘real’ value (or true spending power of that profit) … so if we take into account inflation since 2000, the true spending power of that profit has been lower.



So the ‘real’ value of the profit, after inflation, in Warrington has been £3,143 per year.. still nothing to sniff at.

I wanted to show you that even though we had the 2008/09 Credit Crunch property market crash where, depending on the type of Warrington property, property values dropped between 15% and 20% in 18 months … Warrington homeowners over the long term are still better off than those renting.

Moving forward, the question I get asked time and again is what will happen in the future to the Warrington Property market? Irrespective of what is happening in the World, Europe or even Central London, the biggest factor over the medium to long term to ensure that this level of house price growth is maintained in Warrington is the building of new homes both locally and in the country as a whole. Whilst we haven’t had the 2018 stats yet, Government sources suggest this will be nearer 180,000 to 190,000, a decrease from the 2017 figure of 217,350 new households being created. When you consider that we need to build 240,000 households to equal demand (immigration, people living longer, higher divorce rates and people co-habiting later in life etc) … demand will outstrip supply and unless the Government start to spend billions building council houses .. this trend will continue for years (and decades to come).

Another factor is that whilst Warrington landlords have been hit with higher taxes to enable them to actually be a landlord most, in every national survey, still intends to increase their portfolio in the medium to long term. The youngsters of Warrington see renting as a choice, giving them flexibility and options that being tied to a home cannot give… thus meaning demand will continue to grow and landlords will be able to enjoy increased rents and capital growth, although those very same Warrington buy to let landlords will have to work smarter in the future to continue to make decent returns (profits) from their buy to let investments. Even with the tempering of house price inflation in Warrington in 2018, most Warrington buy to let landlords (and homeowners) are still sitting on a copious amount of growth from previous years.

The question is, how do you, as a Warrington buy to let landlord, ensure that continues?
Since the 1990’s, making money from investing in buy to let property was as easy as falling off a log. Looking forward though, with all the changes in the tax regime and balance of power, making those similar levels of return in the future won’t be so easy. Over the last ten years, I have seen the role of the forward thinking agents evolve from a person collecting the rent to a more all-inclusive role; I call it, ‘strategic portfolio leadership’. Thankfully, along with myself, there are a handful of agents in Warrington whom I would consider exemplary at this landlord portfolio strategy where they can give you a balanced structured overview of your short, medium and long-term goals, in relation to your required return on investment, yield and capital growth requirements. If you would like such advice, speak with your current agent – whether you are a landlord of ours or not – without any cost or commitment, feel free to drop me a line.
If you are looking for an agent that is well established, professional and communicative, then contact us to find out how we can get the best out of your investment property.

Email me on manoj@hamletwarrington.co.uk or call on 01925 235338. If you are in the area, feel free to pop into the office – we are based on G5, Warrington Business Park, Long Lane, WA2 8TX. There is plenty of free parking and the kettle is always on.

Friday, 4 January 2019

As OAP’s set to rise to 1 in 4 of Warrington’s population by 2037 – Where are they all going to live?



With constant advances in technology, medicine and lifestyles, people in the Warrington area are, on average, living longer than they might have a few decades ago. As Warrington's population ages, the problem of how the older generation are accommodated is starting to emerge. We, as a town, have to consider how we supply decent and appropriate accommodation for Warrington’s growing older generation’s accommodation needs while still offering a lifestyle that is both modern and desirable.

In 1997 in Warrington, around one in every seven people (14%) were aged 65 years and over (and the local authority area as a whole), increasing to nearly one in every five people (18%) in 2017 and it is projected to reach one in every four people (25%) by 2037, meaning..

Over the next 19 years, the growth of the over 65 population in Warrington will grow by 38.9% - a lot more than the overall growth population of Warrington of 7.6% over the same time frame.

In fact, the number of those over 90 is expected to more than double in our local authority from 1,574 (0.8%) in 2017 to 3,843 (1.7%) by 2037.


And looking at the proportional percentage changes over those years..


Looking at Warrington and the local authority as a whole, there is a distinct under supply of bungalows and retirement living (i.e. sheltered) accommodation. The majority of sheltered accommodation fit for retirement is in the ex-local authority sector whilst the majority of private sector bungalows were built in the 1960s/70s/80s and are beginning to show their age (although that means there is often an opportunity for Warrington investors and Warrington buy to let landlords to buy a tired bungalow, do it up and flip it/rent it out).

In the medium to longer term, we need to build more bungalows and sheltered accommodation and, if we do that, that won’t only be of benefit to the elderly population of Warrington – it will have a direct knock-on effect to the younger and middle-aged population by unlocking those family homes the older generation homeowners live in.  
There have been 17 Housing Ministers since 1997. No one ever seems to stay in the job long enough to create a consensus and direction in Government Policy on the vital issue of the country’s housing shortage, yet the sound bites and White Papers seem only to focus exclusively on first-time buyers when there is an even more severe and disregarded shortage in suitable housing for the older generation.

This scantiness affects both mature homeowners trapped in unsuitably big family properties, unable to find smaller bungalows or suitable retirement apartments, whilst the waiting list for Council sheltered accommodation is putting a strain on other aspects of social care. In both circumstances, policy coming (or not coming) out of Government is repressing the supply and type of accommodation mature people desire, need and want, whilst at the same time, increasing the cost (and taxes) for social and NHS care.

Maybe we need tax breaks for people to downsize or planning permissions that stipulate bungalows only. Whichever way you look .. there are challenging times ahead for us all.

If you are looking for an agent that is well established, professional and communicative, then contact us to find out how we can get the best out of your investment property.



Email me on manoj@hamletwarrington.co.uk or call on 01925 235338. If you are in the area, feel free to pop into the office – we are based on G5, Warrington Business Park, Long Lane, WA2 8TX. There is plenty of free parking and the kettle is always on.


Thursday, 13 December 2018

Manchester Road, Warrington …the road where people move the most




Many folks say moving home is the most stressful thing. Moving home is like someone (and that someone is usually you and you are the cause of this devastation) has collected all your worldly goods, put them into brown boxes and into a lorry making your whole life look like a Amazon delivery van, only to spend the next six months unpacking it all, whilst unable to find important things like your bank cards, ‘those’ shoes or special jewellery!

We wish we could be instantly transported like in Star Trek “Beam me up Scotty to a blissful moved in state”.  Yet the week you move, it’s like an episode from the original 1960’s series Star Trek, when the crew had a transporter accident with an ion-storm sends Kirk and Spock into an alternate reality, where the caring Federation is the merciless Terran Empire, and the USS Enterprise is a warship and chaos eschews!!!

Star Trek aside, when you decide to move and before the stress of living out of cardboard boxes for months descends; first you trawl the portals (Rightmove/Zoopla/On The Market) to find a new house, which out of the hundreds of properties available to buy, you will probably only view around four or five of them, for no more than 20 minutes each. Then, you will arrange a second viewing of one or two of those initially viewed properties for the estate agency industry stated average of 30/45 minutes maximum (fascinating when you think most people take hours to decide what clothes or shoes to buy but minutes to spend hundreds of thousands of pounds on their next home!).  Then you put your property on the market with an estate agent, find a buyer for your Warrington property, agree a price for both, then instruct solicitors. The property becomes sold ‘subject to euphuism’ ... sorry ‘contract’ … as solicitors and surveyors and mortgage companies pick holes in the paperwork, threatening to wreck the chain at any moment, whilst you can’t get too attached to the property you want to purchase in case the sale falls through … phew - stressful or what??!!

Is it worth it? Worth the stress? The brown cardboard boxes? Well many Warrington people think so.

In the last 12 months, 258 families have sold and moved home in Warrington (WA1)

Yet the question I want raise is ... do people on certain streets in the WA1 postcode move more often than others? Well, the answer might surprise you. I looked at the Land Registry for the all the property sales going back 23 years (to 1995) in the WA1 postcode whilst also calculating the average value of a property on a particular street/road (to see if there was a correlation between price and moving). So initially looking at the top 10 streets in the postcode, in terms of pure out and out house sales, Manchester Road is the winner with an average of 16.0 house sales per year (since 1995) as on the graph below.
  



And to look at the bigger picture, the table below shows the top 25 streets, with the average value of a property on that street.  As you can see, there is no correlation between the average value of a property and the number of times a property gets sold on that street.






Street
Average Value of a Property
On that Street/Road
Average Number of
Properties Sold per Year (since 1995)
Manchester Road
£176,335
16.00
Padgate Lane
£140,096
11.39
Hume Street
£92,775
8.35
Cliftonville Road
£116,150
7.22
Whitchurch Close
£229,749
6.43
Algernon Street
£94,265
6.30
Ludlow Close
£160,464
6.17
Willis Street
£107,205
5.26
Holywell Drive
£154,056
5.30
Dalton Bank
£91,471
5.04
Berkshire Drive
£157,641
4.48
Wellington Street
£97,996
3.78
Riverside Close
£122,957
3.91
Fairclough Avenue
£86,613
3.57
Marsh House Lane
£105,448
3.57
Hillock Lane
£181,451
3.65
Oakland Street
£123,791
3.39
Thorneycroft Drive
£139,884
3.52
Palmyra Square North
£150,966
3.39
Delery Drive
£147,070
3.26
Gorsey Lane
£98,791
3.30
Dutton Court
£105,213
2.96
Edward Gardens
£309,522
3.13
Kerridge Drive
£160,136
3.04
Poulton Crescent
£174,054
3.00

However, I still felt the information wasn’t telling the whole story … some roads in Warrington have many more properties on than others, so I wanted to then compare the average number of properties sold by the actual number of properties on that street, to find out the streets whose owners proportionally moved (or sold more often) than the rest of the locality.

In the next article, (and I promise I won’t mention Star Trek again), I will answer that question in great depth ... and the results should (as they did me) certainly raise an eyebrow. The question is ... do you live on one the top 25 Warrington most saleable streets in Warrington (WA1)?  

Come back to my Warrington Property Blog for the next article to find out!

If you are looking for an agent that is well established, professional and communicative, then contact us to find out how we can get the best out of your investment property.


Email me on manoj@hamletwarrington.co.uk or call on 01925 235338. If you are in the area, feel free to pop into the office – we are based on G5, Warrington Business Park, Long Lane, WA2 8TX. There is plenty of free parking and the kettle is always on.





Thursday, 22 November 2018

The £6,218,153 Ticking Time Bomb for Warrington Landlords





I just love looking over and keeping up to date the 108 pieces of legislation that govern the rental of residential property in the UK  
...No Warrington Landlord, ever
 
If you are one of the 3,194 Warrington landlord’s that manages your own property, would it surprise you to know that there are 108 separate pieces of legislation that govern the rental of private houses to tenants. Oh, and on top of the 108 pieces of law, there are further 300+ regulations in the mix. Whilst Warrington landlords may once have preferred to manage their Warrington buy-to-let properties themselves to boost their profits, many Warrington landlords are starting to see this as a false economy.

In the last four years, an additional 1,228 landlords in Warrington have converted from self-managed to having their property managed by a letting agent in Warrington, taking the total number of properties under management in Warrington to 4,995 (out of a total of 8,189 private rental properties in Warrington).

Now, don’t get me wrong, self-managing your Warrington rental property can be a very fulfilling experience, allowing you, as a Warrington landlord, to build a deep relationship with your tenant and your emergency 24 hour plumber, builder (happy to do small jobs at a drop of a hat), decorators, first name terms with their deposit provider, lawyer and EPC provider to name but a few. (Wow!)

Also, did you know if your tenants deposit isn’t registered, or doesn’t continue to be registered after the end the periodic tenancy upon renewal ... you could be fined up to three times your deposit? With the average rental deposit in Warrington being £649, each self-managed landlord in Warrington could be fined £1,947 per tenancy if the deposit isn’t currently registered. Therefore...

...if every deposit of every Warrington self-managed landlord’s property wasn’t registered, the total fines would amount to £6,218,153

Now of course, I am not suggesting for one minute all the self-managed landlords of Warrington haven’t registered their deposits, yet almost on a daily basis, I come across horror stories to that effect. Another two (but by no means all) hot issues that the Courts are cracking down on, are doing immigration ‘Right To Rent’ checks on all tenants (yes all tenants) and confirmation proving the tenant received the ‘How to Rent’ guide. If that second issue cannot be proved (a ‘sent’ email won’t suffice), the landlord cannot serve the section 21 Notice, meaning the tenant cannot be served notice to vacate the property.

To many, it’s really a case of DIY or getting a qualified professional in … as those additional Warrington landlords mentioned above have done since 2014. You might say, “Of course you are going to say all this – you are a Letting Agent”. Well the choice really comes down to your time and your knowledge. If a Warrington landlord is not equipped, or able, to devote time keeping up-to-date of legislation and law nor doesn’t want to be bothered 24/7/365 about a blown light bulb, dripping taps, have that confrontational conversation with their tenants about missing rental payments, or arbitrate arguments and disagreements between your tenant and the neighbours, it is perhaps better to pass this accountability/responsibility onto a letting agent.

One thing I would say is all letting agents aren’t the same. Would it surprise you to know that letting agents aren’t regulated?

Warrington landlords that do use a letting agent should not forget that passing over management to a letting agent doesn’t mean they can disregard legislation and they are still responsible for deposit/rent repayment legal directives, civil fines or action if the letting agent makes a mistake. Therefore, it’s important to pick a respectable letting agent from the start.

Nevertheless, for those Warrington landlords that see their job as a professional landlord and want to be intricately involved in the day to day administration of their rental properties, it can be worthy pursuit.

If you are a self-managed landlord in Warrington, and want to know if your paperwork is in order please feel free to drop me a line and I am more than happy to do an ‘MOT’ on it to ensure you are the right side of the law.


If you are looking for an agent that is well established, professional and communicative, then contact us to find out how we can get the best out of your investment property.

Email me on manoj@hamletwarrington.co.uk or call on 01925 235338. If you are in the area, feel free to pop into the office – we are based on G5, Warrington Business Park, Long Lane, WA2 8TX. There is plenty of free parking and the kettle is always on.