Abbey Independent Inventories

News & views from the Abbey

Business not as usual

Property Intelligence 2019 Findrs Keepers - published October 2019     Renewals – a new normal Across all offices we have seen an increase in the number of tenants renewing. In Quarter 1 we reported a change in behaviour with tenants negotiating more on rent or length of tenancy. With the same thing happening in Q2 and Q3 it’s safe to say that this seems to be the new ‘normal’. As with new tenancies, the landlords who are being sensible...
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TAX PAYABLE ON PROFITS MADE ON THE SALE OF CERTAIN TYPES OF ASSETS BY A COMPANY OR INDIVIDUAL

Article by guildy | 27 Sep 2019 | 2020, New Legislation Landlords Urged to Sell Now to Beat Higher CGT Bills Buy to let landlords who have rented out a home where they once lived are urged to sell up quickly to avoid higher tax bills. Capital gains tax rules are due to change from April 6, 2020 that will take a larger bite from their sell-on profits. CGT will impact landlords selling homes by – Scrapping lettings relief that allows each owner to ...
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Why rent controls won't work – as the energy price cap failure proves

  ADAM WILLIAMS- THE TELEGRAPH Follow  19 JULY 2019    Everybody would like lower energy bills and bargain rents. But given political interference has not led to more resaonable gas and electricity charges, why does London mayor Sadiq Khan think he can deliver cheaper housing costs?   Mr Khan plans to make rent controls a cornerstone of his 2020 election bid. He proposes setting up a commission that will cap the amount te...
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Landlords now charging rents for pets…

  By LandlordZONE -9th September 2019   Lets for Pets:   The introduction of the tenant fees ban has also introduced uncertainties for landlords and tenants around the issue of letting with pets.                                                                    &n...
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Labour needs to re-think its sequestration proposals

  By LandlordZONE -6th September 2019   Right-to-buy:   Right-to-buy was a main plank in the Thatcher era property owning democracy drive, when the Conservatives introduced laws to allow council tenants to buy their homes at discounted prices.   David Alexander, MD of DJ Alexander, Letting and Estate Agents in Edinburgh and Glasgow, says, perhaps what’s good for the goose, is good for the gander? Why shouldn’t the shadow Chanc...
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“Incoherent”, the Government’s approach to rental market says expert

    By LandlordZONE -10th September 2019   Renting Policy:   Perhaps not surprising with all that’s going on in Government that they’re eye is being taken off the ball with the rental market, but as it’s a crucial housing and election issue there’s really no excuse.   According to a former member of the Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee, David Miles, the Government’s approach to the private rented sector is “inc...
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Oxford house affordability improving, but slowly

 
Posted by Bill Cooper at Friday, August 23, 2019
Oxford Property Blog
 
In Oxford, the average home now costs £405,600 according to Zoopla, which is 11.9 times the average single person income of £33,900.  With Oxford house prices static in Oxford according to Zoopla, average wages are now outstripping house prices.
 
This still places Oxford as the 3rd least affordable City in the UK behind London (13.1 times average income) and Cambridge (12.2 times average income).
 
So why is Oxford property so expensive?  Some factors are shared by Cambridge - it's a World famous centre of learning, with beautiful historic architecture and positioned well for commuting to/from London and for accessing Cotswold chocolate box villages and countryside at weekends.
 
But that's not what's driving the high cost of Oxford homes.  The real cause of high house prices is the lack of new starter homes and down-sizer homes being built.  Just 2% of housing is new build, and most new build relates to larger 3, 4 and 5 bed properties targeting affluent families.
 
Too many Oxford retirees are living in homes that are too large for them because there are no suitable properties for them to down-size into.  At the other end of the scale starter homes are virtually non-existent, forcing many affluent young professionals to rent homes for longer than is necessary.
 
I am asked daily by Oxford prospective home buyers 'will prices crash with Brexit?'.  My current response is there could be a short-term dip, but I can't see how prices will crash.  Demand for homes in Oxford is high, and sellers expectations of value are also high.  Most sellers will stay put rather than sell at a low price, and if demand surges there will be lower supply and higher demand.
 
And, the fundamentals will be the same - too few starter homes, too few down-sizer homes and new supply languishing at the low single digit percentage of supply.
 
Oxford homes owners and landlords may need to weather some 'headwinds' but their assets remain valuable over the medium to long-term.
 
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L&G and Oxford University team up for £4bn housing scheme

GAURDIAN ONLINE 27TH JUNE 2019 Construction of affordable homes for staff and students to take place over next decade First-time buyers in Oxford need to earn £68,800 a year and have a deposit of more than £100,000. Photograph: Arsty/Getty Images/iStockphoto Legal & General has teamed up with Oxford University in a £4bn partnership to build science parks and thousands of homes for staff and students over the next decade. The insurance and pen...
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Tenants will be given access to rogue landlord database

   PUBLISHED GUARDIAN ON LINE 21 JULY 2019   Campaigners have welcomed government plans to open up its rogue landlord database to prospective tenants, as part of proposals to give greater protection to renters.   A package of reforms published for consultation includes proposals to stop no-fault evictions, which the charity Shelter has described as “far and away the most important thing the government can do” to help renters. ...
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MPs call on landlords to scrap 'no DSS' clauses in rental ads

ARTICLE PUBLISHED IN THE GAURDIAN ON LINE 24 aPRIL 2019 MPs have demanded landlords and letting agents end the practice of screening out people on benefits after hearing claims that “no DSS” clauses have become the 2019 equivalent of “no blacks, no Irish, no dogs” notices. During a hearing into the widespread refusal of landlords to rent properties to those on benefits, the Commons work and pensions select committee on Wednesday confronted the di...
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Why are property inventory reports important?

May 24, 2017 by Richard Abbots on RLA website july 2017   Property inventory reports are no longer just about preventing disputes about condition and cleanliness. As the in-vogue term ‘Generation Rent’ suggests, house purchases are edging further and further from reality for much of the population. The result? A wiser, more assertive market place of renters that know their rights. In turn, rental legislation and taxation is becoming more one...
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How landlords and letting agents check tenants

Shelter website 2017 A landlord or letting agent will want to check you will be a reliable tenant and able to afford the rent. Proof of identity Your landlord or letting agent will want to see photo ID, such as a driving licence or passport. If you don't have photo ID, a signed bank card or a utility bill from your current home may be enough. Right to rent You will need to show your passport or immigration documents as proof that you have the rig...
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Landlords: Bulletproof Your Section 21 Notices

Mistakes in Section 21 notices are among the most common reasons for delays and increased costs when a landlord tries to recover possession from a tenant who has an Assured Shorthold Tenancy (AST). Judges are well aware of the complicated statutory provisions that govern such notices. And the slightest mistake, such as an incorrect expiry date, is harshly dealt with, usually resulting in an order dismissing the landlord’s possession claim. Howeve...
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Tenant Fees Bill – what you need to know about the Govenment amendments

Article Posted -06 Dec 2018 on NAL website The Government has proposed amendments to the Tenant Fees Bill, which is currently being debated in the House of Lords. The amendments are due to be debated in the Lords on Tuesday 11 December. The main amendments which affect landlords are: The maximum security deposit being limited to five weeks’ – rather than six weeks’ – rent, for tenancies less than £50,000 per year (and remain six weeks for tenanci...
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Universal Credit: Top tips for landlords

TUESDAY 04 DECEMBER 2018 ARLA ON LINE ARTICLE The Minister for Families, Supported Housing and Child Maintenance, Justin Tomlinson has issued some valuable advice for landlords (or managing agents) to help their tenants better understand Universal Credit and minimise problems with unpaid or late rent. Justin Tomlinson, MP said: "I understand that Universal Credit has felt like a huge cultural change for many private landlords, their staff and ten...
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Drop in number of houses being sold in Oxfordshire

The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) said that constraints on affordability have also affected buyers, following significant rises in the cost of properties in recent years. Up to the end of July, the most recent month for which data is available, 5,413 properties had been sold in Oxfordshire. It is a seven per cent drop compared to the same seven months in 2017.  It is a picture reflected across the South East, where sales we...
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Stamp duty revenue in England down 10% on a year ago

Guardian on-line article 21st November 2018 Government revenue from stamp duty on property sales fell by a tenth in the third quarter of 2018 compared with the same period last year, with the Treasury’s coffers now likely to fall more than £1bn short of earlier forecasts. Behind the fall lies a big reduction in stamp duty for first-time buyers, introduced in November 2017, and a moribund Brexit-hit London market, where estate agents say high taxe...
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Rogue landlords: 90% of local authorities fail to issue fines

Guardian On line Article 29th November 2018 Almost 90% of local authorities failed to use new powers to fine rogue landlords last year, in the latest finding to suggest tenants are being failed by a lax enforcement regime. It follows a Guardian and ITV News investigation in October, which revealed a string of weaknesses in the legislation governing the private rented market and which also raised questions about the rigour with which certain counc...
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UK house prices pick up amid 'subdued' market Values rise by 0.3% in November – but few predict rapid growth in short term

Article guardian on- line 30th November 2018

London and the south-east are dragging down house price growth.
House prices inched ahead in November but Brexit uncertainty has left the property market “relatively subdued” according to Nationwide building society.

The average UK home rose in price by 0.3% month-on-month, pushing the annual rate of inflation up to 1.9%, up from 1.6% the previous month. The average home now costs £214,044.

However in cash terms the average price of a home in the UK actually fell by nearly £500 on the month, but because of seasonal adjustments used by Nationwide, its index recorded a rise.

The direction of house prices will be heavily dependent on the outcome of the Brexit vote on 11 December and what emerges after that. Nationwide said that if the uncertainty lifted, then prices were likely to spring back.

Its chief economist, Robert Gardner, said: “If the uncertainty lifts in the months ahead and employment continues to rise, there is scope for activity to pick up through next year.

“The squeeze on household incomes is already moderating and policymakers have signalled that, if the economy performs as they expect, interest rates are only expected to rise at a modest pace and to a limited extent in the years ahead.”

But the Bank of England’s warning this week that house prices could tumble by 30% following a no-deal Brexit is already having an impact on the market, according to property experts.

Jonathan Hopper, managing director of Garrington Property Finders, said: “While the ‘armageddon’ scenarios run by Mr Carney will be brushed off by many as unlikely, they will further sober the thinking of over-optimistic sellers and cautious buyers.

“For now, his comments have served only to dial up the uncertainty - and the pattern of subdued business-as-usual continues.

“Despite the shortage of homes for sale, a steady stream of strategic buyers are pouncing on buying opportunities that may not be around if the market normalises in 2019.”

Nationwide highlighted how the supply of housing was improving after a decade in which Britain had not built sufficient housing for a growing population.

It said: “After falling by almost 60% in the wake of the financial crisis, there has been a significant pick-up in construction in recent years. New-build completions in England in 2017/18 reached 195,300, around 3% below 2007/08 levels.”

It added that once additional dwellings were counted – particularly from the wave of office-to-residential conversions, then housebuilding has virtually returned to peak 2007 levels. In total, 1.9m dwellings have been built in England since 2007, representing an 8.5% increase in the total stock of homes.

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Be prepared for HMO changes in England

ARTICLE PUBLISHED ON ARLA WEBSITE FRIDAY 14 SEPTEMBER 2018    In England on 1 October, the criteria for what kind of House in Multiple Occupation (HMO) needs a mandatory licence is being extended and agents will need to ensure they’re keeping landlords up to date with the incoming change in legislation and making sure that applicable properties are licensed.   The UK Government announced in May 2015 that it would be changing the cr...
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