Thursday, 17 January 2019

Chichester’s Monopoly board


After a few epic Christmas time battles, it’s time to pack away the Monopoly set for another year. Owning Mayfair for a mere £400 seems a distant dream, but then again the game did come out in 1935 (although it was originally released in 1903 entitled ‘The Landlord’s Game’). But as 2019 kicks off, how would Chichester’s modern-day Monopoly board look?

With around 454 streets in Chichester (PO19 postcode district only), it would take a long time to get around the full board, so I’ll pick out a few notable mentions.


Let’s start with Old Kent Road; the cheapest space on the board. In Chichester that spot would go to Lennox Road, with the average property on the street valued at £163,000. Located close to the hospital, the street mainly consists of flats; many housing just a single person, the majority of which are either renting socially or privately.


The Strand is halfway across the Monopoly board and today in Chichester this spot would be occupied by Oak Avenue. It’s a pleasant street in Parklands, with 82% of the 131 properties being semi-detached, the vast majority of which are owner-occupied. With the average property on the street worth £384,000 it closely matches Chichester’s average property value as a whole.


And what’s the Mayfair of Chichester? The most expensive street in the City? Well that honour falls to North Pallant, whereby the average property in the street will set you back £1,115,000. Located in the heart of the city, with Pallant House Gallery on its doorstep, North Pallant is home to some 171 people, most of whom own their property (74% without a mortgage).

So, what type of Monopoly player are you? It’s always interesting to note the different styles of play, which seem to mimic landlords’ real-life dealings. Some like to accumulate the cheaper properties, receiving multiple rents, whilst others prefer to save up for the premium plots, every so often bringing in a king’s ransom.

If you’re thinking of getting into the ‘landlord’s game’ for real, be sure to follow my Chichester property market updates throughout 2019 at www.tinyurl.com/ChiPropertyNews or give me a call to discuss how you’re thinking of playing it.













(This article was featured in the Chichester Observer's property section on January 17, 2019)


Clive Janes, CRJ Lettings











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

E-mail me on clive@crjlettings.co.uk or call 01243 624 599.

Don't forget to visit the links below to view my previous buy-to-let deals and Chichester Property News articles:






c/o CRJ Lettings, 30B Southgate, Chichester, West Sussex, PO19 1DP



Chichester rental valuation

Monday, 14 January 2019

BUY-TO-LET DEAL OF THE WEEK: 2 bed flat in Chichester, £230,000, 4.4% yield

2 bed flat, Peter Weston, Chichesterkitchenlounge
Summary:
2 bed house in Chichester
Listed for sale on 09/01/19 @ £230,000
Rent = £850pcm
Yield = 4.4%

Last sold for £200,000 in 2014 (+15% in 5 years)

This two-bedroom apartment in Chichester is a likely candidate for a traditional landlord who may be led towards investing in a city-centre apartment. At £230,000 it's a relatively inexpensive way to enter this market compared to nearby apartments that offer similar accommodation, but for 10%-20% more money.

It's only real downside is the size of bedroom two, which may put off a core market of city-centre apartment tenants - two sharers. For a young couple though (or an elderly couple as it's located on the ground floor) the second bedroom will likely be used as a study or occasional room and the large living space and good-sized kitchen would more than compensate.

With allocated parking and it's central location, I'd expect a rental figure of £850pcm, which would provide a 4.4% gross yield. As ever with apartments, bear in mind the lease, ground rent and service charges. Having last sold in 2014 for £200,000 it's now at a realistic price (having increased 15% in five years). Prior to that it sold for just £69,950 in 1996 (just as house prices were about to take off); more than tripling in value in the two decades after.

The property is on the market with Cubitt & West and full details can be found on Rightmove via the following link:
https://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-59414481.html


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

E-mail me on clive@crjlettings.co.uk or call 01243 624 599.

Don't forget to visit the links below to view my previous buy-to-let deals and Chichester Property News articles:



c/o CRJ Lettings, 30B Southgate, Chichester, West Sussex, PO19 1DP


Chichester rental valuation

Thursday, 10 January 2019

What’s in store for Chichester’s landlords in 2019?


Last year the government rolled out new energy-efficiency requirements for rental properties, additional licencing rules for shared houses, reduced tax relief and launched the Rogue Landlord Database. The pace of change doesn’t look like it’ll be slowing down in 2019, with further changes coming to the lettings market:

The Homes (Fit for Human Habitation) Bill - confirmed
The tragedy at Grenfell Tower provided a stark reminder of the dangers of unsafe accommodation. Social tenants have no effective means of redress over poor conditions (Local Authorities aren’t going to enforce health & safety penalties against themselves) whilst private tenants have to rely on over-stretched local authority Environmental Health teams.

This Bill will give tenants the right to take their landlord to court where the property is not ‘fit for human habitation’ - judged by the criteria already laid out by the HHSRS (Housing Health and Safety Rating System).

Deeper tax relief reductions - confirmed
Until recently a landlord could offset the interest on their buy-to-let mortgages against rental income. In the 2017/18 tax year this changed whereby you could only claim 75% of the mortgage tax relief. This tax year (18/19) it drops to 50% whilst in 19/20 it’ll drop to 25% before being eliminated entirely from April 2020 (in place of a reduced ‘tax credit).

Tenant fees ban - highly likely
A big one for letting agents, who not only charge landlords a fee to find tenants and manage their property, but also apply tenant ‘admin’ fees to cover their costs. Many have abused this and charge punitive fees, which has now led to them being banned entirely (subject to confirmation but almost certain to happen). The upshot of this is that many agencies are already increasing their fees to landlords in preparation, which is likely to lead to rent increases further down the line - meaning long-term tenants will actually get hit the hardest.

Security deposit cap - highly likely
Part of the same Tenant Fees Bill, the government is seeking to impose a cap to security deposits of five weeks rent. Tenants with poor credit, pets or other perceived ‘risks’ who could previously offer an enhanced security deposit now won’t be able to, making them less likely to be granted a tenancy in the first place.

Longer tenancies - likely
The Autumn 2017 budget announced a consultation aimed to provide greater stability to tenants by way of longer tenancies. This consultation has now closed and a response is awaited, however fixed three-year tenancies have been mentioned.

Electrical safety checks - likely
Electrical safety checks every five years are already mandatory at larger shared housing and it stands to reason this will be expanded to the entire rental sector, much like the annual gas safety certificate.

Brexit - who knows!!

With all these sticks being thrown at landlords, whilst few carrots get dished out, it’s no surprise that research from RICS shows a falling number of landlords (even though there’s a rising number of tenants). Those landlords who adapt and provide a good-quality product to a more-demanding pool of tenants will be in a good position to bear the fruits of their hard work.










(This article was featured in the Chichester Observer's property section on January 10, 2019)


Clive Janes, CRJ Lettings











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

E-mail me on clive@crjlettings.co.uk or call 01243 624 599.

Don't forget to visit the links below to view my previous buy-to-let deals and Chichester Property News articles:






c/o CRJ Lettings, 30B Southgate, Chichester, West Sussex, PO19 1DP



Chichester rental valuation

Tuesday, 1 January 2019

Community Focus: West Sussex Wellbeing - Dry Janurary


Dry January is the UK’s one-month booze-free challenge - are you in?



After the excesses of Christmas and New Year’s, a popular New Year’s resolution is to lower the amount of alcohol we drink. West Sussex Wellbeing is here to help with this, as part of the charity Alcohol Change and their annual push to promote a Dry January. Their aim is to get people thinking and talking about their drinking habits, and to reassess them.

Research shows that participants lose weight, sleep better, feel better overall and save money.

Chichester Property News - Issue 34 - January 2019


Featuring the articles:
"What's in store for Chichester's landlords in 2019"
"What are better - houses or flats?"
"Community Focus: West Sussex Wellbeing - Dry January"
and "Buy-to-let deal of the month: 3-4 bed house in Chichester, £289,950, 5.0% yield"

Plus, the latest average property values, rents and yields in Chichester.

➕ Plus, the latest average property values, rents and yields in Chichester!

Monday, 17 December 2018

BUY-TO-LET DEAL OF THE WEEK: 4 bed house in Chichester, £450,000, 4.3% yield

4 bed house, Lloyd Road, Chichesterkitchenlounge

Summary:
4 bed house in Chichester
Listed for sale on 29/03/18 @ £525,000
Now = £450,000
Rent = £1,600pcm
Yield = 4.3%

Last sold for £445,000 in 2014 (+1% in 4 years)

This four-bedroom house on the Graylingwell Park development to the North of Chichester now offers a huge amount of space for the money - over 1,500 square feet for £450,000. What draws me to this property is the fact it's modern and good value; bear in mind it was originally listed for £525,000 in April! That's a huge price drop and the property can now be purchased for similar money to when it was last sold four years ago (for £445,000). Before that, in 2011, it was sold as new for £425,995 - so it's hardly increased in seven years, whereas house prices in Chichester have averaged a 38% growth in the same period.

Nothing needs to be done to the house as it's in great condition, although personally I would install an en-suite shower room to the top floor to create a true master bedroom. A few similar houses have done this and it makes a good difference to what is effectively the same house as the three bedroom variety on the estate, but with a whole extra floor on top. Considering that creates 50% extra space, it would stand to reason that the price is around 50% more than the three-beds (which are currently selling for between £300,000 and £330,000).

From a rental perspective I believe £1,600pcm is achievable (if you add the en-suite); a solid 4.3% rental return from what would be a large family home with little work required and (touch wood) reasonably low maintenance costs in the short and medium term. As ever on this phase of the Graylingwell Park development, there are also solar panels on the roof, which should add an extra £150pcm to your income over the course of the year - boosting the already decent yield for a freehold property at this price point to an excellent 4.7%.

The property is on the market with Sims Williams and full details can be found on Rightmove via the following link:
https://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-53655327.html


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

E-mail me on clive@crjlettings.co.uk or call 01243 624 599.

Don't forget to visit the links below to view my previous buy-to-let deals and Chichester Property News articles:



c/o CRJ Lettings, 30B Southgate, Chichester, West Sussex, PO19 1DP


Chichester rental valuation

Thursday, 13 December 2018

Have the Christmas sales come early for Chichester’s tenants?


Here’s a note to anyone looking in Chichester for a property to rent - there’s some bargains to be had! December is traditionally a quieter time of year in the lettings market, but this year seems worse than any I can remember.

As I type, in the past two weeks 60 properties have come to the rental market and only 8 have let! Ordinarily I’d hope to have a property let agreed within a fortnight (I’ve seen leaflets from an agent who offers to do the job for ‘free’ if they don’t) - but barely anything seems to be letting right now.

Those that have let have mostly done so due to generous price reductions - for example there’s a pleasant two-bedroom house on Arundel Park with a garage that has let for £775pcm…whereas another around the corner is on at £850pcm and earlier this year I let a similar property for £925pcm.

Average prices are dropping on the whole - most notably amongst the two-bedroom houses, which currently average ‘just’ £900pcm. That’s the lowest they’ve been since February 2016 and is bizarrely cheaper than the average two bed flat (£975pcm). I suspect this is just a temporary blip as a number of ‘cheaper’ two-bedroom houses have come to the market at the same time - the problem is that this has an impact on the chances of letting a more ‘premium’ property at it’s normal price.

On top of the price drops are further incentives, including half-price rent for the first month if you move in before Christmas, or discounted administration fees (the fact these are due to disappear next year means agents should get used to this loss of income). Offers such as these seem to be more prevalent this year than I’ve noticed before and it’s become something of a ‘race to the bottom’ if you don’t get involved in the discounting, as tenants become ever-more price sensitive.

For tenants on the hunt there’s the cheapest two-bedroom flat in Chichester I’ve seen for a long time - available at £650pcm…and it’s quite nice inside! There’s a three-bedroom flat on for £695pcm, complete with half price rent in month one. There are several three-bedroom houses available for less than £1,000pcm and one in Somerstown that’s been on for months; originally for £1,200pcm (whilst at the same time I let one for £1,100pcm) which has now been reduced to £1,100pcm, with the caveat of being ‘open to offers’.

I myself have got 3 three-bedroom houses available to let - yet only 3 out of the 25 three-bed houses to have come to the market throughout Chichester in the last month have actually let, which makes life rather difficult! So, if you’re in the market for a property to rent in Chichester, get in touch and you might just find yourself a Christmas bargain.









(This article was featured in the Chichester Observer's property section on December 13, 2018)


Clive Janes, CRJ Lettings











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

E-mail me on clive@crjlettings.co.uk or call 01243 624 599.

Don't forget to visit the links below to view my previous buy-to-let deals and Chichester Property News articles:






c/o CRJ Lettings, 30B Southgate, Chichester, West Sussex, PO19 1DP



Chichester rental valuation