Today, Grant Erskine talks about how what it takes to future proof yourself in architecture by keeping your projects diverse and always being willing to learn. As Grant says, ‘If somebody asks you to do something you don’t know how to do, you say yes and then you learn how to do it’ and although ‘it makes my staff uncomfortable, I deliberately force them to do jobs that they haven’t done before’.
Property joint ventures can be fantastic but what happens when things go wrong? Today we look at how planning can help you to survive the unexpected. Nobody likes to think about things like ill-health, death or relationship breakdown but discussing these things when times are good is a lot easier than discussing them when something serious has already gone wrong.
At property auctions, the shrewder investors tend to stand at the back but the important thing is to place yourself wherever you feel most comfortable. There are advantages to being able to get a good look at the room but when it comes down to it, bidding tactics are not the most important things to be worrying about.
In the first on this series on architecture, Grant Erskine talks about how he came to architecture, the projects he worked on with BDP (Building Design Partnerships) and about how the recession led him to set up his own company, Grant Erskine Architects.
Since 2015 people have had a lot more freedom to decide what they want to do with their pension. But is using it to invest in property a viable option? The answer is yes but there are certain restrictions. If you try and take all of your pension money at once there will be income tax to pay. And if you invest in property using your fund as a vehicle then you are limited to commercial property only.
At property auctions, ‘off the wall bidding’ is where an auctioneer invents a bid to drive bids in the room higher towards the reserve price. It sounds bad but it isn’t. If the reserve price isn’t met then the bidder’s being pushed higher could not have bought the property anyway.
In 2017 rates on buy-to-let mortgages have hit a historic low and are now comparable to residential mortgages. But, going fixed rate is advisable as, in uncertain times, there is a lot to be said for paying more for some certainty.
More foreign investment – A fall in available labour – An increase in the price of construction materials. What will Brexit mean for the UK housing market (and there are a lot of issues, flying under the radar, that aren’t getting a great deal of media attention)?
Manchester is the largest economic area outside of London with £56 billion gross value added (GVA). Manchester boasts two internationally renowned football clubs, a world-class orchestra, a film and TV production industry and a rich musical heritage. But, more importantly, it’s the favourite, property investment hotspot for 2017 and going into 2018 that’s not looking any different.
Much of what is sold through property auctions are sold at below market value so buying at auction is still one of the best ways of picking up BMV property. But, all kinds of properties are bought and sold in this way and it isn’t uncommon for houses to be sold at over market value as well. It depends entirely on the motivation of the buyer.
Rumours of its death have been greatly exaggerated but there have been a lot of changes in buy to let in 2017. From the cut to mortgage interest tax relief to changes to stamp duty on second homes. Mortgages are more difficult to come by and legislation is becoming increasingly complex. Many see these changes as representing the end of buy-to-let landlords. But, for my part, I see a market that is very much alive and kicking.