There are some great properties out there just waiting to be found and the good news is the only tool you need to find them is Zoopla. Today we look at four underutilised filters that investors can use to find below market value property and motivated sellers in their chosen area.
Are you looking at how to get started investing in property? Maybe you’re a complete beginner and you are starting from scratch. Maybe you are simply looking for your next great investment property to add to your property portfolio.
If so, I’m sure this video is gonna be great for you.
This is a free training video to show you how to find great value investment properties. They could be right on your doorstep or in your favourite area. They could be anywhere in the UK.
In this demonstration, I’ll be using some free, simple tools to show you how to assess and analyse great value deals on the market, which other investors could be missing out on.
My name is Robert Jones and I run a property investment company called Property Investments UK.
We run a property investment course but we also have clients from across the world who we help find the best of UK property for them to invest in.
So, on a day by day basis, a lot of time is spent looking for the best property investment deals and using a number of different methods to achieve this.
What I’ve done here is I’ve condensed a few of our methods to show you. These, and other techniques are in our training programme but I’ve decided to show these ones for free to show you how you can find great investment properties in your chosen area.
It will cost you nothing to learn because all the tools I use here are free – the tips and tactics involve just Rightmove and Zoopla.
So, I’ll jump from behind the camera, to the computer screen, to give you a walkthrough of how you can do this today.
Introduction To Zoopla
Set Up An Account
So, I’ll be using Zoopla for the examples today. So, if you don’t have an account already you should set one up. I recommend you do that first as once you have an account you will be able to save the investment properties you find into a shortlist.
Select Your Criteria
The next step is to select your locations. So, for this example, I will choose Manchester. Then I will set a minimum price range of £60,000 and a maximum of £150,000 and I’m going to be looking at houses.
Obviously, you can set this up any way you like. This will work in any area in the UK so set your filters in a way that is best for you.
As I’m looking at Manchester, I won’t need to add any extra locations or change the distance settings. We will have enough properties come up here to be working with.
Setting up your day filters is a good thing to do here if you want to narrow down the returned listings to ones that are recent.
There’s a couple of other search tools in here as well that we take you through in our advanced training.
So what I’m really going to be looking at here is this set of filters, here.
So, I’ll start off with the ‘Most Reduced’ filter. There is also ‘New Homes’, ‘Shared Ownership’ and ‘Retirement Homes’ but these aren’t important right now.
There is also an ‘Auctions’ option which you can either leave in or take out depending on how you feel about buying property at auction.
When I click ‘Search’ that brings up 419 properties, which is great, but we need to narrow this list down to the ones that have the best value or show signs of having motivated sellers.
This process is called shortlisting meaning that we want to be saving properties, that we think fit our criteria, into a shortlist. As I mentioned earlier, in order to do this, you will need to be logged into Zoopla.
Now, I mentioned that there were four things we were going to look at today. These are the ‘Most Popular’ filter, the ‘Most Recent’ filter and the map function. Firstly, however, there is the ‘Most Reduced’ filter.
By applying the ‘Most Reduced’ filter what we are trying to do is look for signs that properties have had a large price reduction, recently.
A recent, large price reduction is obviously a great sign that there could be a deal to be had.
So, let’s look at this example here. This house has had a price reduction of 18.9% in August 2017. This is only a couple of months ago and this reduction is quite big.
The property might have been overpriced, originally. Or it could mean that the vendor’s circumstances have changed and they are now seeking a quick sale (in other words, a motivated seller).
It’s important to try and work out why a property might have had a price reduction but for the purposes of our shortlist, we can put this property in.
The rental income for the area is good so we can expect good returns. The reduction is something we want to think about. This property can be added to our list so we click save and it is done.
Now, it’s just a question of going through the results, seeing if any properties stand out and adding them as well.
Variations By Area
What constitutes a big enough reduction to pique your interest will depend on the area you are searching in. What is true for London is not necessarily true for Liverpool, Leeds or Lincoln.
It depends on what the local market is like for a given area.
So, with that in mind, it’s important to be familiar with the market conditions of the area you are searching in. If it’s a popular, buoyant area then it might be very rare to see reductions of 15% or 10%.
So, in a situation like this, we could set our criteria for anything over 10%. In other situation, we might want to set it to over 15. It depends on the area.
Using the ‘Most Popular’ filter is great for spotting properties that might have been missed by other investors and which aren’t standing out in the majority of searches.
So, obviously, we are going to be using the ‘Most Popular’ search function to find, not the most popular properties, but the least popular ones.
At the top, we have the properties that have been looked at the most in the last 30 days. As we go down the list we can see the number of times the properties have been viewed is reducing.
So, we have one here that’s been looked at 2,900 times and then there is this one that’s been viewed 1,700 times. So, that’s quite a big difference.
We want to take this list and scroll all the way down to the bottoms and start to look at it back to front.
Right down at the bottom, we’ve got this property that has only been viewed 18 times in the last 30 days so these properties here have had very little interest, will be getting very few viewing and probably no offers.
Now, these properties could be great opportunities and because of the lack of interest in them, you might find that the vendors are very motivated.
There could, of course, be a good reason why these properties haven’t had many views. For instance, this listing has only just been added. So, it’s important that you check when the property first came to market which you can check to the left of the screen.
If, however, the listing has been on the market for a couple of weeks and it’s still not generating any interest then you should go ahead and add it to your shortlist.
The shortlist is now starting to build but of course, you will still need to do your due diligence later on and we show you exactly how to do that in our VIP, property investment course.
Next up, we’re going to look at the ‘Most Recent’ filter. So, what we’re really looking for here are properties that have been on the market for a long time.
So, again, I’m going to reverse engineer this search and look at the bottom of the list.
This property here came onto the market in August 2016 which is over a year ago. It’s on for offers over £95,000 and a two-bedroom terrace which fits all our criteria.
Because it has been on the market for a long time that can go into our shortlist. But really, any property that has been on the market for a while could turn out to be a fantastic deal.
But why are some properties getting so little interest from other buyers?
Well, maybe things have changed. Maybe, they have not had a chance. Maybe they haven’t considered reducing the price but would be open to a reduced offer?
So, any property that has been on the market for a long time could potentially mean that there is a motivated seller and certainly could be a great deal that everyone else is missing.
The fourth method for finding great investment property is to use the map.
As I said earlier this guide is just a shortened version of what we do when we are looking for potential property investments. So, you can expand the methods here and there are other techniques you can bring into play.
But hopefully, this is providing a bit of context around the kind of things you should be looking for when you are adding potential investment properties to your initial shortlist.
So, using the ‘Map Search’ function, we are trying to find are properties that might have been undervalued. They might have been undervalued by mistake or they might have been undervalued intentionally because the owner wants to sell quickly.
The ‘Map Search’ is the easiest way to spot these opportunities. You can overlay the Heat Map tool and this will help you understand the house prices in a given, local area.
Going from low to high… Dark blue is very low prices and dark red is very high prices. So, if in your location, you know you need a particular yield and that yield is only going to be achieved in areas of medium to a low value then you will be able to identify where you need to be looking, using the heatmap.
So, now we’ve found our area we can turn the heatmap off and then we can start to look at the individual listings.
If there is a star on one of them that means we’ve already saved it into our shortlist. Anything without a star we should have a look at.
We want to go through the listings one-by-one and try and work out and understand what the price ranges in a local area are and what they mean.
We’ve got a two-bedroom terrace here, on for offers of over £100,000, a two-bed here, for £130,000 and a three-bed here, also on for £130,000.
These properties are all close to each other and this one is obviously priced at a lower value than I would expect so that’s standing out as a potential opportunity.
It is as simple as that!
We are just looking for any outliers, properties that look lower priced than those in the surrounding area.
This one is a three-bed, offers over £95,000, so let’s save that one because of another property, very similar and close by, is on for £110,000. So, again, that’s a big difference. It’s the same type of property, it could be in a very different condition, but it’s on for what looks like a big discount.
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