Tag Archives: buy to let

I Sacked Yet Another Letting Agent and Laboured in Liverpool!

6 Aug

Today I have been labouring in Liverpool – yes really. I may not have any photos to prove it (we were all hard at work).

But suffice to say the property is looking better than when the agents gave it back to us. They have duly been sacked! 

I admit the property is dated but we have not refurbished yet because we have planning to convert to flats so until the market recovers we are letting as one BIG family house (6 double bedrooms no less!) at a greatly reduced market rent – so basically one lucky family gets to live in a very large house for very cheap rent 🙂 

Here is the property as the agents gave it back to us (if you had smellovision you would smell the dog urine which permeated the entire house and the reason why I had to rip up all the downstairs carpets). They thought it was acceptable for the tenants to leave all their rubbish there for me to clear up. Not quite. They now have the bill!

24 hours later and a lot of elbow grease – here is what we look like. And we have tenants lined up – Happy Days 🙂

Today I am kicking myself!

28 Jul

Today I am still kicking myself for not attending an auction last Thursday…basically I have been considering opening another agency branch in Cheshire for a while now. Then I was flicking through the catalogues and I came across a cute little shop in a town just 10 miles from where we are based for just a £50k guide!

Had a chat with Karen my office manager and she LOVED the idea and convinced me to do a drive by…so I went and I FELL IN LOVE

It was central in the town centre, had great road visability – and was in pretty good condition…I could just hang a sign and open up!

And so I went back and told Karen all about it….and then I admitted I would have to postpone our refurbishment plans of the current office so that I could fund the set up of this.

“NO WAY” she replied. “I’m not supporting a new venture without you finishing this building first”  She made some sensible points and we agreed that I would leave it and if it did not sell at auction make a cheeky offer after…

On the day of auction I was still desperate to go, but Dimi my partner was not keen until I had finished the major refurb of our current offices…I sensed a theme and decided to heed their advice

My “what-was-not-meant-to-be-lovely-new-shop-in-Cheshire” sold for just £40k

I am SO totally gutted :..(

My Kettering Quandry!

23 Jul

Today I was driving back from North to South and while on the A14 remembered there was a place going to auction in Kettering. As it was just a quick diversion I thought I would do a drive by. 

The property was a 2 bed terrace which was listed as a sale by mortgagees NOT in possession. That means they have the power of sale (as the person hasn’t paid the mortgage) but they have not actually evicted the owner or changed the locks…which means they don’t know if the property is occupied or not! Importantly, it also means there will be NO internal viewings as they do not have access.

It was a street close to town and looked in good condition.

I decided that I should check out the back. In retrospect, me on my own at 8 o’ clock at night going down a back alley and climbing over the garden wall may not have been the best idea….I managed to get some pics through the window of the kitchen. It looked pretty new…

Then I was looking through the dining room indow and suddenly I saw what appeared to be a sleeping bag S***!  Was the property lived in??!!

I made a sharp exit – bearing in mind I didn’t know if the property was occupied and I was currently in the back yard.

I still needed to know if the property was occupied so I knocked on the neighbours door and got chatting. She was lovely and invited me in to see the layout of her property. She was very helpful and made my mind up that I would bid for the property…

But I got outbid 😦

The Brixton Basement with a “vanishing” second bedroom

20 Jul

When you see a 2 bed in Brixton high street with a guide of £100k you know something’s wrong – or that they really are just keen to get you bidding…but it didn’t sell! With the reserve at £100k my curiosity was piqued and I scheduled in to see it. I knew it was under commercial premises – but it was central and so I figured I could make it work.

When I arrived I was pleased to see the residential access had a separate access from the high street to the flats (there were 3 of them in total above/ below the commercial). Then the fun began – the first room you walked into (on the ground floor) was a thin long narrow bedroom which was on the borderline of “decent” housing standards. There was damp damage but not too hard to treat.

You then walked downstairs to a quite light basement which was a lounge with kitchen and bathroom off.  All in good condition…

But then i was looking for the second bedroom!

The deeds had shown the property had 2 bedrooms but there was only 1 in this property. I went hunting and found it…behind a boarded up wall. I climbed out of the window so that I could look through the outside of the building and see what had happened…the shop had “stolen” the second bedroom and converted their back part into a flat which the bedroom was now a part of!!!!

I have circled the window in question here – i couldn’t get too close as there were people in the “stolen” bedroom!

I spoke to my solicitor to see what we could do – to be honest, I was willing to accept the situation and buy it as a one bedroom as the price was still right for the property…until it turned out – it had no planning, no building regs and no access! Oh and a freeholder who was in breach of contract!

Even if this all still sounds bad – the fact is you price in risk and you offer at a price which covers yourself. I negotiated with my solicitor what we felt the legal issues would cost to resolve – but in the end someone else decided that they would take more risk than me and offered more money!