A Guide to Buy-to-Let for New Investors

A Guide to Buy-to-Let for New Investors

Hannah McCartan
16th March 2018

Are you thinking to invest in property in Swansea, but don’t have much experience with the sector?

A Bit of Background

Buy to Let in Swansea has been my specialism for over 15 years now, and it’s my aim to use my knowledge to help Swansea landlords and investors find property that matches their long term financial goals.

I became a property investor at the age of 24, so have a wealth of personal experience as a landlord in this city to bring to bear.

I set up my letting agency business at the age of 26, and we have this year been recognised as being within the top 20% of agents in the whole of the UK by Property Academy and portal giant Rightmove.

Recently, I have also branched out into project management.

Why Swansea?

Now is a really interesting time to be a landlord in Swansea.

In 2016, Rightmove reported rents in Swansea rose by 11.4% – the highest annual rise in rents across the whole of the UK (outside London).  In 2017, Swansea was mentioned twice in Rightmove reports as an area of notable rent growth. Higher rents mean increased return on investment.

There are challenges up ahead for the buy-to-let market as a whole, but Swansea remains a strong area to invest in property with all of its development and employment potential, not only with major employers such as the DVLA, Admiral, Amazon, and Morriston and Singleton Hospitals, but also with new jobs being created by the City Deal and the Tidal Lagoon.

Not familiar with the City Deal, or Swansea’s proposed Tidal Lagoon? Click here to find out more.

Across the UK, more and more people are choosing to rent, not just because they are struggling to get on the property ladder, but because it suits their lifestyle better.

If you invest in the right property in Swansea where demand for long term, professional tenancies is high, you can expect not only healthy return on your investment (what we’d call a high yield), but also a steady increase in the value of your property (capital growth).

Your Own Grand Plan

Investing in buy to let can be very rewarding, but it shouldn’t be entered into lightly – or without a Grand Plan.

It might seem silly, but knowing why you want to invest and having a clear idea of your end goal are both essential before you even begin looking at houses, as they will determine the kind of property you should be looking for and the area you should be looking in.

Do you want monthly cash income, or would you benefit more from equity gain? Do you want to be mortgage free? Are you funding a private pension?

Have you taken stock of your resources? – your knowledge, how much time you can spend on it, what funds you have available? Do you have the time or the funds to handle a property that requires renovation? Do you have any contacts that might be able to assist with any work that needs to be done?

Is there anything about the type of property you might be interested in that requires extra knowledge or advice, such as Houses of Multiple Occupation, or properties built Not to Standard Construction, or do you need to avoid these like the plague?

Once you have your Grand Plan, you can keep referring back to it when making any decisions to keep yourself on track.

The Right Property, Cheaply – Not the Cheap Property

Buying a property below market value can be helpful for maximising your yield, but don’t buy something just because it’s cheap. It’s more important to buy the right property to attract your ideal tenants – and quickly – if it is to succeed in giving you the returns you expect.

You will also want to minimise the risk of any unexpected maintenance costs, void periods and, in the worst case scenario, legal costs for eviction.

No Roadmaps

Remember, what works for someone else might not work for you, and vice versa. There’s no one “right” way to go about it. Someone else’s success story might be good for hints, tips and ideas, but isn’t a guaranteed roadmap for your own success.

Getting advice before making any kind of investment decision is essential.

If you are seriously considering investing in buy-to-let in Swansea, I would love to have a chat and share my knowledge and experience of the Swansea housing market with you. I’m here to assist you with focusing your Grand Plan and/or project managing any renovation work you need at your new property.

Call the team at McCartan on 01792 430100, and you can book a free 30 minute consultation with me.  You can also book via email by clicking here.

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