Is ‘Buy to Let’ still a good investment?

With both sales and rental prices taking a hammering in London over the past 18 months many people have come to question the genuine value of investing in Buy to Let (BTL) property. The reality is, as long as you pay a fair market price and are investing long term (10+ years) BTL property is still one of the safest, strongest investments around.

People will always need somewhere to live. London will always be one of the World’s most exciting, diverse and attractive capitals. Economic downturn merely provides the opportunity to bounce back taking property values with it.

BTL still offers a fantastic return for a nominal investment. With running costs (mortgage interest, agency fees and nominal maintenance) covered in part or in whole by a rental income BTL property still represents a genuine opportunity for people to build themselves a sizeable windfall or retirement sum if run and managed properly.

It is vital that you research any property of interest in detail. Talk to several local agents (big and small) to find out what the market is doing. Jump on the internet and verify any figures you have been told or are hoping for. Factor in vacancy periods, rent reductions, repairs and furniture provision/upgrades. Finally, don’t expect to pocket any rent for a long time unless you have a large deposit or are a cash buyer. BTL returns are long term either when you sell and realise capital growth or once rents have grown substantially.

UK property has, on average, doubled in value every 10 years over the last century. When you factor in being able to buy a property with a nominal 10-20% investment these figures are staggering. Now is a great time to be buying in London. Find yourself a good, reliable Lettings & Management company and get buying- 10 years passes faster than you think!

Kristjan Byfield at Base Property

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