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Even though there are many factors that impact on the London property market, there is agreement that a lack of suitable homes causes major problems. Even reviewing the market in a simple manner and considering the nature of supply and demand suggests that when demand is significantly greater than the supply of property, prices will rise. Topics like Brexit and interest rates receive a lot of attention when it comes to house prices in London and the UK but there is a need for more homes to be supplied.

The need for more homes makes a recent study carried out by the National Landlords Association, the NLA, of great interest. The study found that around one fifth of landlords who operate in the United Kingdom have stated they are considering selling their rental property in the next 12 months. This figure represents 380,000 landlords who are looking for an exit from the buy-to-let market, and this could have a significant impact on not only the rental market but the property market too.

There may be more flats and apartments heading to the property market

The study said that of the landlords who are looking to make their way out of the buy-to-let market, 45% currently own flats or apartments. The study also indicated that only 7% of landlords looking to sell property are looking to sell to other landlords, which suggests that the impact on the rental market could be significant.

Of course, negative news for one person or group in the property market is usually positive news for someone. The fact that there could be a significant increase in flats and apartments should ensure that first-time buyers have access to more suitable homes. There has been a drive to assist first-time buyers step on to the property ladder, but the Government hasn’t really addressed the issue of creating more homes. In the long-run though, it may be that their actions have impacted on landlords and letting agents so much that these professionals decide to leave the market, creating a flood of suitable homes.

Tenants may face a challenging time

Richard Lambert is the Chief Executive of the NLA and he provided a statement based on the report’s findings, saying; “These findings sound like positive news for potential new homeowners, but the reality is not everyone wants, or is in a position financially, to buy. In fact, if all these homes are sold as planned then it will lead to a significant fall in the supply of property available to those who choose to rent or have no other option but to rent.”

It may be that these predictions are the worst-case scenario and not every letting agent who expressed an interest in selling up will follow through with this claim. Therefore, the overall impact on the market may not be as strong as is being suggested but even so, if there is a notable movement of agents selling property, the rental and property market could be in for notable change in the next 12 months.

Whatever your next move in or around Streatham is likely to be, come and speak with a local expert. At Oaks Estate Agents, we aim to provide you dependable information and guidance when it comes to making a move, so get in touch and we will be delighted to help.

If you are looking to sell your home, it is imperative that you know how competitive the market is. There is a lot of talk about how the number of prospective buyers for property is greater than the supply of homes, but this doesn’t make it easy to sell your home. You need to find a way that stands your home out from the crowd and which makes sure that any prospective buyer remembers your property, no matter how many they have looked at.

There are many attractive properties in Streatham, so you may find it difficult to differentiate your home from others. There is however always a way to stand out for positive reasons and adding something to your home is a quick and effective way to be different from all the other homes.

Smart gadgets will appeal to certain buyers

Depending on the most likely buyer for your home, adding a smart gadget may be the ideal way to make your home more appealing. There is no evidence to suggest that adding a smart gadget improves the value of your property. If you are looking to receive a significantly improved price for your home, you will need to add more space or improve the insulation standards at your home. However, when it comes to capturing attention and making prospective buyers feel as though your property has something to offer, a relevant smart gadget is a fantastic addition to your property.

Some key points to remember when adding a smart gadget to your home include:

  • Don’t focus on the gadget that is best for your needs
  • Focus on the most likely buyer and what gadget is likely best for them
  • Review the gadgets in this sector and opt for a well-known brand or market leader
  • Understand the features of the gadget and why a prospective buyer would be interested in it
  • Understand the benefits offered by the gadget and inform the prospective buyer

Working alongside a local estate agent, such as Oaks Estate Agents, ensures you gain insight into who the most likely buyer of your property is. This should help you narrow in on the right style of gadget to appeal to the buyers who hold the most interest in your home. Not every prospective buyer will find a home entertainment system to be of value, but there will be some who will deem it to be the most attractive aspect of the property.

Some smart gadgets offer fantastic benefits to property owners

When it comes to the benefits provided by smart gadgets, if there is an opportunity to save money, share this information. As an example, the leading central heating smart systems help homeowners reduce their energy bills by 10% to 15%. This is a return that most buyers would appreciate, so make sure you inform people of any benefits like this that can be enjoyed with the smart gadget.

You need to make sure that prospective buyers remember your home after they have viewed it or when they review online property listings. Adding smart gadgets to your home is a fantastic way to differentiate your property and to ensure people recall your home when they think about properties later.

Any homeowner looking for support and guidance when selling their home will find that Oaks Estate Agents is the Stratham estate agent to rely on.

Hopefully Streatham will be bathed in sunshine this summer but getting away during the summer months isn’t just about pleasant weather. If you are seeking the sun, hopefully you will get the weather you desire but for many people, a good summer trip is about getting away from it all. The pace of modern London life is hectic, and a lot of people feel the need to relax and unwind. A fantastic vacation can set you up for the rest of the year, but you don’t want to be stressing about your home while you are away.

Home security is important all year round but if you are away from home, it is essential that your home is secure and not sending out an invitation to robbers. One issue to be aware of in the modern day is how much people can find out about you from your online activities. You don’t want to advertise that your home will be empty for a week or two over the summer, but if you look at social media accounts like Facebook, you will know that holiday snaps are very important.

Be careful about who knows you are away from home

It is nice to share your holiday photos online, making friends jealous, but if your security settings on Facebook are not an elevated level, these images may be seen by people who aren’t your close friends or family members. If you would prefer to not advertise the fact that your home is empty when you are on holiday, don’t post on social media or ensure that your privacy and security settings are such that only trusted friends can see these posts.

In a similar vein, but in a more traditional and offline environment, make sure that you cancel or pause any subscriptions or deliveries you have. While not as many people have milk or newspapers delivered to their door as previous generations did, if you do, a collection of these items at or around your front door indicates that you are away from home. This may be all the invitation a burglar needs to target your home.

Secure your doors and windows

For break-ins, the most common entry points are doors and windows. You should review the condition of your doors and windows before you head off on a summer holiday. It is possible to buy additional locks at a cheap rate, so it doesn’t cost a lot to give yourself additional peace of mind regarding your home security this summer.

Another modest investment you can make is to buy timer switches or devices that turn lights on when it gets dark outside. These gadgets create the impression of someone being at home, which can make a difference in minimising the chances of being robbed when you are away from home. Alternatively, if there is a neighbour, friend or family member who is local, you can ask them to pop in every so often, check your home and create the impression that someone is in the property.

At Oaks Estate Agents, we hope you enjoy the summer and if you are going on vacation, we hope you have a brilliant time. However, if you are going away, make sure that your home is secure, and we hope these home security tips give you additional confidence this summer.

While there are many challenges involved in the process of selling a home, one of the biggest problems is the risk caused by a property chain. With a chain, your deal is at risk even if you and the buying party has done noting wrong. This is obviously a concern for most people because if something is outside of your control, you don’t have much of a chance to avoid it. However, when selling your home, there are ways for you to avoid property chains and at Oaks Estate Agents, we are here to assist you with this goal.

Is there a prospective buyer who isn’t part of a chain?

If you are fortunate enough to have more than one interested buyer offering the same or similar amounts for your home, it is recommended you consider the status of each buyer. With respect to avoiding being involved in a chain, it is better for you to sell your home to a first-time buyer or someone who has already sold their property.

You may not be in a position where you can field offers but if you can, consider the difficulties caused by property chains and if you can find a buyer who isn’t part of a chain, opt for them.

Is the buyer ready to move and buy?

You should also review prospective buyers and determine if one is likely to more dependable than others. You don’t need to dwell on their personality to determine if they are likely to buy but there will be signs in their offer if they are ready to move quickly.

Someone who has a mortgage arranged and in place, someone who has the cash to buy the property or someone who has everything lined up that they are ready to move quickly will provide you a greater level of confidence about the deal going through as planned.

Put your own mortgage and solicitor plans in place

To minimise the likelihood of a broke chain impacting on your sale, don’t just focus on the buyer, make sure that your own plans are in order too. If you are looking to move to a new home, ensure that you have a mortgage agreed, at least in principal, and know what professionals you are going to use as part of your move.

When you have everything in place for a move, including the finances, it is more likely that the deal will pass without disruption, which is of benefit. It will probably go without saying that having finances in place is one of the most key features in a successful property deal, so focus on this element and review this aspect in prospective buyers.

While there is no way of fully protecting yourself from the threat of a broken chain when selling property, there are ways in which you can minimise your exposure to risk. At Oaks Estate Agents, we provide thorough assistance when selling property and we look forward to helping you move with a minimum of fuss and effort.

We know that landlords in Streatham face many challenges in running their business. There have been many challenges and many new regulations for landlords to deal with. It is essential that you remain up to date with all regulations and administrative issues, and this is something that Oaks Estate Agents is happy to assist with. If you are a landlord in Streatham and you want to ensure you provide the best standard of service to your clients, contact us and we will be happy to help.

One issue you should be aware of is that on the 2nd of May, the Government published their Tenant Fees Bill. This bill aims to ban all letting fees which are charged by agents and landlords in England. The Government raised the possibility of this bill back in autumn of 2016 and after a lengthy consultation period, it is looking to implement the bill.

Consultations have taken place over the size of the deposit cap

It was initially suggested that the Government was looking to impose a four-week deposit cap but after the consultation period, the cap has been imposed at a level of six weeks’ worth of rent.

There are many factors of the Tenant Fees Bill and some of the most pertinent points are:

  • Landlords and letting agents will no longer be allowed to charge fees for the granting, renewal or continuation of a tenancy
  • Holding deposits will have a maximum cap of one weeks’ worth of rent
  • Security deposits will have a maximum cap of six weeks’ worth of rent

The bill intends to create a civil offence which will carry a fine of up to £5,000 for the initial breach. Following this, there will be a criminal offence when the individual has received a conviction or fine for the same offence within the previous five years. It is intimated that there will be an alternative to prosecution, with a civil penalty of up to £30,000 being on offer.

Trading Standards will have a role to play with the new bill

The new bill will look to Trading Standards to play a stronger role in ensuring that bans are enforced and that tenants are provided with support in recovering fees that have been charged unlawfully.

Under the new bill, landlords and letting agents will only be allowed to charge for deposits, rent and the following issues:

  • If an early termination or change of tenancy has been asked for by the tenant
  • Utilities, council tax and communication services
  • If the tenant has defaulted
  • If the tenant has incurred a cost, such as losing a key which the landlord has had to replace

The bill is still subject to the standard timetables of Parliament and it will likely be introduced into law in 2019.

We know that some landlords will be unhappy at the cap and it may lead some professionals in the letting sector to limit who they let to. However, most groups representing tenants seem pleased at the bill and this is likely to be positive news for the market.

If you need assistance or guidance on this matter, or any local property issue, please contact Oaks Estate Agents. We are Streatham property and rental specialists and we look forward to helping you as best we can.


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