Is your property a threat to life?

Is your property a threat to life?
Multi award winning EweMove in Dorking  are a residential property sales and lettings agency who pride themselves on being refreshingly different and standing out from the crowd. EweMove Dorking covers from Ockley to Oxshott.

Enquiries to 01306 406 506 / 01372 701 702, or via email to dorking@ewemove.com

Is your property secure?

Is your property secure?

Is your property at risk? 

As Christmas approaches and we fill our homes with seasonal (and often expensive) gifts for loved ones, many burglars are rubbing their hands with glee. Dark nights provide easy cover and cold weather keeps people off the streets with their curtains closed. All of which makes the life of a burglar a lot easier.

In 2015 the Crime Survey for England and Wales (CSEW) found that there were almost 800,000 instances of domestic burglary in the UK, with most perpetrators preying on vulnerable properties with poor levels of security. That means approximately 1 burglary every 40 seconds, the majority of which are not planned, but are just opportunistic.

Did you accidentally leave your door unlocked?

With an estimated 64% of UK householders admitting to occasionally leaving their house unlocked when they go out, it’s not hard to see how those opportunities arise. Amazingly 73% of burglars use the door!

home security So if you want to do everything you can to make sure you’re not the next statistic, now is the time when you need to give serious and urgent consideration to your property’s security.

 

Your alarm system

According to recent research, less than half of UK adults have a burglar alarm or security system installed at home and only a quarter of those automatically contact the police.  And that’s made worse by the finding of a survey by the Halifax that only 34% of householders actually activate their alarm on a regular basis.

Make sure you have the best possible alarm and that it is functioning properly. Then make a commitment to always use it when you are out. If you let your property, remember to remind your tenants of the importance of the alarm and the need to use it.

Consider other forms of protection too, such as light timers (fewer than 25% of people in the UK use a light timer), movement sensors (only 18% of householders own movement sensors) and security cameras (only 9% of householders have these).

Locks and doors

Check the quality of your locks and the state of your windows, doors and frames. key-123554You should have a deadlock and all your locks should be of British or European standard. If you are in any doubt, call a locksmith to double check for you.

Consider using toughened glass for windows and avoid glass panels if you can. Don’t forget to check door and window frames too, as rotten wood makes easy work for a burglar. And above all else, remember to lock your windows and doors at night or when you are out.

Be neighbourhood aware

33% of householders who took part in the Halifax survey assumed another neighbour’s alarm was a false alarm! Take time to get to know your neighbours or notify them when your property is going to be empty. Join any Neighbour Watch scheme in your area and add their sticker to your window.

Be social media savvy

7% of people tag their location on Twitter and/or Instagram when they are on holiday. But tempting as it is to let your friends know on social media that you are heading off to the Caribbean for 2 weeks at Christmas, you might as well just invite the burglars to visit while you’re away.

Take advantage of new technology

The wonders of advancing technology, mean that you can now control devices in your home via your mobile phone or tablet. As long as you have wi-fi, you can monitor, view and control your home security, so if you love technology this may be the answer for you.

There is a large amount of common sense and good practice involved in keeping your property secure. Keeping the area around your home well lit, hiding keys or just leaving the lights and radio on are all a good start. Taking a little time now to assess your security and put some measures in place could go a long way to saving you from the heart ache and hassle of a break in in the coming months.

Award winning EweMove in Dorking  are a residential property sales and lettings agency who pride themselves on being refreshingly different and standing out from the crowd. EweMove Dorking covers from Ockley to Oxshott.

Enquiries to 01306 406 506 / 01372 701 702, or via email to dorking@ewemove.com

All your questions about buy to let answered. Free event

All your questions about buy to let answered. Free event

Is Dorking the second best place in the UK to buy to let?

Buy to let A recent nationwide survey by the Legatum Institute, found Mole Valley and Dorking to be the 2nd most prosperous region in the UK. Regions were measured against a total of 43 factors which included social capital, economic quality, health and safety. Dorking beat other regions such as the New Forest, South Oxfordshire, Bath, Tunbridge Wells and Mid Sussex and I think that makes Dorking a great place to buy to let. But I don’t want you to take my word for it…

A unique chance to get free advice from industry experts

buy to let seminar However great Dorking is, becoming or remaining a buy to let landlord can be a difficult decision. With that in mind, on the 23rd November EweMove is hosting a unique and free event to give you the chance to talk to 8 industry experts about buy to let. You can book here. 

Why attend? 

We’ve arranged the event so that you can speak to, as well as hear, our panel of experts giving you a chance to ask whatever you want. The event is also the evening after the Autumn Statement, which means you’ll get a rare chance to find out how any announcements may affect you.  Our experts are there to cover all the essentials of buy to let, and help you to make the right decisions for you.

On top of that, it’s a chance to network and there will be a complimentary drink and nibbles too.

Our experts (and what they’ll be talking about):

Accountant –  Chris Evans of TaxAssist, Reigate
How to structure your business to make it as tax efficient as possible. A really important area after this year’s changes.

Eviction Specialist –   Lorraine Burwood, The Eviction Lady
How to manage difficult tenants, dealing with the minefield of eviction.

IFA –   Chris Webb, of Marks Howard
How to best manage your investment – whether that’s buy to let, pensions, SIPPs or a mixture.

Insurance Broker –   Nigel Smith, of Clifford Lane
What insurances you should have in place.

Letting Agent –   Graham Faulkner, EweMove Dorking
Getting the best possible tenants and complying with the ever increasing regulations.

Mortgage Broker –   Pete Crowe, of KT Partnership
Buy to let financing.

Solicitor –   Steve Pearce, of Hanne & Co, Dorking
Legal aspects of letting properties.

Surveyor –   Gez Parks, of Brickbox Surveys
What to look out for when looking at letting properties.

 

When and where? 

The event is on Wednesday 23 November 2016 from 6pm to 8.30pm.

It’s being held at the Dorking Rugby Club (Kiln Lane, Brockham, RH3 7LZ).

Book your seat 

What’s more, it’s free but spaces are limited so you do need to book now. I look forward to seeing you there.

Award winning EweMove in Dorking  are a residential property sales and lettings agency who pride themselves on being refreshingly different and standing out from the crowd. EweMove Dorking covers from Ockley to Oxshott.

Enquiries to 01306 406 506 / 01372 701 702, or via email to dorking@ewemove.com

 

Are you worried about Brexit and its effect on your properties?

Are you worried about Brexit and its effect on your properties?

And if so, what can you do about it? 

A recent survey by the National Landlords Association (NLA) revealed some interesting statistics. 35% of landlords are worried about the effect Brexit will have on their ability to attract new tenants. With Teresa May’s conference announcement that the Brexit process will be triggered as early as March 2017, it’s an issue that’s suddenly become even more pressing. With that in mind, is it possible to predict the future landscape for landlords and is there anything you can do to protect your portfolio?

A quick look at the past

Brexit for landlords If you’re a worried landlord, it’s important to take stock for a moment. The last year has definitely been a tempestuous one for the property market. With the tax changes at the beginning of April and a 3% increase in stamp duty, there was inevitably going to be some fall out. Then came the shock of Brexit in June. It’s no wonder you’re worried.

According to a recent Podcast by the NLA, the market did unsurprisingly slow down in July with rates at auction dropping from a buoyant 80% + before 1st April to closer to 50 / 55%. First time landlords have definitely been deterred. But it’s not all bad news. Honestly.

On the upside, house prices have continued to rise (albeit at a slower pace) and the general trend of the predictions is that they will continue to do so.  The housing marketing does seem to be recovering after a slow down post April and then again post Brexit and there is a suggestion that a weaker pound may encourage foreign investment which may support, if not boost, current house prices.

There also remains a strong demand for rented properties and a housing shortage particularly in the south east even if it’s in a more regulated and expensive space.

And in Dorking?

In Dorking average rent from a property is £1,655 pcm with 1 or 2 bedroom properties or flats being the most commonly found (their rental income averages from £1,365 to £1,611). That’s well above the national average of roughly £910 pcm  making Dorking still a good place to be a landlord.

Although Rightmove have recently reported that London rents have fallen slightly, elsewhere they have risen, albeit modestly. One of the reasons given for the slight stagnation was the glut of properties that came on the market after the April frenzy.

So what next?

The next significant event will of course be the Autumn Statement. bank-17816With a new chancellor and a new approach it will be interesting to see what stance it takes. There’s been a lot of lobbying to remove the 3% increase in stamp duty, and although I think it’s unlikely, it’s not completely inconceivable.

Of course it’s also going to be important to keep a careful eye on the Brexit negotiations and what impact they have on the landlord and tenant scene.

It’s time to plan 

But perhaps more important than ever before, if you want to continue as a landlord, is the fact that you now need to start putting in place an investment plan. You may have a number of options to consider such as buy to sell, land development or just setting up a limited company. Which is right for you will probably depend on whether you’re more of an accidental landlord or a professional investor and you ought to take professional advice.

The other consideration to bear in mind is that being a landlord for many is a long term game. Throughout the last few decades there have been periods of storm and despair followed by periods of boom. To some extent it is a case of getting a clear idea of your expected growth and profits, putting in place whatever structures you need to best protect yourself and then riding out the storm to happy, more stable times.

Award winning EweMove in Dorking  are a residential property sales and lettings agency who pride themselves on being refreshingly different and standing out from the crowd. EweMove Dorking covers from Ockley to Oxshott.

Enquiries to 01306 406 506 / 01372 701 702, or via email to dorking@ewemove.com