Inside Property Website


Upbeat or Downbeat?

May 18, 2017

I recently spent two days at the Property Investor Show, held twice a year at Excel in East London.  Footfall was noticeably lighter that at events in 2016.  I gave two talks and was sat on a panel called ‘The Great Landlord Debate’ about the state of the market and forthcoming regulation.
There’s a lot of sobering data around at the moment.  House prices are falling, rental demand has slowed significantly and rents are falling in many parts of London.  NLA research tells us that 19% of landlords are planning to sell in the [...]


Top 10 Challenges Facing London Landlords

April 10, 2017

1. Regulation of Buy To Let Mortgages
The rise in Buy To Let mortgages from 5% in 2009 to 16% of mortgage lending in 2016 concerned the Bank of England.  The governor argued that if the market had a downtown, lots of landlords selling all at once could seriously affect the UK economy.  Regulation by the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) started on 1 January 2017 and a second phase will come into force on 30 September 2017.  Phase 1 introduces a new stress test which is being interpreted by most lenders as 145% rental [...]


Tax Surcharge Going To Plan

January 28, 2017

The government’s stamp duty surcharge continues to be a fantastic cash cow for the treasury. Official figures show that it raked in £670m in the first six months since it was imposed on 1 April 2016 comparing very favourably with the projected tax take of £625m for the whole of the first year.  Such figures mean that it is highly unlikely to be repealed as it is providing more useful than expected amelioration of the national debt.
According to research by the UK’s largest estate agent, Countrywide, first time buyers are benefitting from the [...]


Stamp Duty & Letting Agent Fees

November 28, 2016

The latest data from the Office For Budget Responsibility (OBR) shows that stamp duty is really harming the housing market in London. Recent hikes brought in by George Osborne are reducing transactions and the result is that treasury receipts will be lower. The OBR predicts that the government will collect £66.6bn instead of £76.2bn in stamp duty over the next 5 years. Since the 2014 Autumn statement, residential sales over £925,000 have incurred stamp duty rates of 10% and over £1.5 million this rises to 12%. Residential deals over £1million are down by [...]


Goodbye EU, Goodbye Scotland

June 24, 2016

I thought I was a lukewarm Remain voter, but today I am gutted.  The most sobering image of the day so far is Nigel Farage declaring a new dawn.  As I walked to my local café in Hackney, the atmosphere is one of shock: our borough returned the second highest vote for Remain in the UK.  Friends in Spain texted me ‘mala noticia’ though one of them is ready to pounce on cheap equities.  The FTSE was down 7% at the start of the day, but it had climbed nearly 10% in [...]