The pocket guide to property investment

We firmly believe that a well-managed and well-considered investment property is an essential element in any long-term financial plan and there is a huge weight of evidence to support this view. Property values fluctuate, sometimes quite dramatically, through the economic cycle and it’s critical that you are in control of your investment and do not have any pressure to sell. Here are a few tips;

The first rule of property in our view is that you should always view before you buy. In the boom years following 2001, an entire industry sprang up around off-plan sales. Thousands of investors bought at distance and on the basis of sometimes spurious and fanciful claims either about the quality of the apartment or building, or its proximity to well-known landmarks or proposed schemes. Don’t believe the website – visit the city in which you are thinking of buying, visit the site in which you are interested and then test the various marketing claims such as ‘a 5 minute walk to the station’ or ‘2 minutes from John Lewis’. Take a view as to the quality of the location and try and remain objective – schemes in areas which are being regenerated can be a little scary but it’s important to understand the wider plans for the neighbourhood. The web is a great tool in getting to know about a place, so jump online and research the city you are interested in and look at economic data, demographics, population predictions, property market surveys, retail rankings and hospitals, universities and schools. You’ll soon get a sense of whether this is a place worthy of investment.

The second rule is that there is always a reason why a property looks cheap. Some of these can be positive and genuine, others not so;

Good:

1.The property is repossessed and represents good value

2.The property is in a regeneration area where prospects look good but there is little current evidence to support higher values

3.The property is being marketed by an out of area agent who doesn’t know the market (this does happen)

4.The vendor is under pressure to sell

Bad:

1.It’s in an area which has little demand and little prospect for growth

2.It’s got an intrinsic issue such as a defect in the title or structural issues, which can usually be resolved but can carry significant costs

3.It’s in a town or city with low employment and poor transport links

If you are preparing to rent out your own home, there are a few key pointers which will help to make the process much easier and which could actually dissuade you from doing so;

– However well-behaved, professional or considerate your tenant may be, they are unlikely to treat your home as their own. If you are particularly house-proud then you may find it difficult to rationalise this.

– If there are any items of furnishing or personal chattels which you are particularly attached to, take them with you. The principles of furnishing a rental property rather than your own home are entirely different.

– Make sure you advise your lender that you are preparing to let out your own home. They are likely to want to change the terms of your mortgage (i.e. charge you a higher interest rate) and will want to ensure that you can afford mortgage costs.

– Review your insurance, tell your insurer that you are considering renting out your home and look at specific policies to protect you. Rent guarantee insurance is readily available, well-priced and a tax-deductible item so it’s well worth considering.

– Research how to deal with the income from your rental – if you are not self-employed, you will probably need to use the self-assessment process. An accountant will be able to prepare a return for you but if you are organised and have reasonable admin skills, this is something you could do yourself. You can get some guidance here; https://www.gov.uk/renting-out-a-property/paying-tax

– Have an honest conversation with your partner (and/or yourself) as to whether you’ll be comfortable owning a property you don’t live in.

– Whilst you might be tempted to manage the property yourself, we would always recommend asking at least two reputable letting agencies to visit, value your property and set out their service standards. We would always recommend a large, established independent agent as a starting point- make sure they are members of ARLA, the TPO and a deposit registration scheme and make sure that they justify their valuation with local comparable evidence.

The return of Eat Leeds Restaurant Week

With Leeds Restaurant week just around the corner, we couldn’t miss the opportunity to write a short post about all those involved and what deals will be coming our way!

Brought to you by LeedsBID, between 19th-25th February, Leeds Restaurant week is a week where some of Leeds’ best restaurants and bars take part by creating a bespoke menu just for you, with a great offer attached. Below we have a list of all the restaurants that are involved and what they will be dishing up.

2 courses for £10 

Cosy Club: 2 courses for £10

Mans Markets: 2 courses for £10

Pizza Luxe – 2 courses for £10

Brasserie Blanc – 2 courses for £10

Giraffe – 2 courses for £10

Bar Soba – 2 courses for £10

Dock 29 – 2 courses for £10

Roxy Lanes – 2 courses for £10

Browns – 2 courses for £10

Barburitto – 2 courses for £10

Coco’s Beach Bar – 2 courses for £10

Revs de cuba – 2 courses for £10, 3 courses for £15

Harvey Nichols Espresso Bar – 2 courses for £10

Fettle – 2 courses for £10

Sebbys deli – 2 courses for £10 including a 125ml glass of white or red wine

All Bar one – 2 courses for £10

Zaap – 2 courses for £10

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(Dock 29 – photo: Google)

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(Harvey Nichols Espresso Bar – photo: Google)

2 courses for £15

Marco’s: 2 courses for £15

Lamb & Flag: 2 courses for £15

Chaophraya: 2 courses for £15 including glass of prosecco

Le Pain Quotidien: 2 courses for £15 with drink included

Aagrah: 2 courses for £15

Blackhouse – 2 courses for £15

Grilled at the Queens – 2 courses for £15

Shabab – 2 courses for £15

The Lost and Found (Greek St) – 2 courses for £15

Dill & Bay – 2 courses for £15

Firelake Grill House – 2 courses for £15

Veritas – 2 courses for £15

Bar 166 Grill and Steakhouse – 2 courses for £15

Jamies Italian – 2 courses and a glass of prosseco for £15

City3 at Leeds City Hilton – 2 courses for £15

Bibi’s – 2 courses for £15

Bar and Kitchen – 2 courses for £15

Chez Mal- 2 courses for £15

Sukhothai – 2 courses for £15

The Lost & Found Leeds Club – 2 courses for £15

Banyan – 2 courses for £15

Manahatta – 2 courses for £15

Chao

(photo: Chaophraya)

BLACKHOUSE

(photo: Blackhouse)

3 courses for £15 

Cast Iron Bar and Grill: 3 courses for £15

Cosy Club – 3 courses for £15

The Tetley: 3 courses for £15

Smokin’ Bar & Kitchen – 3 courses for £15

Pinche Pinche – 3 courses for £15

Turtle Bay – 3 courses for £15

Gusto – 3 courses for £15

Slug and Lettuce – 3 courses for £15

Cabana – 3 courses for £15

Revs de cuba – 3 courses for £15

Neighbourhood – 3 courses for £15

Buca di pizza – 3 courses £15

M’Deena Restaurant – 3 courses for £15

Cantina – 3 courses for £15

Iberica – 3 courses for £15 plus glass of cava

East 59th – 3 courses for £15

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(Neighbourhood – photo: Google)

iberica

(Ibérica – photo: Google)

Other offers

Reds True Bbq (Leeds City Centre, Headingley ) – £10 Monte Christo Burger, £15 Restaurant Week Bbq tray

Ambiente Tapas – 3 tapas for £10

The Alchemist – Main and cocktail for £15

Byron – Burger and Beer for £10

Hive – 3 courses for £10

Crafthouse- £30 tasting menu

Dirty Martini – 3 courses for £10

Lets Go Mexican – 2 sandwiches for £10

Chino Lantino – 2 courses for £10, 3 courses for £15

Issho – 2 courses for £10, 3 courses for £15, tasting menu £30

The Pit – 2 courses for £10, 3 courses for £15

Pavs Dhaba – 2 courses for £10 with drink included

Stockdales – 3 courses and a drink £30

Red Chilli – 2 courses for £10, 3 courses for £15

The Cats Pjs – 3 courses for £15

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(Issho – photo: Google)

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(Dirty Martini – photo: Google)

After you’ve chosen your restaurant and offer – head to this website to download a voucher to present at your meal. https://eatleeds.co.uk/restaurant-vouchers/

Keep an eye on our social media accounts to see what our employees are looking forward to trying!

Instagram: leedscityliving

Twitter: Morgans_Leeds

Facebook: Leeds City Living

 

Morgans team volunteers at Leeds Mencap

A couple of weeks ago 29 of the Morgans team volunteered at Leeds MENCAP. The day began at 1:30pm and consisted of various different jobs which improved the facilities at the centre.

The Morgans team were divided into groups of 6 and split off into different areas of the centre. Part of the team had the job of repainting the ‘sensory’ room and the entrance corridor. After placing masking tape over every socket, picture and skirting board the team managed to finish the job by the skin of their teeth!

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Another group had the duty of cleaning all the soft balls that were in the children’s play area – each pit was emptied, cleaned and the soft balls were cleaned and hung out to dry before putting them back into the pit ready for use the next day.

charity day 4

charity day 6

There was a team who were outside for the day, pulling out weeds, cleaning the pathways and generally jet washing the outside area. Although it was cold weather, the results of the work made it worthwhile by creating a fresh clean entrance to the centre.

 

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The final team had the job of resetting the entire heating and cooling system in the centre, which surprisingly proved quite difficult, but the team did a great job and got it up and running by the end of the day.

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After a long day the Morgans team were treated to a cinema trip to Everyman with food and drinks provided.

Leeds MENCAP is a centre that offers services and activities to improve the lives and opportunities of children and adults with a learning disability along with their families and carers. They are a local and independent charity who need to raise their own funds in order to run the centre. The charity currently supports over 250 families on a weekly basis and aims to provide support, advice and practical help for the whole family, long term.

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(Photo: Google)

To find out more information on how you can get involved and support Leeds MENCAP, please visit their website; www.leedsmencap.org.uk.