Rugby Town – is the housing market depressed or booming?

Rugby Property Market Update

It is always important to understand what is going on in the local housing market. As part of our ongoing service to you, please watch, listen or read our local housing trends in Rugby Town.

We can also have a bit of fun, comparing our area to the UK as a whole.

I’m Brendan Petticrew, author of this blog, based and working out of Rugby – the home of our Newman Property Experts Head Office HUB.

So…..what’s been happening?

Watch this video to find out more

The national average house price of a property across the UK was £226,798 in the year to March 2019, this is 1.4% higher than a year ago. East and West Midlands have climbed above the national average at and increase of 3.9% and 3.2% respectively.

The majority of sales in Rugby during the last year were detached properties, selling for an average price of £368,530. Semi-detached properties sold for an average of £230,656, with terraced properties fetching £188,666.

Rugby, with an overall average price of £263,785, was similar in terms of sold prices to nearby Hillmorton (£268,127), but was cheaper than Bilton (£290,718) and Cawston (£301,108).

Overall sold prices in Rugby (including CV23) over the last year were 8% up on the previous year and 22% up on the 2016 level of £215,938. Prices have risen by 41% over the last 5 years!!!

What type of homes have made up the moving population?

Well – 9% of all transaction were apartments, 21% terraced houses, 33% semi-houses and 38% detached homes (probably because of the new build sites predominantly lead with these type of homes in our area.

So what does it mean for the house prices of the future, well many commentators will point towards what happens in the economy and what happens with the “B” word. I have been working in the industry for the last 25 years and have identified that the main reason that prices keep rising in our areas is the basic principle…..supply and demand. On this day, according to Rightmove, there are only 297 homes in Rugby (not including new build). There are currently 453 homes sold subject to contract – so you can see there are more buyers than sellers.

Lets hope this momentum in the market place continues for you and your biggest investment.

If you need me to answer any other property related questions regarding your home, please call me on 07989 596836.

You may listen to our podcast below:

Rugby Buy To Let Annual Returns Hit 12.18% in Last 10 Years

Many Rugby people ponder the best places to invest their hard-earned savings and the best piece of advice I can give you is to do your homework and speak to lots of people. It depends on your attitude to risk versus reward. Normally, the lower the risk, the lower the reward whilst a higher risk is normally associated with the possibility of higher returns, yet nothing is guaranteed. At the same time, higher risk also means higher possible losses on your investment – yet if one looks at the bigger picture, the biggest threat to investing, predominantly when the investment is made in the short term, isn’t risk but actually volatility.

So where should you invest? Building society, the stock market, gold or property are options. This article isn’t designed to give you advice – just show you how different investments have performed over the last decade.

Let me start with the humble semi-detached house in Rugby … which in 2009 was worth £157,300 … so assuming I bought that property for that figure, then I looked at what if I had invested the same amount of money in a building society, into gold and finally the stock market…

Putting your money into the stock market (FTSE100) would have brought a return of 30.2% on your capital over those 10 years and an average of 3.79% a year in dividends (making an overall increase of 74%).

Gold doesn’t earn interest – yet it has increased in value by 26.9% over the same 10 years whilst putting your money in the building society, the money hasn’t increased in value, but would have earned you interest of 24.46% or the equivalent of 2.21% per year.

Investing in an average semi-detached house in Rugby over the last 10 years has seen the capital increase by 50% (an equivalent of 4.14% per annum) and the income (i.e. the rent) has provided a return, based on the original purchase price, of 116.78% or the annual equivalent of 8.04% … meaning the overall return, based on the original purchase price of an average semi-detached property in Rugby, is 12.18% per annum.

Notwithstanding No.11 Downing Street’s grab at the profits of buy to let landlords by hitting the buy to let sector with several fiscal punishments with a 3% stamp duty level, a decrease in high rate tax relief for landlords and an increase in rate of CGT on residential property profits, the facts remain that ‘bricks and mortar’ is still one of the preeminent and most constant investments available.

The bottom line is, the buy to let investment remains the mainstay of the British property market, serving to support aspiring homeowners as they work to conquer the, sometimes difficult, financial obstacles of home ownership. With Central Government over the last 30 years only paying lip service to address the lack of new homes being built or tackling the affordability on a consequential scale, it is highly probable this will continue for the next 5/10/15 years as there will always be a call for a respectable, and above all, honest buy to let landlords delivering decent housing to those that need it.

As OAP’s set to rise to 1 in 4 of Rugby’s population by 2037 – Where are they all going to live?

With constant advances in technology, medicine and lifestyles, people in the Rugby area are, on average, living longer than they might have a few decades ago. As Rugby’s population ages, the problem of how the older generation are accommodated is starting to emerge. We, as a town, have to consider how we supply decent and appropriate accommodation for Rugby’s growing older generation’s accommodation needs while still offering a lifestyle that is both modern and desirable.

In 1997 in Rugby, around one in every six people (16%) were aged 65 years and over (and the local authority area as a whole), increasing to nearly one in every five people (19%) in 2017 and it is projected to reach around one in every four people (24%) by 2037, meaning..

Over the next 19 years, the growth of the over 65 population in Rugby will grow by 26.3% – a lot more than the overall growth population of Rugby of 11.2% over the same time frame.

In fact, the number of those over 90 is expected to more than double in our local authority from 1,125 (1.1%) in 2017 to 2,583 (2.2%) by 2037.

And looking at the proportional percentage changes over those years..

Looking at Rugby and the local authority as a whole, there is a distinct under supply of bungalows and retirement living (i.e. sheltered) accommodation. The majority of sheltered accommodation fit for retirement is in the ex-local authority sector whilst the majority of private sector bungalows were built in the 1960s/70s/80s and are beginning to show their age (although that means there is often an opportunity for Rugby investors and Rugby buy to let landlords to buy a tired bungalow, do it up and flip it/rent it out).

In the medium to longer term, we need to build more bungalows and sheltered accommodation and, if we do that, that won’t only be of benefit to the elderly population of Rugby – it will have a direct knock-on effect to the younger and middle-aged population by unlocking those family homes the older generation homeowners live in.  

There have been 17 Housing Ministers since 1997. No one ever seems to stay in the job long enough to create a consensus and direction in Government Policy on the vital issue of the country’s housing shortage, yet the sound bites and White Papers seem only to focus exclusively on first-time buyers when there is an even more severe and disregarded shortage in suitable housing for the older generation.

This scantiness affects both mature homeowners trapped in unsuitably big family properties, unable to find smaller bungalows or suitable retirement apartments, whilst the waiting list for Council sheltered accommodation is putting a strain on other aspects of social care. In both circumstances, policy coming (or not coming) out of Government is repressing the supply and type of accommodation mature people desire, need and want, whilst at the same time, increasing the cost (and taxes) for social and NHS care.

Maybe we need tax breaks for people to downsize or planning permissions that stipulate bungalows only. Whichever way you look .. there are challenging times ahead for us all.

765 Rugby Landlords Plan to Expand Their Buy To Let Portfolios

A noteworthy number of buy to let landlords in Britain plan to buy more properties over the next year notwithstanding the frustrations, challenges and seismic changes in the private rented sector. According to Aldermore, the specialist Buy To Let lender, their research shows around 41% of portfolio buy to let landlord’s objective is to grow their buy to let portfolio (Portfolio landlords are landlords that own more than one property).

So, I thought, “Are Rugby landlords feeling the same?” If so, if these numbers were applied to the Rugby private rental market, what sort effect would it have on the Rugby property market as whole?

Talking to the landlords I deal with, most are feeling quite optimistic about the future of the Rugby rental market and the prospect it presents notwithstanding the doom and gloom prophecies that the property market will shrink. Many of those Rugby landlords who are looking to enlarge their portfolio are doing so because they still see the Rugby rental market as a decent investment opportunity.

With top of the range Bank and Building Society Savings Accounts only reaching 1.5% a year, the rollercoaster ride of Crypto currency and the yo-yoing of the Stock Market, the simple fact is, with rental yields in Rugby far outstripping current savings rates, the short term prospect of a minor drop in property prices isn’t putting off Rugby landlords.

The art to buying a Rugby buy to let investment is to buy the profit on the purchase price, not the anticipation of the future sale price.

No matter what the historical economy has thrown at us, with the global meltdown in 2008/9, dotcom crash of 2000, ERM in 1992, the three day week, oil crisis and hyperinflation in the 1970’s (the list goes on) … the housing market has always bounced back stronger in the long term. That’s the point … long term. Investing in buy to let is a long-term strategy. The simple fact is, over the long term with the increasing demand for rental properties, predominantly among Millennials as many cannot afford to get on the property ladder, and with councils not building enough properties of any kind, many youngsters are having to resort the private rental market for their accommodation needs.

So, what of the numbers involved in Rugby?

There are 857 landlords that own just one buy to let (BTL) property in Rugby and 1,865 Rugby landlords, who are portfolio landlords. Between those 1,865 Rugby portfolio BTL landlords, they own a total of 3,915 Rugby BTL properties and they can be split down into the size of landlord portfolio in the graph below….

If I apply the Aldermore figures that means 765 Rugby landlords have plans to expand their BTL portfolio in the coming year or so.

However, the Aldermore Research also showed that 8% of private landlords intended to reduce the number of properties they own. They put this down to continuing Government intervention in the housing market (as many landlords mentioned too many limitations and higher taxation) while some believed that tenants are excessively protected to the disadvantage of the landlord.

I would say there is no repudiating that the buy to let market has taken a bit of a beating, thanks to a plethora of Government regulation, new mortgage underwriting rules in 2014 and George Osborne’s tax changes. Yet there still remains an overall consciousness of optimism among the vast majority of Rugby buy to let landlords. Despite these latest changes, many landlords still view buy to let as a good investment, as long as you buy right and expand your portfolio taking into account the second rule of buy to let … assess your position on the ‘buy to let seesaw’ of capital growth and yield.

If you want to buy right and assess your own portfolio on the yield/capital growth seesaw … drop me a note. I don’t bite and the opinion I give, whether you are landlord of mine or not as the case may be, is given freely, without obligation or cost. The choice is yours. Thank you for reading this article. To read others, please visit my Rugby Property Blog.

An extension could add £50,650 to the value of your Rugby home

As our families grow bigger the need for more space, be that bedrooms or reception rooms, has grown with it. Also, as our older generation lives longer and nursing home bills continue to rise quicker than a rocket on the 5th of November  (the average nursing home bill in the area being £777.75 per week) many families are bringing two households into one larger one.

So, should you move somewhere larger, or extend your Rugby property to make it large enough for you and your family? In some circumstances the choice has been made for you. If you live in an apartment with no garden, there isn’t much of an opportunity of making it larger. But if you have a house with a garden or an attic with sufficient headroom, extending your home becomes a real prospect.

Even if it makes more sense to extend or move, the choice hangs on a number of different dynamics – your future plans, money (both saved and access to finance), in what way you are emotionally attached to your home, the particular area of Rugby you live in and finally, the type/style of house you prefer.

Interestingly, the average British home is 968 sq.ft, which as you can see from the table, is in the middle of developed nations when it comes to the size of a property. Of the 1.11m homes sold in 2016 in England and Wales, the average floor area of the houses was 1,119 sq.ft – that’s about an eighth the size of an Olympic sized swimming pool. Apartments averaged 530 sq.ft that’s just over ten times bigger than an average garden shed. Looking at apartments and houses together, the average size of properties sold in England and Wales 968 sq.ft  – are slightly smaller than the European average, and much smaller than households in the US.

So back to the question in hand.. extending does mean you will have a lot of inconvenience whilst the work is being carried out. The location of your Rugby property, the quality of construction, what type of room(s) you want to add, your plot, neighbouring building lines, planning regulations and the overall demand for your type of Rugby home, will make a vast difference to the financial repercussions of extending versus moving.

A medium-sized 270 sq.ft single storey extension (say around 17ft x 16ft) will add on average £50,650 to the value of a property in Rugby

It’s important to note the end result of the extension needs to be a sensible and realistic home. A two bed semi-detached house extended to a four bedrooms with no lawn or driveway, or a home with outsized reception rooms downstairs and miniscule bedrooms upstairs, could be problematic if  and when you come to sell your home in the future. Irrespective of whether your strategy is to live in your extended home for a long time, you will want to side-step outlaying a lot of money on costly building work that will make it tougher to sell.

In terms of what it would cost to build an extension, you can expect to pay on average between £140 to £200 per sq.ft, depending whether the extension is a single or double storey extension and other factors including finish and type of extension (note – I have seen it cost a lot more than these figures – so please speak with a builder) … So taking a mid line figure, that same 270 sq.ft extension on your Rugby home would cost on average £55,080.

However, moving means there are substantial costs incurred – Estate Agency fees, Removal Van, Survey Fees, Legal fees and Stamp Duty on the property you are buying. Neither option is the obvious choice and comparing the costs of extending your Rugby home to that of moving is not a stress-free undertaking.

How realistic each option is will probably come down to one thing .. your mortgage provider. You will need a considerable sum of equity in your Rugby home before you can think of increasing your mortgage more, because most lenders will require you to have at least 10% to 20% equity left in your property after the extension or move has been done.

The best advice I can give .. don’t assume anything …. get advice and opinion from builders, mortgage brokers, architects, mortgage people and of course… an agent. Look at your options and make an educated decision with all the superficial and objective facts in front of you.

GOVERNMENT CLAMP DOWN ON ROGUE LANDLORDS AND ROGUE LETTING AGENTS

Could you be facing a £30,000 Fine?

 The Government are clamping down on rogue landlords and rogue letting agents in a bid to make the private rental sector safer for tenants.