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Property Slump? What we think?


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Again I read that the market is gonna crash pretty soon,

Check out this story below on the orange home page again this morning

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Well, I have been following this property discussion for the last 6 years or so and I have to admit I have been wrong on all conclusions HOWEVER as a property developer of around 21 years standing now I havn't bought anything in the last 4 years as prices and profits are unrealistic.

This relentless rise in property prices in totally unsustainable and at some given point in time it has to stop and I believe that point has been reached right now and probably has been for a Month or so.

I feel sorry for anyone who has mortgaged themselves up to the eyeballs to get onto an over-inflated housing price ladder but that's life and there have been downturns before in the economy and we are about to experience another one shortly with higher IR's and economic burden from Central Government by way of taxes etc.

I look around my location and there are loads of houses that just aren't shifting and we are a fairly prosperous area as well.

Regarding the BTL market anyone entering now as a newbie Landlord really needs to tread carefully due to high property prices and an over supply of rental properties with a limited supply of prospective Tenants.

I know of a fair few Landlords cashing in to gain from the price rise in their property but I can tell you their property is not selling as nearly as fast they thought it was going to.

"Batten down the hatches" is my call to anyone before the storm hits as some of us did just that back in 1990 and ride it out and then pick up the bargains in the aftermath of the collapsed property market.

Blame? there always has to be someone or something to blame and I reckon ( in no particular order)

1. Interest Rates unrealistically low for far too long.

2. Pension Funds being robbed by Government causing people to invest in property.

3. Banks and BS lending to people with insufficent long term prospects and too higher salary multiplies to obtain the mortgage.

4. Agents asking too higher prices for what they are selling in a bull market. There is no shortage of property to purchase as they keep claiming......check out rightmove in your area!

5. TV property programs (heavily edited and inaccurate) showing people this is the way to a path of untold riches by "doing up property."

I'm sure there are more reasons anyone can think of.............


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As with all and any investment - it carries a risk....

Now personally if someone can show me an investment that is less risky than prop (with the same "potential" returns) then i am all ears !

So the big crash ............Well do you mean a £200k investment is going to diminish to £5 ? or do you mean that there is going to be a slight market correcton (as with all markets)

A nieve investor in any market is at huge risk - more from ignorance than anything else- i would expect to lose my shirt in the stock market if i didn't do the research properly and invest willy nilly - also investments of this nature can and DO diminish to ZERO -WELL - i got news for you PROP aint gonna do that !

If you buy sensibly, never paying full market value -so you start with intrinsic value, in an established letting area, fix your rate, and keep it full the prices "dont matter" until it is time to sell (or refinance!)

If you have a fixed rent and fixed mortgage - you don't have a problem ! (Is rent going to bcome free?...No!)

"due diligence" is back again !

Worried -- NOPE!

Still Buying ---Yes -but as always, only the right ones !

Problems out there - Anyone , as Mat pointed out yesterday, who thinks a 300k flat off plan at £800pcm is actually going to get them rich is in cuckoo land- a good lesson in survival -maybe! I would wager that most people who can afford this sort of rent are astute enough to buy not rent !

In Cardiff we have 7miles of water front "luxury apartments" 1000's of them - We have spent 10-15 years pulling down disgraceful blocks of high rise concrete flats all over the country ................Who ever thought it was a good idea to relabel them as "luxury apartments" was a marketing genius - but should have been shot at birth as these, in my opinion, will become the ghettos of the next decade ...........

Investors who have bought in Cardiff a few years ago are selling at an average loss of 20K per flat (off the OFF PLAN PRICE !!)

this has been going on for several years - with lux apps handed over to the council to fill with HB and asylum seekers and students with the expected rents of 8-900pcm actually being as low as £450pcm - which drives price and rentability down even more, now is this the sort of place that you young successul professional wants to live ?- ....................

As they were going up a lot of my acquaintances were buying and calling me stupid for not getting involved!

I questioned myself -was i missing something ?.............

One comment some 5 years ago said it all for me - It was this "people are buying them 10 at a time " well that to me said, yep, then the are going to try and let them 10 at a time, (in a market where £8-900pcm Rent is not vast)Then competition sets in and rents come down just to fill them - now losing investor money -followed by selling them 10 at a time and prices driven down - Still they argued with me ..

Now I was not wrong - spot on in fact -it was actually they that were, and still are missing something - £20k in cold blood plus whatever they could have made with that 20K had they only looked at basic info - I wind these guys up regularly, as i also invested around 18k at the same time - my investment has gone from 30K to around 900K ......Not because i am a smartarse but because it was blinding obvious what not to do..........

The point .....For some, investments will never work for them -because they dont work the investment properly !

For others ,who can do basic maths and read a newspaper, whether the market is going up/down/sideways or jumping thru a hoop/free fall is of complete irrelevance as they just go and find the DEALS ...which are ALWAYS OUT THERE!

Crash ............ Only if you want to get involved...........


Ps Newspaper head line "markets to crash - recession imminent! " this was the newspaper headline in 1867 - guess somethings dont change then as they keep saying it!

If you do this properly the only slump you will have to worry about is the one in your back; from carrying all that rent money to the bank!!!!LOLOLOL

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I totally agree with Melboy on ever single point, his observations are made on facts not wishy washy, hollow tales.

I have two properties (one with a large amount of equity in), so right now I am able buy another property / properties,

but the general cost of upkeep, maintenance, and dealing with new tenants, doesn't make it worthwhile at the moment.

If I don't extend my portfolio further then so be it, but I'm not in this game for love. Afterall, I wouldn't put money in a bank that was offering a tiny / non existent return.

The KEY factor to all of this is interest rates, if they rise beyond 6% which is highly possible, then house prices will stall then fall.

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Yes Reg

But another rule of life is :

"A business that isn't growing, is dying"

The rich will get richer thr poor will get poorer!

facts of life..................

perhaps we should all wait for the prices to drop ...........but what if they dont ...........as thy havent ..............

If it stacks up and you can fix your parameters ........do it .......what more could you ask for ?

Or are we advocating "head in the sand until "crash" has settled?"


but the general cost of upkeep, maintenance, and dealing with new tenants, doesn't make it worthwhile at the moment.

These are in your control only - not the markets

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It is wise to fix your parameters, even so, I don't think it's worth the tiny returns in purchasing new property in this current climate, I'm on the sidelines for at least a year until the picture is abit clearer on interest rates, I don't see the urgency in purchasing more property, a buiding society and a tessa is good for me right now.

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I hate to sound like Simons "yes" man, but it does make a lot of sense.

I have never understood why people invest in New builds, they tend to pay 50% extra, to their real re-sale price, usually a 2 bed flat will go for £300K but really is nonly worth £200k when purchased. They get people to buy these by paying stamp duty etc and offering pretend discounts so investors can pretty much buy one with no deposit. I can't beleive Mortgage companies are doing this, madness. They offer rent guarentee for a year or so, again at pretend prices, since if they lose £300 pounds a month for a year, it is only £3,600 they are in theory paying you back, but you paid £100K extra for the flat!

I can only think that stupid people would do this. Time will tell but I think there will be a crash, but only really on newbuilds, which isn't a "real" crash just that they were over-priced.

I too feel that nobody will want to buy these flats when they come up as they have poor yeilds and huge service charges. I do beleive this is a good opportunity for the council to gain a load of stock back, ultimately at the price of the mortgage companies and a few reckless investors. This will then tarnish future new builds. But we will then have council tenants in swanky new flats, which is just weird!

I only started buying properties last year July 06, and if there was a crash it would not affect me.

Property 1: Mortgage of £170K @ 5.25% for 3 years, £1.5K monthly rental = could afford if interest rates wen to about 10% (also rents would increase at that interest rate)

Property 2: Mortgage of £170K @ 5.14% for 3 years, 1.85K monthly rental = could afford if interest rates went to about 12%

I may make less profit for a while at the end of the fixed term, but I have a reasonably paid job, so no biggy.

I never plan on selling, so re-sale only important for future re-mortgage/growth. But if there were a crash now, I am a newbie and my face is not BOTHERED!

My prediction overall = small correction 5 to 10% smaybe and then little growth for the next 5 years.

I plan to buy in the future, but am doing my accounting exams, so am taking a year out.

My advice, do the math, if it stacks up DO IT and FIX, if it doesn't.... F**K IT!

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Some fantastic points of views here guys and thanks for sharing your views.

I'm sorta sat on the fence with 'yes there will be' and the 'no there won't be' arguments, points of views etc.

Please remmeber though that this happened in Japan not so long ago and house prices were halved and took 10 years to recover as I recall.

Personally I'm with Simon on this one (although it grates me to say it haha) where you just need to do your maths correctly and buy wisely. Either way, if there is or isn't a huge crash and I don't mean 200k down to 5k simon cos that's just a silly analogy really, but a 5-10% drop in property value across the board may just put a few landlords out of business if they haven't built in a plan B.

If they were shrewd enough to plan for a fluctuation in the market then they shouldn't worry. If they weren't, then I expect to see a whole load of BTL properties entering the market and i'll be waiting with my cheque book.

In the mean time i'm gonna carry on looking and buying if the right property comes along.


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Hi Gareth

It is a silly analogy BUT A TRUE ONE ! If you dont invest in prop then other than wine, jewels, bloodstock, race horses, greyhounds, Roulette maybe, art, sculptures,classic cars etc you are left with shares and equities.

I am no expert on these fields but the "value" of all of the above CAN and DOES drop to ZERO if the investment goes seriously "wrong" Now unless you happen to buy a prop on a cliff in east anglia and it drops into the sea, or, in a valley which fills up with water every winter - It is safe to say that at absolute worse case scenario you are at a risk of Japanese type problems which are 50%

This is not taking into consideration the "gearing" and "leverage" which in the market you can only get with futures options and spread betting ...

That is to say 15K will buy you 15k worth of shares (asset) in the financial markets

BUT 15K will buy you 100K worth of Prop as an asset

Now with 20% growth on your investment your shares will do very nicely and give you £3k Return very nice thank you very much (20% GAIN)

BUT your prop will give you £20k Now then - thats 133% GAIN on the cash invested ..................... Not including rental profit or renovation/improvement profits...........................

ADD this to the fact that YOU ae in control NOT some spotty 20 yr old kid "investing" on your behalf and doing a Nick leeson with your cash!

AND Your risk at probably the lowest in any industry

I think we can confidentley say that Prop is one of, and will continue to be one of, the safest investments on the Planet - Lets face it - as long as people are breathing they will need a house to live in!

Not only the safest but one of the most profitable !

So as you are in the best investment sector possible (well of the legal ones!) ..

Pack in the moaning and winging and go "fill yer boots!"

Mel I have also listened to the doom and gloom for 6 years and heard the stories of people selling to rent thinking they could back into the market when the price drops - and guess what they are still renting and scratching their heads - wondering what went wrong with the plan!

It is also intersting to note that I built my portfolio from scratch over those very 6 years!

Sure the market will top out - course it will - but as long as the prop fits the equation and you have your arse covered and your prop is giving reasonable returns then a tempory correction is not going to make any real differnce to us guys!!

I also welcome a good shake out of "idiots" from the market place b4 they do any more damage to their financial future!!!!

You know the ones who spend £2-300 K on an Offplan then let it at half the Mortgage cost - drive down rents in the area, then struggle to pay Mort then sell at huge loss, dragging the whole market down with them !!!!!!

- i gotta say same as MAT.................. face ....NOT BOVERED ...........!

ANYone who has any thoughts on "alternative" investments that are more safe and profitable PLEASE LET ME KNOW, LIKE RIGHT NOW.......................


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So as you are in the best investment sector possible (well of the legal ones!) ..

Pack in the moaning and winging and go "fill yer boots!"

Really don't know if you were generalising Simon or aiming this at me.

I actually am not moaning and think there could be some real snap-up investments around pretty soon so i'm with you on this.

I tell you what i'd like to do (and this maybe will need another topic question) is drive the rents UP.

For so long the rental ability in this area has been 'static' and I think it's time we slung a £100/month on and wait to see what happens. I think if local Landlords and agents agreed to do this then it wouldn't take too long at all. I'm realistic enough to understand that agents 'don't speak to each other' which I think is 'pure financial suicide' because if they did we would all benefit.

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Hi Gareth

I was going to write " you is paranoid.boy !" but then realised i had addressed the post to you - !!!

Not this was not personal it was a very big generalisation just to push the point home !!!

As usual got carried away -as i started the post just to make the "zero" point !

but you know me- my brain started to "sparkle"!!!! and off i went again !

But in my defence i did mention MAT and MEL and it wasn't aimed at them either - just keep your finger well covered !!!!!!!!!!!LOLOLOL


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Excellent idea !!

in theory

in practice


Just do it any way as you will attract far more LL if you can get more rent for them - I have agents i avoid like the plague as they will always fill it, but not at the right price -

I have 2 bed flats which are fetching £650 per month when most of the comp (in the same roads) are £100-125 behind me - and agents asking me how on earth i get it !!!!..................That little chestnut is close to my chest !!! but as i tell them ............if you market at £550 you CANNOT start talking £650 now can you BUT if you market at £650 then £550 is a masive discount to close deal if i really need it ......never do though !!

Jacuzzis help ..and i will give a "little" discount for 12 mth ast instead of 6 mth ......

I think all LL should go on a basic sales physcology course - if not all business people !!!!!!!!!..

You need all of these "closes" built into a polished routine along with interviewing T from the second you meet them with out them even realising it !!

i just love this game !!!!!!!!!!!!


One more - i managed to get one of those flats paying 1200 per month for 4 months last year - there are all sorts of deals to be created just get imaginative...

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I agree here

Luckily I studied Psychology (not 'sales' psychology {if there is an ology called that}) for 3 years and my thoughts are always 'there's more than 1 way to skin a cat'

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I'm realistic enough to understand that agents 'don't speak to each other' which I think is 'pure financial suicide' because if they did we would all benefit.


How quickly do you want to go to jail or get hit with big fines.

Its called Collusion and being in a Cartel to defraud the public and is a criminal offence.

I worked for 10 yrs in an industry where you could not even discuss pricing or deals customers were on. If a competitor talked of this then clear guidelines were to walk away and report what happened. Yes we put prices up at a certain time every year and everyone else did as well BUT it was in the papers about the % increase so that cleared everybody. Yes people knew the competitor sales people or a personal level as people changed companies but was n't worth the hassle.

If this were to happen then would destroy the BTL very quickly as people would start to discount rents as they assummed they were being ripped off.

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On the issue of a slump I initially though there would be but getting more heavily involved with some props recently I am less convinced.

I have met a couple of "Landlords" who were clear amateurs and bought because everyone else was doing it and then couldn't understand why they couldn't make money.

People like this will sell quickly as they have no idea what they are doing.

The lets buy a new one as we get 20% off brigade also are at risk as so many places there and while they are nice there are problems with blocks of places all rented out where a community spirit can never develop as nodoby is there long enough. Thats why places with a mix of people who have lived there for years, some newbies and some renters are often better as there is an underlying stability.

The we say it on Property ladder so must buy at auction is also risky. Place I saw recently ended up at auction selling for £500 less than sale price in estate agents, There is a bubble with auction props at the moment and also risky.

Property prices will correct but if investing for long term then thats more of an opportunity as places will be available to buy at a knockdown.

CASH IS KING so if have a long term deal where it washes its face and gives you some cash then they are worth holding onto.

I do think that forums where there are a mixture of people with 1-2 BTLS and people with many does help.

You do learn and temper what you do when getting advice from others, even Simon has altered his style from when he first came on and given and taken good advice.

If you act professionally and don't get yourself mortgaged to the hilt then you can survive a slump, often the advice of Corp Jones on Dad's Army is the best "Don't Panic, Don't Panic".

Some people will be panicked into making a decision and other will be panicked into not making one but you need to make decisions on the best info available and also be willing to ask for advice and help.

In selling remember there has to be some profit in it for the buyer and ultimately its better to lose your wealth than your health.

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Hi Odecar

Some very pertinent and astute points !

"even Simon has altered his style from when he first came on and given and taken good advice."

Hahaahhahha ...................!!!

Yes cant disagree with that, but i was so wound up with TDS , HMO licensing and the new smoking laws -I found somewhere to let rip !!!!!!!!!!! I did start off as a bit of a mental case on here ....!

I have nearly calmed down now, although last night's £150 to protect 5 more deposits did "grip my SHxT" somewhat!

but was balanced by my new £100 set up fee.(x5)!

In this life the first sign of intelligence is to realise that you can never stop learning, the second is that what you have learnt is not necessarily correct and should be regularly qestioned and updated on the arrival of new information.

I completely agree that one can benefit, big style, from diverse input - as we certainly get on here ....

I have taken many new ideas and thoughts from the forum and hope i have managed to give people some in return..

"Dont Panic - Due Diligence- consider all options" all order of every day! with my personal favorites cynical and unconventional chucked in as well - and of course plans b,c &d in the background - How can we fail?>>!

As for the "slump" it should be remembered that this is "averaged" across the whole country and all sectors of the prop market - My feeling is that 99% of my portfolio will be exempt from this phenomenon ( i have personally exempted it ............!!!) Due to all the reasons stated previously ....

The First time buyers "sector" has been and will be in "slump" for some time to come as FTBuyers competing directly with seasoned and experiences LL with some serious financial clout .......I am completing on a 2 bed flat next week and shook hands on another 2(2bed&3bed) this afternoon...........(Just to confirm that YES i am still buying......)(no none are new build, off plan or overinflated Bulls. deals ...They just all stacked up very nicely so i had 'em! )

These are typical FTB props and will not be coming back on the market for the forseeable future.........this is the story in most parts of the country with the "traditional starter home" not rolling over every couple of years so progressively diminishing available stock....as BTLers vie for them and FTBers themselves move upmarket but KEEP the house for investment purposes..

Add in higher mort pymnts from int rate rises and so up goes rent - so trapping the wouldbe FTBers in rented acc ..... I have several T 's in this position who have all but given hope of ever being able to buy - several who have requested me to sell them my prop which they are living in. (That will be the Jacuzzi again ......!!!haha)

This is a situation that as a LL is great ......and i can see a real shift towards the way things are in countries like USA and Gemany where prop is prohibitively expesive - mortgages are out of the financial reach of most and ownership comes much later in life - if ever..........

Perhaps we need a new thread for this alone ?

What we thinking peeps.................


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How quickly do you want to go to jail or get hit with big fines.

Its called Collusion and being in a Cartel to defraud the public and is a criminal offence.

Don't be so daft, I wasn't talking about colluding to bring prices up here I was just saying the if agents spoke more (just like LL and LA can and do in here) then they can surely share the wealth of knowledge out there and give the market a better name. It's crap at the moment isn't it and surely needs a revival.

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if agents spoke more (just like LL and LA can and do in here) then they can surely share the wealth of knowledge out there and give the market a better name.


Not a question of being daft and not how you percieve it its how someone looking in will percieve it.

EA's talking together would be seen as inflating prices for ord consumer and allowing their friends etc to boost their own fees and rip the consumer off, not putting in competitive fees for vendors to keep overall fees higher and rip the consumer off, massaging rents higher and not allowing them to go lower to rip the consumer off.

DTI would investigate and ANY evidence would be used to find everybody guilty in the media 2 years before it ever came to court.

Best keep Govt out as then you would get everybody wanting to legislate for everything......that means cost and it will be LL paying.

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I think the current property market has developed in a more complex manner partly because of the increase in buy 2 lets

In the past the lower end of the property market was sustained by "first time buyers" however since the growth of B2L us landlords have replaced first time buyers. I have found that estate agents and mortgage companies are keen to work with landlords because we provide repeat business whereas a first time buyer only ever buys one property we might buy one every month or so. The property pundits have not taken on the effect of this by consistently reporting the lack of affordability for first time buyers.

I personally think that a slow down in property prices will occur but as interest rates increase this will put pressure on rental inflation and as a result rents will rise. My experience of letting property over the last ten years is that rental inflation has been limited almost artificially depressed for the last ten year period despite property prices doubling or trebling. I think that substantial increases in rent of 10 – 25% + are likely over the next three years especially as interest rates rise.

My index rent in 2001 was £75pw

My index rent in 2006 was £85pw

Another issue is that persons who historically made up the first time buyer group such as key workers in the public sector now make up the prime target tenant group. This increases tenant demand and will also add to the rental inflationary pressure.

The result of increased rents will make some lower end property appear cheap again as the percentage rental return improves.

Landlords look set now to reap the rewards in increased rents and so lower capital growth will be offset by an increase in income.


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So eloquently put Oliver.

I so wish I could say things on paper that my head is thinking haha

But I totally agree with this. I reall think that the market is ready for an rent increase however small.

As a new agent I have looked at the current market locally and seen that there is an abundance of Tenants with not as many proeprties to let. For this reason I have suggested to new Landlords that we put £50 on their expected rent and play a waiting game. Obviously we will keep a very close eye on this over the first fortnight that we are advertising and see if it works.

I think simon has mentioned that he gets higher rentals than other LL's in his area and I'm sure we can do the same if we play it correctly.

(We just need to put Jaccuzi's in all the properties. lol)

Saying this though it needs to be monitored VERY VERY carefully.

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Put £50 on the rent immediately ...........with the condition that you can answer this question to a T's satisfaction....

The Q..

"Why is this property £50 more expensive than the one 3 doors away ?........"

I ALWAYS ask for high rent - it produces high expectations ( which i can meet..........LOL) and raises the quaility of the T (usually) also leaves me space to "play" to close a deal ie £625 for a 12 mth or £650 for a 6 mth ast etc

Another FUNDAMENTAL RULE is " you can ALWAYS go down in price - it is EXCEPTIONAL that you can go up" so dont cut yourself off from this option by pricing too low.....

Also with web advertisng you can pick up a lot of "non local" T's who are not aware of "mean" rents - but if they like you, and the prop, and the price ..Boom Boom Thank you very much ..........

This raises another topic starter - We are in the people business as much if not more than the property business - so if they love the prop but dont like or trust YOU then i would suggest it highly unlikely that they will take the prop! mmmmmmmmm......so that puts price down the priority list then ???? in some cases definately ....

Comments requested !!!!!!


Seriously, i am 100% behind your idea and think you should do it and NOW (I get more per prop on most of my portfolio than most of my competitiors)

But not always directly from the tenant eg.

Have another house 4bed (average rent on these is £900 in area) it was taking to long to fill so i "DROPPED" rent to £800 and filled it straight away

So how is that more !................????????????

I bulit a garage on the back last summer and let the house, without the garage, for £800 -

The Gar I have let seperately for £150 a month -

I mentioned this house in an early couple of posts, it also has an ad hoarding fetching £120 pcm So my £800 is actually £1070 putting it a full 19% above the norm in the area!!!.......................

.(And yes this one has Also got a Jacuzzi...!!!!!!!!!!)

Obvoiusly you cant do this with all props - but careful buying will ensure your Portfolio IS Loaded with props like this !!!!>..............


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Just wondering what you tend to pay for these one bed flats that get £650 per month?

In my area one bed flats that rent for £650 per month go for around £175,000 to £200,000, so just don't make sense.

Reading a book yesterday and the author was saying he gets 70% returns and don't do an HMO unless you get a 33% return? Made me think what a load of rubbish, where can you get this? Having said that the areas he was saying were hotspots for buy-to-let were very cheap areas, Mansfield and the like. Anyone get 33% returns? I feel like i am missing out.

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