2016 in review: A year of the Medway Property News blog

Hello readers. It certainly has been a year that’s seen a lot of dramatic change, especially in the world of politics.

History was made with Britain deciding to leave the European Union, David Cameron stood down to make way for a new prime minister in the form of Theresa May, and Philip Hammond was ushered in as the new chancellor – to name just a few key goings-on.

Whether directly or indirectly these factors affect the property market. It is therefore a good time to look back at 2016 to remind us how much has changed in the last 12 months, as reported on here on Medway Property News.

January 

The beginning of the year brought news that Medway experienced one of the largest increases in rent in the country by a massive 8.8%, ahead of Thurrock and only beaten by Luton. I also posed some questions on how the June Brexit vote would affect the rental market using Carter Jonas research as basis.

February 

In February, I offered advice on how you can protect your rentals from tenant sub-letting, after stats from Direct Line showed that 20% of tenants did not inform their landlords that they were doing so. I also looked at leasehold vs freehold when considering a buy-to-let property.

March and April

Medway is lucky to have the Universities of Medway and a campus of the University of the Creative Arts. With that in mind I had an in-depth look at student HMOs and how to get the best return on these potentially lucrative investments. As was discussed, careful planning and consideration of corporate competition are important considerations when looking to invest in these projects.

May 

In May I considered the scrapping of mortgage interest relief and how to work out the rental yield in a property, both of which are important matters when investing. The high rate of tax has impacted investors and I considered ways of mitigating against this.

I also provided a guide on Medway HMO investments as handy reference for new landlords entering the market.

June

With the big vote at the end of June looming, Brexit was back on the agenda and I considered what the referendum’s impact could be to rental and house prices. At the time we were wondering if Boris Johnson was going to become the new PM! There was also a guest blog on the impact of Brexit on property prices based on historic data.

July

Following the Brexit vote and surrounding thoughts of impact on the market we had a second guest blog post. Clearly the vote to leave was a surprise to many, and the media was full of stories of spooked foreign property investors. There were also predictions of another recession. However, it was also noted that fortune favours the brave in times of turbulence.

August

In August I focused on the influx of new university students and the impact on HMO investors. The good news was that the combined local universities had increased their intake, creating a positive knock-on effect of increased demand for 2017.

September 

The Property Vault in Medway was launched in September, an event which I was proud to host. We have had some great speakers so far that have included Rick Walton and Martin Skinner – both of whom are well-known property investors that shared their experiences and advice.

In addition, I looked at what offers the best yield in Medway between HMOs or flats. There was also more good news that the Medway property market outperformed the rest of the country.

October 

A new report published from the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) detailed a lack of rental properties on the market as the number homes fails to keep up with demand. RICS said that 1.8 million homes are needed by 2025 and I considered the different options of solving this issue.

I also posed a question: are you prepared for the upcoming Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) 2018 changes which come in on 1st April 2018?

November 

The Autumn Statement was the big story in November with the introduction of letting agent fees. There was also no change to tax relief and more government money was made available to build new houses. I also looked ahead to the new HMO legislation coming in April 2017, which is due to remove the storey rule.

December 

And here we are at the end of the year. I published an update on the Right to Rent legislation and on new figures that showed the property market is still strong. I also announced Georgina Burnett as the next speaker at The Property Vault Medway, in 2017 (tickets are still available).

***

I hope you enjoyed reading Medway Property News in 2016. Clearly a lot has changed in the year, but the overriding theme is that Medway has been bucking the trend and is a great place to invest. I look forward to offering you more information and insight next year and seeing you at The Property Vault Medway.

If you are seeking advice on a rental or need a property sourced, I am always happy to hear from you. My email address is hasan@bullfinchproperties.co.uk and you can ring me on 07944 726 676.

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