Buying a Fixer-Up Property vs a Move-In Ready Home in South West London

by | Apr 19, 2021 | Buying A Home | 0 comments

For most people looking to buy a new home, it’s a case of finding one that matches your budget and specifications. However, there are those brave few who consider fixing a rundown property up. It’s true that this can represent an investment opportunity, but it’s a lot of work without any guarantee of a decent return on investment.

At Gentleman & A Van, we work with individuals and professionals who go this route. It’s a guestimate as to the chance of success, even for seasoned property developers. While this is always subjective and no two situations are the same, there are ways of increasing your chances of success. This article will go through both options to see what the best route is.

Renovating for Profit or Convenience that Costs –

A note before we begin – there’s no such thing as an easy move. We certainly don’t consider buying a home simple or straightforward. There are lots of potential obstacles to navigate and issues to avoid. And it will take plenty of patience when organising and ticking items off your moving checklist, which you should create and update through your relocation.

The phrase convenient is a comparative reference between buying somewhere you can move in straight away versus a property you’ll work on for months. In simpler terms – the convenience of purchasing a property without having to undertake renovations before moving in. A liveable space from day one makes things a lot easier, but the process to get there is anything but simple.

We should also add that not everyone buying a fixer-up home is doing so for profit. Many people do so to create the ideal house or apartment to their exact style and taste. While others are struggling to get a mortgage, and this is the best route to homeownership. There is a multitude of reasons with house-flipping being one.

This blog will consider various angles as we traverse the different options available. We’re doing our best to stay away from bias and will remain discursive and even-handed. The idea isn’t to give you a definitive answer, instead some pointers to help your decision.

Work with an Estate Agent and Create a Strategy –

This is something we’re suggesting you do as a first action. You’ll put yourself in a favourable position by enlisting the services of an estate agent from the start. Draft a wish list with everything you want when setting up viewings. Then send it to the agent for them to provide feedback and send any relevant suggestions for the following best action.

If you’re unsure of either option, they’ll present you with some data and advice for both. This will help you piece together enough information to determine which is the best route eventually. However, they won’t make any decisions for you, and you’ll need to do some of the legwork. You’re not off the hook regarding research and scouting.

One of the benefits of getting an estate agent early is their ability to value prospective properties. They can give you an accurate valuation of each house or flat as well as a list of pros and cons. Plus, they’ll advise on things like inspections and the legal side of things. We can’t think of a more important person to have on board.

Once you have a wish list, send it and get them to group suitable places for viewings. They’ll filter out unsuitable properties and do further research on potential ones. This is essential for anyone who’s moving into South West London from another part of the UK. You won’t waste time and energy on places that don’t match up to your needs.

Finding a Bargain at an Auction –

Auction houses have regular lots with properties to develop, and this is the holy grail of finding a bargain. Every auctioneer has their own set-up and criteria for how they accept and present each item for bidding. The best way to get a better idea is to attend one in your local area, even if you’re just there as a spectator. Remember to keep your hands down; otherwise, they’ll think you’re actively taking part.

Most auction houses will produce a catalogue with information for prospective bidders. Open viewings will also be an option you should undertake if they’re available. It’s not always possible to view, but you can ask for additional information. Familiarise yourself with things like guide and reserve prices, as well as the terms and conditions of sale.

Professional auction houses do a lot of preparation work to help facilitate the sales side of things. Legal packs might be obtainable, and we encourage you to request this when you first contact them. You need to understand the terms and conditions of the auction and property. Furthermore, get to grips with the procedural stuff in the event your bid is successful.

While the thought of an auction seems daunting, we believe it’s worth considering, even if it’s for research purposes. If you go the route of a ready-made house or flat, at least you have this experience. You might even decide to try your hand at development in the future, and you’ll already know where to begin. Who knows, you might even have fun while doing it!

Counting the Cost and Seeking Quotes –

Now that you have a better idea about the route to finding cheaper properties let’s discuss the numbers side of things. We advise you to invest in some good coffee to stay awake during this stage. You’ll need to perform costing exercises for both approaches. This must include every aspect, and you’ll add and update your figures. It’s crucial you pay attention to the small details to avoid problems later in the process.

Applying for a mortgage is usually necessary, even for auctioned properties. You’ll need to calculate and draft something akin to a business plan, especially if you choose to renovate a building. The home loan provider will want to know your capacity and commitment. If you’re unable to satisfy them, you’re serious and can make repayments, and it’s unlikely they’ll back you financially.

You’ll need to think about deposits and affordability as your primary goals for people who aren’t fixing up. You’ll need to prove you have the financial clout to repay a mortgage rate. The requirements are often stringent and far from inclusive. You have to earn approximately three times the mortgage repayment rate.

The sad truth is, applying for and acquiring a mortgage is anything but plain sailing. It’s very exclusive and doesn’t take things like being a good tenant into account. We hope this will change soon, and rental payments act as a qualifying point for home loans. For now, get to know this side of things and see which lenders might be willing to accept smaller upfront payments.

The Importance of Location Research –

We can’t stress this enough – it’s all about location, location, and location. The area you’re moving to is vitally important, especially for reselling purposes. It needs to tick a certain number of boxes, both for things like style, property details, and the area’s quality. When putting together a list of possible locations, think about healthcare, schools, travel, and local amenities.

It might help if you create a scoring system where every potential property and location receives an x-amount of points for a specific task. For example, you might allocate a fixer-up property in Wimbledon a six for the number of rooms, but the local amenities are superb, so it gets a nine. Then a four-bed detached nearby has everything you want in a home, scoring nine, but there’s a lack of decent shops, and you’re not fond of the surrounding area.

This is where your estate agent comes in handy as they’ll be able to use property descriptions against your wish list. They’ll research sales in the area of similar buildings to get an idea of asking prices. By doing this, you’ll get a better idea of return on investment and how appealing the vicinity is. Do your part by looking into safety and employment statistics, in addition to Ofsted ratings.

The most important thing to remember here is you’re going to be spending most of your time on the property. Whether that’s living there on working on the building, so you’ll need to be sure it’s the right pick. Even for those developing the property to sell straight away, you’ll need to like the village, town or city. Otherwise, why would your potential buyer?

A Range of Removals and Storage Services –

The Gentleman & A Van team have been moving people in South West London and all over the capital since 2004. And, as you can imagine, we’ve performed all manner of relocations in that time. Many of them fall into this blog’s category, with some working on properties to sell or call their own. Then some people were thinking about it but went with the slightly more straightforward option.

Regardless of what decision you make, we’ll go through the same stringent assessment process before suggesting a removals package. Irrespective of whether you’re moving from a two-bed apartment or a five-bed detached house, we begin by understanding your circumstances in full. For homes with three bedrooms and more, we usually suggest our Home Removals package. Anything below that, typically one- or two-bedroom apartments, tends to work better with our Man & Van service.

We have storage options to suit any individual or business needs precisely, suitable for any length of stay. Gentleman & A Van also has our very own online store, where you can buy the same high-quality packing materials we use on every job. You can enjoy the same industry-level boxes and packaging the professionals have without leaving the house.

Gentleman & A Van – Reliable Advice for Homeowners in South West London –

Everyone at Gentleman & A Van wants our customers to find the perfect home and enjoy a pleasant moving experience. You’re investing time as well as money, so you need to be sure it’s the correct choice for you. That’s why it’s a good idea to have credible information at hand, and we do our best to produce and link to other sources.

Once it’s time to move, we will be delighted to provide you with a high-quality service. We have an excellent selection of removals package options available. And should you need it, self storage to ensure you have somewhere secure for your belongings. Every service we offer has a high degree of flexibility to accommodate any unique aspects. We guarantee a high standard of quality for every package we offer.

Whether you choose to find a bargain to turn into a charming home or you’re going with something ready to move in, please contact us today. We’ll provide you with any assistance you need, including discussing a removals service with you.