Where to purchase properties for buy-to-let purposes
If you're looking where to invest your money in order to get a good return on it, you may want to think about getting a buy-to-let property.
Certainly, Chris Norris, policy manager at the National Landlords Association, said that this option is more attractive than storing money in a bank due to low interest rates at present, or on the stock market, which is not performing well at the moment.
But just where should you search for such homes?
London has always been a good place to invest in houses, with Hugh Best, head of investment management at the London Central Portfolio, recently saying that certain areas of London offer a "safe haven" to invest money in.
For example, he noted that this is particularly the case with properties for sale in the central areas of the city, in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea and the City of Westminster.
In addition, you are likely to be able to charge higher rents in London during the Olympics, particularly if a house is located close to some of the venues being used for the event.
However, London properties for sale are notoriously expensive, meaning that you may have to look elsewhere in the UK to find a house to buy-to-let property.
If this is the case where should you be focussing your property search?
Ian Potter, operations manager at the Association of Residential Letting Agents, said: "Some towns across the UK are suitable for rental investment as they have a high number of students, while others - such as the recently unveiled Local Enterprise Zones - are areas being targeted for future growth."
Similarly, Knight Frank recently advised people looking for buy-to-let properties to search for such homes in university towns as they have a "more robust economic environment".
When choosing a buy-to-let property you should also make sure that it appeals to the intended tenant by, for example, being close to schools and universities, if a family will live in the home.
In addition, Simon Lambert, assistant editor of Thisismoney.co.uk said that an unfurnished property may be suitable for a family as they may already have their own belongings to fill it with, while young professionals are more likely to want rental homes that are stylish and contemporary.
"If they are students, it needs to be easy to clean and comfortable but not luxurious," he said.
It is also worthwhile for you to make sure that the properties for sale you're considering purchasing are close to good transport links, shops and other amenities in order to attract potential tenants.
Another factor worth taking into account, according to Mr Lambert, is whether a property will be close to where you live or further away.
He said that one positive of choosing rental homes close by is that landlords can be nearby in case any problems arise and so that they can keep an eye on the property.
However, if you've hired an agent to do this job then opting for a property in an area where you can get a better return on it will be a more attractive option.
If you've decided to look further afield you may also want to consider buying properties abroad, which you can enjoy yourself for holidays and also let out on a short-term basis for holidaymakers.
Indeed, James Dearsley, European sales director for Atlas International, recently said that you can make good returns on rental homes abroad from both a rental and capital investment perspective.
He also said that low prices mean that now could be a good time to buy a home overseas, with Spain being particularly popular. Turkey and Florida could be good options too.
Whether buying homes to rent here or abroad it's important that you think carefully about the location of the property, determine who will live there and gear it towards their needs and work out if you want to handle the home yourself or let it through an agent.
And don’t forget to make sure you get advice from and use a regulated National Association of Estate Agents professional. You can search for regulated agents across the UK at www.naea.co.uk.
By doing this you'll make the process as simple and profitable as possible and may even be able to expand your property profile in the future.
Posted at 01:04 22/08/2011