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Why ‘fixer-uppers’ could offer value for property investors

It was interesting to read a piece of research published last month, revealing that poor maintenance and damp are among the top problems which would put home-buyers off a purchase.

Fair enough, you might say – nobody wants their first night in their new home worrying about damp-proofing, replacing windows or filling the large crack in the ceiling. However, it’s exactly these kinds of ‘fixer-uppers’ that could prove a great opportunity for property investors and landlords.

Experts are reporting that in prime Central London and other areas of the country, distinguished but dilapidated properties are becoming fashionable again – and investors can add considerable value by purchasing them at low cost and doing it up.

One boss of a property buying agency told a national newspaper last month that this is becoming more common with more grand buildings coming onto the market as sellers look to release capital. They may have been in the same family for generations and could have risen in value considerably since they were first bought, so those selling may be keen to strike a deal.

Unfortunately, some lenders won’t even consider providing finance for properties which may be defective or have had poor remarks on valuation reports. At Together, we will consider all types of properties, regardless of their structure, age or valuation, using manual underwriters to look at each case on its merits.

We also provide bridging finance in short timescales, meaning investors would be able to buy the property with the loan, do the work needed to bring it up to scratch, and pay it back from its sale.

At the auctions we attend across the country, we see anything from maisonettes which have seen better days to crumbling castles, so it’s also worth looking through auction catalogues (most are online) to see if you can find some bargains. Before doing the work, you will have to look into planning permissions and restrictive covenants, but even more modest projects, such as replacing a bathroom of a kitchen, could prove a savvy investment.