Frequently Asked Questions
Who are R&M Investing?
R&M investing are an independent investment property advisory company who specialize in providing overseas investors with expert advice and high-quality investment opportunities
What is real estate investment?
Real estate investment involves putting personal capital into a property that is then used to create a return on investment through both yield (rental return) and appreciation (value increase) over time.
What is off-plan?
Off-plan property is a commonly used term within the property industry to describe a property that is purchased before completion. This is done by reviewing a number of documents, including but not limited to; the architect’s plans, the planning documents the CGI imagery, the lease, the contract and other supporting legal documents along with advice from a specialist partner such as R&M Investing.
What are the advantages of purchasing off-plan?
The main benefit that an investor gains from purchasing off-plan is that the prices will be set at the point of sale and not completion, meaning that as an investor if chosen correctly, the investment upon completion will achieve instant capital appreciation. This is why it is important to use a company such as R&M Investing to find a successful investment
What if the developer doesn’t finish the development?
Unfortunately, in very rare circumstances a developer can go into liquidation, depending on the way funds are held unfortunately this can sometimes mean that the investors can lose their initial investment. Generally, this would be the deposit placed down on the exchange of contracts. This is a worst-case scenario, although this is a concern for investors purchasing off-plan, it is something that can be mitigated through a thorough due diligence process into the developer and the development itself.
What is the payment structure and what is the purchasing process?
A payment plan sets out the terms under which an investor agrees to purchase their apartment.
- A nonrefundable reservation deposit is placed to secure the chosen unit, as an investor you then enter into a contract via your chosen legal representative, an average of 28 days is given to review the legal documents and complete the Anti Money Laundering procedures.
- Once the legal process is completed you would then commit to a certain percentage of the purchase price to exchange the contracts.
- Once the exchange of contracts occurs, you have entered into a contract that ensures you are liable to complete the purchase upon completion of the building.
Is the reservation fee refundable, If not why?
Reservation deposits are generally deemed non-refundable apart from in certain circumstances where it is agreed between the two parties prior to placing the holding deposit. The nonrefundable aspect is generally in place because at the point of reservation the client agrees that they have understood the investment to the best of their knowledge and agrees for the developer’s legal team to undertake work on their behalf. The fee removes the apartment off the open market meaning it can no longer be sold to a different party.
What does “Exchange” and “Complete” mean?
Exchange of contracts will generally occur around 28 days after reservation. During that period of time, your chosen solicitor will undertake a review of the contract pack and work with the developer’s solicitor to answer any queries they may have. Once this process is completed, they will ask you to transfer your deposit funds and signed copies of the contract which they will then exchange with the developer’s solicitor. You are legally bound to complete the purchase of this property when the build is finished, failure to do so after this point will mean you have lost your exchange deposit.
Completion occurs once the developer has finished the development and it has been signed off by an accredited building control body as a completed property that complies with full building regulations and planning permissions. Once this has happened you are now legally obligated to send the outstanding balance owed which would be the remainder of the purchase price. You will be issued with a completion statement notifying you of the amount and the timeframe for which this is due to be paid. This outstanding balance can be paid in cash or via a mortgage.
Can I use my own solicitor?
Yes, of course, you can use your own legal representative at all times. It can be beneficial to use the legal team recommended to you for a specific purchase as they will generally already have a good understanding of the contracts and the ins, and outs of the lease agreement meaning they will be able to give you the best advice in a timely manner.
What are the solicitor fees?
The solicitor’s fees are the cost of using a solicitor to complete the due diligence on a contract on your behalf. These fees generally range between £900 – £1500, but the appointed recommended solicitor will normally offer the best rate due to the level of transactions they will be taking care of within the development.
How easy are the properties to sell?
This is determined by location, price, yield, and overall quality. If you choose the correct investment the current market conditions in key cities generally found in the North of England such as Manchester, Liverpool, Leeds, and Birmingham mean it can be easily disposed of. R&M can also assist our investors to find a buyer or a preferred sales agent through our extensive reach of partners worldwide.
Are there any restrictions when selling?
There are very few if any restrictions when reselling a property. When selling in the UK the main restrictions are ensuring your chosen purchaser is compliant with UK Law and anti-money laundering procedures.
What is buy-to-let?
A buy to let property is a property that is purchased with the sole purpose of renting to a tenant who will pay you an income based on the properties size, location, amenities, and quality.
What is a NET rental yield?
NET yield is a return on investment presented as a percentage. This percentage yield is based on the purchase price and all outgoings associated with the ownership. These outgoings will generally include; initial capital invested, ground rents, service charges, and if applicable the mortgage costs to give you an accurate analysis of what the actual money you have invested is going to earn you year on year.
How do assured rental yields work?
Assured yields are offered by the developer over a set period of time (for example; 3 Years at a rate of 6% NET) This means for the period of the rental assurance the developer is responsible for letting out the apartment for you and also means you will not experience any void periods in between tenants leaving where you would not receive an income, this assured period also gives you the advantage of not having any additional costs such as a service charges or ground rent, meaning you have a strong hands of investment. Student investments will all generally offer assured rental yields, these are usually over 3-5 years and can range from 7% – 10% Net dependent on location.
What is Capital Appreciation?
Capital appreciation is simply the rise in value of your property. Capital Appreciation is just as important as yield when it comes to choosing your investment. Cities such as Manchester, Liverpool, Leeds and Birmingham offer the strongest potential for capital appreciation over the next 5 years.
What is PBSA?
PBSA stands for purpose-built student accommodation. This is when a building is developed using planning permissions that means the property can only be used for the purpose of housing students and therefore cannot be used or sold as a residential property. These developments are designed specifically for students meaning they will generally contain more amenities such as washing facilities, communal areas and studying places.
What are the differences between Student and Residential Properties?
As mentioned above a PBSA property can only be let to students, they hold a different title to a standard residential property. A residential property near a university can be let to students however it would not generally be seen as their first choice for their first year at university. Cities such as Manchester, Liverpool, Sheffield, Leeds and Birmingham all have very strong student populations. This is essential for a solid investment as students will rent properties both during their years of study and also these cities have very high retention rates for students meaning many of the students will find work and stay in the city once they have finished studying which creates an extremely strong rental market.
Who manages the property at completion?
The building maintenance will be covered by an appointed block management company that you will pay a service charge to. They are responsible for maintaining the upkeep of the building itself, the communal areas and facilities while also providing concierge or security staff when applicable.
Your actual apartment will be managed by a letting agent who will take care of actually renting out your property. Your chosen letting agent will advertise your property, find and do all checks on potential tenants, collect the rent, and when appointed with a management contract arrange any necessary maintenance within the apartment itself.
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