Update on the leaseshold property scandal

The world of leasehold property has been a hot topic this year. For the first time many people have begun to question the logic behind paying for a property over which someone else still retains a measure of control. This has come into sharp focus with the leasehold scandal, which illustrated just how costly it can be for homeowners to buy a property that is ‘leased.’ Now, though, there is some light at the end of the tunnel with potential government intervention in this rather shady part of the property world. The problem with leasehold Most properties in the UK are available either ‘freehold’ or ‘leasehold.’ A freehold property purchase transfers entire ownership to the buyer, now and forever, as long as any mortgage payments are kept up. A leasehold property is sold on the basis of a long lease – for example 150 years – and when that lease expires ownership of the property reverts back to the freeholder. Most flats in the UK are sold on the basis of leasehold and ma
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How to release equity to pay for home improvements

While even getting on the property ladder is a tough task for younger generations, many over 50s are already living mortgage free. Property is considered the wisest of investments. In fact, according to a report by Consumer Intelligence, one in three people has given up on a pension to fund retirement, relying on investing in property instead. However, the most pressing question for many property owners is what happens if you need to access some of the cash you’ve poured into bricks and mortar. How can you turn that investment liquid without selling? This is where equity release comes in. “I’d like to make improvements to my home but I don’t have the disposable income.” “My property requires repairs or upgrades but I’m not sure how to pay for it.” “I’d like to be able to give my son a contribution to a deposit for a flat but I don’t have much in the way of savings.” “I’ve worked hard to pay off my mortgage but now don’t have much cash with which to enjoy
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The Great Property Renting Race – how to find and keep that great property

One of the main reasons many of us want to buy is to get away from the insecurity of renting. The average UK tenancy is just 12 months and long-term tenancies of three to five years are unheard of. That means, for many tenants, there is an annual insecurity about losing the roof over your head. Add to that the increasing cost of renting and the lack of good properties and it can be a thoroughly anxiety inducing situation. But there are ways around it. If you want to find – and keep – a great rental property, it can be done. Finding your rental home There’s no need to rely on high street letting agents any more to find the best rental properties in your area. Online agencies such as Upad often have a much wider selection of options and lower fees. If you want to bypass the agent completely then sites like Open Rent connect landlords and tenants directly. Thinking it over Start by giving yourself the time to research the perfect property. Letting agents have a tendency to give the
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The rise of Generation Rent and build-to-rent property

It is difficult to get away from the constant bad news about the UK housing market. Well, bad news if you’re trying to get on the ladder that is. Although we’ve seen some fluctuations, prices have risen pretty consistently. The average cost of a home in the UK is around £310,000 now, according to Zoopla. That rises to £500,000 if you’re house hunting in London. The huge discrepancy between the value of property and the amount we earn has left many younger generations at a bit of a loss. Do you tie yourself to a mortgage you’ll still be paying off at 60? Or do you rent forever and never own an asset or experience real property security so-called Generation Rent . The end of home ownership? Being part of Generation Rent is now a real possibility for many of us. And there are some pretty resourceful people out there who are looking to take advantage of this. Recent reports in the Telegraph, for example, have drawn attention to the changes under way in the rental sector. We may
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