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Current Property Market

Date Submitted: 23/01/2011   Author: Robert Macfarlane

Across the country letting has become more acceptable and popular and in most areas, including Staffordshire, the market for landlords is vibrant.

In recent times this has been brought about by the difficulties prospective buyers have raising a deposit. Most mortgage companies will only lend if a 20 per cent or more deposit is paid. This in a lot of cases tends to make the first time buyers rent, save, and if possible buy at a later date. So yes more people are looking, but it goes deeper than that. With a lot of buyers unable to sell their existing properties, and experiencing property prices fall, they are turning to renting their properties out as a short term solution.

So we have a situation where there are more prospective tenants and more properties out there. It is important therefore for a landlord to present his property in a desirable fashion. Delaying that new kitchen or bathroom could result in not attracting tenants quickly and seeing a lower rental return. Having recently refurbished almost all my own properties I can say that refurbishment produces a quicker, higher priced let. It is also a win win situation for landlords because, should they at some point in the near future decide to sell their property,it will be in tip top condition and more likely to attract a buyer . MD have on occasion sold properties to tenants, or investment landlords leaving the tenants in the property.

Whilst I have not got a crystal ball I see rental demand remaining strong in 2011 but property prices in Stafford dropping by around 3 per cent. Therefore it must be remembered that letting property is not a quick,get rich scheme, and landlords must be prepared to accept it is, in general, a long term investment. The good news is property investments over the long term can produce a nice rental income and capital growth.

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