Last month I revisited the facts regarding buy to let and how it still offers a great return on investment, despite the recent changes to tax and profit calculations. To avoid the risk of having a blog which scrolled down the whole length of the page I didn’t add the details of how Strawberry take it a step further and look to achieve the best possible return for our Landlords right from the very beginning, even when finding the property itself. 
We understand that sometimes more experienced Landlords want to handle the management of their properties by themselves and that is something we can accommodate via our ‘Introduction Only’ service. 
 
The main down side of this is that the tenant is placed in a relatively strong position when it comes to any damage they cause as there is very little proof to say that the property or furniture was not already in a state of disrepair. One person’s word against another; a very frustrating and potentially costly time where tempers flare and valuable time is consumed. 
At Strawberry we obviously have many clients who are Landlords so we are only too aware of how difficult life as a Landlord can be. Aside from the work involved in getting a property ‘rental ready’ there are the on-going maintenance tasks and calls from tenants (and maybe also contractors) with questions relating to many different aspects of the property and terms of the let. 
I think it’s generally agreed that we all go through some degree of hibernation during the winter months; doing less outdoors and tending to keep to the warm comfy cosiness of home. As Spring comes into view we jolt back into life and start to make plans about what we are going to do and where we are going to go. It’s no coincidence that Spring sees a spike in property activity – people want to move, but to make this happen there needs to be a healthy balance of buyers and sellers. 
Business owners (and in this particular case we’re thinking landlords) can now consider a new type of pension arrangement which allows the use of that pension to support the business. What’s so good about that I hear you say? Well, it introduces the concept that your hard- earned, previously ‘untouchable’ pension fund could be a very viable alternative to going to the bank to ask for loans (all too often difficult to obtain and possibly also attracting a relatively high cost). 
I am sure by now you are familiar with property portals such as Rightmove and Zoopla. One which might have escaped your attention so far however is ‘Get Agent’. This recently-launched service takes some basic information on your needs as a vendor (size of property, approximate value, postcode area) and uses those details to shortlist the agents in the area who can best meet your needs 
So in this shiny New Year I’m afraid I’m going to return to an old topic: old in the sense that we covered it last year – the abolition of stamp duty for first time buyers. And why am I returning to this subject? Well, despite cynicism coming for some corners, this policy seems to be having a certain degree of success. We are certainly seeing an increase in demand for properties which fall within the first time buyers ‘ideal home’ category and that has left us with a little bit of an issue – WE NEED MORE PROPERTIES!!! 
It’s been a funny old year in the property market. Lots of stories of doom and gloom – Brexit uncertainty ‘killing’ house sales, tax changes heralding a mass exodus of landlords and changes to tenant fees being ‘the last straw’ for lettings agents. 
So 2018 heralds the 10 Year Anniversary of Strawberry Lettings and Sales. Quite a milestone in an industry which tends to favour ‘the big boys’ and trample over the smaller independents who want to show clients what a personalised service can look like. 
It’s that time of year where we all start to concentrate hard on the run up to the big day (although, is it just me or is the run up starting earlier every year?) and everything else seems to be put on hold for a month or so. 
 
If you’ve come to the conclusion that a house move is on the cards then do not delay making a start. You don’t need to be inconvenienced by hosting lots of viewings (although it must be said that those prepared to view properties over Christmas are usually really quite serious about buying!!), just getting your property on the internet nice and early for 2018 is a great start.