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What should you look for in your next investment property?

By Emma Martin, 10 May 2018

As we amble quietly towards the summer months, there’s traditionally a bit of a lull in terms of the housing market, following the inevitable busy period of New Year and spring. As finances settle and people prepare to go on holiday, many put the idea of moving house on the backburner.

This allows the chance to refresh and re-imagine what priorities people have when looking to move. In research undertaken by Savills, they surveyed a number of households from across the country to find out, when buying a home, what was the most important thing to buyers?

The respondents were organised into four different categories, First Time Buyers, Upsizers, Downsizers, and Relocators.

Minimum maintenance

Respondents in high-density and medium-density urban areas such as city centres and outer boroughs said that the most important priority when looking for a new home was minimum maintenance.

Extrapolating from that, we can say that those who are happy to live the busy city lifestyle are unlikely to want to undertake a project and want a readymade home to move in to and slip into a hectic lifestyle.

Families are unlikely to be moving into city centre high-density areas but more likely to move to outer boroughs and medium-density areas. This research has revealed that they highly prioritise a lack of maintenance needs when buying in these areas.

The message is clear then, if you’re operating in urban areas make sure you spend a little extra to get any maintenance done.

Off-street parking

For those in quieter suburban areas off-street parking was their number one priority. It’s fair to assume that the majority of these buyers are likely to be families and, by that logic, it’s important that they don’t have to worry about parking.

If you’re investing in these areas and don’t have off-street parking, there’s a few options. First of all you can look at the closest available parking to provide an alternative to potential buyers but more desirable would be apply to the local council to have your kerbs dropped in order to change your front garden into a parking space.

Of course if you live in a house with no back garden this may well not be a desirable option, but if you do then it really does make sense in this day of families with multiple cars to transform the front of your house to accommodate for it. It will, as evidence shows, increase the attraction of your house.

Location

Varying in priority across the groups anywhere between second and fourth, location is still incredibly important to people.

There’s little you can do about the location of a property you already own and so this is more directed towards buyers. Proximity to travel routes, good schools and amenities will never stop being a key priority for home buyers, take this into consideration when purchasing.

Energy efficiency

Perhaps unsurprising, energy efficient homes have become massively important to buyers and tenants. At number one for those who are downsizing, it makes sense that they want to save as much money as possible.

It varies hugely across property types but proper energy efficiency can save the average home owner thousands per year if done properly. Solar panels, water conservation, good insulation and septic tanks are all ways of reducing your carbon footprint and reducing your outgoings.

Socially and economically conscious young buyers simply won’t accept a lack of any type of energy conservation, and that’s unlikely to change over the next 10 to 15 years and will probably increase quickly.

With that in mind, if you’re not in a mad rush to sell up why not look to invest in your home by getting top quality insulation put in, or solar panels installed? Look into the most innovative ways to conserve energy in your home and the investment is very likely to pay off in the long term.

If you’re looking to invest in a new buy-to-let property contact Intus Residential today to find out more!

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