Do Embarrassing Street Names Affect Your Tamworth Property Price?

As a child do you remember chuckling when you saw a rude street name or have you refused to buy a house that you really loved as it was on a street with a particularly embarrassing name.

Well, have you considered how the name of your street could possibly be affecting the price of your home?

A recent study carried out by Hometrack claims that is your property is situated on “Lane” this is the most sought after address, with a road named “Way” coming in a close second.

Properties situated on roads named “Drive”, “Street” or “Avenue”  were the most affordable.  I personally would have thought that “Avenue” would have been in the top 3, for me this conjures up leafy suburbs.

Most Valuable Street Names

  1. Lane
  2. Way
  3. Road
  4. Close
  5. Avenue
  6. Drive
  7. Street

Rude or embarrassing road names tend to command a lower than average price.

A semi-detached home on Bell End, Rowley Regis costs an average of £126,408, whereas a neighbouring road, Uplands Avenue, a similar property costs an average of £187,027.

Properties on Minge Lane in Upton-on-Severn are worth half as much as a property on  neighbouring roads.

Rude Street Names

 

 

 

 

 

Trying to sell a property on a rude sounding road may possibly take longer to sell? Imagine if people where to ask where you lived and you replied on Minge Lane or Coppers End, I can imagine the chuckles and tittering. Living in houses with rude road names is not for the faint hearted.

In October 2015 Tamworth Borough Council gave residents  the chance to choose street names for new council house projects for the Tinkers Green and Kerria Centre developments. The flats on Tinkers Green Road are currently being demolished, so I’m sure we will soon see what names the Tamworth residents have chosen.  lets hope the residents don’t go for :-

  • Boggy Bottom, Abbots Langley, Herts, UK
  • Booty Lane, NorthYorkshire
  • Bottoms Fold, Lancashire
  • Broadbottom, Cheshire, UK
  • Brown Willy, Cornwall,UK
  • Bushygap, Northumberland, UK
  • Catsgore, Somerset, UK
  • Charles Bottom, Devon, UK
  • Clap Hill, village in Kent, UK
  • Scratchy Bottom, Dorset, UK

Residents will get the chance to choose the street names for the Tinkers Green and Kerria Centre development replacing homes such as these in Linthouse Walk.

 Flats on Tinkers Green Road currently being demolished

 

If you are looking for an agent with experience that can help you find the right tenant for your property, then contact me to find out how we can get the best out of your investment property. Email me on lorraine@hallandthompson.co.uk

 

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Should the 8,064 home owning OAP’s of Tamworth be forced to downsize?

This was a question posed to me on social media a few weeks ago, after my article about our mature members of Tamworth society and the fact many retirees feel trapped in their homes. After working hard for many years and buying a home for themselves and their family, the children have subsequently flown the nest and now they are left to rattle round in a big house. Many feel trapped in their big homes (hence I dubbed these Tamworth home owning mature members of our society, ‘Generation Trapped’).

So, should we force OAP Tamworth homeowners to downsize?

Well in the original article, I suggested that we as a society should encourage, through building, tax breaks and social acceptance that it’s a good thing to downsize. But should the Government force OAP’s?

Well, one of the biggest reasons OAP’s move home is health (or lack of it).

Looking at the statistics for Tamworth, of the 8,064 homeowners who are 65 years and older, whilst 4,113 of them described themselves in good or very good health, a sizeable 2,841 home owning OAPs described themselves as in fair health and 1,110 in bad or very bad health.

13.76% of Tamworth home owning OAP’s are in poor health

Tamworth Home Owners 65Years +

Tamworth Home Owners 65Years + HealthBut if you look at the figures for the whole of Tamworth Borough Council, there are only 119 specialist retirement homes that one could buy (if they were in fact for sale) and 568 homes available to rent from the Council and other specialist providers (again- you would be waiting for dead man’s shoes to get your foot in the door) and many older homeowners wouldn’t feel comfortable with the idea of renting a retirement property after enjoying the security of owning their own home for most of their adult lives.

My intuition tells me the majority ‘would be’ Tamworth downsizers could certainly afford to move but are staying put in bigger family homes because they can’t find a suitable smaller property. The fact is there simply aren’t enough bungalows for the healthy older members of the Tamworth population and specialist retirement properties for the ones who aren’t in such good health … we need to build more appropriate houses in Tamworth.

 The Government’s Housing White Paper, published a few weeks ago, could have solved so many problems with the UK housing market, including the issue of homing our aging population. Instead, it ended up feeling annoyingly ambiguous. Forcing our older generation to move with such measures as a punitive taxation (say a tax on wasted bedrooms for people who are retired) would be the wrong thing to do. Instead of the stick – maybe the Government could use the carrot tactics and offered tax breaks for downsizers. Who knows – but something has to happen?

.. and come to think about it, isn’t the word ‘downsize’ such an awful word?  I prefer to use the word ‘decent-size’ instead of ‘down-size’- as the other phrase feels like they are lowering themselves, as though they are having to downgrade themselves in their retirement (and let’s be frank – no one likes to be downgraded).

The simple fact is we are living longer as a population and constantly growing with increased birth rates and immigration. So, what I would say to all the homeowners and property owning public of Tamworth is … more houses and apartments need to be built in the Tamworth area, especially more specialist retirement properties and bungalows. The Government had a golden opportunity with the White Paper – and were sadly found lacking.

And a message to my Tamworth property investor readers whilst this issue gets sorted in the coming decade(s)  – maybe seriously consider doing up older bungalows – people will pay handsomely for them – be they for sale or even rent? Just a thought!

If you are looking for an agent with experience that can help you find the right tenant for your property, then contact us to find out how we can get the best out of your investment property.

Email me  on lorraine@hallandthompson.co.uk or give me a call on 07531484956. We can always meet up for a chat and a coffee, we can even walk the dog.

If you enjoyed reading my article, feel free to take a look my other online resources below:

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Tips to Maintain your Tamworth Buy To Let Investment

Landlords, I’m sure you would tend to agree that the majority of tenants do not take a great deal of care with your property, probably due to the fact that they have no financial responsibility with the property, apart from perhaps the deposit.

Maintain your buy to let

Maintain your buy to let

 

How many tenants cause accidental damage in a property and do not inform their landlord knowing that they would be expected to pay for the repair or replacement, however if a problem arises that is down to the landlord to rectify, the tenants are soon making contact.

Maintenance of a property is an ongoing commitment whether it be your own home or a buy to let and can be a drain  on your finances.  Buy to let  landlords need to be practical, versatile and pragmatic ensuring that any investments work both financially and do not make you time poor.

Buy to let properties take a beating, so my advice is to decorate with that in mind. Rather than getting the cheapest fixtures and fittings it’s often more cost effective to spend a little more – “don’t spoil the ship for an hapeth of tar”

My top tips for maintaining your buy to let

Ensure that you carry out regular inspections and make a note of urgent and none urgent jobs.  Have a time schedule of jobs to be carried out.

Avoid mould in the property, it’s easier to keep mould at bay than deal with it, once it appears.  Send information leaflets to your tenants at regular intervals, they need to do their bit. Would and air brick help circulate the air or how about vents in double glazing, both items can be installed fairly cheaply.

If your tenants give notice to vacate, make an early visit to see what will need doing once they have gone. If you are using contractors you will need to book them in advance as good contractors are usually booked solid for weeks and weeks.

Pay close attention to bath seals and sink surrounds and replace the sealant before it becomes unsightly. I always carried a box in the boot of my car for those little jobs which I could do myself,  along with the usual screwdrivers there was filler, no nails, a tube of sealant, a sealant gun and heavy duty wipes. Little jobs that I could complete myself and in the process save myself a few pounds, thus not having to pay contractors.

Use hard wearing, good quality carpets or laminate flooring, cheap carpets are often false economy and tend to require replacing every couple of years. Laminate  flooring is both practical and looks attractive.

Gone are the days when we painted every wall Magnolia, why not use light greys or greens and give those rooms a homely feel and use the rooms natural light.

If you provide the white goods in a property, why not take out the extended warranty. How many times has the 1 years manufacturers warranty just expired and  your washing machine, for instance, has broken down. For the sake of a few pounds a month  you could potentially save hundreds of pounds in call out charges and parts over time. What about boilers, the call out charge alone can be £80.00, the cost soon mounts up.

I know quite a few landlords who do not fit cookers in properties, it’s then the tenants responsibility to supply and maintain their own. If central heating is fitted, many landlords do not have fires in the properties, this also saves on maintenance costs.

Keep spare floor and wall tiles so that you can easily replace damaged ones, it’s quite surprising how quickly ranges or colours of tiles are no longer available.

If you are letting a property furnished, work with neutral colours and don’t fill the property with unnecessary items.  Allow tenants to put their own mark on their home, they may look after the property better if it feels as though it’s their home and not just a rental property.

Maintaining your buy to let will benefit  you in the long run and be less hassle.

 

If you are thinking of getting into the property rental market and don’t know where to start, speak to us for impartial advice and guidance to get the best return on your investment. For more information about other potential investment properties that we could introduce you to, or to ask about our thoughts on your own investment choices, call us now on 01827 425195, you can always email me on Lorraine@hallandthompson.co.uk

Don’t forget to visit the links below to view back dated deals and Tamworth Property News.http://www.Tamworthpropertyblog.co.uk

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How do Transport links effect the Tamworth Property Market?

It might surprise you that it isn’t always the poshest villages around Tamworth or the swankiest Tamworth streets where properties sell and let the quickest. Quite often, it’s the ones that have the best transport links. I mean, there is a reason why one of the most popular property programmes on television is called Location, Location, Location!

How do transport links effect the Tamworth property marketAs an agent in Tamworth, I am frequently confronted with queries about the Tamworth property market, and most days I am asked, “What is the best part of Tamworth and its villages to live in these days?”, chiefly from new-comers.  Now the answer is different for each person – a lot depends on the demographics of their family, their age, schooling requirements and interests etc. Nonetheless, one of the principal necessities for most tenants and buyers is ease of access to transport links, including public transport – of which the railways are very important.

Official figures recently released state that, in total, 1,578 people jump on a train each and every day from Tamworth Train station. Of those, 454 are season ticket holders. That’s a lot of money being spent when a season ticket, standard class, to London is £6,520 a year.

So, if up to £2.96m is being spent on rail season tickets each year from Tamworth, those commuters must have some impressive jobs and incomes to allow them to afford that season ticket in the first place. That means demand for middle to upper market properties remains strong in Tamworth and the surrounding area and so, in turn, these are the type of people whom are happy to invest in the Tamworth buy to let market – providing homes for the tenants of Tamworth…

The bottom line is that property values in Tamworth would be much lower, by at least 3% to 4%, if it wasn’t for the proximity of the railway station and the people it serves in the town

And this isn’t a flash in the pan. Rail is becoming increasingly important as the costs associated with car travel continue to rise and roads are becoming more and more congested. This has resulted in a huge surge in rail travel.

Overall usage of the station at Tamworth has increased over the last 20 years. In 1997, a total of 398,197 people went through the barriers or connected with another train at the station in that 12-month period. However, in 2016, that figure had risen to 1,148,686 people using the station (that’s 3,156 people a day).

How transport links effect the Tamworth property market

How transport links effect the Tamworth property market

The juxtaposition of the property and the train station has an important effect on the value and saleability of a Tamworth property. It is also significant for tenants – so if you are a Tamworth buy to let investor looking for a property – the distance to and from the railway station can be extremely significant.

One of the first things house buyers and tenants do when surfing the web for somewhere to live is find out the proximity of a property to the train station. That is why Rightmove displays the distance to the railway station alongside each and every property on their website.

For more thoughts on the Tamworth Property market – please visit the Tamworth Property Blog https://www.tamworthpropertyblog.co.uk

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Ask Lorraine – What if my Tamworth tenant has a criminal conviction.

🙋  Landlord’s Question: 

My landlord insurance policy does not allow tenants with criminal convictions. To cover myself as it’s not possible to get a CRB or DBS check carried out on a potential tenant  should I add  a clause to the tenancy agreement stating that I do not take tenants with criminal convictions?

What if my tenant has a criminal conviction
What if my tenant has a criminal conviction

Lorraine’s Answer:

It’s a bit like shutting the gate after the horse has bolted!  So perhaps your application for accommodation should have this question added.The potential tenants then complete the application and sign the declaration, they have answered all questions in a truthful manner, right? You have done your best.

Surely if the potential tenants had lied on the application form about criminal convictions,  your insurance company would have to pay out, what more could you have done.

What if you found out a week later that they had lied on the application form and you want them out of your property,  then ground 17 should be used to seek possession.

Ground 17

The tenant is the person, or one of the persons, to whom the tenancy was granted and the landlord was induced to grant the tenancy by a false statement made knowingly or recklessly by—

* the tenant, or

* a person acting at the tenant’s instigation.

Without the application declaration, you have no proof that they had lied and would be stuck with your tenant for a while longer.

Until next week.

Hard Brexit could cause 550 properties to be dumped onto the Tamworth Property market

So all cards up in the air! A general election will be on the books, but one thing is for sure … whoever gets the job to deal with Brexit has a hard job on their hands (I’m just glad its not me!) As it currently stands, by not assuring the rights of EU citizens in the UK, Theresa May has squandered an opportunity to give peace of mind to our EU co-workers working and living in Tamworth (and the rest of the UK). No.10 Downing Street’s point of view is that in promising the rights of EU citizens in the UK, it will postpone the same guarantee to the 1.5 million UK citizens living in the other nations of the EU.

Putting aside the politics for one second, the simple fact is now Article 50 has been triggered, we have two years to make a deal with the EU; otherwise it will be a ‘hard Brexit’. Now you might not think a hard Brexit will affect you in your home in Tamworth … but nothing could be further from the truth.

Tamworth property market could see 100's of properties dumped with a hard brexit!!
Tamworth property market could see 100’s of properties dumped with a hard brexit!!

Of the 76,446 people who are resident in the Tamworth Borough Council area, 73,628 were born in the UK, 850 were born in EU countries from West Europe and 794 were born in EU countries from the former Soviet States in East Europe (the rest coming from other countries around the world).

The rights of these EU citizens living in the Tamworth area are not guaranteed and will now be part of the negotiation with Europe. It is true a lot of our EU next door neighbours in Tamworth will have acquired rights relating to the right to live, to work, to own a business, to possess a property, the right to access health and education services and the right to remain in a UK after retirement… yet those acquired rights are up for negotiation in the next two years.

So, what would a hard Brexit do to the Tamworth property market?

Well a hard Brexit could mean the nuclear option when it came to the Tamworth housing market. It could mean that every EU citizen would have to leave the UK.

In the Tamworth Borough area, 590 of the 850 Western European EU citizens own their own home and (so they would all need to be sold) and 525 of the 794 Eastern European EU citizens rent a property, so again all those rental properties would all come on the market at the same time.

Hard Brexit and mass EU Migration would mean c. 550 properties being dumped onto the housing market in a short period of time, meaning there would be a massive drop in Tamworth property values and rents, causing negative equity for thousands of Tamworth homeowners and many buy-to-let landlords would be out of pocket.

While there is no certainty as to what the future will hold, both UK expats in the EU and EU citizens in the UK rights will no longer be guaranteed and will be subject to bilateral renegotiation.

All I ask is that the politicians are sensible with each other in the negotiations. A lot of the success of the Tamworth (and UK) property market has been built on high levels of home ownership and more recently in the last 10/15 years, a growth of the rental sector with lots of demand from Eastern Europeans coming to Tamworth (and the surrounding area) to get work and provide for their families. Many Tamworth people have invested their life savings into buying a buy to let property.

Much will depend on what is politically realistic. Unilateral knee-jerk reactions and measures caused by a hard Brexit would not only likely cause major disruption or suffering to the 3 million EU citizens living in the UK, but also everyone who owns property in the UK … politics aside – a hard Brexit is in no one’s interests.

If you are a landlord or thinking of becoming one for the first time and you want to read more articles like this about the Tamworth Property Market, together with regular postings on what I consider the best buy to let deals in Tamworth (out of the many of properties on the market, irrespective of which agent is selling it) then feel free to get in touch!

Email me on Lorraine@hallandthompson.co.uk or call on 07531484956.

Don’t forget to visit the links below to view back dated deals and Tamworth Property News. https://www.tamworthpropertyblog.co.uk

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Tamworth rents rise by 14.8% since 2005

The Tamworth Property Market is a very interesting animal and has been particularly fascinating over the last 12 years when we consider what has happened to Tamworth rents and house prices.

Tamworth rents rise by 14.8% since 2005

Tamworth rents rise by 14.8% since 2005There’s currently much talk of what will happen to the rental property market following Brexit. To judge that, I believe we must look what happened in the 2008/9 credit crunch (and what has happened since) to judge rationale and methodically, the possible ramifications for long-term investors in the Tamworth property market. You see, an important, yet overlooked measure is the performance of rental income vs house prices (i.e. the resultant yields over time). In Tamworth (as for the rest of Great Britain), notwithstanding a slight drop in 2008 and 2009, property rentals have been gradually increasing.

The income from rentals has been progressively increasing over the last 12 years. Today, they are 14.8% higher than they were at the beginning of 2005. In fact, over the last five years, the average growth has been 1.4% per annum. From a landlord’s point of view, increase in average rental income is not to be sneered at. However, the observant readers will be noting that we are ignoring an important factor – our friend inflation.

Turn the clock back to 2005, and we have a property being rented for say £900 a month and that is still being rented at £900 a month today, in Spring of 2017. While the landlord is not getting any less income, this £900 is no longer worth as much. Let me explain, in 2005, £900 may have bought a two-week 4* holiday in Italy. Yet, holidays have increased in line with inflation (which has been 38.5% since 2005), so our holiday would cost today £1,246 (£900 + 38.5% inflation = £1,246). Therefore, the landlord could no longer afford the same holiday, even though having the same amount in pound notes from their rental property.

This means when we compare rents in Tamworth to inflation since 2005, Tamworth landlords are worse off today, when they receive their monthly rental income, than they were in 2005 by 23.7% in real terms (rents increased by 14.8% since 2005, less the 38.5% inflation since 2005 – net affect 23.7% drop)

Tamworth rents rise by 14.8% since 2005

Tamworth rents rise by 14.8% since 2005

However, rental income is not the only way to generate money from property as property values can increase. Although in the short term, cash flows are diminishing, many Tamworth landlords may be content to accept that for a colossal increase in capital value.

Property values in Tamworth have risen by 23.05% since 2005

This equates to a reasonably salubrious 1.92% per annum increase over the last 12 years. Even more interesting that this includes the 2008/9 property crash, this will make those Tamworth landlords and investors feel a little better about the information regarding rents after inflation.

Moving forward, the prospects of making easy money on buy to let in Tamworth have diminished, when compared to 2005. Last decade, making money from buy to let was as easy as falling off a log – but not anymore.

It would be true to say, my rental income verses property prices study does lead to noteworthy thoughts. I am often asked to look at my landlord’s rental portfolios, to ascertain the spread of their investment across their multiple properties. It’s all about judging whether what you have will meet your needs of the investment in the future. It’s the balance of capital growth and yield whilst diversifying this risk.

If you are investing in the Tamworth property market, do your homework and do it well. While some yields may look attractive, there are properties in many areas that do not have the solid rudiments in place to sustain them. If you are looking for capital growth, you might be surprised where the hidden gems really are. Take advice, even ask your agent for a portfolio analysis like I offer my landlords. The clear majority of agents in Tamworth will be able to give a detailed analysis of past and anticipated investment opportunity (especially the awful effect of inflation) on your portfolio. However, if they can’t help – well, you know where I am, the kettle is on!

For more thoughts on the Tamworth Property market – visit the Tamworth Property Blog https://www.tamworthpropertyblog.co.uk

If you are a landlord or thinking of becoming one for the first time and you want to read more articles like this about the Tamworth Property Market, together with regular postings on what I consider the best buy to let deals in Tamworth (out of the many of properties on the market, irrespective of which agent is selling it) then feel free to get in touch!

Email me on Lorraine@hallandthompson.co.uk or call on 07531484956.

Don’t forget to visit the links below to view back dated deals and Tamworth Property News.

Website : http://www.hallandthompson.co.uk

Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/hallandthompsonestateagents

Linkedin : https://www.linkedin.com/in/lorrainethompson2/

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Tamworth Landlords Are Out In The Cold With Energy Efficiency Rules

As with all the Governments hair brained schemes to get money out of private landlords, harsh penalties will be levied should landlords fail to comply with these minimum standards.

Ask Lorraine – Can I force my Tamworth Landlord to replace a window

🙋  Tenants Question: 

We rent a 3 bed terraced house in Tamworth from a private landlord. the house was  built in the 1960’s and we have been living there 2 years.  Last year the landlord had cavity wall insulation carried out and he replaced the kitchen. Since Christmas  I have  been asking the landlord to replace a single  glazed window in the kitchen as the rest of the house is double glazed, he is refusing, how can I put pressure on him to do this?

Can I force landlord to upgrade window?

 

Lorraine’s Answer:

I presume that you inspected the house before you agreed to rent and were happy with what you saw?

The landlord is obviously spending money on the property and upgrading it, some  landlords don’t even see fit to upgrade their properties so I think you have a decent one there. Trying to  put pressure on your  landlord may only cause bad feeling and that will not help your cause. It may be that the window is  on his/her radar to renew, after all he must have spent a fair amount last year and being a  landlord is a business, not a charity.

Under general repairing  obligations, as a general rule, a landlord doesn’t have to improve the property from what was granted initially.  If your financial position allows, would replacing the window yourself be something that both you and the landlord would agree too.

I do think that you should ask to meet the landlord for a friendly chat and clear the air before a small thing like a single glazed window becomes so much more.

Until next week.

 

 

Tamworth Rents To Rise Quicker Than Tamworth Property Prices In Next 5 Years

The next five years will see an interesting change in the Tamworth property market. My recent research has concluded that the rent private tenants pay in Tamworth will rise faster than Tamworth property prices over the next five years, creating further issues to Tamworth’s growing multitude of renters. In fact, my examination of statistics forecasts that ..

Tamworth property values and rents

By 2022, Tamworth rents will increase by 23%, whereas Tamworth property values will only grow by 16%.

Let me explain why I have come to those conclusions:

Over the last five years, property values in Tamworth have risen by 25.9%, whilst rents have only risen by 17.1%.

Tamworth property values

Tamworth property values

Throughout the last few years, and compounded in 2016, tenant demand for rental properties continued to go up whilst the Press predicted some landlords expect to reduce their portfolios in the next couple of years, meaning Tamworth tenants will have fewer properties to choose from, which will push rents higher. In fact, talking to fellow property professionals in Tamworth, there appears to be privation and shortage of new rental properties coming on to the Tamworth lettings market.

Landlords have some intriguing challenges ahead of them in the coming years most notably in that the Tory’s have changed the taxation rules for landlords in the way buy to let properties are to be taxed. On top of that, there is the ban on letting agent fees which is still to come into force (probably in 2018). When that happened in Scotland in 2012, Scottish letting agents passed on those fees to their landlords, who in turn increased the rent they charged to their tenants.

All I would say to Theresa May and Philip Hammond is that they must be wary about indicating both red and green lights at the same time to the private rented sector. They can’t expect the armies of small private landlords to continue to house around a fifth of the population and then tax the hell out of them. They didn’t invest in buy to let as a charity or to satisfy any philanthropic urges. Something has to give – and that will be significant rent rises over the coming few years (and before anyone gives me any derogatory comments about landlords … if it wasn’t for landlords buying all these buy to let properties over the last 15 years, I am not sure where everyone would be living today – because most the Council houses were sold off in the 1980’s!).

With the challenges ahead, with the ‘B’ word (that’s budget if you wondered!), house price inflation will be tempered over the coming five years in Tamworth. As I have discussed in previous articles, the number of properties on the market in Tamworth remains close to historic lows, which is both good as it keeps houses prices relatively stable, yet not so good as it impedes choice for buyers… and hence why I believe property values in Tamworth will only be 16% higher in five years’ time.

Whilst on the other side of the coin, with the challenges facing landlords and the significant shortage of new homes being built, Tamworth people still need somewhere to live. If those people aren’t buying houses and the local authority aren’t building council houses in there thousands (because they have no money), with the average rent for a Tamworth rental property currently standing at £762 per month …

Over the next five years, I predict the average rent

in Tamworth will rise to £937 per month

These are interesting times. There is still money to be made in buy to let in Tamworth – Tamworth landlords will just need to be smarter and more savvy with their investments. If you are looking for such advice and opinion to help you meet those investment goals, one place you can find more information is the Tamworth Property Blog https://www.tamworthpropertyblog.co.uk

If you are thinking of getting into the property rental market and don’t know where to start, speak to us for impartial advice and guidance to get the best return on your investment. For more information about other potential investment properties that we could introduce you to, or to ask about our thoughts on your own investment choices, call us now on 01827 425195, you can always email me on Lorraine@hallandthompson.co.uk

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