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News - 29 August 2012

Renting: A lifestyle choice? Home Ownership and Investment Opportunities

Are the roots of the issue found in long-term housing strategy, or is it all to do with the state of the UK economy?

The housing charity Shelter, say that private rents have risen at one-and-a-half times the rate of incomes in the 10 years to 2007 because of the failure to build enough homes over decades.

New house building is at a post-war low, with just 134,000 new homes built in the UK in 2010, government figures show. That was the lowest number in any year since 1949, and just 31% of the peak number for building, which was 426,000 in 1968.

The Shelter research suggests that rent levels are more affordable in cities such as Manchester and Birmingham, than in some rural areas. But estate agents counter that demand is higher, even in the cities, because people like the flexibility of renting, rather than ownership.

Lavinia Newman of ABDS comments:
"For entrepreneurial client this is an opportunity property investment in the rental market. Home and property ownership has a proven track record in wealth creation for personal security and investment returns.”

The banking crisis had a significant impact on those trying to buy their first homes. Banks had to pull back their lending, and be more careful who they were going to give mortgages to.

A recent report for the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors suggested that home ownership in England has been falling since 2003 and has also fallen in the US, Australia, Austria, Finland and the Irish Republic, among others.

The knock-on effect is that existing rental properties are let for a longer periods, and with fewer new rental properties becoming available, the supply-demand balance being affected.

This has also provided an opportunity for investors, Lavinia Newman continues, "With high demand and the expectation of good levels of rental income, there are a growing number of investors turning to the buy-to-let market as part of their investment strategy. Finding a mortgage might be challenging but not impossible."

If you need any help and advice on the implications of Property Ownership, Letting and Taxation, and for advise concerning good contact for mortgage advice please contact Lavinia Newman, Stuart Coleman or Tonmoy Kumar to discuss how ABDS can help.

ABDS Chartered Certified Accountants of Southampton.
Tel: 023 8083 6900  E-mail: abds@netaccountants.net

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