Residential Land Property News Section

Top 10 tips on how to keep your home safe while you’re away

Sunny skies and the hot days of July are finally upon us, which for many Londoners means one thing: time to escape the city! But whether you’re heading to the Cotswolds or the Caribbean, the last thing you need is to worry about the security of your home while you’re away, or worse, come home to a break-in.

To keep your mind at ease, we’ve put together our top ten tips of how to keep your home safe and sound while you’re away, so you can enjoy your heard-earned break without a care in the world. Happy holidays!

Lock - Residential Land

Lock your doors and windows | Image credits:- www.moneysupermarket.com

1. Lock all windows and doors securely

As obvious as it may sound, you’d be surprised how many people forget to lock the bathroom window or bolt the terrace doors. Take the time to check every window, door and possible entrance to your property has been doubly locked, and never leave keys in the lock – keep them all in a designated safe place such as a drawer instead.

2. Unplug all electrical items

Avoid the consequences of an unexpected power surge by unplugging all electrical items while you’re away, including microwaves, televisions, kettles and toasters. Switch off the gas supply and check smoke alarms are in working order too, so if a problem did arise the neighbours would be alerted to it.

Instagram post | Image credits:- www.instagram.com/feedingthecat

Instagram post | Image credits:- www.instagram.com/feedingthecat

 

3. Don’t tell the world that you’re going away

As much as you want to boast on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram that you’re off on a sunny holiday or enjoying a cocktail on the beach, wait until you return to share those envy-inducing pictures and updates. Not only will you be telling the world that your house is empty, you may also be voiding your insurance policy, as some companies refuse to pay out following a burglary if you’ve publicly declared your absence on social media.

4. Inform your building manager that you’re going away

If you live in a property with a building manager, let them know that you’ll be away and how long for so they can keep an eye on your property and deter any suspicious-looking visitors. They may also be able to store your mail for you if it’s kept in a public place.

Don't leave valuables visible | Image credits:- www.thesweetsetup.com

Don’t leave valuables visible | Image credits:- www.thesweetsetup.com

 

5. Move high-value items out of sight

Any items of value such as laptops, jewellery and cameras should be hidden in a safe place away from windows. Under pillows, in drawers beneath clothes and full laundry baskets are good hiding places, and for anything of particular value consider investing in a small safe for true peace of mind.

6. Clear out the fridge

The last thing you want after a relaxing holiday is to return to a smelly fridge, so go through it carefully before you leave, taking care to check the use-by dates of any particularly pungent items and throw them away if necessary.

7. Empty all rubbish bins

Hot weather and rubbish bins are the perfect breeding ground for bugs and rodents. Empty and bleach all bins before leaving to ensure you don’t return to an unwanted colony of beasties.

Mail | Image credits:- www.wikipedia.org

Mail | Image credits:- www.wikipedia.org

 

8. Put your mail on hold

A growing pile of mail, flyers and free newspapers on the mat is not only a nuisance when you open the door on your return, but equally alerts criminals to an unoccupied property if it can be seen through a window. Ask a kindly neighbour to collect your mail and parcels, otherwise you can use the Royal Mail holding service while you’re away. [http://www.royalmail.com/personal/receiving-mail/keepsafe]

9. Add a timer to visible lights

Closed curtains and a dark property is a clear sign to thieves that the building is empty. To avoid this, keep some curtains partially open (upper floors are ideal) and add a light timer so that light is emitted during the evenings to give the impression that someone is home.

Milk | Image credits:- www.marycrimmins.com

Milk | Image credits:- www.marycrimmins.com

 

10. Cancel any milk, grocery, or paper deliveries

A growing collection of milk and groceries outside your property is not only messy and wasteful in terms of perishable items, its also another clear sign that no-one is home. Put your regular deliveries on pause while you are away, and thieves will be none the wiser.

Residential Land goes offplan in west London

Residential Land is proud to announce that it has completed on Palace Wharf, a deal for a riverside scheme in Fulham that has planning permission for 27 residential units.

For further information please read the article in Property Week below or follow the link to read it on the Property Week website

Ritchie’s Residential Land goes offplan in west London

Bruce Ritchie’s Residential Land has completed a major off-plan residential purchase in west London, after taking advantage of a lull in the Asian forward-sales market.

Backed by Canadian pension fund giant Ivanhoé Cambridge, the private rented sector (PRS) specialist has forward-purchased Chase New Homes’ scheme at Palace Wharf in Fulham at £1,250/sq ft – with the deal worth around £37m in total.

Palace Wharf, Fulham

Palace Wharf, Fulham

The site, near the famous River Café, has planning consent for 27 residential units, comprising five townhouses and 22 flats. “We see that to fulfil our stock requirements we need to be buying new as well as existing [stock],” Residential Land chief executive Ritchie told Property Week. “There’s an opportunity while Asian markets cool for us to replace that Far Eastern buyer with investor money, PRS money, rather than ‘export money’.”

The deal is Ritchie’s first off-plan purchase with Ivanhoé Cambridge and comes after Ivanhoé invested in a fifth Residential Land fund in February. The new £650m fund is focused on a broader area of prime central London, and its upper price point for investment has increased from £1,500/sq ft to £1,650/sq ft.

As well as buying the Fulham scheme, Residential Land has sold a £47m residential block in Marylebone to a group of Middle Eastern investors. Elliott House, 1 Molyneux Street, has been sold to developer Coronado – with backing from Shariah-compliant Al-Rayan bank.

Residential Land had already stripped out the building after receiving planning permission in 2012 to increase the size of the 1930s block from 28,500 sq ft to 35,500 sq ft – increasing the number of flats from 23 to 31.

Coronado will now take over the redevelopment to create the enlarged building, with Residential Land exiting at a price of £1,650 on the existing square footage.

Ritchie said it was a sign Shariah-compliant purchasers were becoming more comfortable with development.

Prime Central London prices rise above 2007 peak values

Central London residential prices have now risen by about 16% above their 2007 peak values, but the widespread industry consensus of opinion is that values will continue to grow , putting the sector in to a super prime category compared to the rest of the UK and other world cities. This was highlighted in a recent CBRE report entitled ‘Why London Still Packs a Superprime Punch’ – download it here.

Residential supply remains restricted, and both domestic and international demand, particularly from the Far East remains very strong.

The reasons for this overseas demand remain the same, overall quality of environment for foreign owners, safety for assets and persons and easy access. In addition and as importantly there is a good choice of apartments and houses to choose from, all designed and finished to the highest world standards.

Residential Land remains committed to this sector, both in the traditional prime areas of Mayfair, Knightsbridge and Belgravia, but also in the newer prime pockets in St John’s Wood, Hampstead and Regents Park and are actively seeking to increase their portfolio.

If you have any opportunities, both existing or new build, contact our acquisition experts here or email enquiries@residentialland.com

Savills spotlight on Prime Rental Markets

Savills have recently produced their 2011/2012 Winter report on prime rental markets.

Their key findings are:

  • In the face of economic uncertainty, prime rental growth has slowed.
  • However, stock levels have been contained as renewal rates have remained high and tenants have sought increased tenancy lengths.
  • Over the medium term, tenant demand and rent levels will remain driven by limited mortgage availability and increased demand from those delaying house purchasing.
  • In the short term this will be tempered by the outlook for the financial and business sector, which is a key component of rental demand.

The report states that whilst growth has recently eased in the prime rental market of London, rental growth is expected to outperform the UK over the next five years.

Residential Land has all of its residential investment portfolio in prime central London and continues to experience high levels of occupancy and growing rent levels.  The company continues to look for new investment opportunities.

If you have any residential property opportunities within Prime Central London please contact one the Residential Land’s acquisition team or email enquiries@residentialland.com

To download a copy of the Savills report, visit:
http://www.savills.co.uk/research/residential-research.aspx

Lord Digby Jones – Prime London property prices likely to rise

Former government minister and CBI head Lord Digby Jones was the subject of this weeks ‘Fame and Fortune’ interview within the Money Section of the Sunday Times.

When asked “Is property still a good investment?” his response was “Yes , especially in London. I don’t think you can go wrong buying a flat in London and putting in a tenant . I will look to invest again, perhaps in the prime market , where the value is most likely to rise , though probably at the lower end of prime, where yields are higher “.

Residential Land are prime central London experts and we are actively seeking to increase our portfolio. If you have any opportunities for us, contact one of our acquisition experts or email enquiries@residentialland.com

RESI 2011 – best attended to date


Residential Land was pleased to be a platinum sponsor of RESI 2011. It was the best attended RESI conference to date and confirms it as the premier residential property event in the UK property calendar.

Against a gloomy global economic background, there was much debate about the new coalition planning proposals and the Conference was fortunate to have Secretary of State Eric Pickles to address the conference and to answer questions. Bruce Ritchie also chaired a residential focused Dragons Den which was a highlight of the conference. The residential sector is still struggling with a shortage of mortgage availability, and affordability challenges for first time buyers in particular. What came through clearly though was the strength of the Private Rented Sector and the Central London Market.

RESI 2011 - Busiest conference to date

RESI 2011 - Busiest conference to date

Residential land operates exclusively in this market place and is well placed to grow its business accordingly. The Company is in buying mode and anyone knowing of blocks of flats for sale should get in touch with a member of our acquisitions team. If you have any opportunities worth discussing, email sales@residentialland.com or visit http://www.residentialland.com/property-required.aspx

Bruce Ritchie to chair the Dragons Den at RESI 2011

Bruce Ritchie, CEO and founder of Residential Land is set to chair a new and exciting panel at the RESI conference held at Celtic Manor Hotel in Newport, South Wales. Alongside fellow property specialists and entrepreneurs Nick Candy and Tony Pidgeley and former Dragon James Caan, Bruce will be quizzing presenters on all aspects of their business propositions. The event organisers are currently looking for innovative proposals from serious candidates to present to the four judges. All ideas are welcome; whether it is an investment proposition or a new concept in design or something to assist house building. This will be a great platform to get your ideas out into the market and to get some great ideas from people who have been in your position.

Submit your proposals via www.resievent.com/dragons by 30th July when Bruce and the other judges will shortlist the top four to present their ideas.

Good Luck, we look forward to seeing you at the event in September!!

Residential Land – Tenancy Deposit Scheme News

Tenancy Deposit Scheme – Threshold increased to £100,000.

The Tenancy Deposit Scheme was first introduced in April 2007, where residential landlords holding an assured shorthold tenancy with a rental income upto £25,000 were required by law to hold their tenants’ deposits in an authorised scheme for the first time. The scheme was introduced to protect deposit monies and to ensure that residential landlords were held fully accountable for the deposits they took from tenants at the start of the tenancy.

Now 3 years on, the rental income threshold has increased to include all tenancies with annual rent up to £100,000.  The changes came into force on 1st October this year and any residential landlords who earn a rental annual income from a single tenancy of £100,000 need to ensure that their tenants’ deposits are placed in one of the three authorised schemes.

The new threshold applies to existing tenancies where the deposits were taken after 6 April 2007, not just those created after October 2010 when the laws come into force.

Landlords holding an assured shorthold tenancy to which the legislation applies are required to register the deposit taken from the tenant with one of the three statutory protection schemes within 14 days of receiving the deposit and provide prescribed information to the tenant.

Residential Land has over 1,200 rental properties in central London and with the AST threshold being increased to £100,000 per annum and many of Residential Land’s existing contractual tenancies exceeding £25,000 per annum our lettings team had to ensure that current deposits held within this bracket were all registered prior to 1st October.  Residential Land uses My Deposits deposit protection which is an insurance based scheme, for full information please visit www.mydeposits.co.uk

Residential Land are Prime Central London’s largest private landlord, specialists dealing in flats for rent, property investment sales and acquisitions. To view our latest rental properties click here

Imperial College Student Housing

Residential Land are attending the Imperial College Private Housing Talk 2010

Monday 8th March
Queen’s Tower Rooms, South Kensington Campus

Residential Land have hundred’s of flats to rent in London and are the ideal choice for students looking for quallity central accomodation in the capital.

Roland House Apartments, located in South Kensington is minutes away from the Imperial College South Kensington Campus. The fully equiped flats are spacious and reasonably priced, with free broadband and free on-site residents gym, sauna and spa.

Students studying at Imperial College can benefit from special rates when renting with Residential Land. Rent directly from us and pay no agency fees. For more details about any of our properties, email enquiries@residentialland.com or click here

Residential Land Rent, Sell and Buy Prime Central London. We are a responsible Landlord with the widest selection of rental properties in the Capital, all managed in-house by a dedicated team.

We acquire London properties to build our extensive portfolio and offer a number of investment properties for sale.

Top Tips for Renting in London

Residential Land, Prime Central London’s largest private landlord, put together some useful tips for people looking to Rent in London that were published on homesandproperty.co.uk…

Make sure your deposit is protected
Tenancy deposit law was introduced on 6 April 2007 and provides protection for tenants by preventing landlords and letting agents from unfairly withholding a deposit. The scheme protects all Assured Shorthold Tenancies in England and Wales. Ensuring your deposit is protected allows you extra comfort for when your tenancy ends and you want to move on. As long as rent and services are paid up to date and the property is in the same condition as when you moved in (allowing for wear and tear) your landlord is obliged to give back your deposit, this is usually within ten working days of moving out.

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