There has been a good deal of talk in the media recently about the prospects for the student housing market. The international real estate company CBRE reckons that even after current student housing developments are completed there will still be a shortage of accommodation in London.
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Some councils across the UK are to consider introducing licensing that would see landlords need to conform to a number of standards.
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Dartford Borough Council was been in the news for successfully prosecuting a local landlord for harassing his tenants. The landlord pleaded guilty to charges relating to changes the locks on his rental properties on three occasions to try to force tenants to leave. He was fined £600 with £200 costs.
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The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors has recently published research showing that more than 20% of buyers who did not have a survey on their properties find themselves saddled with a property they would not have bought if they had known its true condition. Of course, the RICS has an axe to grind but they do make a good point. It seems incredible that so many people are prepared to make the largest investment of their lives without understanding the true condition of the property they are buying. The survey covered just over 1,000 buyers across the UK. Nearly all of them agreed that it was important to have a survey but nearly one third failed to obtain one.
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Letting out a property is quite a daunting business, especially if you have never dome it before. Many people find themselves in the position of accidental landlords; needing an income from a vacant property they have inherited or simply cannot sell. Others decide to enter the lettings market as an investment. There has been a lot of coverage recently about the number of people who prefer to invest in bricks and mortar rather than a conventional pension as a way of funding their retirement.
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