paragraphUPDATE FROM ELR BANNER CROSS - JUNE 2017
With so many clients being affected and others asking about the stamp duty changes we thought this report below may make things clearer for those unsure about the current situation.
Ten key points to consider when buying a second home for your own use or as a buy-to-let investment
To buy-to-let or not to buy-to-let, that is a difficult question! It can be quite a conundrum for people with capital to invest who are dithering between the stock market or bricks and mortar.
Since April 1 2016 - as many homeowners will be aware - a stamp duty surcharge of three per cent has been levied on second homes with obvious implications for the buy-to-let sector. If you are contemplating a second home, whether for your own use or as a buy-to-let investment, here are the 10 key points to bear in mind.
1. Stamp duty - or to give it the full title, stamp duty land tax (SDLT) - is a tax paid by homebuyers when they purchase property or land. The tax is banded so that no tax is levied on properties worth less than £125,000, but £7,500 on a property worth £350,000 and £43,750 on a property worth £1million, and so on.
2. Since April 1 2016 second homes have been subject to a three per cent stamp duty surcharge. Under the banding system, second homes worth less than £125,000 now attract three per cent tax instead of zero. Those worth between £125,000 and £250,000 now have a five per cent rate rather than two per cent, and so on. At the top end of the scale, second homes worth in excess of £1.5million attract 15 per cent stamp duty rather than 12 per cent.
3. Visit the government's stamp duty calculator to work out tax liabilities.
4. Second homes - for the purposes of the stamp duty surcharge - are homes other than a main residence whether they are let or not. It does not matter if a main residence is overseas because a second home in the UK will still be subject to the stamp duty surcharge. However, a buy-to-let property will not attract the higher rate if the main residence is rented, not owned.
5. Homebuyers helping a family member buy a property will still be treated as second home owners and the relatives will be liable for the surcharge.
6. Anyone owning two homes because they have bought a new one, but not yet sold the old home, will have to pay the three per cent surcharge. But if the old home is sold within three years, the three per cent will be refunded.
7. No one will be able to escape the higher rates of stamp duty by 'flipping' properties which is defined as moving into a new home, designating it a main residence, then letting out the old home.
8. Couples who have separated, but not yet divorced, and own two properties between them, will not be treated as second homeowners. But couples living together, whether married or not, will be treated as one unit. They will not be able to buy a second home and escape the surcharge by putting one property in one partner's name and one in the other's.
9. Stamp duty is not payable on caravans, mobile homes or houseboats.
10. It is sometimes possible to reduce stamp duty liabilities by designating a property, whether the main home or a second home, 'mixed-use': i.e. used for both residential and commercial purposes, such as running a small business. But this can also expose the homeowner to higher business rates and higher rates of capital gains tax. If in doubt, talk to an accountant or mortgage provider about tax liabilities.
Content provided by OnTheMarket.com is for information purposes only. Independent and professional advice should be taken before buying, selling, letting or renting property, or buying financial products.
paragraphUPDATE FROM ELR BANNER CROSSWe have had an incredible start to Spring 2017. Sales and property listings have increased dramatically in the last couple of months with record prices being achieved on several local roads, our mailing list is bursting with new applicants hoping to find their dream homes and with May/June being the best times in the year to sell please feel free to discuss a valuation on your home if you are thinking of selling. We are looking to market over 35 properties from our very busy Banner Cross branch this month, with a diverse range of property types being avaialble including a modern studio apartment at Kelham Island for £70k all the way up to the striking Dunstone Hall at Cutthorpe which will be coming on for £1,500,000 so if you are looking to buy then please don't hesitate in contacting either James on 07773821068 or the team on 0114 2683388 to register your details as property is literally flying out of the doors and there is stiff competition from unprecedented levels of buyers.
paragraphUPDATE FROM ELR BANNER CROSS
Although some parts of the UK have seen a very volatile market over recent months, the Sheffield housing market remains generally strong, whilst demand has continued to grow. Even through the traditionally quieter months, sales at ELR remained consistently high, and small price increases were seen across most property types.
Most of the sales in Sheffield over the past year were semi-detached properties which on average sold for £172,025. Terraced properties had an average sold price of £139,668 and detached properties averaged at £310,208. In the traditionally higher value post codes of S7, S10, S11 and S17, prices were on average around 20% higher than across the city although growth was similar.
Sheffield, has an overall average price of £178,310. In the past year house prices in Sheffield were 4% up on the year before and 14% up on 2010 when they averaged at £157,068. Overall, prices have returned to their peak of 2007, and in some locations now gone beyond those figures.
One thing that has changed significantly over recent years, is the perceived 'selling season'. Historically, estate agents would rely on the traditionally strong months of March to June to agree the majority of their sales, however, there no longer appears to be any seasonal patterns. Correctly valued and marketed homes will sell whatever the time of year, this probably being down to a limited availability of quality properties. As an example, in 2016, our Banner Cross branch enjoyed very good activity levels in October and November, selling around 28% more properties than in May. This was never the case in 5 - 10 years ago.
So, if you are contemplating moving home, the best time to market is when you're ready, not when you think the market may be ready and we certainly have a buyer for you!
paragraphUpdate - 1st December 2016
This week sees the listing of a fabulous house on Dore Road, with 5 bedrooms, a large plot and classic Victorian architecture it will be sure to impress the discerning purchaser and being called Mandalay (who knew 'The Road to Mandalay' started in Dore Village?) we wanted to share an interesting article from Nethouseprices that we saw this week.
WHAT'S IN A NAME?
There are, of course, external features like great schools in the neighbourhood, a low crime rate, the proximity of a branch of upmarket store Waitrose and even superb local eateries that can enhance the sale price of a house or flat. Then there are things the householder can personally undertake such as remodelling a home or having it professionally dressed by design experts. It now seems there is something else you can do if you want to push your house valuation upwards: give it a name! Yes, apparently a property having an attractive name is central to its appeal to prospective purchasers.
Not just any name
It's important to preface this with the point that not all names will encourage the hordes to come and view your property. Quirky or "amusing" names can be downright offputting, so you probably won't want to go with such hoary old gems as "Dunroamin" or a combination of your and your partner's names, like the memorable but unfortunate "Dalentrace" in the nineties sitcom "Birds of a Feather". It's also wise to stick with names that are fairly realistic and representative of your property. In other words, as lovely as your suburban post-war semi may be, "Rectory Cottage" or "The Manor House" aren't really appropriate descriptions and certainly won't help manage expectations about what your house has to offer. In fact, estate agents point out that too fanciful a name can make your home seem something of a let-down to potential buyers during viewings.
Established and English
Property experts almost universally suggest that choosing names which sound traditional and characteristically, even stereotypically, English is the best way forward. Certainly, this seems wise advice when one thinks of some of the lovelier British house names. Take, for example, "The Old School House." This name is evocative of charming old village schools, perhaps Victorian in architecture, whose solid walls have seen generations of children learning and playing. Likewise, "The Old Rectory" conjures up images of Edwardian grandeur and of the sedate pace of English village life in a more innocent era. "The Manor Barn" suggests farmhouse solidity, as well as the vaguely aristocratic connection to a manor house.
Statistics tend to support this advice. Research based on Land Registry figures shows, for example, that houses named the "The Old Rectory" fairly frequently sell for around a million pounds. "The Coach House", "The Stables", and "The Old Vicarage" all tend to carry premium price tags, too.
As clear as the evidence seems to be that properties with great names sell for correspondingly great prices, there isn't actually a consensus that there is really much of a causal link between the name and the final selling price. Some commentators are pretty adamant that a house's name can add real monetary value, but there are many others who contend that the name is generally just part of a package that will usually include several of the other factors that raise house prices. For instance, residences called "Garden Cottage" generally happen to be located in more prosperous picturesque towns and villages with the well-respected schools, excellent amenities and efficient transport links that tend to accompany high value properties.
Assuming the name chosen is relatively sensible, it certainly won't do any harm to rename your house, even if it is questionable whether it will add much to the eventual selling price. You may want to bear in mind before selecting a name, though, that according to the Land Registry, the following are the most common house names across England:
1. The Cottage
2. Rose Cottage
3. The Bungalow
4. The Coach House
5. The Barn
6. The Lodge
7. Ivy Cottage
9. Orchard House
It's not just house names that can add value. Your street name is also closely linked to your house's value, according to an extensive study carried out last year by Barclays. For instance, having "Lane" in your postal address may enhance your selling price by nearly a quarter. At the other end of the scale, however, living on a "Street" may mean that your house is worth on average around a hundred thousand pounds less than if you lived in a "Lane". In descending order, the following are the street addresses with the highest premiums:
Again, the question arises whether it is the street name that actually makes the critical difference? Certainly houses on Cherry Blossom Lane, Larch Close or Lovelace Drive sound as though they are in smart leafy districts while Colliery Street evokes old industrial towns. But, as analysts ask: if you changed these names around so humble old Colliery Street was actually a classy thoroughfare in a town in, say, Surrey, would it really affect the value of the properties? The argument seems to be that the more attractive sounding street names tend to be located in places with already high property prices and that it's the location not the name that is key.
It is possible, should you judge it worthwhile, to change your street name, though you will obviously need the support of your neighbours when you approach your local authority for permission. There have recently been one or two high profile examples in Britain of residents successfully changing their street name from something they deemed disagreeable to something rather more pleasant-sounding, although, in the interests of taste and decency, we won't mention them in detail here! The real challenge would perhaps be reaching an agreement with fellow residents about what the new street name should be. There would surely be some feisty residents' association meetings on the subject...
paragraphUPDATE 1ST NOVEMBER 2016Can you believe that November is here already? We now only have 8 weeks until Christmas, this very often sees the market slow down while people concentrate on shopping for presents however at our busy Banner Cross office we don't seem to be affected at present with October proving to have been one of our most productive months of the year so far (exceeding targets on sale agreed's, listings AND completions). November has also started strongly with 5 listings already under our belts including:-86 Southgrove Road - A large Victorian semi overlooking The Botanical Gardens - £400,000105 Tadcaster Road - a larger than average 3 double bed terrace in Woodseats - £165,000149 Ringinglow Road - A spacious 4 bed semi needing a bit of TLC but sure to be popular - £350,000148 Oakbrook Road - A stunning 4 double bed recently renovated semi in this very fashionable area close to the Parks - £395,000.Just because they aren't on the market yet wont stop us arranging you a viewing so if you fancy getting in there first give us a call and if you play your cards right you may be opening a dream home as your Christmas present this year!Have a super November and we will be in touch soon, all at Banner Cross.
paragraphUPDATE - 18TH OCTOBER 2016Hi, the latest Rightmove intelligence has been released today and confirms exactly what is happening in the Sheffield property market, Rightmove say:-
It's a Sellers' market in the northern regions. The six northern regions (North West, North East, Yorkshire & the Humber, East Midlands, West Midlands and Wales) saw an 11% fall in the total available stock for sale compared to the same period in 2015, continuing the downward trend over the last few years. This reduction in choice for buyers hampers their ability to negotiate and gives sellers the confidence to both ask for higher prices and hold out for their asking price. The number of sales agreed have risen by 3% in these regions compared to the same period a year ago.
Here at Banner Cross we can 100% agree with this report although October has interestingly seen more listings than September already at our branch (we are the top listing agent in S7, S10, S11 and S17 in the last couple of weeks) . Sales are still being agreed in record quick times for very strong prices with price ceilings smashed on both Rustlings Road and Ranby Road. This is all positive news for sellers and is also a credit to the excellent sales team so if you are considering selling then please don't hesitate to contact us and take advantage of this excellent market place. Thanks and see you again next week. All at Banner Cross
paragraphUPDATE - 7TH OCTOBER 2016Since the beginning of October the branch has seen a marked improvement on all things property. Listings are up on this time last year which goes against recent form and the demand for property remains very high. The Rustlings Road property mentioned last time sold with multiple bids for in excess of the asking price, Ranby also performed admirably and both houses on Broomgrove are currently attracting fierce competition from a diverse range of buyer and we will probably look to close both mid next week. This week we have a beautiful and extended Edwardian semi in Totley up for sale at £375,000 which seems very reasonably priced when you look at the excellent location, close proximity to the best schools in Sheffield and of course its situation right next to the beautiful countryside that surrounds our fab city. The open viewing is not quite booked up (2 spaces remain) so if you are in the market for this area/price band give us a call to book your appointment. With 15 other properties already listed for October being mailed out to our exclusive mailing list before they go on to the open market perhaps you should also consider registering your details with our team at Banner Cross to ensure you dont miss out on the home of your dreams. Thanks for reading and we will be back next week with another update. All at Banner Cross
paragraphUPDATE - 21ST SEPTEMBER 2016Hello from Banner Cross, its been a pretty hectic week here so far with many people turning their attention to selling their homes after the holidays. We have just listed 123 Rustlings Road and have an open day booked for Saturday 24th September if you would care to view. We cant imagine this property will hang about, attractively priced at just under £480,000 with 5 bedrooms and park views to both the front and rear this will surely appeal. If that is too much for your budget we have an absolutely beautiful terrace on Ranby Road available for £295,000, this one has a fabulous finish and already has 5 people lined up for appointments on the 24th. With a few more slots available on the open viewing now is your time to call and arrange your appointment to view.Next week is also shaping up quite nicely already with 2 large Victorian semis coming on the market on Broomgrove Road, both of which need a scheme of modernisation but priced at £340k and £350k there is a lot of room in the budget to grab one of these superb properties and turn into the home of your dreams. If you are interested in any of these properties then please don't delay pick up the phone and call us to arrange a viewing before they sell. See you next week, all at ELR Banner Cross.