Residential Buy-to-Let Investments

Buy-To-Let is exactly that. You buy a property with a plan to let it out in order to generate an income. It’s one of the only asset classes where you can put down as little as 20-25% of the value of the asset and ask the bank to pay for the rest!

CURRENT BUY TO LET INVESTMENT OPPORTUNITIES

Investing in UK Buy to Let Accommodation

Stocks and shares, gold, bonds…none of these can you ask the bank to lend you the money for it, and you don’t even need to pay down the balance of the loan. The bank will let you repay it in the future, providing you pay them the interest on the loan each month.

 

The way buy-to-let works is that you purchase a property on a freehold or leasehold basis, meaning as far as the land registry are concerned you are the legal owner of the property. Once you own it, you have a responsibility to maintain the property, service any loan repayments, and pay for utilities. However, once you own the property you can then rent it to a tenant for a period of time, usually a minimum of 6 months on an AST (Assured Shorthold Tenancy agreement), for a pre-agreed fixed rental figure. The income you receive should cover your loan repayments, cover any maintenance costs, cover any utility bills (usually the tenant is responsible for these), and give you some money left over at the end of each month.

Should I buy with a mortgage or cash?

 

As an example, if a property was £100,000 and rented for £5,000 per year your yield would be 5%. If you invested purely with cash, your return on investment would be 5%.

However, if you purchased with a mortgage, the figures might look something like this:

Purchase Price: £100,000
Deposit: £25,000
Mortgage: £75,000

Annual Income: £5,000
Annual Mortgage Payments @ 2.5% Interest: £1,875

Net Annual Income: £3,125
Return on Investment: 12.5%

For the purposes of the above example we haven’t factored in any stamp duty or legal/broker fees, or taxes, however you can see the difference in return.

With mortgage finance, you can also refinance the property every 2-5 years depending on your mortgage product, and providing the property has gone up in value, you should be able to release some funds for a second, third, fourth etc investment. This is how to build a portfolio using just one initial pot of cash.

 

Other things to factor when investing in buy-to-let are your stamp duty payments, as investors are now required to pay an additional 3% surcharge on buy-to-let properties. Click here for an online Stamp Duty Calculator – be sure to click Additional Property to get the most accurate figure.

 

Taxes on buy-to-let properties are also currently changing. Previously investors could deduct their mortgage interest payments as a tax-deductible expense, however from 2020 investors will be taxed on the full rental income. The way to counteract this is to invest through a limited company SPV (Special Purpose Vehicle) purely set up for investing in property. The investor becomes the owner and director of the company, and still has to carry out the same checks when applying for the mortgage (affordability, credit check etc). It is essentially a tax wrapper for the investment. Check out our blog on investing through a limited company, or contact a specialist tax advisor to discuss your personal situation.

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