It can be tough to find a way to get great returns on your hard-earned cash in the current financial climate. Jobs aren’t secure, banks are paying some of the lowest interest on savings in recent history, and the stock market has not fully recovered from one of the biggest drops in its history. 
Property, however, still remains an attractive proposition for investors due to the fact that it continues to offer healthy potential returns for the initial investment. As with any investment, there are things to consider before investing in property. 
I’ve outlined five main things that, from my experience, it is worth considering when making an investment in UK property. 

What do you want to achieve through property investment? 

Property is ideal for providing you with a passive income, freeing up your time and energy to spend on things that are important to you or that you enjoy doing. It is also a good way to increase your retirement funds or provide a more substantial inheritance for your children; it is still one of the best methods for long-term investment, as well as being a tax efficient way to increase your capital. 
If your motivation isn’t purely financial, then investing in property can be a good way to give back to your local community or improve the lives of young people in the UK. You can still improve your own financial circumstances, through substantial return on investment, whilst also providing much needed, safe, reasonably priced accommodation for young people just starting out in their professional lives. You can turn property into a socially responsible investment through the regeneration of parts of your local area or hometown, using and growing your local knowledge and contacts in the process, or improving the lives of young people through shared accommodation. 
Investing in property allows me to provide young people with a strong start to their working lives by giving them a beautiful home to be proud of, along with a community of likeminded peers in a similar situation through my portfolio of co-living spaces. This gives me an enormous sense of well-being, as well as providing me with a substantial return on my investment and a reasonable passive income. 
Whatever your reasons, it’s important to be clear about why you are investing in property because it will help you pick the right area, property and strategy that will align with your goals. 

How much capital do you have at your disposal? 

You need to know how much you can afford to invest before you get started. This includes the initial outlay, along with any ongoing funds required to develop your investment, before you build enough capital to rely on reinvestment from the ROI alone. 
If you want to invest in UK property by yourself, managing as much of the various aspects as you can, then you will require substantial funds to cover the purchase price of the property, as well as the fees, taxes and costs associated with the development of the project. 
When you consider the total cost of all of these considerations it becomes clear that this can be a significant barrier, which prevents many people from investing in the UK property market. 
However, even if you don’t have all of the funds necessary to purchase and develop property by yourself, there are other options. You could work together with other investors to pool your funds and resources, which would open up more avenues that would otherwise be unavailable to you. 

How much time and effort are you willing to spend on your investment? 

How much time you can afford to invest in your project will have a direct impact on your costs, overall completion time(s), and, potentially, your ROI. Once you have a good understanding of what you want to achieve through your investment and what you can afford to invest, it is time to contemplate, long and hard, about how much time you can and are willing to invest in it. 
Do you want to oversee the refurbishment, interior design and vetting of the tenants as project manager and landlord? Or would you rather employ someone else to do aspects of it on your behalf? 
Being hands-on can be an incredibly rewarding experience, not to mention the fact that it will reduce your costs in professional fees, labour and, potentially, materials. But, managing everything yourself can also be a bit of a headache, to put it mildly. Many investors that choose to go it alone fail to calculate their own time into the costings for the project. Some first-time investors, that had a desire to leave their day job, simply swapped their career for that of managing their investment portfolio. But if that is not what you wanted when you first chose to invest in property, it is not the ideal situation. 
You may have other priorities that require your time, other avenues of work that you still need to pursue, or you may realise that your expertise lie elsewhere. Whatever your reason for not putting all your time and effort into your property investment project, a more passive role would likely suit you better. Working with an experienced and established property developer and/or management company might be the best option and could, in fact, save you lost revenue through competent management alone. 
This step requires much consideration and requires you to be honest with yourself. 

How much knowledge do you have? 

If you decide that you do want to take an active role in the development of your new property investment, you will need a broad set of skills and knowledge. We are not just talking about knowledge of DIY to help with the renovation or interior design, we’re talking knowledge of property and rental markets, project management, an understanding of your legal obligations, and good communication skills in order to work effectively with a broad range of trades and professionals that may be working on your project at various intervals. 
When you choose to manage projects yourself, the experience that you gain from things that go right, and even more so from the things that go wrong, is invaluable. But, especially during your initial foray into property investment, you may not be able to afford many costly mistakes. 
When I first started out, I found getting the right advice, from either a mentor or more experienced partner, was indispensable and helped to reduce the risk of my investment going wrong due to lack of knowledge on my part. 
Finding, and keeping, the right team to work with you is also invaluable. The architect that we use here at JIMENY has a saying: 
“Think using a qualified, experienced professional is expensive? Wait until you see how much using someone who isn’t costs you.” 
I have seen people fall foul of what this advice warns against. Not only did they quickly regret not finding the right team to work with, both for advice and practical support, but their ROI also took a substantial hit as a result. 

How much do market conditions affect your investment? 

Do you have a reasonable understanding of market conditions within the UK property market? It is important to understand how changes to market conditions can affect your investment. 
Changes in tax legislation has made property less attractive for people investing directly in second homes, for example, and we have seen changes in lender behaviour and property prices recently, with huge regional variations. Attitudes to buying and renting have also changed. 
Due to a reduction in the number of mortgages offered with low deposit options and a rise in house prices, compared to little movement in wage increases, many young people must now rent for longer, when compared with previous generations, in order to save up for a larger deposit on their first home. 
Having a good understanding of current market conditions, how they could change in the near future and how that can impact your investment, will give you a good head start on choosing the right location, property type and strategy for your property investment journey. 
There is a lot to consider before making an investment in UK property. But, having clear motivations and goals, being honest with yourself about your level of knowledge, and knowing what you can afford, will all help you to avoid costly mistakes. 
Considering all the above points together can ensure you stay in control and make property investment an exciting and rewarding adventure. 
If you are interested in making an investment in UK property, but would like a little advice, guidance and someone to manage much of the organisation and risk, then get in touch with JIMENY to find out more about our current investment opportunities and how we could partner with you on your investment journey. 
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