Rat and Mouse
Tue
15
Apr

They’re the Internet’s version of the Oscars, and Foxtons is the only British candidate in the real estate section. See their rivals here. Results announced on April 29.

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Mon
14
Apr

Fleeing Londoners push up prices across UK [International Business Times]
What to do about next-door’s noisy animals [Sunday Telegraph]
Celebrity homes for sale [Daily Telegraph]
The half a million pound London garage [Evening Standard]

The Rat and Mouse - it’s about your house 

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Fri
11
Apr

20140411bar

Don't mention Del Boy. Posh homes with bars.

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On the subject of evicting tenants, here’s the story of a lawyer-landlord and a battle with Foxtons over unpaid commission, after a tenancy was cut short. It’s a fairly familiar subject, and it’s not entirely clear who’s at fault here. The agents don’t choose the tenants, that’s - finally - the landlord’s call every time. And whether commission’s owing after a tenancy is cut short is ultimately dependent on the fine print. What I don’t understand is why the agents didn’t take the commission up front. Isn’t that the usual practise? 

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Both Section 8 notices (fault based) and Section 21 notices (accelerated, non-fault based) are going up, in some cases (online) doubling. More here.

Rental arrears falling [April 9, 2014]

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Yes, according to the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, with average annual UK house price gains of 6% driven by a chronic shortage of available properties. (Interestingly, RICS blames the chronic shortage of available homes on a chronic shortage of people wanting to move, so I’m not entirely sure where that leaves the supply-and-demand balance.) Here for more.

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Thu
10
Apr

At a record low of 0.5%. No surprises, most commentators are looking at the first half of 2015 before a rate rise.

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London prices up 40% on credit crunch low [Evening Standard]
Government reaches out to Islamic investment [CityAM]
Politics and London property [PropertyWire]
Under Offer… did you see it? [Guardian]
Is Gwyneth property shopping? [National Ledger]

The Rat and Mouse - it’s about your house 

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Wed
09
Apr

It’s a Mortgage Works (Nationwide) buy-to-let mortgage, and - according to this - part of a swift response by lenders to new pension rules, in which pensioners will have quicker, easier access to their retirement savings. Good for the bubble? Not likely. Good for pensioners? Debatable. Property prices are expenses, Stamp Duty and CGT are considerable and being a landlord is surprisingly hard work. Good for tenants? See previous answers.

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According to LSL’s buy-to-let index, the number of tenants in (serious… in other words of more than two months) arrears is down by 35% over 12 months, and 40% down on a 2012 peak. And this despite a spike between Q4 2013 and Q1 2014, written off as seasonal. The proportion of tenants in arrears now stands at 1.4%. Get your own copy of the actual report here.

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Tue
08
Apr

… we’d imagine. Jeremy Helsby has just received £2.3m, a 44% increase on last year, with the increases coming largely in the form of shares and profit-sharing. It’s been a good year in prime London property. More here.

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Mon
07
Apr

German landlord collects rent… with a chainsaw [Toronto Sun]
Message to landlords: check the small print [Daily Telegraph]
The Thunderbirds home, in Poole [Sunday Telegraph]
On the Nine Elms regeneration [Your Local Guardian]

The Rat and Mouse - London’s property blog, since 2005 

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Fri
04
Apr

Clearly prices have started to rise.

He promises vigilance from the Treasury to avoid a bubble. 

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Thu
03
Apr

A research note called “Strong growth not built to last” points to a dangerous combination of a strengthening pound and rising interest rates resulting in slower fiscal growth. Coupled with a weakening of interest from foreign buyers, it could see the London property market “unravel”. More here

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Wed
02
Apr

20140402nationwide 2

It’s the rate of growth the commentary’s focussing on when it talks about “moderation” in the market. Still, with annual gains approaching 10% nationally (and double that for London), I don’t think the bubble forecasters are going to be convinced. Some commentary here. Your copy of the official release here.

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Tue
01
Apr

The data’s from Hamptons, and it shows just under half (49%) of buyers in Prime Central postcodes were from the UK in 2013, up from 43% in 2012 and 37% in 2011. That translates as 2,800 sales versus 2,900. Looking at London as a whole, 77% of sales were to UK buyers, up from 65%. Accompanying comment singles out cooling interest from foreign investors with concerns about an over-heated market.

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