This month Property Options will not be publishing an update specifically on the Bristol buy to let (BTL) market. Instead there will be two market overviews in April covering in the impact of the Covid–19 crisis.
This article is the first market overview, the second market overview will be published in mid – April. We will return to the Bristol BTL market later this year.
Before turning to what is happening in the BTL market, landlords and tenants will need to consider what they need to do to operationally to deal with the immediate crisis. Government guidance is available at:
The Residential Landlords Association has published a more concise guide for landlords at
Here is summary of the practical steps that landlords and tenants should take.
- Keep up to date– monitor the situation on a day to day basis, keeping up with the latest guidelines issued by the government and local authorities and share these with tenants, employees and contractors.
- Communication – keep in touch with tenants to see what steps are being taken to help protect against the risk of infection and highlighting the importance of cleanliness and hygiene.
- Enhanced security– establish more stringent security and building entry procedures Consider ways to reduce social contact.
- Remote working – work from home if possible.
- Enhanced cleaning – clean communal areas, manage waste disposal and introduce more frequent cleaning of those areas which are at high risk of spreading the virus (door handles, taps, lifts, stair rails).
- Contingency plans – management teams should meet more regularly to review continuity plans and contingency plans.
Reorganising the business and adapting to the new circumstances will be the first priority for landlords, but BTL investors should also to begin to consider trends in the market and a review of their business strategy. For instance if they had been considering a new investment or the sale of property, should they continue with that or wait for more stability in the market?
The recovery in the housing market seen at the start of the year has been brought to an abrupt end.
A recent report on the housing market in the Sunday Times stated that “estate agents can continue to offer general advice on the local property market, but they will not be able to market property in the usual way because viewings would generally not be permitted and there are also difficulties with getting property valuations done. Home buyers and renters should as far as possible delay moving while emergency measures are in place.”
The estate agents Savills has forecast that house prices will fall by between 5% and 10% in the short term as Covid–19 causes a down turn in the economy. However their view is that the governments financial support package and historically low interest rates should support a return to price growth.
The news about mortgages is slightly more optimistic.
Mortgage broker Kama Financial Solutions who do a lot of business in Bristol have reported that funds are available from mortgage companies but lenders are being forced to slow down applications because of staff shortages.
For existing mortgage holders the possibility of a three month mortgage holiday is being offered by many banks and mortgage companies while for other investors this may be a good time to consider a re- mortgage as an alternative to selling a property.
Our Next Property Meeting
We will all be discussing the latest position on the property market in Bristol and across the UK at our next PIM. We’ll be arranging this when government guidelines indicate that it is safe to do so.
We hope you will join us then.
For more info please Click Below