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This is the first in a new series of "Spotlights" to showcase specific areas ... both in terms of the pros and cons of investing there, but also create micro-networks of investors, and information such as events in the area etc. I want to create a "mini Wiki" on each area that is Spotlighted as a resource to the community.
Milton Keynes is my first "location" Spotlight.
I don't invest in MK myself, but I do appreciate that it is an excellent location in terms of transport links and distance to London.
I also know it is famous for being built on a "grid" system and it has a lot of green spaces and beautiful countryside around it. Some of the tribal members in the area are: Jonathan Clarke Alex Caravello Sue Maxwell Smith Nikki Parsler Glenn Armstrong Richie Banks Mark Whitburn Please add your name to this thread if you invest in MK, but would prefer not to share info. Previous discussions on Milton Keynes can be found >>> here. There are 24 pages of comments on the area so already a fair bit of information, but I would like to curate it all here to make it easier to digest! I would appreciate it if the tribe members currently investing in MK could share their thoughts and maybe answer these questions or write their own summaries:
Anything else investors should know about investing in MK ... threats & opportunities?
Is the future bright for Landlords in MK?
Do you offer any services to investors in the MK area?
If anyone else would like to start a Spotlight for their area, and answer questions, then please feel free! Plus it would be very much appreciated.
Vanessa Warwick Landlord and Co-Founder of PropertyTribes.com **If you have got value from Property Tribes, find out how you can support it in remaining a free to use community resource**
Great idea V. I will come back later to contribute and answer any questions people may have
Jonathan Clarke. http://www.buytoletmk.com
Wow ... lightning fast response!! Thank you J. x
Dont be selling your patch too hard, there will be less property on offer for you, when they realise how great the investments are in MK - (Note I have read many/most of your posts regarding the positive cashflow for LHA).
V its a great concept, but also likely to attract competition for existing investors.
One strategy I have learnt is to identify and work an area that meets your investment criteria. Why would you want to attract interest in your secret goldmine (unless the mine is endless and beyond your capacity to mine).
Sure there should have been a pub analogy somewhere in this...but I'd rather not go there!! :-)
Thanks for commenting Craig.I don't believe in competition. I believe in collaboration. :)There are hundreds of towns in the U.K. and I am sure there is abundance for all!!!However, you are absolutely right about identifying and working in an area that meets your investment criteria. MK will not be for everyone, no matter how great it is! Property is not one size fits all, so I hope these Spotlights will help people identify areas that work for their individual circumstances, strategy, and overall outcome.There will always be negatives to any area, even MK, and one of the negatives might be that the likes of JC and Glenn Armstrong have got it sewn up!
So if you were looking at a holiday let unit, in perfect a location with high occupancy guaranteed, would you be telling everyone else about it?
Collaborate your opportunity away?
Surely we are all in property investment to secure the best deals we can that meet our own strategy. So why would you attract interest from the tribe in your niche market?
Only reason I can think of is the people selling/sourcing property leads. Nnote I'm not saying that is your reason for the thread, just cant see any benefit in telling people what works in your area - Jono being the exception :-)
Don't want to be negative at the moment as I really like PT and realise, some are saying that the end is nigh for PT.
I have benefited in various degrees, some direct others not so, but I know the indirect info is filed ready for the unknown ahead.
Many thanks to you and nick for the service you provide.
You are not being negative at all Craig. It is a valid point.Perhaps I am daft but I regularly tell everyone where we have success with our holiday lets. I am not fearful of competition because I know we have a good product. The only person I compete with is myself to try and make our offering even better. :)It might sound cheesy but I do believe in abundance for all. I will also benefit from other people's marketing which will bring attention to the area and give more visibility to our property. Have you noticed in retail parks that there are often a few big furniture stores like DFS and a few smaller ones? The smaller ones benefit from all the marketing and footfall of the big corporates. It creates a triple win. The big retailer wins, the little guy wins, and the consumer wins because they have more choice and they will opt for the best deal.Like water, a market place will always find its own level. The good guys will flourish and those offering a poor service or not going the extra mile with their marketing efforts will suffer and fade away imho.I think its healthy and if I find anything good, I tend to share it with others, as I hope to contribute in some small way to their success. That is how I believe I will become more successful.Old thinking was closed, selective, and controlling.New thinking is open, random, and supportive.The latter is where my head operates.
You could look at it that if your area becomes sought after it can only positively affect your existing investment there.
What are the pros and cons of investing in MK?
Pros: Its geographically at the centre of our island. Good transport links . 50 mins to London and Birmingham. 230K approx population. Diverse housing mix enough for all. Growing. Room for significant capital growth when MK matures.
Tenant demand very high. Easy access within MK. We dont get traffic jams. Multitude of competing firms to supply the services to landlords.Always benefiting from those poor souls squeezed out of the capital. Plenty for all
Cons: Theres no beach and people always think they are the 1st person to joke to you about the roundabouts and concrete cows! Is it mainly private tenants or LHA tenants, or a mixture of both? Mixture. I do 75% LHA 25% privateWhat yields do you achieve in MK? Aim for 10%. Happy with 8-9%. Exchanged on a 3 bed house today in fact. Bought for 85K £750 rent pcm yield 10.5%. If that had been on a 75% LTV that would be in the region of £450 gross positive cash flow pcm What kind of properties are in demand? Across the boardWhat kind of properties are over-saturated and should be avoided? Its still growing so over saturation wont be for 30 /50 years or more as I see it . I will be long gone by then. Some estates though are tired as they were put up quickly when MK was born . These will/are being regenerated. Any areas that you would avoid like the plague in MK? No everything has its price. The dodgy areas will provide fantastic yields. The super smart areas capital growth. But personally i avoid new city centre flats like `The Hub`. Very pricy for what you get with big service charges so I would steer clear of those myself. But if you are into serviced lets perhaps thats a good place to go.What is your favourite networking event in the MK area? I`m networked out now after the last 12 years tbh. Pick and chose individuals more to have a costa or pint with. Does MK suit novices, or should only seasoned investors get involved there? I was a novice in 1983 when I first dabbled. Started in earnest in 1999 and now a bit more seasoned I guess. Anyone can dive in I reckon. The best time to buy a property is today.Anything else investors should know about investing in MK ... threats & opportunities? I see only opportunitiesIs the future bright for Landlords in MK? Yes laser sharpDo you offer any services to investors in the MK area? Yes I will show you around my `manor` for free for an hour or so and chat incessantly to you about the beauty of MK as an investor`s haven. You can ask away with any questions you have to your hearts contents. I`m good at motivating you. There`s no trade secrets. No magic formula. Property is simple. Just conquer your mindset. If you like what you see I will nurture your enthusiasm and if you want to go further I will source you a suitable property, negotiate the best deal i can for you and manage it for you as well if you want. In effect i will do for you what I`ve done for myself so you too can enjoy the fruits of the MK tree. :-)
Great post Jonathan!
I live 30 minutes from Milton Keynes and like to add to the above:
MK attracts people/business from the whole region. People go there for shopping and leisure. It has one of the biggest shopping centres in the UK "thecentre" and offers leisure activities such as dry skislope, many cinemas, indoor climbing, skydiving wind tunnel, cable water ski etc. Also see: https://www.mkweb.co.uk/relocation/
The leisure facilities, job opportunities and more reasonable houseprices seem to attract families from the more expensive regions such as South Northamptonshire and Oxfrodshire and from the south.
For investors interested in HMO's, be warned! MK is one of the 31 cities who have adopted the Article 4 directive and planning permission for change of use from C3 to C4 is needed for "3-6 unrelated individuals, who share one or more amenities". https://www.miltonkeynes.gov.uk/developme...ticle.a...
I'd like to echo Angela! Great post Jonathan! I live close to MK. MK is a great place to be - great location, good facilities, good roads/transport sytem, good variety of housing stock, lots of investment potential - enough for everyone!