New BTL Lender

Cambridge & Counties Bank now offers loans to residential property investors across the country who can ‘demonstrate knowledge and experience in this market’. Let’s quote, ‘The new Cambridge & Counties Residential Investment Loan will have rates starting from 4.50 per cent (plus Bank of England Base Rate) and will be a secured long-term lending product of up to 25 years (minimum three-year term). The bank will lend up to 70 per cent of the lower of either the market value or purchase price of the property. The loan is available for property investment via purchase and/or refinance.’

‘Repayment of interest will be monthly, with capital repayments of equal monthly amounts via direct debit throughout the life of the loan, except where interest-only facilities are allowed. Interest-only loans will be available for periods of up to ten years and are capped at an LTV of 70 per cent.’ Again, start your due diligence at a site such as before talking to a broker.


Turkey – Getting Hotter?

According to Colordarcy, the property agents, ‘Arab investors will become bigger players in Turkey’s property market.’ With Turkey having opened up the property market to these investors, they call it correctly. Investors from the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Yemen  are going to drive prices upwards.

Loxley McKenzie, managing director of Colordarcy takes up the commentary, ‘In my experience, European investors are not the main target for Turkish developers at the moment, it is the growing influx of investors they are welcoming from the Gulf. People have been calling Istanbul the new London for most of the past 12 months and it is likely that many Middle Eastern investors will find Istanbul a more attractive proposition. Turkey is much closer to home and so is the culture.’ We have a report coming soon.

Heating Tips & Tactics

The Heating Helpline at is offering some money-saving tips.

If you have less than 10cm of insulation in your loft you’ll be wasting energy. Top the insulation up to 27cm and you could save around £150 a year.

Since the 1930s, most houses have been built with an air cavity between two outer walls. If you get this gap filled with insulating foam you could save well over £150 on your heating bills.

Floorboards lose a lot of heat – insulation seal between the gaps can save you about £25 per year.

Insulate your hot water cylinder. Fitting a jacket at least 75mm thick costs very little and you could save more than £50 each year. Lagging all your hot water pipes could also save you over £25 a year.

Badly fitted doors and windows mean avoidable heat loss. Draught-proofing doors and windows by sealing gaps will help you save energy.

Unused fireplaces are one of the biggest causes of lost heat. If you’re not using your chimney but don’t want to board it up try a chimney balloon – they’re easy to inflate and last for years.

There is a free helpline at 0800 810 8303 or you can go to

Student Accommodation Update

New research by CBRE reveals that a record £2 billion was invested in UK student accommodation in the first three quarters of 2012; that is a rise of 145 per cent on the same period in 2011. There is a growing trend for investors to look outside of London; more than 50 per cent of the total investment in 2012 has been in the regions.

Jo Winchester at CBRE says, ‘Total returns remain a key driver for investors as they flock towards the impressive returns given by student accommodation for a second year in a row. Our data shows that student accommodation is outperforming other asset classes by some margin, as it has brought 9.6 per cent returns in the year to September 2012. This compares to 5.4 per cent for all offices and 2.2 per cent for all retail in the year to August 2012.’ Is it time you looked at student accommodation investing; drop us a line if you are interested.