UK Property Process

If you are an overseas buyer, you may be considering buying UK residential property as an investment whilst the value of the pound sterling is down. Before you decide to invest, read our explanation of the UK property purchase process

Getting started- your objectives

Before looking for potential UK property investments, you would have to get a clear idea of what you are hoping to achieve with your investment. Are you looking to invest for the short term and achieve good levels of rental yields, or are you looking to hold on to your investment for a longer time for capital growth?

If you are looking for high rental yields – often a characteristic of alternative commercial property – you should consider investment classes such as student property and retirement homes. Many Chinese agents are selling UK property but when it comes to alternative property classification it is recommended that your agent works with a specialist property broker such as Knight Frank or One Touch Property Investment. Their expert guidance and research on the fundamental of on a student and care markets are essential to make the best investment.

If you are looking for capital growth, London’s property prices are increasing and there are several London developers that are selling directly to China.

Work out your budget

The pound sterling is not faring well against other currencies so those overseas may be able to get a more favourable exchange rate. Commercial property such as student and retirement home investments are generally not mortgageable, but units have a lower entry point compared to buy to let. You would be able to get a mortgage on residential properties over £100,000. Interest rates would be 4% but the rental income generated through the property would be able to cover mortgage payments.

Ultimately, buying a property whether as a buy-to-let investment or otherwise is quicker if you are a cash buyer as you will not have to spend time filling in mortgage applications.

Do I have to visit the UK to purchase property?

People from overseas can invest in the UK, and you do not have to visit the UK to purchase property in the country. The legal side is handled by a solicitor and if you used a property investment company such as One Touch Property, they would be able to provide guidance on different investment types in different cities.

Of course, you may want to visit the city you eventually decide to invest in. Some people choose to invest in a certain city or area they feel an affinity with. They might enjoy the status of owning property in that area, like the location, or recognise the impact regeneration has on capital growth of property prices.  It’s based on personal preference and the amount of importance one would place on an area.

The basic property purchase process

Property process Explained

Once you have decided what your objectives are with the investment and have calculated how much money you have for it, you review each investment that is presented to you. If you find an investment you feel comfortable with, you would have to choose a unit and pay a reservation deposit usually between £2,000 – £5,000.

Next your agent will instruct solicitors on your behalf who will do all the legal work and carry out all the necessary legal checks. Once that is completed there would be an exchange of contract and at that point you would pay 50% of the property price minus the deposit. There would be another stage payment of 25% and then the balance would be payable upon completion.

After this you would receive your income. This will typically be paid quarterly. Overseas investors will need to complete a Nrl1 tax form. As the investments One Touch Property Investment offer are hands-off, investors will not have to worry about advertising for potential tenants or carrying out maintenance task.

The UK is an attractive place for home ownership, it’s seen as a politically stable and prosperous country. Liverpool was named the European Capital of Culture in 2008 and Manchester was ranked the 38th most liveable city in a global list that measures crime rates, access to healthcare and social stability. London is the jewel in the crown boasting a rich history and the financial capital of Europe.

As negotiations for Britain’s departure from the European Union are drawn out, the value of the pound has dipped against other currencies which has in turn made property more accessible to overseas investors. This makes it an ideal time to consider investing.

If you are unfamiliar with how property investment works within the United Kingdom, it may be helpful to get in contact with a property investment company such as One Touch Property, Savills or Foxtons who can provide guidance from start to finish, including presenting you with a range of investment opportunities through to instructing solicitors on your behalf and keeping you informed on the progress of your investment.

Need more information? Read our 7 tips for investing in UK property and our best places to invest in property in the UK in 2019 or download our buy to let investment guide to get more information on the process.

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