If your London rental investment property needs a little more work than just a furnishings pack, then we can help you create a bespoke interior that looks visually stunning and also meets your practical requirements and budget. From a basic freshening up; putting in a new kitchen and bathroom or a more comprehensive property refurbishment, we have many years’ experience at managing all sizes of residential projects across London.
Modernising your rental property to add value
We can advise on how best to maximise available space.
Creating a desirable interior that tenants will love
Our proven track record will help you attract top quality tenants.
Design flair with a practical eye for detail
Overseen by a qualified interior design team. All work fully insured.
If you are planning to refurbish a property, whether it's a principle room or an entire property, we can manage that too. From planning and design to construction and installation, we work with partners who have an in-house team of builders, bathroom and kitchen specialists and can manage the entire renovation project. And throughout, you'll work with our experienced design and support staff who will ensure that the work is completed to the highest standard, on time, and within budget.
We can also help with the supply of furniture, window dressings and soft furnishings or why not take a look at our Furnishing packs which include everything needed for an incoming tenant. These are ideal for overseas investors or for those who want to save time and get on with letting their property.
Not sure if you need to refurbish your property? Take a look below at our advice for when you should refurbish your London rental property.
Well presented properties always let more quickly, often for a higher rental, so landlords should always aim to enhance the presentation of their rental property. It's important to match the presentation of the property to the calibre of tenant you're hoping to attract. For example, a professional or corporate tenant will expect a high spec finish with stylish, contemporary furnishings. People with higher budgets have high expectations and so Landlords have to ensure their property is appealing and up to date.
Kitchens and bathrooms are priorities. Investing in a smart, contemporary kitchen is a must. Equally important are bathrooms. A two bed property should have two bathrooms if possible. If you own an older property, it is worth creating an ensuite by taking space from an existing bedroom (which tend to be larger in older properties). Always retain original features in period properties, such as ceiling roses, cornicing and fireplaces. If you have a limited budget, simple measures like a lick of paint, new flooring and curtains are worth doing. Tenants usually prefer the contemporary look of wood flooring but check your lease allows them.
At the end of the day investing in your property will add to the overall capital value too, so it is worth considering employing a a specialist to look at the layout. Older properties often have small rooms, so by removing some internal walls you can create a more spacious, open-plan layout with a real 'wow' factor – it will definitely increase the asking rental. A great example of this is an apartment opposite the Science Museum in South Kensington which we were instructed on by a client. The apartment was old fashioned and had a layout that didn't maximise space so we brought in a refurbishment specialist to carry out alterations. They suggested removing some internal walls to create a larger and elegant reception area. The client agreed and the result was better than even he could have imagined. They created a grand, double height reception area that makes the most of the room's floor to ceiling windows. And the work reaped dividends too as the apartment let very quickly, in 10 days, and for an asking rental of £1500 per week, £500 per week more than previously.
This year has been challenging for all of us but another issue that landlords need to address is the tax changes that have also taken place this year or are planned for next year. Landlords should consider the implications of these tax changes according to their own personal circumstances. Throughout the year we’ve been keeping you updated about these tax changes in our regular blogs but to make life easier, we’ve summarised them below. Temporary Stamp Duty holiday We’ll start with a positive tax change – the temporary Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) holiday which applies to buyers completing on a property before March 31st 2021. For properties valued at up to £500,000, buyers will not pay any Stamp Duty. For properties costing from £500,001 to £925,000, SDLT is 5% of the portion above £500,001. For properties costing from £925,001 to £1.5 million, SDLT is 10% of the portion above £925,001. For the remaining amount, the portion above £1.5 million is taxed at 12%. This is a temporary measure – the deadline to complete on a purchase is March 31st 2021. There is still time to benefit from this tax cut but buyers need to move quickly as it takes time to carry out valuations and conveyancing and there are currently high volumes of transactions taking place so there are some delays. Stamp Duty surcharge for overseas buyers from April 2021 A new 2% SDLT surcharge for overseas investors not resident in the UK is being introduced from April 1st 2021 so this is another reason for buyers to complete their purchase before the end of March 2021. Transactions will be exempt if exchange of contracts took place before March 11th 2020 but does not complete until after April 2021. The new tax means that overseas buyers will pay a 2% higher rate of Stamp Duty than the rate that applies to UK residents. Check the amount of tax you will pay on your property purchase on our recently updated stamp duty calculator Non-UK residents must register for Corporation Tax Non-UK resident companies (including those investing in UK property through collective investment vehicles) must now pay Corporation Tax instead of Income Tax on profits from UK property. Previously these companies paid Income Tax on rental income (at a flat rate of 20% of profits) using a SA700 return. From April 6th, 2020, these overseas companies have been required to register for and pay Corporation Tax instead but the good news is that the Corporation Tax payable is less – 19% of profits. We can assist companies affected by completing the relevant tax return on their behalf. Further details and fees can be found here at our tax return service for overseas investors web page. Changes to Capital Gains Tax (CGT) Since April 6th 2020, any Capital Gains Tax due on the disposal of a residential property (a buy-to-let or other second property) must be calculated and paid to HMRC within 30 days of completion. Letting relief of £40,000 against CGT – which was available where a property that was rented and also lived in by the owner at some point – is no longer available. Also, previously there was a principal private residence relief – a reduction in taxable gain made during the final 18 months of ownership – this has been reduced to nine months. Higher rate tax relief phased out The phased introduction of the restriction of interest relief against residential property income is now complete and higher rate tax relief has been phased out. From April 2020, landlords have had to calculate the tax on their profits before any interest deduction in full and claim back a basic rate tax credit which is currently 20% on the amount of interest charged. This only affects individuals (and not companies) and only those whose income will be in one of the higher rate tax brackets. Looking ahead to 2021 Of course, the Covid 19 pandemic has created a huge drain on public resources and the government has intervened in many different ways to support the economy and help address the consequences of the pandemic. Measures such as the Stamp Duty holiday have had a significant impact on the property market which has performed extremely well over the last few months. And with a vaccine now being rolling out, the outlook is more positive than it has been for some time. But more tax changes may be necessary and as this is a fast-moving situation we will keep you updated with any changes as they are announced. For a copy of our Tax Guide for Overseas Investors, please sign up here