The double edged sword

Tuesday 19th February 2019 19:38 EST

Currently, we are arranging bridging funding for several clients.  

The aim of a bridge is to take one from one place to another.

You’re not supposed to stay on a bridge, it is not designed for this purpose.

For one reason or another, there are legitimate reasons as to why investors would opt for a bridge.  At the moment, lenders are taking notoriously long to approve loans.

In a situation where speed is of the essence, going to a conventional lender is not an option at the best of times, let alone if you’re facing some complications with the property.

Using bridging is like a double-edged sword.  We have experience on both sides.  On numerous occasions the bridge has served its purpose, and allowed us to buy properties with issues and we have come out successful.  On one deal we made 40% per annum for our investors.  On another occasion, we purchased at the top end of the market just as it was going down, and our costs went up, resulting in a loss of equity.

London is full of bridgers.  There are many investors both private and corporate who wish to get a return on their money without having the headache of actually dealing with any property.  The money comes in and out and their aim is to continually keep the funds being reused.

 One client needs funds to purchase a development, and exercise an option to purchase a restaurant which he is currently leasing and has an option on.

Another client has had an altercation with the council, over a planning issue, resulting in the press catching hold of the story and spreading it all over the media; with the result no lender will touch him and not many bridgers either.  We required someone to look at the case in detail and intuitively.

We used a bridging company when we purchased a number of units in NW London.  The deal had numerous issues.  Enforcement notices had been put on the title by the council.  The flats had been constructed without planning.  There were signs of subsidence.  The freeholder was absent… and so forth.  Not the sort of deal you can even approach a High Street lender with.  These issues are good, it means many buyers will be scared off, as not everyone can quantify and assess each risk the building poses.  If a lawyer looks at the issues they will typically scare the client into not purchasing the asset.  In fact, this was the view point of the lawyer we were using at the time.  We pressed on and purchased the deal overriding the lawyer.  The bulk of the funds came from a bridge and we used this time to tidy up all the issues until the deal was in good shape to approach a High Street lender, with a more favourable rate.

If wielded correctly, bridging can be used as a powerful tool to execute deals.  It allows one to move with speed, and to decrease the amount you have to put in a deal.  However, you must be able to see the exit prior to going in.

Proactively serving in the workplace

Last week, I discussed being more effective in our relationships by proactively expressing love in a way the other person values. 

Love needs to be expressed in the language understood by the other person.  

These principles can be applied in the workplace, in terms of service. 

The categories are different. 

When we serve one another, we anticipate what will please them rather than what only pleases us. We should take care to apply this word “please” in a non-sentimental way. We try to “please” the higher nature of the other person not the lower nature. If the doctor has prescribed that a person should eat no confectionery then buying confectionery, however much the person likes it, is not “pleasing” them. It is only appeasing their lower nature. 

In the workplace we can be effective if we proactively and consistently serve through the following acts: 

Development - acts that show commitment to improving the skills and aptitude of your employees. 

Acknowledgement - informal and formal ways of saying thank you and recognising contributions. 

Values - often overlooked but very powerful; inculcating behaviours which have integrity and congruency and imbue staff with pride to work for the company.

Tangibles - such as pay and conditions etc.

Clarity - making sure everyone knows their responsibilities and managing expectations. 

Many successful business leaders know that if they take care of their employees, the result is happy customers and healthy profits.

Abraham Goldberg

­Agony Agent Is Here To Help!

Q:  My tenant’s toilet is blocked again! What should I do?

A:  First, we need to get to the bottom of why this is happening. 

Perhaps the toilet is prone to blocking as it has been fitted incorrectly (very unlikely).  In which case it is your responsibility as the landlord to have this investigated and unblocked. 

Or, perhaps your tenants are flushing items like cotton buds, wet wipes or even nappies down the toilet.  If this is the case, then your tenants are responsible for any costs associated with the unblocking.  If you like, as a gesture of goodwill, you may unblock the toilet at your cost as a one off, but you will need to explain if the same situation happens again then they will be liable for the costs.  Always follow up such conversations in writing (for example by email).

If this is a flat where you have residents sharing a waste pipe, you may find that the neighbours above or below are the ones blocking the waste pipe.  If this is the case then all you need to do is contact the building manager, and they will deal with the issue.  

If you are having issues with your buy to let property please do get in touch, I will be more than happy to help.

Richard Bond


London, SE2

Purchase Price: £205,000

l Large two bedroom, split level flat

l Very close to a Crossrail station

l Journey time to Canary Wharf and Bond Street will be 11 mins and 25 mins respectively on Crossrail

l Excellent yield of 6% per annum

l Huge potential for capital and rental growth due to Crossrail

l Long lease 

l Very low service charge

l £68K cash required to close this deal, subject to mortgage criteria

l Very good long term buy and hold opportunity

Call us now for more information!

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