The secrets of the buy-to-let pension pot

One canny investor is putting her cash into property rather than a pension.

One of our Landlady’s already owns her own home, but recently decided to buy a property to rent. ‘rather than put money into a pension fund, as interest rates are so low I thought it best to put it into bricks and mortar as a nest egg for my future,’ she says.

This landlady aged 36, isn’t new to buy-to-let. Having moved from Lincolnshire to Hertfordshire to run the family business, she now rents her Lincolnshire property. ‘It’s a Victorian terrace and I’ve never had a problem renting it out, but last year I did have to spend quite a lot of money on some little niggles there,’ she says.

This time she wanted a brand new, maintenance-free apartment. When a friend who lives in Dunstable told her about the city’s rising property prices, she researched the market and decided buying there made sense.

‘It’s easy for me to get to and there’s a captive rentals market,’ she says, ‘because many large companies, such as Honeytop and Whitbread are now based there. I could have bought an apartment in London or Hertfordshire and made more in rent but it’s the growth I’m more interested in.’

Our landlady took out a mortgage and bought a two-bedroom apartment at Stokers Court, the new development in Dunstable next to the Busway.

‘It’s well located, an easy walk to the town and Busway bus stops and I think today’s tenants expect a certain standard and prefer to live in a brand-new property,’ she says, adding that she likes the development’s ‘feel’. ‘It’s right in the heart of the town yet it’s got a certain tranquillity, which I thought tenants would appreciate. This, plus the apartment’s high-spec finish, helped me make my mind up.’

Before renting out her flat, she decided to give it a test drive for a night. ‘I only had an airbed but the bathroom was more luxurious than the one I have at home. I loved it there!’ she says.

Belvoir Dunstable manages the flat, which is now rented out for the next 12 months to a professional couple for £725 per month. ‘I’m pleased with that amount, as it covers the mortgage, but you must factor in maintenance charges,’ she warns.

Does she feel there are risks involved? ‘Hopefully not,’ she says, ‘but I can always sell if things go wrong. The hard thing with buy-to-let is finding the right property – but I think I’ve done that.’
She plans on keeping the flat for around five years. ‘The rentals market is a competitive one and if it starts to look shoddy, I might sell and buy a new property. Today’s tenants have high standards.’


Contact Daniel Bourke of the award winning and licensed Belvoir Dunstable Letting Specialists for a no obligation consultation or guidance on 01582 343209 or call into our shop oat 18 Church Street, Dunstable