Category: Architecture & Design
Grant Amos

Growing a property business

GRANT AMOSGrant Amos tells us the steps he has taken to make the move from an unfulfilling job to operating a successful property businessThis month we speak to Grant Amos who, with wife Emilie, has steadily built up a property portfolio over the past six years to include 12 HMOs (houses in multiple occupation) before […]

The Church Conversion

How much pain do you like with your projects? This month I thought I would discuss another project I’m currently working on, and – what with me being a glutton for punishment – I haven’t made things easy for myself. I hope the process so far will help you when you’re looking at potential projects […]

Where there’s muck, there’s money

Why a problem property attracts less competition and can bag you a higher discount on the purchase price Us property folk are a weird bunch, aren’t we? Wired a bit differently to most, don’t you think? Are you like me in that whenever you’re looking for a new project it’s often the smellier, dirtier, more […]

The Bank Job

Commercial conversion from disused bank to co-living development This month I thought I’d discuss a project that myself and fellow The Property Thing partner in crime, Paul Million, are undertaking with two joint venture partners who approached us with the deal – dynamic deal-sourcing duo Nicola Chapman and Debbie Archer. We became acquainted with the […]

Johnson frees-up town centre planning restrictions for ‘change of use’

Developers will be able to change more High Street offices, large retail units and other town centre commercial premises into apartments with less hassle in future.

That’s because, in many instances, a planning application won’t be needed, Boris Johnson assured today.

In his ‘build, build, build’ speech the Prime Minister also insisted developers will no longer need the green light from Planners to demolish and rebuild vacant and disused property. This is provided the end result is residential housing.

And there was also good planning news for property owners intent on building second and third floor extensions: their  application will be fast-tracked.

Easing of planning rules to help with housing crisis

The effective ‘tearing up’ of many existing government and local authority Planning rules is in a bid to boost the economy post-coronavirus and, at the same time, house more people. All the new Planning regulations are due to come into force in September.

Boost to infrastructure and ‘connectivity’

Johnson also pledged £5bn for a series of infrastructure projects and create jobs. He said this meant more schools, hospitals, roads and railways.

Self-billing his planning reforms the “most radical ” since the Second World War, he insisted they will help both UK companies and the government to build “faster, greener and better.”

He added: “I fully accept that there are going to be economic aftershocks, but there are also big opportunities now to take this country forward, to make investments, to make big changes.”

Critics are speculating that the money for the infrastructure projects will be funded via an increase in tax.

Meanwhile Chancellor Rishi Sunak will give more detail on the first phase of the UK economy recovery plans next week.

When 2 become 3

Converting properties from two- to three-bed for maximum value and yield. This month I thought I’d talk about a good way I’ve found to add value to your two-bed refurbishment projects. As you’ll probably know, adding value means that you have a higher chance of getting a better mortgage valuation when you’re finished with your […]

Paints & Colours by ‘The Property Thing’ Group

In the world of property there seems to be one topic that many of us love – decor! And more specifically, the colours we choose to paint our properties.

We asked ‘The Property Thing’ network group in Darlington to tell us what they choose to splash on the walls of their property projects. So whether you’re a fan of bold colours, feature walls, neutral greys or brilliant white, here are some cracking examples of what’s working well for property investors in the North.

Chris Bunn, of Goldcrest Property Investment, based in Teesside, opted for grey tones to catch the eyes of buyers for this newly renovated 4 bed semi detached house in Stockton on Tees. 

Colours used: Farrow & Ball Blackened for the main colour and Plummet for the feature wall, with white woodwork. 

I feel like there’s too many whites and magnolias around in the property world. I wanted this to appeal to first time buyers or young families who are all about the grey tones. It is ready to just drop their furniture in and give it some colour pops with accessories

Chris Bunn

Anthony Boyce of Diversify Property Solutions, based in Darlington, chose to add a striking feature wall to his newly renovated 3 bed semi- detached house. 

Colours used: B&Q Vence (blue feature wall) with white walls and woodwork

Originally, this property was meant to be a flip project, so with us using plain white on the walls throughout the house, we wanted to create some contrast and colour for our glossy sales pics.  I love a good dark blue, normally like a Stiffkey or Hague by F&B, but opted for this one due to its cost.  It’s B&Q’s own brand, so is cheap as chips but looks really classy, in my opinion.  It worked well with the existing stone fireplace which we retained (we changed the fire trim & grate to a silver colour from brass), the black light fittings & stainless steel sockets.

Anthony Boyce

Dean Jones, of Urbanlets, based in Leeds is also a fan of a feature wall for his HMO properties.

Colours used: Dulux Thunder Clouds (feature wall) and Silver Shores for the rest

For this HMO in Grimsby we opted for bold, lower maintenance colours. Our choices are on trend, just what tenants are looking for, this helps us to fill our rooms quicker and for a higher rate.

Dean Jones

Paul Million, of Real Property People Ltd, based in Darlington, isn’t one to shy away from colours that make a statement in his HMO properties.

Bathroom Colour used: Farrow & Ball Vardo (Green)

This was a tired vanilla 3 bed single let that we transformed into a 4 bed HMO with a five week refurb. I used F&B Vardo to breathe life & vibrancy into the space which just contrasts phenomenally with the F&B ‘Off Black’ skirts & matchboard bath panel, black bathroom ‘Perfect Fit’ venetians, fittings & accessories & charcoal showerpanel wall.

Communal Room Colour used: Farrow & Ball Hardwick White

F&B Hardwick White is my current Go-To Grey Neutral, providing the backdrop for most of my last few HMO & SA schemes. It is versatile & provides Carte Blanche in matching any other chosen feature wall, accessory, furnishing or artwork. I love using it on woodwork & doors and looks as smart as a carrot with black door furniture and trim.

Paul Million

Rachel Tasker, of Northside Homes Ltd, based in Gateshead, chooses Brilliant White every time for all of her single let properties.

As someone who is obsessed with everything in property I love design, colour, textures and also learning how to use the materials is very important to me, I love getting my hands dirty.

So why do I paint everything white? I love the brightness it creates, I like the feel of a fresh, clean room. Rooms feel bigger. Anything a person brings with them will go – It’s a faster job with no cutting in. Its cost effective and the first person to view usually takes my properties. I do think that a feature wall can look great but I would always do a feature wall with wallpaper not paint, mainly because I think it adds more in terms of design, introducing a texture, pattern and suitable colours (nothing bold). So as shocking as it may seem to some in the property community I won’t be venturing into the world of Farrow and Ball anytime soon, it’s still white all the way for me!

Rachel Tasker

Building Regs & Planning: What’s the bloody difference?

This might be a simple subject for some of those reading this article. Like me, you may deal with these types of applications day in and day out. I imagine though, even then, the thought of submitting a planning application can bring on the sweats, nervousness, and even a bout of squeaky bum time. So […]
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