B2L pundits keep it close to home

One of a broker’s main raisons d’etre is to help people invest their money by buying property. But where would advisers put their own cash?

Mortgage Strategy examines this question in this week’s cover feature starting on page 44 in which we provided some of the industry’s big hitters with a – sadly imaginary – 100,000 cheque to invest in bricks and mortar.

When considering the buy-to-let option, unsurprisingly some reassuringly familiar themes emerged including buying in an area with which you are familiar and choosing popular rental property types such as two-bedroom flats.

Five industry experts gave their views on where and how they would invest the cash in the property market. Most preferred to stay close to home so they could keep an eye on their investments – though the issue of diversification and spreading investment risk was also raised.

The timing of investments was also considered, with one pundit suggesting Coventry and Blackpool as the next hotspots for investors. At first glance, these seem unlikely buy-to-let areas but closer examination reveals that millions are being invested in Coventry to expand its city centre and there is the potential for a new casino complex in Blackpool. These are places that should not be overlooked.

The 2012 Olympics will have a major effect on east London, making it a viable venue for investment. It’s only a three-week event but a great deal of development will occur. And with pundits suggesting there could be a dip in property prices while the construction takes place, this could be a good time to invest as prices are expected to climb considerably as the marathon project nears completion.

It’s also reassuring to hear that those questioned believed in investing their 100,000 over a minimum 10-year period.

And if all else fails, there’s always the option of investing some of the cash on your own home to boost its value – in particular an Olympic-sized hot tub attachment, according to one pundit.