Before I started this blog I had the usual wobbles most of us have when we're embarking on a new and ambitious project. I remember wondering how I would get the information and advice out there. Would anyone read it?
I shouldn't have worried because from the very first article back in October 2016 (yes, we're approaching our second birthday!) I have had emails, telephone calls and visits directly relating to and following up on the content I have put out here.
People all around the world read this blog and although we have an active social media presence and a popular monthly email bulletin, most of you find my blog either by word of mouth (someone sends you an article or tells you to look it up) or you find us through searching the web for an answer to a burning property question.
It was the former which brought a landlord to me last week, having been sent a link to my latest Investment Focus in which I advised a buy-to-let investor who wanted to pick my brains about buying in BT8.
She is another landlord who has a small portfolio of properties in a part of Belfast she knows well, but she's freed up some cash and wants to invest in another. The postcode in question is BT4 and she has a budget of £70,000 which could be pushed to £80,000 for the right property.
I visited this part of town in my recent Area Profile on the Lower Newtownards Road, so you'll know that I have tipped this area as one to watch. Urban regeneration gathering pace, an expanding city centre, plus lots of vacant little shops that I believe would be well served by converting them back into residential accommodation.
So here are my top three currently on the market.
Eagle-eyed observers will recognise this one from the Lower Newtownards Road Area Profile in January. Well within budget and still on the market. Possibly a lot of work required but as it's been unsold so long, there may be wiggle room with that price, freeing up more investment capital.
The location is just incredible - so handy to the city centre as well as East Belfast and its conveniences and commodities. Definitely worth looking into.
At £15,000 this quirky little single-story retail unit is priced to reflect the fact it needs a lot of work - but if my landlord got it for close to the asking price, she could have the guts of £65k to play with.
Keep it as a little commercial unit or explore conversion into residential rental property - if you have the energy and the cash, this could be a great project and potentially a long-term earner.
On the market for less than £65,000, this seemingly-immaculate 2-bed flat in a sought-after part of the postcode could be a headache-free rental option. I think £500 - 525 is reasonable for rent, which would offer a very healthy maximum yield of approximately 9.7%.
If you're reading this thinking you'd love to pick my brains too - just drop me a line to firstname.lastname@example.org