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Nearly £2bn worth of vacant property unclaimed.

There is currently £1.744bn worth of vacant property unclaimed across England and Wales.

The latest research was carried out by StripeHomes

London and the South East had the most unclaimed property.  The majority of the estates have been left by people who didn’t pass them on in a will, normally when they has no immediate or extended family.

Across England and Wales there are currently 7991 estates lying unclaimed with an average value of £218,000 per estate.  (London inflates this figure with average estates their exceeding £500,000.)

Each unclaimed estate on the government list remains on the list for 30 years before title is passed to the treasury. The only people eligible to claim an estate or share of an estate that isn’t bequeathed in a will are blood/distant relatives or a spouse.  This does not include non-married partners, civil partnerships or stepchildren.

James Forrester, managing director of StripeHomes, said: “Finding out you’re eligible to claim one of the thousands of unclaimed estates across England and Wales is probably one of the most fortunate but unlikely ways of getting a foot on the property ladder.

“It makes for quite depressing reading when you consider the struggle many are facing to secure a property of their own while such a substantial value of bricks and mortar is currently left tangled in red tape, only for the Government to take control of it after 30 years.

“While procedures need to be followed to ensure anyone with a legitimate claim has the right to do so, 30 years seems a very long time to leave an estate lingering in limbo when it could be contributing positively to the current housing crisis. Particularly when you consider that the majority of these estates are located in London where the ratio of demand to the shortage of housing is probably at its worst.

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Borrowers were not told payment holidays would affect lending decisions

The FCA has failed to explain why mortgage borrowers, who took advantage of payment holidays in the March lockdown, were not told that doing so would their credit record and future lending decisions.

Under questioning in the Treasury Select Committee, neither FCA chief executive Nikhil Rathi or chairman Charles Randell explained why it took so long for consumers to be told about the impact of taking a payment holiday.

Siobhain McDonagh (Labour MP) questioned why they were not told at the outset instead of months later.

She said, “On 18th March the business secretary reassured those seeking a three-month payment break that it would not impact their credit record. On 20th March the FCA confirmed this,”

“However, the FCA did not tell borrowers at this point that the mortgage payment holiday or deferrals could still influence banks’ willingness to lend to them, even if their credit scores or ratings were unchanged.

“Why was it not until the 22 May that the FCA added these warnings to the mortgage advice page and until 1 July for similar warnings to be put on the FCA’s loans, credit cards and overdraft webpage?” she asked.

Randell said there were two different elements being considered in the situation – credit files maintained by credit reference agencies, and lenders making decisions about customers requiring the full detail of the borrower’s position.

However, he did not explain why there was a delay in being clear about the situation.

Rathi said of the latest measures first announced Saturday: “We’ve been clear that the credit file masking is there for three months.”

He added that the FCA had been clear over the last week, that the credit score break did not mean lenders would ignore the additional indebtedness when making affordability decisions.

“It is important that when a lender makes a future lending decision, they have an understanding of the overall indebtedness of a consumer,” he said.

“We’re being straight now”

McDonagh said: “That’s not answering my question.

“To the lay person with a mortgage, they were told in March that if they took a payment holiday it would not affect them in the future.

“It took the FCA three months to put onto the website that indeed it would be taken into account.”

Rathi, who joined the FCA as chief executive in October concluded: “I wasn’t there in March, but we are being straight with borrowers now.”

FCA extends mortgage payment deferrals to six months

With the new COVID-19 restrictions announced by the government, the FCA has disclosed that mortgage lenders will extend mortgage payment deferrals up to a maximum of 6 months.

With the new rules, mortgage borrowers who haven’t had a payment deferral can request one for up to 6 months.  Any borrowers who have already got a payment deferral of less than the maximum 6 months can request to extend that deferral.

The FCA has said that lenders will provide further information after 2nd November with details on how to apply for this support.

Lenders are providing many levels of support to help people through covid.

HMRC send 14,000 letters asking property sellers to review CGT

HMRC have sent out 14000 letters to property sellers that have sold a property and should have paid capital gains tax within 30 days.

They warn that if a return is late it will accrue interest on the late payment as well as a filing penalty.

These letters from the HMRC are asking people who have sold a residential property during the 2018/19 tax year to check if they owe Capital Gains Tax.

There hasn’t been much publicity about this new policy and the short amount of time you have to declare is catching people out.

This letter is designed to remind people of the new policy and give them the opportunity to amend their 2018/19 tax return or make a disclosure for this tax year. 

Needless to say, if you receive one of these letters make you sure you check and if necessary, get professional advice.

The main target of the letters is those who sold a property which may not have been their main residence.

It’s unusual for HMRC to carry out indepth checks of the information they hold so people can still receive these letters even if they qualify for CGT relief.

Buy to Let & Brexit

Brexit has caused uncertainty across many industries including the Buy to Let Investment Sector. Up to a third of property investors have not invested since 2017 when the official Brexit negotiations started.

The survey from Censuswide found that 60% of property investors have continued to invest since the 2016 Brexit referendum, others are thinking of investing and 17.1% are waiting until after Brexit before they invest again.

Most of the investors who took the survey think that the buy to let market will recover strongly over the next 3-5 years.

However, there are opportunities to be found now.  The uncertainty has created new below-market deals and although there is speculation as to what will happen to prices in the market with Brexit (or no Brexit) if you buy at the right price your investment should be protected.

As soon as the market starts to pick up finding those below market value investments can be made more difficult.

No-one knows whether Brexit will happen next month or not so the question for investors is how long are you planning to keep your investment for?

If you’re looking at 5-10 years on your buy to let investment, then why not invest now and start delivering returns?

We have some great deals and investments.  Check out our latest blogs for great investments in Sheffield and Bradford. 

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Thanks for reading

Jo Fox.

Great Central Development, Sheffield

Fantastic Investment Opportunity in Sheffield!

Knight Knox’s latest development, located at the strategic heart of the country in South Yorkshire. Sheffield is known nationally and internationally for its highly skilled workforce and quickly-growing business sector.

Sheffield is at the heart of the Sheffield City Region – the UK’s most centrally located region – and is one of the UK’s core cities which helps to drive the national economy.

More than 2.1 million people live within a 60-minute commute of Sheffield and provide a highly skilled workforce for the city’s world-class businesses and industries.

The Development

The 131 apartments at Great Central are spread over eight storeys and wrapped around a large landscaped courtyard. Private car parking is available on selected apartments and all residents will have access to secure bicycle storage.

Every apartment is designed to be bright and airy, and the large living spaces really set Great Central apart. Residents will benefit from a state of the art fitted kitchen and a modern bathroom, with some apartments also enjoying large balconies.

With a mixture of studio, one, two and three-bedroom apartments, Great Central is sure to be in high demand with renters. Each apartment will be fully furnished with a stylish finish. With Sheffield’s renaissance in full swing, Great Central is sure to be popular with the many people looking for high-quality accommodation in the city.

  • 131 apartments split into studio, one, two and three-bedroom.
  • Balconies with city views
  • Private landscaped courtyard for residents
  • Secure cycle storage and 20 parking spaces
  • Located next to the trendy Kelham Island District
  • Prices from £90,000
  • 25% on exchange plus 50% furniture, 10% 6 months after exchange (remaining 50% of furniture), remaining balance payable on completion
  • Developed by Qualis Developments, and managed by Intus Lettings

The Figures – Rent & Sale

  • Studios: £425 – £500 pcm (Update: Studios SOLD OUT)
  • One bed: £500 – £600 pcm
  • Two beds: £650 – £750 pcm
  • Three beds: £850+ pcm
  • Studios: £90,000 (Update: Studios SOLD OUT)
  • One bed: £95,000 – £120,000
  • Two beds: £150,000
  • Three beds: £250,000 – £280,000

Great Central – where is it?

  • 8-minute drive/15 minute walk to Sheffield city centre. Approximately 0.7 miles
  • Just a 5-minute walk from the Kelham Island area
  • Located opposite a charming waterside pub!

Less than a mile from Sheffield’s lively city centre and next to the vibrant Kelham Island, the city’s residential hub for young professionals, Great Central’s location is unrivalled and will offer tenants a high-end urban lifestyle near the banks of the River Don. There is a great range of amenities close to the development, as well as a popular local riverside pub and restaurant opposite, which offers stunning waterside views.


  • The proposed Sheffield Devolution Deal would give the region £1.3bn to spend within the region to improve infrastructure, transport, housing, skills and other drivers of the local business growth which powers the economy.
  • The Sichuan Guodong Construction Group (China) has committed to investing £1bn into Sheffield over the coming decades in a bid to change the face of the city centre.
  • The Olympic Legacy Park will provide a place for approximately 3,000 people to work, learn and research.
  • Development of a new Retail Quarter. This £480m development will create significant amounts of retail and office space, including regional headquarters for HSBC which is the anchor tenant for the scheme.

The Construction

A great development and opportunity for investors. There has been a lot of interest in this development.

If you would like more information please contact us. Click Here

Thanks for reading.


Sheffield, one of the UK’s fastest-growing and most exciting cities with an ever-growing need for private rental property.

The city is comparable to how Manchester was a few years back and has some amazing new investments, projects and figures to make this one of the investment hotspots in the UK.

More than £2.5BN is being invested in Sheffield over the next decade to continue the development of the city centre. A city which is already extraordinarily popular with businesses and young people will only continue to grow and become more vibrant.

It’s Advanced Manufacturing Park alone is home to more than 40 World Class Companies and the city is also home to household names such as Mclaren Automotive and Boeing UK.

Sheffield’s population is predicted to grow by almost 15% by 2035 and a link to HS2 has been proposed.

This growth in the city is expected to increase rents up to 22% over the next 5 years and to date, house prices have increased by nearly 30% in the last 5 years.

Invest Leeds see Sheffield as one the UK’s biggest investment hotspots and we have some exciting investment opportunities coming up.

Keep an eye out! Below is some more background and detail on this wonderful city and its investment potential.

Thanks for reading.

Jo Fox, Founder Invest Leeds.

St. Pauls Place

Sheffield, Facts, Stats and Interesting Things!

  • The UK’s most centrally located city region – at the hub of key road and rail networks.
  • 2.1 million people live within a 60-minute commute of the region making it England’s third-largest metropolitan region.
  • The population of the city itself is expected to increase by more than 75,000 in the next 25 years, an increase of almost 15%
  • Core sector strengths include advanced manufacturing, creative and digital industries, business services, logistics, low-carbon industries and healthcare technologies – much like Manchester
  • Home to world-leading manufacturing and engineering companies, including Boeing, Rolls-Royce, Tata Steel, Siemens VAI, Koyo Bearings, Bridon International, Pegler Group and Outokumpu.
  • Home to the strategic operations of major organisations such as HSBC, B Braun, Aviva, DLA, Polestar, Sandvik, IKEA, Amazon and ASOS.
  • Proximity to major UK business centres in Manchester, Leeds, Birmingham – and only two hours by train from London.
  • Britain’s most concentrated and popular higher education destination outside London, with 12 universities less than an hour away providing more than 313,000 students and 92,000 graduates per year.
  • Hosts engineering, technology and materials research centres of excellence at the University of Sheffield and Sheffield Hallam University.
  • Sheffield is the only UK city to have a national park within its boundary – and is home to the UK’s largest theatre complex outside London.
  • Highest ratio of trees to people of any city in Europe!
Sheffield City Tram

Chinese Investment

Last year the Chinese announced a £1bn investment into Sheffield which aimed to “change the face of the city”.

This is a 60-year commitment which is set to create “hundreds if not thousands of jobs” over that timeframe. An initial £220m will pay for four or five city-centre projects in the next few years and the work will go on from there.

The deal is between Sheffield City Council and Sichuan Guodong Construction Group, one of China’s largest developers.

They were drawn to Sheffield because of the strong university links the city has with China and the outstanding future potential. Sheffield steel and manufacturing is well known to the Chinese.

*Source Guardian

HS2 – Sheffield is a major stop on the HS2 route which will now run into the city centre on the way to Leeds. This will reduce journey times, encourage business and help drive growth.

*Source Star

Devolution – The devolution deal for Sheffield City Region has provided £1.3bn to be spent over the next 30 years on infrastructure, housing, transport, skills and other drivers of business growth.

Another aim of the deal is to create 70,000 jobs over the next decade.


Sheffield City

Advanced Manufacturing Innovation District – Sheffield knows itself as the city of makers and is reinventing its industries for the 21st century.

This new advanced manufacturing park is their equivalent of MediaCityUK and has similarly massive global tenants such as Rolls Royce, Boeing, McLaren, Toshiba, Tata Steel and Sheffield Forgemasters (see big companies section below for more info on some of the recent investments made by these companies). This Innovation District was built in partnership with the city’s two universities and is home to world-leading research and manufacturing in areas as diverse as aerospace, defence, transportation, nuclear, oil, gas and healthcare.

This district is based around the 200 acre Sheffield business park which has been seeing big investment over the last ten years and is a major driver of growth across the region and the North as a whole.

Enterprise zone – Sheffield has an enterprise zone on the M1 corridor which offers business rates relief, simplified planning conditions and a range of financial and infrastructure support from the council.

*Source – Welcome to Sheffield

Sheffield Retail Quarter – This is a world-class quarter being built in the city centre which will open up a huge amount of space for business. Construction is due to start soon and is set to be completed in 2019.

*Source – Sheffield Retail Quarter

Olympic Legacy Park – This is part of the Innovation District and will be home to internationally recognised research in health and education. When finished, it will provide a place for approximately 3,000 people to work, learn and research. This is being done by a partnership between the universities, the NHS and the City Council.

This is a £55m investment which covers 35 acres and is set to be finished in 2017. It took its inspiration from the Advanced Manufacturing District, much like how lots of things in Manchester have taken inspiration from MediaCityUK

*Source Olympic Legacy Park

Big companies which have invested in Sheffield recently

McLaren Automotive – McLaren has invested £100m into Composites Technology Centre, reshoring jobs in the UK in partnership with the universities which will create 200 jobs. Building their supercar chassis here. Part of the previously mentioned Advanced Manufacturing Innovation District.

*Source – SheffieldACUK

Boeing – Sheffield has been chosen as the site of Boeing’s first factory in Britain and will be investing £20m in a 25,000 sqft factory in the Advanced Manufacturing Innovation District. Parts for 737s and 777s will be made there when it opens in 2018. Boeing currently employs more than 2,300 staff in the UK so expansion of their manufacturing arm is likely and Sheffield will continue to benefit.

*Source – Telegraph

Sky Betting and Gaming – Recently pledged a further £3.5m investment in Sheffield which will create 160 jobs. Sky has extended its Sheffield premises three times since their office in Sheffield first opened which goes to show how good the city is for businesses

*Source – Insider Media

Jaywing – Jaywing is an international media company which is headquartered in Sheffield. A new HQ was built and opened this year called Albert Works which has kickstarted a wave of regeneration in the local area.

*Source – Insider Media

HSBC – HSBC has invested millions into Sheffield’s New Retail Quarter and is the anchor tenant for the scheme. The 15-year lease on a 140,000 sqft office indicates the confidence which the bank has in the city.

*Source – Welcome to Sheffield

Sheffield Forgemasters – This is a 177-year-old family-owned company which helped make Sheffield Steel famous around the world. They still have a big presence in the city and have recently made a £6.5m investment in a new precision machining centre in the city. As cheap steel from China and elsewhere gets dumped and pushes prices down, places like Forgemasters which do precision engineering are the only sort of heavy industry which will survive in this country. It is the type of business which is part of the fabric of the city.

*Source – Insider Media & the FT

Property in Sheffield

The average increase of property in Sheffield is 4% a year, confirmed by Rightmove.

Sheffield is one of the UK’s top ten most affordable cities to live in and is therefore extremely attractive to tenants looking to move away from more expensive cities like London, Manchester and Leeds.

*Source Estate Agent Today

Sheffield City Council has been applauded for its innovative approach towards building. The Sheffield Housing Company – a public and private collaboration – is building a lot of houses in areas which were previously run down which is helping to regenerate the city as a whole.

*Source The Guardian & Sheffield Housing Company

Invest Leeds see Sheffield as one the UK’s biggest investment hotspots and we have some exciting investment opportunities coming up.

Sheffield Apartment Development

If you need any further information about Sheffield or investing in property please do not hesitate to get in touch.

Thanks for reading.

Bradford Investment Opportunity

Modern Student Apartments

All apartments in the project are spacious, with the clever use of natural and electrical lighting, the apartments are light and airy, providing truly special homes. Communal areas will be provided, including a games room, common room, lounge and gym.

Apartments are available for just £49,000

The first stage of apartments are now completed and the remainder will be ready by October. Due to being a conversion, everything is new and covered by warranty, therefore no maintenance issues are expected.

The University

As well as a world-renowned university, Bradford campus also has a college, student village, Fieldhead Business Centre and Listerhills Science Park.

Bradford University enrolls 11,000 students annually and there is a shortage of good quality student accommodation in the area.

Bradford University is ranked 7th in the UK for Graduates Employment, many of these students chose to remain living in the city. As well as the broadcasting industry, the University has strong links with local business and offers courses which lead directly to qualification in a job, such as healthcare courses.                       

The Area

Bradford is a city of 350,000 and is situated in West Yorkshire, on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales National Park.

Bradford has several major employers, with many national companies making the city their home; including Morrisons, Yorkshire Building Society, Yorkshire Water, Santander Bank, JCT600, Safestyle UK, Hallmark Cards, Provident Financial and Seabrook Crisps.

Bradford is home to 2 FTSE companies, more than any other Yorkshire City.

The City is served by the M62 and M606 motorway, along with 2 City Centre Train Stations and a bus interchange linking Bradford to other parts of West Yorkshire and beyond. Leeds-Bradford International Airport lies to the north east of the city, giving international air links, as well as being home to Jet2 Airline.

Bradford has experienced great gentrification, with £75 million being awarded to the town, a number of City Centre iconic Buildings have been restored, the central £25 million “Bradford City Park” attracts visitors from across Yorkshire, the National Science and Media Museum brings visitors from across the UK and beyond.

The economy in Bradford is strong; once an industrial powerhouse now experiencing growth as part of the Northern Powerhouse, the economy is worth £9.5 billion, the 2nd largest in West Yorkshire, after Leeds. The economy in the wider Yorkshire region grew by 3.03% in the 12 months of Q2 2018 – Q2 2019.

The Numbers

Apartments are available for purchase at £49,000. They will rent out at £100 per week.

Expected yields are between 8-10%. No sourcing fees!

A great investment opportunity.

If you would like more information, please contact us here.

PPN Mastermind Sessions

A different format for PPN this month to give you even more!

This is your opportunity to kick-start/reboot/hit the ground running after the Summer holidays.

Whatever you’re doing in property, this event has experts that you can speak to directly, and not just for 5 mins at the end of the night.

Buy-to-lets, property finance and lettings are just some of the topics you can quiz experts in. And, if that’s not enough, you will have the opportunity to switch experts and learn even more.

I’ll be one of the Masterminds at this event covering Sourcing, Buy to Let and much more.

Imagine the impact you could have on your business if you just got the answer to your biggest challenge right now and how much you could get done before the end of 2019 by taking action right now.

Full details of who’s coming to Sheffield will be released on the PPN Page.

Tickets to this event are limited because as only a few people can sit with each expert, so do yourself a favour and secure your seat with an expert now!