Why joining the Property Investors’ Academy was THE perfect birthday present
As a 50th birthday present for himself structural engineer David Taylor enrolled on a Property Investors Crash Course and then joined the Academy. It turned out to be the perfect gift. Recently, he secured a ‘no money down’ deal with a £1.4m Gross Development Value. During lockdown he has also been setting up a string of other high-earning investments combining multiple strategies.
I’ve been making my clients millionaires – now it’s my turn!
David has spent all his working life in the construction industry. He started in his father’s fabrication company the day after he left school aged 15. He had few qualifications, other than being able to work with his hands. Later, David went back to night school to study for an A level in maths so that he could become an engineer.
Now a partner in a firm offering consultancy services to the building sector, David has a wealth of experience in property. Despite this, he had never invested in the housing market before meeting Samuel Leeds.
As David puts it: “I’ve been doing it for my clients for years, making them millionaires, but never for myself!”
That all changed when his wife Michelle asked him what he wanted for his landmark birthday. He told her about the crash course, and they watched Samuel’s YouTube videos.
The weekend event coincided with his birthday and they both signed up immediately for the Deal Finding Extravaganza. It was his wife who then encouraged him to become a member of the Property Investors Academy, believing he would do well because of his background.
Her faith was soon repaid. His first deal came about after he spotted a development opportunity on a piece of land.
“I got speaking to the land agent who unbeknown to me had actually bought the land himself. He said, ‘do you think we could build houses on it. I said certainly. I’ve been doing this for years for all my clients.
“We found an investor to put up the funds. Then I spoke to a local builder I knew and decided to set up a joint venture construction company to build three detached houses. It has a GDV of £1.4m and a return on investment of 35 per cent which is about £450,000. The building work is due to start in the next couple of weeks.”
‘Think no money down deals don’t exist? Think again!’
Samuel says there are people who think ‘no money down’ deals do not exist. David, however, has proved how wrong they are.
“People who say that are not right. I haven’t invested a penny of my own money, just my time, so I’m happy. It’s a very good deal for me. Somebody else is putting in money, but he’s making the biggest profit.”
As well as pulling off a ‘no money down’ deal, David has successfully completed other types of investments, again using the knowledge gained from the Property Investors Academy.
He and his wife own a house in Blackpool which is currently being renovated. They bought it for £51,000 and are spending £10,000 on doing it up. They found it through two fellow academy members who now source and sell deals to investors.
David initially intended to turn the property into a buy-to-let, which would have grossed about £300 a month, or to simply do it up and sell it on at a profit of £22,000.
But then he attended the Rent-to-Rent Revolution course and learned about serviced accommodation.
“When I thought about where the house was situated in Blackpool, and redid my figures on it, I realised it would make a cracking SA. It was a no brainer. I’m expecting it to make a profit of about £1,500 a month. That’s based on a 75 per cent occupancy rate which is realistic.”
They bought the property using their own cash and plan to remortgage it once the work is finished. This will cost them £149 a month. The refinance valuation has come back at £83,000. With no rent to pay to a landlord, it works even better as an SA, says David.
Alongside his consultancy job, he is also now running a property business with his wife. Together they have added a rent-to-SA in nearby Lytham St Annes to their portfolio. David is confident they can achieve a rent of £200 to £250 a night as the two-bedroom villa apartment is in a more affluent area.
“I got a phone call offering it as a joint venture. When I looked at the numbers it was a straightforward yes. Michelle also looked at the figures and agreed. It has its own private gated entrance with two private parking spaces, and you can land a helicopter on the front lawn. It’s right on the seafront.”
They have been unable to rent it out due to the coronavirus pandemic, but with the easing of the lockdown restrictions hope to make it ‘live’ in three to four weeks’ time. Their anticipated net profit per month is £1,000.
Refusing to let lockdown put the brakes on deals
David and Michelle have been busier than ever during lockdown, despite being unable to view properties due to the restrictions imposed in March to halt the spread of coronavirus.
Instead they have focused their efforts on identifying land with development potential, including places where a house could be built in a back garden or driveway.
The pair found one end-of-terrace house being sold at an online auction for £90,000. With a further investment of £30,000, they calculated that two terraced houses could be built in the driveway, each generating £145,000. But when it got to the auction, they discovered it had already been sold beforehand.
“That would have been a massive deal but, as Samuel teaches, you have to discipline your disappointments,” says David.
More deals are in the pipeline, including an option to buy a two-bedroom house in Burnley with two receptions rooms which could be converted into a four-bed house share. It would work as a buy-to-let, but as an HMO it could quadruple their revenue.
David is also negotiating for options to buy three parcels of land with the intention of seeking planning permission for light industrial units which could be sold or rented.
“We always put an option first on the land because the planning process is quite involved and then split some of the profit with the landowner, rather than buying it and taking the risk,” he explains.
The Deal Selling Mastery course also opened his eyes to the possibility of earning fees from finding, packaging, negotiating and selling deals to investors. They became compliant sourcers in February 2020 and are now looking to build an investor list.
And through his networking, David has secured another major deal from an academy member to create a 13-bed HMO. The work will be carried out by the joint venture construction company David set up at the start of his property journey. The same firm will also be undertaking a pub conversion.
“We’ve also got some industrial units which we’re going to build for ourselves. It’s turned into about £1.8m worth of work just in eight months.”
I will recoup my academy membership fee ‘many times over’
David expects to cover his Property Investors Academy fee from his serviced accommodation in Blackpool alone.
“My first deal will also do that twofold. I’ve had such great value from the academy. I’ve made so many friends. It’s been fantastic. The academy is a family of people. Everybody wants to do well, and everybody helps each other. You can network and people ring each other up all the time. There’s also support from Samuel and the other main trainers. I’ve never messaged anybody and not had a response. I still ask questions and I’m happy to help people as well.”
He has also started working his way through the online version of the Deal Selling Masterclass.
“With that version I can keep going back and watching it which is useful if you miss a key bit. The live version is good too because you can’t just hide. You’ve got to do it. You’re in a group and everyone helps each other.”
David’s motivation when joining the academy was to not just create wealth for himself and his wife, but also to leave a legacy for his children. He wants to build a portfolio which they in turn can pass down to future generations.
He advises anyone wanting to follow in his footsteps to attend the Property Investors Crash Course. “You’ve got to experience it to understand it. You get shown enough to be able to make a deal and then obviously there are other strategies to learn. I wouldn’t be sat here now if I hadn’t gone to the crash course. It’s a mindset thing as well because you are physically doing everything, ringing agents, booking viewings and actually going out and doing it.”
David answers some frequently asked questions
Other academy members frequently pick David’s brains because of his experience. These are some of the typical questions he is asked:
Q: What is a permitted development?
A: Some work can be carried out without the need for planning permission, such as a single-storey extension with a maximum height of three metres at the rear of a property. It has to be a certain distance away from buildings.
Q: How do you value a piece of land?
A: A good starting point is to look at the Local Plan and assess what type of permitted development would be allowed there. That effects the value. If, for example, you find a small plot of land in a residential area which you can build on, you’re almost guaranteed planning permission because you’re not building on a greenbelt area. You also need to research comparable land prices. I recommend you get back-up from a RICS surveyor before making an offer.
Q: What makes property exempt from Stamp Duty?
A: For mortgage purposes the main definition is that the property has no hot running water or no central heating. If the boiler doesn’t work and can’t be easily repaired, and you have to have a new boiler installed, it is unmortgageable at that point, so it becomes uninhabitable. Your solicitor has to log that with HMRC. Severe damp is another reason for it being uninhabitable.
The verdict from Samuel Leeds
‘I’ve been so impressed with what David has achieved since attending the crash course in July 2019. When he came on the academy, he wasn’t aware of serviced accommodation and the different strategies you can use to make money from property. He’s managed to combine them really well.”
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