With the April date for people being able to withdraw their pensions drawing close, self-made multi-millionaire property investor Glenn Armstrong is warning people thinking of withdrawing their pensions pots to invest in property that they risk a potential minefield.
Armstrong, who is a frequent advisor to other property millionaires on ways to improve their investment strategies, said: “Most people assume that you simply buy properties in the same way that you buy your own home - and then get a letting agent to rent them out for you,” says Armstrong. “But if you invest your pension that way you’ll very soon use up your capital and have very little income to show for it.”
“The average Buy-to-Let property requires a 25 per cent deposit and gives a return of only £200–250 of net income per month. And that’s if you know what you’re doing! So for an income of say £3,000 per month you’d need 15 to18 properties and £0.5 million just for the deposits.”
“What’s more,” warns Armstrong, “stories abound of nightmare tenants. Such tenants are very common and present a big risk to the future income from Buy-to-Let properties. Using a letting agent does not save you from such problems. You need to learn how to be a good landlord, how to comply with planning rules, building regulations, tenancy legislation and HMO (houses in multiple occupation) licencing.
Armstrong, (www.glennarmstrong.com) teaches property investment as an adjunct to his main businesses of property development and managing a portfolio of 243 of his own properties. He states: “I and other experienced property investors are seriously worried that people who, whether they like to be told it or not, are total amateurs and are set to take untold risks with their pensions and livelihood.
“Property investment is very risky. The sums of money at risk are very high - especially if you don’t know what you’re doing. Many people – sucked in by the media hype and the many TV programmes (which seriously mis-represent property development as being easy) are going to sleep-walk into property disaster with their pension money or get taken-in by rogue portfolio-building companies.”
“I’m not a Financial Advisor, said Armstrong “but for anyone thinking that they want to move their pension money into property I’d strongly recommend they talk to an IFA (independent financial advisor) about investing in property or leave it where it is. But make sure you’re talking to an IFA who him or herself invests in property to gain a realistic view.
“For those people that still desire to do their own investing then all I can say is learn, learn and learn more - before you spend a single pound on property. Better still, find yourself an experienced property mentor who knows what they’re doing – and by that I mean one who is successfully investing on a large scale themself.” Armstrong concluded.
“There are a number of property teachers out there of varying degrees of effectiveness. Some just teach, others like myself make our main income from property and then teach only the successful strategies that we have proved in our own portfolios. Property is a highly complex market place where investment strategies need to change on a very frequent basis in response to market fluctuations”.
You can find more information on learning about property investing at www.glennarmstrong.com
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