Find UK Property – Pros & Cons
- Great Returns – 6% for the first 3 years (5% or more after)
- Property Ownership – you own the property outright. It’s yours. Not a P2P loan or partial investment.
- Hands-off Investment – Find UK Property take care of everything and pay you a guaranteed 6% return on investment.
- Lazy Investor – own buy-to-let property without the hassle of becoming a landlord.
- High Cost of Entry – initial investment starts at £70k. That’s for a whole house that you own outright.
- Higher Initial Purchase Price – properties cost a little more for initial purchase. Renovations need to be completed & properties brought up to rental standard.
- 6% Guaranteed for First 3 Years Only – minimum 5% guaranteed after (although with standard inflation increases usually still 6%+).
- Investment Only Properties – these houses are located in areas where rental return is the greatest, so they may not be somewhere you would want to live or have a holiday property.
Initial review of Find UK Property (FindUKProperty.com) buy-to-let investment property company.
I was referred by a reader of my website to a company called “Find UK Property”. Although I am a relatively new investor with the company, I decided to write this Find UK Property review early as I have done several months of research on the company to bring me to this point. When I first heard about the company, there was very little information about them out there on the web, even though they have been around for over 10 years. So I thought I would publish my findings to help anyone else starting out in the same position.
What is “Find UK Property”?
Find UK Property is a company which specializes in packaging buy-to-let property investments for investors looking for turnkey, hands-off investment in UK buy-to-let rental property, with a guaranteed rental income and the opportunity for capital growth.
They offer low cost investment properties to passive investors from the UK and all over the World. All of the properties are located in 28 towns in North East and North West of England, and are either already rented out to tenants, or will be rented out before they are offered for investment.
Find UK Property offers a complete package, they find properties, renovate them, then sell them on to investors along with a complete property management solution offering a low-hassle, hands-off investment opportunity with a guaranteed 6% rental income. Clients simply buy properties and benefit from long term guaranteed rental income and capital property growth. It doesn’t matter if the property is rented out all of the time, or if it needs renovation, Find UK Property take care of it all and you receive 6% of your investment whatever. No extra costs ever after initial purchase.
The company has been around for over 10 years and they currently manage 2,000+ houses for over 1,000 clients.
Easy-Info Table© – Find UK Property Review
|Overall Rating*:||(4.8 / 5)|
|Who can invest:||Anyone from any country.|
|Estimated Return:||6% guaranteed, 5% guaranteed after initial 3 years (avg 6%+)|
|Target Annual Return |
|My Calculated XIRR:||Awaiting Data|
|Risk Rating*:||2/10 - Low|
|Early Exit:||After first 3 years with 6 months notice you can
sell property as normal property sale.
|Deposit Funds:||Payment for property by bank transfer (through solicitor).|
|Lending To:||N/A - Property owned fully by investor.|
|Security:||Property owned fully by investor.|
|Default Rates:||None. Rent payments always paid on time.|
|Provision Fund:||Find UK Property guarantees rent payments through company funds.|
|Time to Invest:||After property selection, 5-6 weeks to complete.|
|Time to Mange:||None after initial property purchase.|
|Extra Fees:||None after £999 initial purchase costs (solicitor transfer fees). There may be
stamp duty payable for some people depending on individual circumstances.
After the first year there is also £99 per year for insurance.
|Payments Received:||Interest payments are received quarterly.|
|Properties Under Management:||2,000+|
|Number of Investors:||1,000+|
|Dflt Stats:||N/A - None.|
|Regulated:||Standard regulation for realtors & rental agencies.|
|Location:||HQ - Burnley, UK.|
|Launched:||Incorporated 12 June 2007|
|Telephone:||+44 1282 882424 (UK)|
|Cashback/Discount:||Yes! £200 Discount (for new customers/referrals only)
email me for discount code
|How to Sign Up**:||email Sales for info.|
How Does it Work?
The first thing you would need to understand is how the whole opportunity is structured as it’s not immediately obvious when you look on the FindUKProperty.com website. I believe they do it this way to try and simplify things for prospective clients. When I asked a few questions to Tariq (one of the founders) he was very forthcoming with all and any information I asked for. From day one I felt like everyone I dealt with at the company were transparent and honest.
Find UK Property are the company that puts packaged buy-to-let investment options together for clients who are looking for a hands-off investment opportunity. Find UK Property is actually a trading name (T/A) for International Property Specialists Limited.
Sell UK Property is part of the same group (and owned by family members). They offer sellers a quick cash sale for their house (obviously at a discount). Find UK Property have several ways to acquire properties, this one of them. They also have a company called Colossus Property which they use to buy properties from retail (Zoopla.com, RightMove.com listings etc.). So the main ways Find UK Properties acquire their buy-to-let properties is either through Sell UK Property, Colossus Property, or they buy properties at auction.
Find UK Property then oversea the remodel of the property (using in-house builders and/or subcontractors) bringing the house up to rental standards and getting it ready to let to long term tenants.
Once ready for rent, they use another (related) partner company Rent UK Property to advertise the properties and acquire the tenants.
Find UK Property also use other partners & subcontractors to do some of the main day-to-day running of the property, including maintenance, taking care of tenant problems, collections etc. Find UK Property manage the whole process. You can see on Zoopla that they usually have 50+ houses for rent (mostly Find UK Property client houses).
Once the property is fully rented, it is sold as a buy-to-let investment to the client. The client owns the property fully and outright in their name (or whatever entity they choose to purchase the property with, company, trust etc.) and Find UK Property are listed as the caretaker of the property so if there are any problems with licenses, councils, taxes, associations etc., the notices go to them rather than the client.
Basically Find UK Property become your tenant and are responsible for paying you your 6% per annum rent. It’s not your problem if the actual tenant doesn’t pay, Find UK Property are responsible for paying you. So far in 10 years they have never missed a payment to a client.
Properties are then “standardized” in to 8 different pre-packaged variations to make the selection process easier based on customers requirements and budgets. This standardization means that property values are not exact, some are a little more, some are a little less than fair market value. The 6% rent is always paid on your initial investment amount for the first 3 years whatever.
Find UK Property oversee the whole process from start to finish, then they oversee the property management at a high level, paying for maintenance and any renovations that need doing out of their profit. The 6% rental income to the client is guaranteed whether or not the property is rented, or if the tenant doesn’t pay (or whatever else happens), for the first 3 years (contract cannot be canceled & property cannot be sold in that time without prior agreement from both parties). Find UK Property take a cut of the tenant paid rent to cover maintenance expenses (and make their profit). The typical yields on these types of properties in these areas are from 7%-9%. Plus they make a margin on the renovation and sale of the property initially.
One thing that’s important to point out here is when the property is first purchased and it is renovated, it’s going to be at the high and of values for that type of house. You’re not going to get a newly renovated deal at way under the going property price for the area as Find UK Property need to make money just like any company. I was ok with this as I’m interested in the guaranteed 6% income and as long as the property is worth around what I paid for it, I’m ok. UK House prices have always increased very well over time so by the time I need to sell it, I’ll guess it’s worth a lot more than I paid for it, plus I’ve had the 6% income for all the time I will have owned it of course.
After the first 3 years, the client can choose to take control of the property & manage it themselves, sell it, live in it, or stick with the guaranteed rental system from Find UK Property, however the guaranteed income drops to 5% as at that point, there are often larger renovations and fixes that need to be done in order to keep the property rentable and up to UK rental standards. Rental income is then reviewed at the end of each year and increased (never decreased) based on inflation and rental income from the tenant and current property valuation. From current clients I’ve spoken too, it still averages around 6% typically and increased with inflation.
Why Invest in UK Property in the North of England?
When looking at buy-to-let properties purely for investment, there are two return factors to take into consideration. One is rental yield, and the other is capital growth.
UK Property prices all across the UK have averaged around 7.5% capital growth since the second world war (actually for about the last 100 years). Properties double in value about every 10 or 11 years. Capital growth is very similar across the UK over the long term. Recently the South of the country has done very well seeing double-digit returns, whereas the North has seen less.
Over the next 10-20 years, the North of the country is expected to do better as remote workers move away from the larger cities in search of less urban environments. Overall, in the long term, property value growth all averages out (or has done historically) at about 7.5% per annum. You can see below on the graphs since 1975 that although properties are at different values, on average, growth is around the same over the long run.
If you want to see how these figures look over time on a graph, you can go to the UK Land Registry and see for yourself.
You can also see on the graph below the average property price in the North vs the South of England (click for interactive).
Notice how prices in the South are almost double the North? The growth rate is similar over time, but the prices are much less in the North.
With the UK population ever increasing, and new build houses not even getting close to demand, I personally don’t see UK property prices slowing down anytime soon, and if they do, they likely won’t be long before they take off again. From what I can see, I think property prices in the North are ready to accelerate.
As working from home has become more acceptable since COVID19, I believe people will start to look North to where they can buy property for less, and own their own home. People who can’t afford the down-payment for their own property, or can’t get a mortgage for some reason, will likely need to rent, which again is of benefit to UK property investors.
The other factor of investment property return is rental yield. Because of the lower property prices in the North of the UK, and the fact that the general population salary is less, there is more call for rental so rental yields tend to be higher.
Gross Rental Yield is the annual rent income divided by the value of the property expressed as a percentage. Example; If you buy a property for £100,000 and get £8,000 rent per year. Then the gross rental yield is 8%. The map above shows the gross rental yield on houses in different areas of the UK. Gross Rental Yield varies greatly depending on rental demand and property pricing in each area. You can see that the North West and North East of England deliver the best rental yields as property prices are still very low and the rental demand is strong.
So as you can see, if Find UK Property stick to the 28 towns they target in specific areas in the North of England, they can achieve better gross rental and make money, while still guaranteeing investors a 6% rental income no matter what.
Is Find UK Property Too Good to be True?
That’s the first thing I thought when I initially started looking at them. I was referred to them by a long time reader of my website who suggested that I could do with some UK income property in my investment portfolio, he had been using them for several years and was happy with the results.
It’s not the first time I’ve toyed with this idea, but the idea of dealing with rentals and becoming a landlord was just not something that excited me as I have rented out properties in the past and basically it’s a pain in the rear for the return. When I heard of how Find UK Property works as a turnkey, hands-off investment solution returning 6%, I had to start and do some research.
Is Find UK Property Legitimate? – Research & Due Diligence
The first thing I did of course was Google “Find UK Property Review” which brought up very little. There were some hits from people on various forums asking about them from 5 or 6 years ago, and the same client giving information a couple of years later, but nothing much more as far as written reviews, or even anything on TrustPilot.co.uk. No recommendations, no reviews, no complaints, nothing! You will find reviews on TrustPilot.co.uk now as I suggested to them they should ask clients to review them as it will help their business.
I looked at Companies House and the company has filed accounts (but the company name is actually International Property Specialists Ltd T/A Find UK Property, which is OK). They have filed all accounts but are not a large company by any means.
Then if you look at the main guy there (Dr. Tariq Mohammed) you’ll see that he’s currently a Director of 3 different companies, however in the past he’s been involved with about 20 companies! Some which have been dissolved, some liquidated, and some where he resigned. RED FLAGS ALL OVER THE PLACE!
Email from Tariq – Director
So at this point I thought I’d write Dr. Tariq an email, tell him my concerns, and let him explain (if he wanted to) the history. I honestly didn’t expect a reply, but low and behold I got a reply, and a personal, detailed one at that. It was very interesting. Here’s the readers digest;
Tariq’s family were the folks that started and ran Time Computers in the UK back in the late 80’s & 90’s (most UK folks over 40 years old will likely remember this company or one of the companies it bought like Tiny Computers etc.). In fact the other companies which are involved in property now are mostly based on Time Business Park in Burnley, Lancashire which is still owned by Tariq’s family.
Most of the companies Tariq was involved with were related to Time Computers and were all finished with by the early 2000’s (I went back to Companies House and sure enough, this is true). I actually managed to dig this up which is an article on Tariq from back in 1995 which talks about how he & his brother were involved in setting up Time Computers. So, he is a real person with a history I thought.
Tariq explained a few other bits to me in his email (which I’ll go over later) but one thing he suggested was that I watch a few of the shows from the well known UK series “Homes Under the Hammer”, 5 of which featured Tariq’s company and how they buy & renovate properties. I took the time and watched all of them, and I was duly impressed. I’m figuring here that the BBC wouldn’t typically do a series including a scam company.
Tariq also suggested I watch a video he put together which explains everything about how his company works, which again I found very interesting and informative. Worth an hour of your time if you’re at all interested in this type of investment.
After receiving Tariq’s email, it calmed a few of my fears so I carried on digging.
On the FindUkProperty.com website they have a Testimonials area where they list quotes from clients who have purchased properties from FindUKProperty.com. So I started using my superior digging skills (ok, just Googling) the people on there. It appears they are all real people with real lives. I have actually communicated with a couple of them, who have nothing but good things to say about Find UK Property.
One gentleman spent almost an hour with me on the phone going over how he started back in 2013 and now he has 3 houses, and he’s never had a problem. This really helped me as there is nothing better than an unsolicited 3rd party referral in my view.
I also checked on some of the professional and government organizations they said they are part of, and they all checked out.
- A licensed member of National Association of Estate Agents. Their Licence Number is M0189573
- Licenced with the Property Ombudsman TPOS – Number: D7083
- Licenced Follower of the OFT Code. Customers can have the confidence of knowing that they will be dealing with a company that has undertaken to treat them fairly if problems arise, and deliver customer service standards that go beyond minimum legal requirements. The code is now replaced with a Trading Standards code.
– Registered with Companies House UK Registration Number 06276610 – International Property Specialists Ltd
- All staff hold as a minimum the Award in Residential Property Sales from NFOPP – The Federation of Property Professionals.
- Award Winning Agency: One of their staff members was officially recognised by NFoPP as achieving the highest marks amongst all UK Estate Agents in 2012.
- They are registered with Data Protection Registrar of the UK Information Commissioner – Enter Registration Number Z2057635. Other brand names they own are listed but they only trade as Find UK Property.
- They have to comply with legal requirements on how they treat data such as personal information including passport copies and id information. Be aware they they are pretty through with the ID checks but nothing you probably haven’t had to do before (passport, address verification etc.).
Video Call with Tariq – Director of Find UK Property
All of the digging above was done over several months, not just overnight. By the time I got to this stage, I had found nothing that was a complete no-go so I decided to take Tariq up on an offer he made to do a video call over Zoom.
The call lasted for about an hour and Tariq was very patient and had a reasonable answer for all and any questions I asked. Not every answer was positive, however the main thing was I felt like he was telling the truth and being fully transparent about the service his company offered.
Taking the Plunge – Buying My First Property
So at this point I felt like I had to give it a try. I couldn’t see how it could be a scam, all of the information pointed the needle to the “good” side of the dial. My thinking was, as long as I get full ownership and title of the property, I still own the asset, so even if everything else goes pear-shaped, I shouldn’t lose everything. I emailed Tariq (this was a few days after the video call) and said I was ready to reserve a spot.
There is a good demand for the service that FindUKProperty.com offers so after signing the reservation form and paying the £3,000 deposit, I was expecting to wait for 5 or 6 weeks before I got access to any properties. Luckily it turned out it was only about 4 weeks when I got the first set of property sheets delivered.
There were 33 properties in total to choose from so I started digging until I found one I liked the looks of.
I went for an H8 property (their most expensive) as this is the property that made most sense to me for a number of reasons, plus I wanted to get a good amount of capital invested. I liked the idea of a 3 bedroom semi for the first one as I feel like it would attract longer term renters (more affluent families perhaps). Not that it matters if everything Find UK Properties offers holds up, but just in case, better to have something easily rentable I thought.
The house is situated in a smaller town in the north of England (near Durham). I did some research on the town and it seems like a normal smaller ex-mining town. Houses in the area are kept nice, gardens taken care of (a sign there are a lot of hard working owners in the area who take pride in their living area). Houses on the street seem to sell quite fast when they come up for sale too (info from Zoopla.com & RightMove.com) which is a good sign.
Research on My First Buy-to-Let Property – Find UK Property Review
When I started to look at comps for the area, I thought the price they were asking at H8 level was quite high. I wrote to the person from FindUKProperty.com I was dealing with at this stage (Gary) and he was very helpful. He told me exactly what they had paid for it (and the price the previous owner was asking for it), what it was going to cost to renovate, bring up to rental standards etc.
I did some more digging and everything Gary had said I was able to verify. I found an archive listing on Zoopla for the property from April 2022 with the asking price Gary told me the property was listed at. Although it takes about 6 months for properties to show up at the UK Land Registry, I called and was able to convince a person there (smooth talk) to verbally verify the price Colossus Property (a related Find UK company) had paid and that was correct too. Also all paperwork was correct and normal.
I was also able to pull Title Plan, and Summary of Title from the UK Land Registry Online (£3 each) which also gave more information on the property. To top it off, Gary was also good enough to send me the searches they did on the property (these were done again for me independently by the solicitor upon purchase). I blanked out the address on the search for obvious reasons.
The price that Find UK Property were asking (based on their set levels of property) was still high for the area, but just a bit more now I had all the information. The property was larger than the comps for the area, and in better condition (& this was before renovation). The property already had renters in it, but they were due to move out at the end of the month, at which time the renovation would take place. There is significant cost involved in getting a house up to standard for renting out on a long term basis in the UK and keeping it there, these costs are also included in the total price.
After all the research, I decided I was ok with the overall price being a bit higher than the average value for the area. If I was having to do all of this myself, it would definitely cost much more, plus my time and having to hire professionals who know what they’re doing to check this house.
Find UK Property guarantee the property & the rent while it is under their supervision, even if tenants are not paying, or when there is a transition period between tenants leaving, and finding new tenants. They also do ongoing repairs & renovations (between tenants) to keep the properties to their set standard. All of this takes time and money if you are trying to be a landlord yourself, not to mention the hasstle.
Side Note: I think if you were very savvy in the property business, had time to purchase properties yourself, had contacts for builders, plumbers, electricians etc., and had the time & inclination to manage and maintain properties yourself, deal with tenants, collect rent etc., you could probably make more money overall. That is absolutely NOT what I wanted though, so a fixed 6% income, and full ownership of the property (providing access to capital growth over the long term and full asset security) I’m happy with.
When taking into consideration everything that’s offered through the Find UK Property programme, I felt that paying a little bit more for a newly renovated house was worth it. All of the research I had done was telling me the company just takes care of everything without bothering the investors, and that was exactly what I was looking for. The 6% is paid on the price you pay for the property, so I’m ok with it. Property prices in the UK always go up over time, so after the first 3 year period, if I did want to sell the property, it would likely be worth a bit more than I paid for it anyway, plus I’ll have had 3 years worth of income.
Whenever I make a new investment, I always try to hope for the best, but plan for the worst, so I map out all of the risks I can think of and what would happen worst case scenario.
Find UK Property Goes Out of Business – this of course could happen. However the risk is quantifiable in that the property is owned outright by me, so as the owner (or in some cases the administrator, if company fails) will be able to pass the management of the property to other companies using standard estate agency lettings terms.
It would be an inconvenience as then I would need to follow the standard system and I would no longer have the “guaranteed” hands-off approach Find UK Property provide. I wondered how much it would cost in real terms & from what I could estimate based on available information out there, it could be around £3,500 per property to get it set up with another agent.
UK Property Prices Crash – there has been some talk around this as prices have accelerated like crazy over the 2 years of the COVID pandemic because the UK government gave a stamp duty holiday (no tax) on investment property purchase to help the economy stay afloat. Also as interest rates are rising now (to try and combat inflation), mortgages are becoming more expensive. So what if this does happen? Unless I needed to sell the property soon (which would mean I take a loss obviously), I figure people still need places to live, so the rent shouldn’t be affected too much. And if inflation keeps going up, after the first 3 year period, so would the rent payments increase.
When inflation finally curbs, there is a good chance at that point the country will be in recession, so the government will start to lower rates again, which will increase property prices as mortgages will become more affordable again. Either way, people will always need somewhere to live, and in the UK the population is increasing at a much higher rate than new properties are being built, so I doubt any downturn will last too long.
Find UK Property Don’t Treat Me Fairly After the First 3 Year Term – what if inflation takes off, but the company don’t increase the rent like they promise, or don’t take care of the house as they say they will in the agreement? What if they stop making rent payments? Then I’ll give them notice, and take back the house and pass it to another letting agent per the fist point above.
I own the house outright so it is my prerogative if I see fit. This is really not something I worry about though as everything tells me they are in this business for the long run. Being 10 years in already with no complaints from clients (that I can find) kind of makes that obvious.
The House Burns Down or Gets Trashed by Tenants – This is all on Find UK Property to sort out, but just in case, after the first year I will buy insurance in my name (as a second layer of protection) for £99 per year which will cover these issues should Find UK Property not live up to their side of the deal (it’s included in the price for the first year). There are obviously other insurances you can buy too if you so desire.
Summary – Find UK Property Review
The extent of research I have done on Find UK Property is second to none in any investment I’ve made so far. This is obviously because of the value of the initial investment (Minimum £67k, I did the more expensive H8 ). It took me over 4 months of research, over 200 emails back and fourth, and several telephone calls to get comfortable enough to do business with Find UK Property. This along with company searches, calls with current customers, and background checks on directors. Call me obsessive, but I don’t like to lose money 🙂
I’m still in the early stages of buy-to-let investing with Find UK Property, but so far, so good. If everything continues this way for the next few months, I’ll be looking for my second property. I can envision having a good size portfolio of this type of investment in the north of England over the next few years if everything pans out as expected.
Signup, Discount & Cashback Links – Find UK Property Review
Signup is a manual process as UK law states that before they can sell you a property or send you any properties to look at, they’ll need to check your ID (just a scanned copy). If you click here you can start communication with the Director of the company (Tariq) directly. Tariq is really patient & down to earth, and will answer any questions you may have. Please mention you found them on ObviousInvestor.com.
If you do decide to seriously look at Find UK Property for buy-to-let property investment, email me and I’ll send you a referral code which will give you £200 discount (for new customers/referrals only). Not huge on the overall price of a house, but better than a poke in the eye with a stick.
If you are seriously looking at an investment with Find UK Property, please quote the referral code up front to get the discount. If you are already in their database without quoting the referral code, you won’t be classed as a new referral and therefore won’t be eligible for the discount.
I also just wanted to mention here that the Find UK Property folks also have a company called openshoreproperty.com which offers a similar service in Dubai. This is not something I am personally interested in as I like the regulation on properties in the UK, but if you are, then have at it.
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