A new online platform that provides an instant mortgage and ready-to-move-in tenants is giving investors the chance to become landlords overnight.
The scheme is being launched in Manchester and Liverpool and, the founders of Dot Residential say it “means anyone can become a professional landlord,” allowing them to get on the property investment ladder.
Dot Residential says they work by creating a “wrapper” around the property by setting up a limited company that a landlord would own the property through, allowing the investor to pay corporation tax at 20%.
Gray Stern, co-founder and chief executive of Dot told the Financial times: “We take all the time and friction out of it so you can get on with your life.”
This approach helps circumnavigate some of the buy-to-let regulatory changes that have been introduced in recent years which has seen a rise in landlords investing in property through a limited company in order to reduce the effects of changes to tax relief.
Investors in Under Dot put down a deposit of 30% and can complete quickly on a Dot mortgage, which the company describes as “more like asset-based lending” – the loan carries an interest rate of 4.99%.
Dot works buy bulk-buying properties at a discount from a developer which they then furnish to a high spec. The landlord must pay for the furnishings upfront, which can cost as much as £5,000. But Mr Stern said landlords would make the money back through higher rents and fewer empty periods.
Manchester and Liverpool have become renting hotspots in recent years, with rents in Manchester for a two-bed apartment commanding around £1,200-£1,400 a month. Dot hopes to ride the wave of this boom with properties aimed at the young professionals who are the foundation of this upsurge.
Dot is currently budgeting for four weeks of void periods a year and says it aims to fill these through Airbnb or company short-term lets.
The company will charge landlords £500-£1,000 a year for filing accounts and other compliance. Service charges will be at least 10% of the rent.