We are always taught to find houses for sale which are priced below the market value (BMV properties) or from motivated sellers.
This is all good but how many of us really do that?
That 90% of us rely on estate agents to help us with the deals and put forward reasonable offers with refurbishment costs in mind.
Whilst we may be giving cheeky offers, trust me they aren’t cheeky enough given the fact that 90% of us leave money in the deal.
Dare I say we definitely leave between £5000 to £10000 for even single buy to lets.
It’s hardly a MIMO deal (money in money out deal).
However, irrespective of MIMO deal or not our best shot should be to find those houses for sale which are below the market value.
And it turns out that you can indeed find either BMV properties or motivated sellers easily.
We have been able to list down about 95 houses for sale as potential deals across 8 months and with almost over 9 offers accepted and 7 of them completed with rest in progress.
In this post, I am going to list the techniques I used to fill my properties funnel with BMV houses for sale. I can say, I never had shortage of houses to view.
What Will You learn:
- The power of filters to shortlist below the market value properties or houses for sale
- Mind The Map: The power of map view with in online research
- One plugin that works with Rightmove to show price fluctuations (No, it isn’t propertybee)
- One Add-On that will find and highlight to you the motivated sellers in London
- Finding BMV properties from lettings section
Powerful Website Filters Resulting In Houses For Sale
Zoopla cannot be beaten when compared to other property listing websites when it comes to implementation of filters.
Let’s take a quick look at how you can maximize potential of filters to fill your sourcing funnel.
The Reduced Prices Filter:
The first filter I go through is “Most Reduced” filter in Zoopla. This filter will get you all the properties where the price has been reduced by some percentage.
It depends on what you can accept as a norm to add such properties to your list reduced in price.
I usually look for a minimum of 25% to 30% or higher reductions to add them into my funnel.
This will leave me room for negotiation resulting in at times up to 35% below market value based on refurbishment work required.
If you have a property that has good price reduction and also see that the day it was listed is 6 months ago, then you know this is from a good motivated seller.
It’s not just one filter but a combination of filters that are applicable to the property which determines if this is an opportunity or not.
The “Most Recent” Filter
The next filter I tend to look at is the “Most Recent” filter in Zoopla. The trick though is to view the properties from end of the listing when this filter is applied.
The last property in the recently listed properties is the oldest listed one. One should be looking for such houses for sale, which have been on the market for a while.
If the property has been there for over a year or so, then we know this property or the owner has an issue which needs a resolution.
Yes, you guessed it.
I look houses for sale which are a year or older to add into my property funnel.
This does not mean, I would not take into account a property which is 8 months old. It takes a bit of reading the description and if it’s a deal, I add it to my list.
The “Most Popular” Filter (My Favourite)
Yes, popular. In other words, most viewed properties. You may wonder, why would I go for the properties if they are popular and there are so many investors looking at them.
Here is the secret:
If a property has been viewed a number of times but hasn’t been sold OR is struggling for views, you know there is a problem and hence is a potential deal.
This is my favourite view. Do you know why?
You now have potential deals coming from both ends of the filtered list.
i.e. most viewed but not sold and, not viewed as much with two opposing ends of problems.
Not just that, you tend to get clear indications of problem statements from estate agents themselves too given that they are not sold despite the interest.
If you can provide a solution in such a case, you have an estate agent friend within no time.
I have to say, depending on area you will find views either in hundreds or thousands on the website. Anywhere between 700 to 1000 views on websites in 30 days is good for me in my investment area. You can keep an eye on what’s the average in your area and judge if it’s a deal or not.
It’s a potential deal depending on sales in the area as well. If the market is buoyant and the house isn’t being sold despite so many views then yes, it goes into your sourcing funnel.
The Ever Popular “Lowest Price” Filter:
Lowest price, the name itself gives it out. You get the properties with the lowest price listed at the top once you apply this filter.
This probably is my second favourite which fills my funnel when it comes to volumes based on price range.
But here is the real reason why I like this one:
Once you have listed the lowest price filter and updated your funnel with relevant low priced properties, then the fun starts.
I love to apply the price range between the mid to high range for a terraced type of properties and I segment anything that looks like a deal.
Mostly, either a touch of paint or simply kitchen or bathroom replace will do for such properties. I segment such properties into a list and view them to provide cheeky offers.
While I wish, I had MIMO deals in my portfolio, I always wanted momentum buying to accelerate growth. Such offers if accepted will be quick wins and ready to rent in no time.
One out of every 5 properties, I can accept to have such a quick win to keep momentum going. Remember it’s still a BMV property in your portfolio if not a MIMO.
Mind The Map:
Map view cannot be beaten:
When it comes to short listing properties based on list/grid/map views, nothing beats map view. Particularly, if you wish to do a quick price comparison of houses advertised in a single street or a town.
Keep clicking on the “Z” icons in zoopla mapview and quickly check prices of each property.
If you find one which is advertised at lower price than others then you have a potential deal to be added to your database.
Additionally its easy to list the schools, stores, parks and other public services with just a click around the properties.
Heatmap is a very powerful feature to identify properties price range classified from high to low via colour codes.
It’s a good way to identify the focus areas to invest in and if it meets the location to budget equation visually.
Plug-In For Rightmove (Nope, not property bee)
While Property Bee is a wonderful plugin, it always disappointed me crashing on the browser every second.
Property Tracker, it’s a plugin that helps identify the price variation on a property instantly adding colour coded arrow next to the price on Rightmove.
Each arrow indicates if the price has risen (red), fallen (green) or stayed the same (blue) since the day it was added to Rightmove.
By hovering the mouse over the arrow icon (refer picture below), you can see details of how the price has changed over time.
Downsides: It is a Chrome browser only extension.
Propcision – Finding Motivated Sellers In London
Now which investor does not dream to invest in London if you are able to find a motivated seller.
Everyone says, London is where you buy at asking price. Very True…
But, This Add-On could help change that:
The Propcision Add-on seamlessly plugs into a user’s internet browser. When the user browses properties through Rightmove, Propcision will automatically display vital property fundamentals such as:
- Traffic Light Indicator for Price Comparison
- Suggested Asking Price
- Price-a-Rater ranking: A ranking of the price between 1 and 10 with 10 being an exceptional bargain.
- Stamp Duty
- Estimated Rental Income based on property characteristics and location
- Rental Yield
- Short-term/Holiday Rental Income based on Airbnb listings having similiar property characteristics and area
- Flag for motivated sellers based on our Algorithms
- New Features Rolled Out Frequently
It actually indicates the price adjusted and also points out a traffic light system to say the degree of motivation seller comes with to sell the property.
Its a powerful plugin but I hope the developers of the add on can extend it to further areas in UK soon.
Houses For Sale From Letting’s Section
Ever wondered if you could even list properties into your database by searching for houses to let in your investment area?
Look for properties on lettings on Rightmove or Zoopla which
- appear tired and could do with cosmetic refurbishment
- advertised at lower than market rents
- havent been let out for over 6 months
Check out with letting agent if the landlord would be interested to sell the property. Now that you have called the letting agent anyway, check if there are any landlords who are looking to sell their property or portfolio.
You may not get many with this option.
If you get one then note that you are the only one pursing this opportunity.
You are able to twist this into conversations with agent and landlord to do a Rent to Rent or a lease option if they are not ready to sell.
There are BMV properties at any given point of the year if you are keen and have the mindset to look for them. If you use above methods to populate a database with consistency then the deal database will have more houses for sale than you ask for.
If you think you have more houses for sale in your database than what you want, then its time to narrow down your search criteria. Narrow it down until you reach an optimal level of deals in the database.
Happy house hunting.