Phil Spencer shared his “biggest” mistake in property that lost him thousands of pounds in profit in a recent column.
Mr Spencer explained to readers that he identified an opportunity to flip a property large enough to be divided into two, which could then be sold at a higher price.
Writing in his Telegraph column, the Location Location Location presenter said: “Here was my first big mistake.”
Heading off on holiday after setting up the purchase – but before paying the deposit – Mr Spencer wrote: “I got ahead of myself. While I was away a builder I had asked to put together some initial quotes got wind of what I was doing, went directly to the seller and managed to beat me to it.”
According to Mr Spencer, taking his eye off the ball lost him around £250,000 in profit that he intended to reinvest in new ventures.
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This unsuccessful transaction came after his first property deal, where he essentially employed the same strategy but managed to achieve success.
The first successful venture saw Mr Spencer purchase and divide a four-bedroom flat in Wandsworth into two smaller properties. He said he sold one and lived in the other, and it was this success that gave him the idea to attempt it again.
Delving into the lessons learned from the mishap, Mr Spencer said that while the property industry can be unpredictable, buyers should concentrate on the aspects they can control.
This can include areas such as the type of property, the price a person negotiates, and where they allocate their expenses – as well as being mindful of who people confide in.
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He also suggested collecting as many details about the property as possible, including going further afield and asking neighbours for information about their own homes.
For those looking to sell, Mr Spencer said a common error many people make is not cleaning their homes properly before putting them on the market. He suggested sellers invest in a professional cleaner to display the property in the best light possible.
There are a number of additional tips people can employ to add value and increase the appeal of their homes, experts at ModernGardenRooms have said.
From upgrading the plumbing to adding an outside space, sellers can boost the value of their properties by thousands of pounds.
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Jonathan Creber, commercial director for ModernGardenRooms said: “If the property is older than 50 years, it is worth checking the electrics and plumbing to see if they still need to be upgraded.”
While the expert said a full rewire of the average three-bed home can cost between £4,000 to £5,500, “buyers may be reassured if rewiring or new plumbing has been installed recently.”
Meanwhile, he said: “Garden rooms are multi-purpose, and many don’t require planning permission before building. The average garden room can add over £10,000 to a property, depending on the area.”
He added: “With the UK housing market currently at a low point due to high mortgage rates, improving the saleability of a property is crucial.
“Buyers are looking for homes that offer a lot for a reasonable price. Researching the average prices in the area and other properties for sale can also assist in quickly selling a home.”
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