The Property Buyers, a leading national sale and rent back company based at Castle Cavendish in Nottingham, is backing calls from the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML), Citizens Advice and homeless charity Shelter to allow the FSA to regulate sale and rent back schemes to provide greater protection for consumers.
As a highly reputable sale and rent back property company representing dozens of customers across the UK, The Property Buyers are concerned that some companies are operating schemes which are treating owner-occupiers facing repossession unfairly by allowing them to sell their home well below the market value and then remain in the property by renting it back without any security of tenure. In many cases people are given empty promises and find themselves having their homes repossessed and being homeless within a year giving more reputable sale and rent back companies a bad name.
For homeowners in dire financial straits, the appeal of these schemes is that they can remain living in their property, albeit as a tenant, sparing them the emotional upheaval of leaving their home as well as providing them with urgently needed cash to pay off their debts and minimising any damage to their credit record from having their home repossessed. Although the sell and rent back industry is perfectly legal it is completely unregulated.
Baggy Tiwana, managing director of The Property Buyers, says, “We completely support calls to regulate the industry. There is an increasing number of cowboy companies in the marketplace who quite literally seek out the vulnerable and ‘plunder and pillage’ them of their homes to make easy money at a time homeowners should be well informed of their options and protected.
“With the number of repossessions predicted by the CML to increase from 30,000 to 45,000 in 2008 as increases in interest rates hit those whose fixed-rate mortgage agreements are coming to an end, it is time the Government took notice and created a code of conduct and set out standard by the Office of Fair Trading which will provide safeguards for customers entering into these schemes.”
Baggy adds, “Anyone considering sale below market value and rent back should explore all their options first – get the home valued by three reputable established estate agencies and try selling it on the open market first, but if you decide to go ahead with one of these schemes, it’s essential to get a number of quotes, fully check out the company and its credit history. Has it got a solvent and proven track record as well as all of the necessary landlord insurances in place?”
The Property Buyers is part of the Goldman Hunter Group of Companies, and has a private property portfolio in excess of £16 million with access to cash funds. The company has been operating a fair and flexible sale and rent back option for over 14 years. Customers are always called back within 12 hours and speak to one of the company’s friendly advisors who will take their relevant information and contact details and work with them to provide a solution which is best for them. The Property Buyers do not charge a valuation fee and use independent valuers as well as paying customers’ legal fees up to £500 + VAT.
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