Hi and welcome to another PPP case study, I’m here with Louise Thompson and she’s investing in Greator London. She started with PPP in 2013, Louise can you tell us a bit about what you did before you joined PPP I had studied and worked in fashion. Pretty much leaving school I had a couple of years where I messed about and didn’t do much but played with horses. And then I went to St.Martin’s studied fashion design and have worked in fashion pretty much all my life. What led you to looking for a new opportunity, or a property or franchising.
I found the fashion cycle a bit of a graft, it never seemed to get easier. In fact it was getting more difficult as it was becoming quite a saturated market every college was offering fashion design courses so we have a lot of people coming in grass roots level. And just looking at my life I understood that really all my money have been made just by buying a house holding on to it and trading it up and hadn’t been terribly difficult. It just kind of happened in the background. I bought a very big house in Hackney and had.
Rented a couple of rooms and effectively not really paid the mortgage for about 8 years. So I knew I wanted to do something in property I didn’t want to really have a 95 again. So I started looking at other franchises, lots and lots of different ones, it wasn’t just property. But I’ve seen PPP, discarded it thought I don’t really need them to do that. Then I looked into it a bit more and realised it was a lot more complicated than I thought owning an HMO portfolio. I went back, listened and went to a Discovery Day.
My property portfolio will provide my pension income Louise Thompson
And was hooked. What was it in particular about PPP that you felt they could add value to your property portfolio growth Well I think for a franchise, you own the asset and you keep it should you leave. I don’t know of any franchise where you could do that. You are buying a system, essentially for most of franchises and when you leave, that’s it, you lost everything. But with PPP, you buy into it you are owning the asset. you are working their model, making a really good return, and it really sets you up for life if you do it correctly.
So as someone who was initially skeptical about joining, what have you learned from PPP that you think wow I wouldn’t have been able to do that if I’d done it on my own Well, I think from me I had a quite a bit of an odd start because I started just as there was a meteoric rise in property prices within East London. So even though I sold the property to get the capital to do this, I was faced with a really difficult buying market. And having the network I think is something really hard to quantify in value.
But it really get me going. I bought a property and it was over a year before I bought my second one. And that was 8 sales falling through I’ve viewed over hundred properties the year and it was just a treadmill of going around all these open days queuing sometimes 15 minutes to get into a house. And when you are in your own little bubble, had I been on my own I probably wouldn’t have proceeded it, apart from the fact that I’ve joined the franchise and that’s why I have to do, so I committed 100 doing it. It really motivated me and.
It kept me going. And I just thought well I can see other people are buying houses, there’s no reasons why I can’t I’m just having a bit of bad kind of run. But when you speak to other people and you hear their stories about you know they are doing their conveyancing and they drop out and it just makes you realised that you are not alone. It is possible you just have to keep at it. So you overcame some initial barriers. Where’s your portfolio at at the moment.
I’m sale agreed on property number 4, I have two investment areas, Waltham Forest and Havering. I’ve got a little bit of balance there because Waltham Forest was seeing an amazing growth and capital returns and I’ve got equity sets on property. But I realised that it was a gamble and I don’t know if you can bank on it. And I’ve got Havering which is for cash flow really. So at much reduced property price, but actually in terms of rental, it’s marginal. So you previously made money in property so more of buying and selling strategy.
It wasn’t even buying and selling, buying and living I have to live somewhere. I bought a house, my first house I bought in Tottenham, and it was just I had started I think back in 1999 I had 70000 which I had to buy well at 20000 but then so I was looking at buying a house at 70,000. And at that point it was a very low amount to have to buy a house so I would go into a state agent and say what have you got for 100 or under because I was.
Too embraced to say I had 70,000 and I actually started to go further and further at because again the property was rising in that year. And I found a cute little cottage in Tottenham. Much to my fathers dismay, it wasn’t that great area. but it just I think I did it three times. I travelled and valued and I sold it in about 4 years’ time. So you’ve been a livein landlord Yes. And now you are a liveout landlord. How do you enjoy that Do you enjoy the tenant side of the job.
I enjoy the tenant side and it’s going well, you do get a couple of tenants who aren’t so great. But you kind of try to weed those out and when they before even come in. And sometimes and you get a tenant and they have an issues and all the do is passing on their problems to you. And I think just by going there first just sitting down at talking to them. You need to build a relationship with them and if they are having a bad time and.
They are trying to pass it onto you, then sometimes you build a bit of relationship you find it dissipates and just goes away and especially in the first month or two of moving into a house that can be a bit of high maintenance. But generally all my tenants are actually really good. And are you finding that there is a high demand for this kind of housing Yes. Especially more for us. U put one room recently, and I had so many applicants I had to take the advert down. I had 8 viewings booked for one day. I generally sell a room.
Within 3 viewings. I did all the viewings and the first guy who viewed actually took it in the end. But for the fairness I completed all the viewings for the day. But that is not abnormal. It does tend to be and especially quite often through refurb I do viewings on a daytoday basis because I’m at the property anyway. But I find that one two three viewings and it’s gone. Okay, so on a personal level Louise. How has PPP changed your life in 2 years or so that.