I was invited to chair a panel session at the 9th anniversary of the London and Wandsworth Property meets in April. It was a fantastic property networking event organised by Brendan Quinn and certainly a great way to mark the birthday. There must have been 80-100 or so property investors packed into the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Battersea, right next to the heliport.
Rumour has it that Brendan arrived by helicopter, but I can’t confirm it as I was a little late and missed him touching down.
The evening was sponsored by Crowd with Us, Ronald Fletcher Baker and Konnexsion, who always support Brendan’s events. It was good to see that support on the night.
The evening kicked-off with Nicholas Marshall introducing some of the key issues in the property market. Has it slowed down, are there still deals to be had, what are his experiences are from investing in Croydon and the South East? As always, Nicholas showed real knowledge and expertise in property investing.
Following Nicholas there was an update from Augusta Onyiuke-Eluma on the mortgage market. Interesting to note that some lenders are bringing products to market that will work for the serviced accommodation / short lets model.
Jay Howard from Auction House London then took centre stage to promote his book, alongside giving an update on what’s been happening in the auctions recently. Did I mention he promoted his book? You can find out more about his book, that he may have promoted a couple of times during his talk, here. In terms of the auction market, it seems the volume of transactions is down across all auctioneers and the market is showing clear signs of Brexit jitters.
After Nicholas, Augusta and Jay, we had a panel session to discuss the main opportunities for property developers in 2019.
I chaired the panel, which featured Thor Portess, Rudi Ramdarshan, Charles Rose, Ranjan Bhattacharya, Augusta Onyiuke-Eluma and Am Kainth. A lot of the discussion on the panel was about the opportunities surrounding the forthcoming change to PD rights for retail premises. It looks likely the next gold rush is going to be retail to residential development, so get in quick before the masses pile in – which will be towards the end of 2019 when the planning rules will change.
We also had a healthy discussion amongst the panellists around crowdfunding, other forms of finance and getting your house in order if you’re seeking finance.
The final speaker was Frederik Sandvaals, who gave a good interactive talk on the value of partnerships in property development. It was interesting to hear Frederik’s perspective as both a property investor and advisor to other property companies.
Before the evening ended, Jay Howard auctioned two prizes – dinner with Evan Maindonald at a swanky restaurant in Kent and a seat at the PFA Awards night donated by Carl Hutchings. The proceeds of which went to Aspire, a charity to help people with spinal injuries, represented on the night by Luke Hamilton. I believe over £700 was raised, so well done all.
Overall it was an excellent evening of property talks and networking. Well done Brendan for 9 years of property events in London. I look forward to another 9 or more years of excellent networking opportunities to come.