Investor Information

Why Cullen Property?

With over 20 years’ experience in Edinburgh’s buy-to-let market and as investors ourselves, we know exactly which properties will deliver high capital and rental yields.

Put simply, we are your Edinburgh buy-to-let personal shopper.

There are many more reasons to invest with Cullen Property:

  • Edinburgh specialists in buy-to-let: we know the city inside out and can advise you on the best areas and types of property for a long-term, high-yielding investment. We can also source these for you.
  • Student market experts: Edinburgh’s student population continues to grow and students are constantly looking for high-quality properties to rent and share with their friends. Investing in suitable property guarantees stability and high returns.
  • We search the Edinburgh market for suitable properties: Sign-up to receive regular updates or contact us directly to discuss your requirements.
  • We liaise with: lawyers, vendors and mortgage brokers to make your purchase as stress-free as possible.
  • Total transparency: on all costs.
  • Fully managed cash-flow positive investments: take a look at our case studies.

What We Do for Our Investors

Where to start with Edinburgh property investment?

Our typical investor will have between £50k and £2m to invest in Edinburgh property and may choose to either purchase properties outright or gear their funds to build a larger portfolio. Please look at our Case Studies to see the type of assets we source for our clients.

In short, we;

  • Source properties on both the open market and via off-market exclusive deals
  • Carry out a full property/site visit
  • Prepare a full and detailed financial appraisal
  • Circulate the main ‘headline’ details via newsletter to our registered investors
  • Forward full details on request of the property
  • Advise on the investment property opportunity
  • Arrange any surveys, roofing assessment or site plan confirmations as required
  • Set up legal conveyancing and independent financial advice as required
  • Collect keys, record meter reading, transfer utilities, test all fittings and appliances
  • Arrange architect and refurbishment plans as required and obtain quotes
  • Project manage all works
  • Submit and obtain HMO Licence (House of Multiple Occupancy) as required
  • Market and let the property (usually while the works are ongoing so that tenants are ready to move in as soon as possible)
  • Manage the property on an ongoing basis following completion.

Basically, we do everything for you with your Edinburgh property investment so that you don’t even need to visit the property unless you’d like to!

Please call us on 0131 221 1818 or email our Managing Director Steve to find out how we can find the right Edinburgh property investment for you.

FAQs

Whether making your first investment purchase or adding to your portfolio there are many considerations you should make. There is no such thing as too much advice. Cullen have a strong network of non-affiliated businesses which we will always advise you to take advice from ahead of any major decision. The small number of hours this will take can have a huge effect on your investment purchase. As we always say, you don’t know what you don’t know, we want you to have the same advice we seek for ourselves.

Scotland’s Capital City, Auld Reekie – Edinburgh is regularly noted as not only top of list for where to invest based on your potential yield and returns but almost as important, Edinburgh is regularly rated as one of the best places to live in the UK. There are many accolade’s for Edinburgh including Scotland’s highest ranked university being just one of the four universities in the city. Edinburgh is also an economically strong city, it is vibrant, cosmopolitan and highly educated. Edinburgh boasts more green space than any other city in the UK as well as a beautiful coastline to the Forth. The population has increased by nearly 10% between 2007 – 2017 and forecasts predict this will continue. While attracting around 85,000 students to the city, a very significant circa 70% of our population are of working age. There are many reasons to choose Edinburgh. At Cullen we are Edinburgh centric, this is the only city we work in and advise on – we are experts of Edinburgh.

Cullen Property Limited have been established for more than 20 years, we are an Edinburgh centric firm with strong values. Customer service is at the top of our agenda, we are always striving to ensure our one-to-one dedicated service is always delivered. Our property managers look after your properties as they would their own. We are personally qualified and are proud to be one of the first registered agents in Scotland. While we will always be available to meet with, our door is always open or happy to have a conversation we also use high end software to aid the managing of the portfolio and keep up to date with advances in technology to support our

In short, Cullen Property can make property investment so easy for you that don’t even need to be in the Country! We provide services to cover sourcing and property management and everything in between:
We look at numerous factors when considering any potential property as an investment including local market knowledge, property values, probable rent values, potential tenant demographics (who might want to rent it), tenant demand in the area etc. We also assess whether it can meet the ‘Repairing Standard’ (minimum level of quality in a rental property) and, if applicable, whether it can meet the House of Multiple Occupancy regulations in terms of sizing and fire safety provisions.
We can also look at the potential in the property or floorplan for reconfiguring or adding value. Apart from the property-related benefits we bring, we can also provide ready access to the best legal, tax and funding advice for the investor client.
Finally, we regularly have access to high-quality off-market property investment opportunities too which investor clients like due to them being a known fixed price.

Convenience, compliance and returns……….!
We regularly re-assess rent performances (minimum annually at renewal/rent increases) to ensure market rents are being received, whereas we often meet private landlords who have let rents become static for several years. This can be quite significant, especially given some Edinburgh rents have increased by over 30% in the last five years.
Compliance with all regulations is a constant challenge for the Private Rented Sector industry generally, but especially for private landlords who may not always be able to keep up to date with the latest legislation changes. For example, the new Private Residential Tenancy regime is still causing confusion for many private landlords, with a number most likely using leases which are no longer legally compliant.
Having minimal involvement with the property and tenants at arms-length via the agent, coupled with the administrative ease which a good agent can provide (e.g. annual summary for tax returns) all come under the ‘convenience’ banner which is particularly appealing to landlords who are distant or have busy family/working lives.
Finally, using an agent gives access to all the main property portals and a professional vetting and referencing service whenever the property needs to be re-marketed to new tenants.
We’ve recently helped several portfolio landlords to move their properties to under management. In each case they’ve seen the rise in rental income more than compensate for the management fees, whilst improving the properties where required and removing all the stress and hassle for them at the same time. For example, in one case the portfolio rents were £10,850 but market rents were £12,250, a 13% increase.

Firstly, it’s important to recognise that there is always some level of ‘risk’ in owning and letting property. However, one of the biggest risks is owning and ‘not’ letting i.e. voids. These can be minimised if the property is well presented, sensibly priced, and advertised properly with good information on the main portals.
The new Private Residential Tenancy rules, which allow tenants to give 28 days’ Notice To leave at any time, do limit forward planning (student properties and festival lets!) but we expect the market to adjust this year and next as all parties settle into the new system. However, 28 days is not long to market, let, reference, prepare/sign a lease and check-in new tenants!
The other main risk is unpaid rent and tenants unwilling to engage, which may ultimately lead to obtaining an order to evict. However, this is now easier under PRT and via the First tier Tribunal.
Contrary to popular belief, tenants ‘trashing’ properties before they leave is extremely rare, but some are cleaner than others! However, landlords or their agents should have good check-in and check-out information so that they can claim against the deposit funds (which must be held in a Tenancy deposit Scheme). If the information is poor, then there is a risk that the claim would be dismissed, and the landlord lose out.
Non-compliance with regulations (Repairing Standard etc) can lead to tenants taking action via the FTT. Again, this system is new and still bedding in, but tenants are now much more aware of their rights and it is relatively simple to raise an action.

Carry out a regular rent assessment – at least once a year. Consider if there is potential in the floorplan to reconfigure rooms. Would it be better to obtain a HMO licence to allow for it to be let to a group (can be done on one lease and not multiple leases)? Should it be aimed at a different market? Would it be better furnished/unfurnished? Could it be revalued and the re-finance to use the money to improve the property and increase rent or even buy another property? Does it need some re-investment to keep it fully occupied and at good rental levels? Should it or some of the portfolio be sold and the funds re-invested?
Every property and each investor is unique and there isn’t one answer.

This has grown in the last 6 years or so but the rules are changing. It appears that owners will soon require a licence for running a property on a commercial or professional basis for 45 days or more per year.
It is estimated that up to 10 % of all flats which would usually be available for private rent in Edinburgh are now on AirBnB or other short-term letting portals.
Local authorities (City of Edinburgh Council) would set their own criteria and regulations which owners would need to meet to continue operating a short- term letting property. These would most likely be in relation to fire safety, gas and electrical safety certificates and legionella risk assessments, all of which are currently required in the private rented sector.

The property market is still robust. Tenants may need work/study visas once the UK leaves the EU, although this is the same as the current arrangements for non-EU national at present.
Investment in property remains strong with some investors looking to ensure they can have/retain a UK footprint before Brexit takes place.

Property Investor Guide

Take care of all aspects of running our properties

They are a highly professional organisation and take care of all aspects of running our properties, including all maintenance, legislative and compliance issues.

  • Linda J
  • Landlord
Made the property management and tenant finding process effortless

They really have made the property management and tenant finding process effortless.

  • Stephen Y
  • Landlord

Legal Responsibilities

At Cullen Property, we handle the whole investment process for you.

This includes sourcing and presenting properties to you, as well as introducing you to lawyers (you may already have your own preferred Scottish based lawyer), banks, IFAs and other sources of finance, and tax experts. Once your investment property has been purchased and is ready to be let, our full management service ensures you adhere to all relevant rules and regulations and are fully compliant with the legal responsibilities of being a landlord.

Please contact our investment team on 0131 221 1818 to discuss your individual circumstances.