How can we help?
Development land is a precious commodity, particularly in town and city centres, so knowing where to look for potential buyers and sellers and how to optimise value is key.
- Site Sourcing - Knowing where to look and who to contact to find the perfect site can be challenging. Through our extensive network of regional contacts we can help you identify the location of every suitable on and off-market opportunity. Our integrated service offering means that we’re also able to analyse sites likely to come forward through Planning, as well as keeping an ear to the ground for any potential distressed or redevelopment opportunities.
- Market Research - By combining our local market knowledge with our proprietary database that provides us with a detailed geographic analysis of pricing trends, current housing supply and historic demand, we can advise on which sites present the most attractive marketing and resale potential based on price point and product mix.
- Viability & Feasibility Studies - We undertake detailed market research to produce independent feasibility studies and viability assessments to provide a clear view of the financial viability of a proposed development and to provide solid advice on a robust delivery strategy.
- Land Valuation - Valuation plays a vital role in ensuring a fair and transparent negotiation process. Leveraging our comprehensive database of transactional evidence, we provide an independent opinion on the market value of the land in question, thereby eliminating any financial risk for both the purchaser and seller.
- Financial Modelling - Our financial modelling capability allows developers and lenders alike to test out the financial viability of a residential development project by balancing the projected the construction costs against the likely return on investment once the construction phase is completed. This ensures that our clients can be assured of the project’s quality, deliverability and value for money before a spade is even put in the ground.
- Acquisition & Disposal - Our vast network of contacts combined with our wealth of agency experience and access to historic transaction data means that we are able to engage with potential buyers and sellers and deploy targeted acquisition or disposal strategies geared towards strengthening our client’s overall negotiating position.
The key to boosting the pipeline of new homes lies in unlocking development sites.
- Development Appraisal - A development appraisal is crucial to establishing the financial viability of a proposed residential scheme. By analysing the nature and cost of any planning constraints associated with the proposed project, such as Section 106 obligations and affordable housing contributions, we are able to ascertain the level of likely returns as well as determining the residual site value.
- Strategic Land - Strategic land – that which has the potential to be developed in the longer-term – is well-suited for residential development. We can prepare and submit detailed technical evidence demonstrating a site’s suitability for development and manage representations with the local planning authority in order to secure an allocation within a local plan.
- Urban Design & Master-planning - How things work and look matters. From feasibility projects for half a dozen homes on tight urban sites, through to large masterplans for mixed-use urban extensions with thousands of new homes, we knit together commercial urban design advice and skills to deliver better places and built environments that promote social and environmental value as well as enduring commerciality.
- Planning Applications & Appeals - We can help you prepare and submit a watertight planning application, flag and address any potential issues and increase your chances of securing permission in the quickest time possible. From time to time, applications are refused and it is necessary to lodge an appeal. We can evaluate the reason for refusal and advise on the most appropriate strategy to have the decision overturned and provide expert witnesses at appeal.
- Negotiating Developer Contributions - Where a planning permission requires a legal requirement to mitigate site specific impacts, such as Section 106 or Community Infrastructure Levy, we can advise on how to modify or discharge your obligations to remove any onerous clauses and make the development more financially viable.
- Procurement Advice - We provide clear advice on OJEU regulations, develop strategies to ensure the cost and resources required to comply with the regulations are proportionate and provide recommendations on evaluation criteria, application of available frameworks and requirement for expertise in order to deliver efficient procurement.
- Management Consultancy - Thinking about the practical aspects of how a residential development will operate at the development stage is crucial to optimising its performance. Our specialist advice provides an opportunity to eliminate any potential design issues thereby enhancing tenant satisfaction and mitigating any costs associated with remedial works once the scheme has transitioned to a working asset. We can also help to set up the management framework, including drafting the service charge budget and schedule to provide greater transparency over future operating costs.
Transforming a development brief into reality requires careful management of many complex moving parts.
- Joint Venture Solutions - The public sector is one of the biggest land and property owners in the UK. Utilising our deep understanding of local authority accommodation requirements, we can help identify and unlock surplus sites or redundant buildings which may be ripe for redevelopment. We can then identify suitable private sector development partners to deliver much needed housing social housing.
- Forward Funding - Forward funding provides developers with certainty over financing the delivery of a scheme as well as safeguarding their exit once the project has been completed, while investors are more likely to secure a much stronger yield than if the scheme had already been built in acknowledgement of their increased risk exposure. Utilising our extensive knowledge of the capital markets, we can tap into our network of funds and institutional investors to identify potential development partners and negotiate the agreement between the parties.
- Loan Security Valuation - Developers may seek to secure a loan against their existing assets in order to release funds to facilitate the construction process. We can provide a RICS Red Book-approved valuation report, taking into account factors such as location, condition, current market conditions and income generation profile, to enable financial institutions to make an informed decision in respect of the secured lending request.
- Development Finance - Finance costs can vary widely depending on the individual’s circumstances and the lender’s attitude towards risk. Choosing the wrong lender can heavily affect the profitability of a scheme. Through our detailed understanding of the residential development process and leveraging our extensive lender relationships we are able to structure debt and equity, or a blend of the two, to create a bespoke product on the best possible terms.
- Project Management - We work closely with our clients from the outset to develop a deep understanding of their requirements, advising on the initial brief including, team selection and procurement, design, specification, cost planning and programming, through to procurement of contractors. Using a blend of development and project management skills, we are able to shape a scheme which maximises returns and set out a route map to optimise delivery through procurement to completion. With a robust plan, our highly experienced team, will lead the project through all stages by taking responsibility, working collaboratively and being decisive. We also administer the building contract through the procurement, construction, handover and conclusion of the construction process.
- Project Monitoring - We provide an independent advisory service to investors and lenders connected with a development project to act as their eyes and ears during the construction process, highlighting any potential issues which may affect delivery and protecting their interests.
A successful lease up strategy is critical to securing the long-term viability of any BtR scheme.
- Lease up - The first residents to any scheme are key as they will be the ones who will help to establish its reputation in the marketplace and maximise its re-capitalisation potential in the future. We work closely with our clients to develop and implement a strong brand and marketing campaign to establish demand, optimise pricing levels and ultimately secure as many tenants as possible prior to practical completion.
Residential investments, like every other asset class, must be actively managed and maintained during their lifecycle to protect and enhance their long-term value.
- Block & Estate Management - We take full control of the property management ecosystem, providing the vital link between landlord, tenant and resident management company. Our dedicated team is on hand to undertake regular inspections and resolve any technical issues or emergencies 24/7, while our robust accounting and credit control systems and procedures ensure that rent and service charge collection is maximised.
- Planned Preventative Maintenance - Planned preventative maintenance allows you to significantly reduce reactive maintenance costs and prevent unnecessary downtime while ensuring your assets remain in the optimum quality and efficiency. Our surveyors will carry out scheduled maintenance tasks to identify or prevent any problems with plant and machinery before they become a major issue.
- Repairs & Refurbishment - Residential properties are by their very nature designed to be lived in. However, from time to time, either as a result of defects or general wear and tear, repair or refurbishment works will be required. Acting as a single point of contact throughout the process, we can assemble the design and construction team, provide advice in respect of party-wall or neighbourly issues, and oversee the final sign-off of the works.
- Reinstatement Cost Assessments - Having adequate insurance in place to cover the cost rebuilding your property to the same specification in the event of a major incident is a legal requirement. Combining our detailed knowledge of the latest construction costs with our deep understanding of the residential market, we can provide an accurate evaluation of the rebuild costs providing you with the reassurance that you are fully protected should the unthinkable happen.
- Asset Valuation - Combining our knowledge of the residential property market together with our vast pool of transactional evidence, we’re able to provide robust valuation reports for accounting and audit purposes and to enable you to monitor the investment performance of your assets.
The relatively immature nature of the BtR and PRS markets means that there are very few stabilised assets available for trading, which makes it even more vital to seek expert advice.
- Investment Purchase/Sale - Our depth of knowledge across the entire residential development lifecycle, combined with our close relationships with all of the key buyers and sellers within the BtR and PRS markets provides us with unrivalled foresight into potential investment opportunities. This allows our clients to make well-informed, strategic decisions to maximise returns.
- Pre-acquisition Survey - Our pre-acquisition advice is vital for any investor looking to purchase standing stock. We undertake a thorough survey of the property, including detailed analysis of ongoing property costs and maintenance schedules to provide a comprehensive assessment of the asset’s condition as well as a fully-costed programme for addressing any remedial works.
- Property Finance - Finance costs can vary widely depending on the individual’s circumstances and the lender’s attitude towards risk. Choosing the wrong lender can heavily affect the profitability of an investment. Through our detailed understanding of the residential property market and leveraging our extensive lender relationships we are able to structure debt and equity, or a blend of the two, to create a bespoke product on the best possible terms.
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Development Commercial Director
Director - Major Projects & Cost Consultancy
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