Pulling Profits Out Of A Hat Book Launch with Brad Sugars

Brad Sugars and Brett AlegreWood discuss Brad’s new book – Pulling Profits Out Of A Hat.

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Transcription:

Brett:                       Cool. Hey guys, I’m really excited this morning. I’m here with Brad Sugars, a mate of mine for over 25 years. In fact, I’ve known Brad since the start of ActionCOACHing, or what was Action International way back.

Brad:                        I’m not that old. You might be that old, I’m not that old.

Brett:                       It’s certainly been a while. It’s gone quickly, I have to say. It’s amazing to see somebody go from where they and where you are now, and having seen you right at the start, because even before ActionCOACHing I knew you.

Brad:                        Neither of us had much fun back in those days. We never went for a beer or anything. You know why time has flown for us, mate? Because we run our own business, and we’ve all got lots of kids. You’re at four, I’m at five. It doesn’t stand still in that way, especially as entrepreneurs. I was quoted about a year ago by Richard Branson saying, “We entrepreneurs are the crazy people who will work 80 hours a week so we don’t have to do 40 for someone else.”

Brett:                       So true, isn’t it?

Brad:                        Which is the exact opposite of me, though. I work 12 hours a week. It’s kind of funny that way.

Brett:                       I think, to be fair, you’ve put the hours in previously to get where you are. I think anyone that thinks they’re gonna get off easy and have this Amazon business on their first try, and they may well do it, but it’ll be a gamble, a roll of the dice rather than a methodology, and I guess that leads nicely onto what we’re talking about today, which is your new book: Pulling Profits Out of a Hat.

Brad:                        Yeah. Book number 17. There’s the older ones up there. There’s 16 already, and actually here’s number 17: Pulling Profits Out of a Hat.

Brett:                       Looking forward to getting ahold of it, actually.

Brett:                       That’s out Monday, and so I thought I’d grab you and just talk me through what the book is about, because one thing I’ve always admired about your business, and I had the pleasure of speaking at one of your global conferences a couple years back, and the way you go about coaching is you systemise. The whole thing is about setting up systems, so that you don’t have to work 80 hours a week continuously, and the business doesn’t own you, effectively, and the thing I loved about the systems, and the other side was the passionate people. You’ve got over a thousand offices, 88 countries?

Brad:                        Yeah, we just opened Russia. That’s country number 88.

Brett:                       Yeah. 88. That’s impressive, and that would have to make you, I think you’re the largest coaching, and even if you’re not.

Brad:                        Yeah, we are the behemoth, we are the biggest in the world. Over a thousand offices. We’re the biggest in the world. Number one in the game, and we started the game, so we should be, too. If we practice what we preach, then absolutely we should be on the ball, and that’s what was interesting. I was chatting with someone the other day, and I was telling them about an award we just won and that sort of stuff, and they’re like, “That’s really great.”

Brad:                        I said, “No, no. Check your coaching company. If your business coach isn’t winning awards in normal business awards, not just business coaching awards, but normal stuff, then you probably should be a little bit worried.”

Brett:                       This is one thing that you guys, not only did you set up the industry, but you really have led that industry as well, and one of the challenges I have with the whole business coaching right now is it’s sort of gone the way of life coaching where it’s almost the fashion of the day and everyone thinks they’re a business coach, but obviously we don’t.

Brad:                        25 years ago, almost 26 years ago now, when I first started this thing, it was August 26 years ago, I sat down and I had to explain to people, because I don’t know if you ever remember Trout and Ries, 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing, and a lot of it still applies today, and one of them was “If you can’t be number one or number two in a category, invent a new category.”

Brad:                        I said, “I can’t be a biggest business consulting company,” and what happened was a lot of people were asking me for help, and I didn’t have the time, because I was running my own businesses as well as doing speaking, because when you’re young and successful people ask you to speak, and so I said to them, “Listen, call me once a week and I’ll coach you through it.”

Brad:                        And magically by that silly statement I created this whole business and therefore a whole profession, and you asked me to talk about the book, I’ll get back to the book in a moment, but interestingly enough, and as you know building a business, it’s not the easiest road in the world. It’s sometimes the hardest, sometimes the loneliest road in the world, but what we discovered over many years of coaching business owners, 25+ now, is that there’s a systematic methodology to do that, and that’s why, if I come back to the book, I was sitting at lunch with a mate of mine, and sorry if I sound both Australian and American everyone. I’m Australian but I married an American and I’ve lived here for a long time, and he says to me, “It just seems like magic, the way these companies like IKEA and Amazon and Apple and all these, it just seems like magic how they make a bunch of money.”

Brad:                        And I sat there, I said, “No, it’s not magic. It’s a systematic methodology.”

Brad:                        And that’s why I did it. It’s not pulling a rabbit out of a hat, or you don’t pull profits out of a hat, it’s not that, it’s there is a secret to exponential growth in business. It’s not really a secret now, because it’s in the book, but what I did was I sat down and I said, “Let me look at our clients who are growing exponentially.”

Brad:                        In other words, year on year, multiplied growth, and consistent year on year, not just did it one year and then plateaued, or dipped type thing, but consistent, and there’s five core disciplines that we go through and that we’ve been coaching them in, and that we use to help them get that level of results, and the five disciplines are; Strategy, Business Development, People, Execution, and Mission. All five of these need to prevalent, and we call them disciplines because it’s not, “Hey, I did that once,” it’s a discipline.

Brad:                        Your business must be disciplined in all five areas to the highest degree if you want exponential growth. If you want to scale fast, you’ve gotta have all five disciplines working strong.

Brett:                       I talk about it all the time. I think discipline is the biggest missing thing in any business. We talk about systems, you can set up a system, but if you’re not disciplined enough to continue applying it then you’re not gonna get a result from it.

Brad:                        I always struggle. People often ask me, “Why do businesses fail?”

Brad:                        And I always have the same answer, and it’s, “They didn’t know what they were doing.”

Brad:                        And people say, “But they’re very smart people.”

Brad:                        I said, “Yeah, but the one area that they failed in, they didn’t know what they were doing.”

Brad:                        And this is where business is a consistent learning thing. The hardest part of business isn’t the doing, the hardest part is the learning. It’s like, why’s your first million the hardest? Because you gotta learn how to do it, and if you’ve never run a business doing hundreds of millions a year, you’ve never run a business doing hundreds of millions a year. Once a year I invite 10 businesses to Vegas, I sit down with them a week and teach them how to go to a billion, and they just sit there, and they go, “I would never have thought of it that way.”

Brad:                        And I said, “That’s right. You know why? Because you’ve never done it before.”

Brad:                        It’s interesting, mate, because I still own nine companies, or own major shares of nine companies, and I sit back and I look at them, and I’ve built them, as you can tell by my really high corporate appearance, I’m involved. I get involved once a month. I’m in my board meetings with them. My CEOs do a great job, but I’ve built the business so that it works so that I don’t have to. I built the business to scale, and that’s where I don’t care if you’re an executive in the largest banking organization in the world, or the largest corporate structure, or you’re a brand new self-employed person, if you don’t understand the recipe for business success, you don’t understand it, and that’ll take you down.

Brett:                       I think one of the challenges that I have, too, is you get these books which, no disrespect to the four-hour work week, but it’s almost sells people that business is done in four hours, and it can be, and all respect to you because you can do it that way now, but I know the work you’ve put in over the years, and the ups and downs along the way, because it’s always an adventure.

Brad:                        Do you remember the beginning when it was the four-hour work hour? You had to do four hours work in one hour?

Brad:                        I still remember, mate, when you came into my office on 303 Coronation Drive, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia. It was Milton, I think it was. We couldn’t afford the big rents, mate, and I still remember sitting there in that business, and I’d slept in that office three, four nights a week. That’s what it took in the beginning, but I didn’t know what I didn’t know back then, and that’s where I think a lot of business people, especially corporate executives, mate. The biggest challenge for a corporate exec is to just to admit, “Holy shit, I should read something.” Sorry about that, “But is should actually read and learn more.”

Brad:                        I go back to coaching. I said something before I think’s really important. Coaching started out as a “What’s that? It’s like consulting.”

Brad:                        Then it went to “You’re failing, you should probably get a coach.”

Brad:                        To now it’s like, I was sitting with an exec from a very large corporate the other day, CEO in fact, and he said, “Listen, I got these five guys that I think are gonna go somewhere, can you get them a coach for me?”

Brad:                        And that’s where I think we’ve flipped from, “I don’t know if you need a coach,” to “Hey, I need to invest in my best people so that they’re getting coaches,” or “I own the business.”

Brad:                        Actually, I’ll flip that around. I was sitting with an entrepreneur the other week at lunch, it was a friend of my wife’s, and he said, “I don’t think I need a business coach.”

Brad:                        I said, “Really? Who’s your biggest competitor?”

Brad:                        And he said, “This bloke.”

Brad:                        I said, “Great. Give me his phone number.”

Brad:                        And he looked at me like I was an idiot, and I said, “No, no, no. Give me his phone number. I’m gonna call him and coach him.”

Brad:                        He said, “You don’t wanna coach him. Why would you coach him?”

Brad:                        I said, “Well, you don’t want it, so I may as well coach him.”

Brad:                        This is what people don’t understand, that there’s an unfair advantage to having an expert on your team who knows how to grow business. And they’re not really even on your team.

Brett:                       I think one of the challenges with entrepreneurs and leaders is, it’s almost like to get to the top we’ve gotta fake it until we make it, so we act as if we know everything, but it’s almost like you’ve gotta flip that around at some point and go, “You know what? There’s so much I don’t know.”

Brett:                       Because with disruption and changes, and all these things that are happening in the market, so much is changing, and I find that I’m consuming more now in terms of learning more and educating myself more than I probably ever was before.

Brad:                        That’s where you get to what is the CEOs job? What is the job of a CEO? And these days I’m the chairman of the company, I’m not even the CEO, but in my books the CEO has two real jobs. One is recruiting, and the other guiding is in where we’re going, and you can’t guide us in where you’re going or come up with new strategy unless you got new ideas, and you’re not gonna get new ideas reading the same old stuff, and that’s why even just listening to us chat here today, I would imagine that we’re sparking ideas for people on different things, and that’s why sitting and listening, audiobooks, this, that, you name it, reading the good old hardback. This is the heaviest book I’ve ever written. 370-odd pages, and because there’s so much to take in I went with a full color print run, because trying to help people understand the five disciplines and how they all work together, and who are the five constituents, and how do you satisfy the constituents like the shareholders, the team, all of that sort of stuff, the community, because you have to satisfy the needs of all the stakeholders, all the constituents as well as take care of the five areas of business, in order for the business to have sustained consistent exponential growth, and that to me is a big part of it.

Brad:                        I think that it’s really easy, mate, to sit back on the sidelines, and as much as I love reading books I love writing them more for one reason, because all I do I write what I do. I don’t write theory, I don’t write what I think might work, I write what I actually do. That’s why all my books, people love them when they read them because they go, “You made it seem so simple.”

Brad:                        And that’s where Einstein, you remember Einstein’s quote on that? “If you can’t make it simple, you better not being teaching it.”

Brad:                        Something along those lines.

Brett:                       On those constituents point, I think it’s really important, because we’ve been told for many years, the customer’s always right, and it’s almost like this focus on customer, but now you realise that actually that was a bit of a ruse. There’s a truth in that, but actually there’s so many other stakeholders or constituents, as you call them, in a business you need to address.

Brad:                        If you’re not addressing the staff, you don’t have any customers. It’s pretty simple that way. If you’re not addressing the shareholders, you don’t have anything because they’re pulling the money out, they’re out of there. If you don’t address the community, the community has to be taken care of, and the CEO, the leader of the company, these are certain things that we have to understand, and the relationship between them and the success of a business is quite phenomenal. When you look at the mission of a business and its relationship with the constituents being community and staff, you have to understand that without that, those two constituents can’t buy into the success of your company, and when they can’t buy into the success, it’s like I talk about mission, and let me go into a little bit of details what I mean by mission, I use the word love associated with mission. Do people love coming to work for you, and do people love buying from you? Not like, not “Gee, it’s good. It’s convenient,” or, “They do a good job,” or “They’re okay, I don’t hate them.”

Brad:                        Do they love buying from you? Do they love coming to work? Because without that engaged workforce, which today you look at the statistics, we have the worst engagement of employees in the history of employees that there is. People go, “That’s the millennials.”

Brad:                        It’s not the millennials. Every generation, I had someone who’s a friend of mine. He grew up in the 60s complaining to me about millennials the other day. I said, “Are you for real? What did anyone say about your generation back in the day? Come on, let’s be honest about this stuff.”

Brad:                        I know my generation, you and me, parents weren’t complaining that we were too lazy, wanted it all now, and didn’t wanna work hard. Every generation says this about the following one. It comes down to great management. I did a speech in Dublin, which was bloody funny, mate. You’d laugh at this. The person before me was Lady Michelle Mone, and she’s a member of the house, and after me was Sir Richard Branson. You got a Lady, a convict, and a Lord. I thought it was hilarious, but Richard was asked one question in the group setting, and he was asked, “Have you had to change your management since managing millennials?”

Brad:                        He said, “No, we’ve always done good management.”

Brett:                       That’s so profound, isn’t it? I think that’s one thing I love about talking to yourself and guys like you, and having these discussions is, it’s amazing the distinctions you pull out of what you need to be doing and what you don’t need to be doing, and I think, I don’t know how long we’ve been chatting now, 10, 15 minutes, but the distinctions you get, and I imagine with this book, those five disciplines are gonna yield lots and lots of different distinctions, which I think in this day, and the one point I was gonna make was, one of the challenges I have right now is people think that there’s so much change and disruption going on that everything is changed. What I’m finding is, that’s the white noise in the background. Actually, the fundamentals haven’t changed since we learned them way back when.

Brad:                        I had a guy I was talking to the other day about marketing, and he says to me, “I’ve gotta get really good at this LinkedIn and Facebook and all of that sort of stuff, our corporate is just not doing good in that.”

Brad:                        I said, “Oh, really? How many referrals did you get last month?”

Brad:                        He said, “What do you mean?”

Brad:                        I said, “Tell me, how many referrals did you get? Show me your referral program of what you do to get referrals from your existing customer base.”

Brad:                        He said, “We don’t have a referral program.”

Brad:                        I said, “Maybe we should start there. Let’s start with doing the fundamental core stuff.”

Brad:                        I believe you’re right. There is a big white noise out there about the change, change, change, change. What we’re seeing, and I’ll use Apple as a very simple example, Apple’s business strategy, I teach strategy in the book, Apple’s business strategy was genius where no one owned a computer in the beginning. They were selling computers, and if you wanted the best you bought an Apple, if you wanted something else you bought a PC. Once everyone owned a computer, Apple’s strategy was awful, because no one in corporations wanted to spend that much to have Apple everywhere, so they had to either bring their cost down or something else, and second of all, Apple didn’t charge for their software in the beginning, they had to bring that in where software’s now a secondary purchase, and you have to buy that to upgrade type thing. Apple comes back, and Steve Jobs comes back, and he says, “Hang on, while I was over at this thing called Pixar, I learned this strategy called Make it Once and Sell it a Billion Times. What business can we go into?”

Brad:                        He went into the music business. He’s a bigger genius than I am, he’s not making one sell it a billion times, he’s never make it, but sell it a billion times. Apple’s never made a song in their life, and here they are with this amazing platform that sells music every day and takes a 30% clip on the way through, and says, “Hey, Sony, thanks for letting us sell your music. Oh, and by the way, thanks for inventing that MP3 thing that we used to actually sell it on. You guys at Sony are geniuses.”

Brad:                        That’s where Sony messed up their strategy. Their strategy messed up. They could’ve owned that market. Apple came in, owned the market with decent marketing, and a decent product and all that sort of stuff, built the platform. But you can also have a satisfied of being in the music business or being a drummer in a band that plays at a pub on Friday night, or the pub owner that puts the band on on a Friday night. There’s so many strategies in business, and I don’t think most execs, most entrepreneurs, have never actually sat down and examined what is our strategy for the entire business? At its core is it scalable, leveragable? Are we able to grow faster and get easier as we grow? And I don’t think that.

Brad:                        That segment of the book alone is the reason to read it. If you don’t get strategy right, your business is harder as you get bigger.

Brett:                       That’s key, because certainly that’s been one of my challenges with one of the particular businesses that I’ve got is that it’s not scalable. Unless I own the property and I build the property, I can’t do it.

Brad:                        I know, you’ve already got it.

Brett:                       [crosstalk 00:19:27] my team, and I’m actually gonna give them all out so we’ve all got a platform to talk from.

Brett:                       One point I was gonna make, too, is one thing I like about your books, actually, and one thing I love about you, and it may be the Aussie, it may be whatever, but actually is the way you write and the way you present is all very implementable. In other words, you can read it and then you can go, “Okay, let me put that in place.”

Brett:                       I think that’s one of the key things. Although I haven’t read the book yet, I’m looking forward to it, I’m pretty sure it’ll be in the same vein as all your other books.

Brad:                        When I wrote my book Billionaire in Training way back when, which is how to create wealth through business, I wrote the Wealth Coach, and the Wealth Coach, I’ve had friends of mine who give it to their teenage kids, and say, “Listen, I read it and I got all these distinctions, but I gave it to my kids and they actually understood it too, and now I can have a financial conversation with my kids.”

Brad:                        As you said, this book, you give it to your staff, and they will understand it, and you’ll have a conversation about implementation with your staff.

Brett:                       Funny enough, because that’s actually the plan for my business. If you’re one of my clients, you’re gonna be copping this sweet [crosstalk 00:20:42] implementation soon, because I’m sure, and I have no doubt there’s bits in the book that we’re missing right now.

Brad:                        I don’t care how good you are, and I’m supposedly the best business coach in the world, and I work with the best executive coach in the world, Marshall Goldsmith, and I have all of the best and that, but there’s still stuff every day that I can’t see. It’s forest for the trees stuff, mate. That’s why you need a coach. When you’re in your own business, you can’t see that stuff, it’s just too hard, but if you walked into my business you could probably find five things I needed to fix, and if I walked into yours I could see five things. There’s five things that you can’t notice and that I don’t notice. I don’t think anyone should ever be upset by that. I think they should be upset if they’re not actually getting some help to find those things. If you’re that head-in-the-sand business owner, or that head-in-the-sand exec who’s just saying, “I got it, I got it, I got it, I got it,” then you’re gonna be the one in trouble at some point in time. Learning is key.

Brett:                       Yeah, yeah, absolutely.

Brad:                        I actually do literally teach this stuff for days on end in my courses, but all I can say to people is just one thing, because Brett’s a mate of mine, he said to me, “Brad, my people need something better.”

Brad:                        We had an offer that ended three, four weeks ago with just my clients, and what we’re doing, over the last 25 years, up until year 17 I’d recorded every single thing on video from year about seven onwards. We put it all into an online business school. If you attended all the courses you would’ve invested 25-26,000 bucks to go them all. All of that is now online. It’s all in a business school. We call it Profit Masters, and if you bought it you can go onto the website and see it right now. You gotta pay a thousand bucks to buy it. We’re gonna give you a thousand-dollar course, all my training courses, all for free when you buy a $25 book. It’s because we’re stupid, but it’s also because I know one thing: my goal is to get to New York Times best-seller, and here’s the deal I’m gonna make with all your people. I’ll give them that thousand bucks, but I need them to at least promote the book for me some way, shape, or form. Give me a shout out, give me a photo of it, or the best way to do it, what we’re doing, and I’m getting a few magician friends to do this, you’re gonna do a thing pulling the book out of a hat.

Brett:                       I haven’t done that one.

Brad:                        That’s gonna be our hashtag. Pulling profits. My wife had that genius idea. She’s a bit of a marketing genius, my wife.

Brett:                       Awesome. Just to finish off there. Mate, appreciate the chat and look forward to catching up, but I think if you’re in a business, or this is even for employees, if you want to become a better employee, more valuable, so you can go to your boss and ask for a raise, then this is the sort of stuff that you need to understand.

Brad:                        It was interesting because I was chatting with someone about this the other day, and they said, “I work for someone, why would I bother reading it?”

Brad:                        I said, “Because you don’t wanna work for someone eventually. You wanna be the CEO at some point. Hello.”

Brett:                       Yeah, absolutely. I think, for US$24.95, you get in a thousand-

Brad:                        I’m sure there’s a couple of bob in there for postage and handling there, too. I’ll give you the link. You can put the link below for everybody to click on.

Brett:                      Get the book, have a read of it, it will expand your mind and gets you thinking, and the other side of it is, too, is that whatever country you’re in, wherever you are, if you do want to take it the next step, which is the coaching side, there’s coaches everywhere. Literally, 88 countries. But I think right now get the book, have a read of it, I think you’ll be really impressed, and if you haven’t read any other of Brad’s stuff, look him up, he’s done incredible things. I’m really, really impressed. I’m really, really thankful that I met him many, many years ago, and [crosstalk 00:24:49].

Brad:                        It’s good to be there, and I’m looking forward to my next trip to Singapore to hang and have a beer or two.

Brett:                       Definitely, definitely. All right guys, we’ll leave it there. Mate, thanks very much, appreciate it, always great to chat, and even I’ve got some distinctions today. Pulling Profits Out of a Hat, jump online, check the link, and get it.

Simply Click this special link – https://www.gladfish.com/pulling-profits-out-of-a-hat-book-review-brad-sugars/.

 

Leeds Property

Leeds is set to provide great post-Brexit property investment returns

A vibrant economy offers protection and growth potential in uncertain times

Leeds is one of the UK’s core cities, with a large regional economy, excellent education facilities (including three universities), and a vibrant city centre. Leeds is currently benefitting from massive investment and regeneration. Channel 4 has recently selected the city as the location for its new UK headquarters. It is a lifestyle city to achieve your lifestyle investment goals.

I’ve recently been asked how Leeds is likely to fare after Brexit. I think it’s going to do fine. But don’t take my word for it. In the UK Powerhouse Study, Irwin Mitchell and the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) expects Leeds to be the second fastest-growing local economy in the UK immediately after Brexit.

There is a jobs boom in Leeds

The report forecasts an economic slowdown after Brexit but also concludes that the Yorkshire region has the potential to produce long-term economic growth. This growth, it says, is likely to be concentrated in the major towns and cities in the region, particularly in Leeds.

Leeds has a diverse economy, with major sectors including:

  • Financial and business services
  • Retail
  • Leisure and the visitor economy
  • Construction
  • Manufacturing
  • Creative and digital industries

Its jobs growth has recently been concentrated in knowledge-intensive businesses, and, combined with digital tech business, this is expected to help it produce the second-fastest jobs growth in the UK in the three months after Brexit day (29th March 2019). In the 12 months to the second quarter of 2019, the UK Powerhouse Study forecasts that jobs growth in Leeds will be 2% and that the local economy will grow by 1%.

What does this mean for property investment in Leeds?

Whatever form Brexit takes, it is likely to create issues that will cause economic uncertainty for the UK. Many businesses are preparing for the worst and hoping for the best. It’s clear that Brexit won’t be all bad, despite what various experts and doom merchants are predicting. There will be opportunities created, and, with its diverse and knowledge-based economy, Leeds is more protected against Brexit than many other cities in the UK.

The city is an attractive place to live and work, offering much to both businesses and residents. It is home to a huge local economy – the biggest regional economy outside of London – and is well connected by road and rail to the rest of the UK, and by Leeds Bradford Airport to international destinations.

Jobs growth is expected to continue in the next 10 years, with the local authority forecasting at least another 25,000 jobs in the private sector. The highest growth in jobs is expected in accommodation and food services, financial services, and manufacturing. These jobs will help to support a growing population, forecast to grow from 780,000 currently to more than 900,000 by 2036.

Fundamentals like these have led JLL to forecast that property prices in Leeds will rise by almost 20% by 2022, and rental prices will rise by around 19% during the same period.

When searching for the best property investment opportunities, it is vital that you ignore the noise and concentrate on the fundamentals that drive demand and long-term profitability. We believe that Leeds is one of the most exciting cities for property investment in the UK today. Its vibrant and diverse economy should sustain long-term income and capital gains, to produce above-average returns in post-Brexit Britain.

To find out more and receive an in-depth appraisal of the best property investment opportunities in Leeds, get in touch with Gladfish today.

Live with passion

Brett Alegre-Wood

Brexit

Get ready for a Brexit bounce in London property prices

Why London prices may rise, and where

Property investors should be preparing now for a bounce in London property prices when the UK leaves the EU. This is what several experts are now predicting for the London property market, with almost three years of experience of Brexit uncertainty behind us.

In this article we examine why the experts are so positive about the potential for property investment to produce great gains in the coming years, and we’ll also highlight a couple of locations where that potential could produce the best returns.

What is in store for London property in the next five years?

London’s property market has been the most sluggish of almost all UK locations since the EU referendum produced its surprise result in June 2016. Many experts predicted a crash in London prices, causing an exodus of financial firms from the City.

However, these predictions have proved wide of the mark. Additionally, the EU has altered its rules to allow European firms access to the London financial markets even in the case of a no-deal. But, without a doubt, those predictions and the uncertainty surrounding Brexit affected the London market, especially at the high end.

JLL is among those who now expect a post-Brexit bounce. It forecasts that, between Brexit day (29th March 2019) and 2023:

  • The average price of new build homes in Zones 1 and 2 will rise by almost 18%
  • Luxury property prices will rise by 15.3% in Central London
  • The average price will rise by 14.3% across Greater London

Why could property prices in London rise?

JLL expects a Brexit deal to be done, in which a transition period smooths the path to final exit from the EU. This, it says, will lead to a more stable and confident economy. This will encourage homebuyers and investors to return to the market. As job security returns, property values will rise faster, it says.

We’ve got to put this reasoning into context, though. There are currently no forecasts that the UK economy will crash post-Brexit. GDP is expected to grow by more than 1.5% in 2019, and rise to 2% and above in the two years after. Wages are expected to continue to grow faster than inflation.

But it is not only the economy that dictates house price direction. There is a chronic shortage of homes in London. The Mayor of London has a target of 66,000 new homes each year. Developers are currently delivering around 20,000 to 25,000 new starts each year. That’s a massive gap between supply and demand, and a lot of pent-up demand in a city whose population is forecast to grow by almost two million in the next 23 years.

Will there be a boom in London house prices?

As recently as 2014, London property prices increased by as much as 20% in a single year. It’s clear that those days are now gone. If the Brexit deal finally turns out better than expected, the cork could be released from the bottle of pent-up demand. But a rapid bounce in property prices is less likely today than in the past – the government’s property tax reforms and more regulation have dampened buy-to-let interest.

So, while we may not see a sudden boom in property prices in London, there is likely to be a more measured return to a rising market. The question is, where might it be best to invest for growth in London?

Look for growth potential in London property locations

Recent research from Dataloft and property developer Mount Anvil (and published in Homes and Property) suggests that the best locations to buy will be those that are benefitting from regeneration and offer apartment living. In such areas, average prices rose by around 17% between 2012 and 2016. Boroughs such as Tower Hamlets and Newham performed particularly well.

London property plays well for the greater investment emphasis on capital growth, as the tax advantages of rental income have been eroded. So, where might that capital growth be found in London?

Outer London is hot

Some of the hottest areas for investment in London property are found in Outer London right now. Boroughs such as Redbridge and Merton have bucked the trend of sluggish house prices in the capital. With 24-hour underground services, massive infrastructure investment and regeneration, these areas in Outer London are gaining in popularity with buyers and renters attracted by greater affordability.

A few ideas for your investment location research

London property investment benefits from a wonderful basket of strong fundamentals. The question is, where are the best locations to invest in the capital? Here are a few key locations which we believe could produce above-average returns in a market returning to growth:

  • In East London, our favoured locations include Tower Hamlets, Hackney, Redbridge, and Waltham Forest
  • Locations that are likely to benefit most from infrastructure projects include those on the Crossrail 2 route, such as Haringey, Wood Green, and Battersea
  • We also think that Canary Wharf, Woolwich and Aldgate are attractive for investors

To find out where our research tells us are the best investment opportunities in London as we move through the final stages of Brexit, get in touch with Gladfish today.

Live with passion

Brett Alegre-Wood

Manchester Property

Manchester – an economy that is pumping property investment potential

Economic and residential growth is here to stay

Earlier this year, we published an article asking if Manchester property investment could be the story of 2018. In that article, we highlighted the following:

  • Expansion of development across the city
  • Delivery of property for all tenant types
  • The masterplan that promises premier league property development
  • Collaboration between the local authority and private investment to regenerate swathes of brownfield land

In this article, we update you on the rapid transformation of Manchester and how its city landscape is changing.

Manchester is growing up – literally!

Manchester is getting taller. The desire for city centre living is encouraging developers to build residential towers and deliver thousands of new homes. Deansgate Square Towers – not long ago little more than a hole in the ground – is growing at a fast pace. These will dominate the skyline to the west, eclipsing the Beetham Tower, which was once the tallest in Manchester.

The residential market in Manchester is flourishing, as the city’s economy is proving itself as a world-class city for foreign direct investment and property investors. Its economy has grown faster than London’s since 2014 and is expected to continue to grow rapidly.

As the economy grows and adds jobs, so, too, does the population. Many of Manchester’s 100,000 students studying in its universities stay on for the opportunities provided in its thriving knowledge economy. More people are choosing rented accommodation to suit their lifestyle – and this creates a wonderful opportunity for buy-to-let property investors.

The big boys are investing in Manchester property

Manchester is attracting the new breed of buy-to-let investors. Institutional investors are taking advantage of the potential here, and ploughing money into buy-to-rent opportunities. LaSalle Investment Management, M&G, and Invesco (among others) have recently been joined by Legal & General Investment Management on the roll call of institutional landlords in Manchester.

L&G has followed up its Slate Yard, Salford investment with a deal for Deansgate Square’s West Tower. The deal is good for both L&G’s investors (who want long-term income and capital appreciation) and Manchester City Council (who want to grow the residential offering across tenure types).

Manchester set for continued residential growth

Manchester City’s growth strategy envisages a rapid expansion of residential stock, and as development ripples out from the city centre new locations for development will be unlocked. Plans are for around 15,000 new homes to be delivered in the next 15 years – with property types ranging from apartments to penthouses and townhouses.

The land is expected to be freed up in all directions, with £4 billion of investment pouring into accommodate regeneration and new developments in the Northern Gateway, Eastern Gateway and beyond in towns across the breadth of Greater Manchester.

Manchester’s well-connected towns are thriving, too

Investment potential is not limited to the city centre and its fringes in Manchester. The Metrolink connects outer towns so well with the city centre that investors can discover some fabulous opportunities in nearby Rochdale, Bury, Altrincham, Didsbury, and all places between.

Indeed, The Sunday Times recently called out Altrincham as one of the best places to live in the UK, noting the quality of its schools, housing and transport links.

In summary

Manchester’s economy is growing and is likely to continue to do so as we near the delivery of HS2 services, which will reduce journey times to London to just a shade over one hour. This massive infrastructure project is the keystone to unlocking the potential of Manchester at the heart of the Northern Powerhouse. As the local economy grows, Manchester’s housing shortage may become worse – and the long-term effects of this imbalance are likely to provide further impetus to property values and rental prices.

There are many opportunities for property investors to take advantage of Manchester’s fantastic property fundamentals, with different property types to suit. Your challenge to benefit from investment here is to find the best opportunities – to help you, download your free Hotspots Guide to Manchester. To benefit from an in-depth discussion of how investing in property in Manchester could boost your portfolio returns, contact Gladfish today to book a meeting.

Live with passion,

Brett Alegre-Wood

Birmingham Property

How can you profit from property investment in Birmingham?

4 steps to take advantage of Birmingham’s potential

Birmingham is a city with huge appeal to its residents. It offers some amazing shopping, great restaurants and bars, and a fantastic nightlife. It’s a city with a rapidly growing and young population, and five universities supporting the education of 65,000 students. With a diverse and growing economy, home to many national and international businesses, and boasting one of the fastest rates of new business start-ups in the UK, the number and quality of jobs available here is encouraging many more people to make Birmingham their home. In 2017, more people migrated out of London to Birmingham than to any other UK city.

A city is a place where savvy investors are buying property, with regeneration pumping Birmingham property prices. If you are considering investing in property in Birmingham, we think you are about to make a good decision. But how good that decision will be depends on investing wisely. These four steps will help you take advantage of the very real potential for property investment in Birmingham.

1.    Do your research to pick the best location

Most locations in Birmingham are in high demand. However, we think four city centre locations are standout areas. These locations allow investors to take advantage of the growth in the population of young professionals who want to live on the doorstep of all Birmingham’s fantastic amenities. They are:

  • Digbeth, a trendy location with great transport connections and some exciting regeneration going on. Here you’ll find an eclectic mix of bars, bistros and cafés. Young professionals are attracted by the modern contemporary apartment-style living being developed here.
  • Southgate & Highgate is home to the Chinese Quarter and Birmingham Gay Village. It’s a vibrant and diverse area of the city undergoing massive redevelopment of its wholesale market. Here, vacant land and derelict buildings are being transformed with open spaces and a fantastic residential offering which is ideal for young professionals and families.
  • The Jewellery Quarter is a well-connected and vibrant place to live, work and play. It is packed with character as a result of its more than 200 listed buildings, and could be described as the cultural heart of Birmingham; here is where you will find museums and galleries as well as some amazing eating and drinking options. Only a few minutes’ walk from the best of Birmingham, the Jewellery Quarter is uber trendy and offers younger residents a relaxed or lively nightlife, whichever the preference. Property investors here benefit from a good rental yield and affordable entry level.
  • Westwood and Ladywood is an area supporting more than 200,000 jobs. 130,000 people live here. This really is one of the most popular areas of Birmingham. It is where you will find The Cube and Brindleyplace, and the International Convention Centre. There is huge potential here, with more regeneration to come.

2.    Run your numbers

Always project your cash flow before investing in property. Take a deeper look at the locations in Birmingham in which you are considering an investment, and do your research to find out actual rents that are being achieved in the location. Speak to letting agents and ask about average void periods and length of tenancy. If all the numbers stack up, then move to the next step.

3.    Consider future value

Like most other cities in the UK, Birmingham is short of property. Demand for homes outstrips supply, and unless and until this equation balances out, the pressure on prices will be up. Another consideration is that when High-Speed Rail services start operating, London will be less than 50 minutes away. Birmingham may become a commuter town!

Hometrack has forecast that property prices in Birmingham are likely to rise between 20% and 30% in the next three years. That’s some real growth potential.

4.    Should you buy off-plan property in Birmingham?

When you buy off-plan property, you should be able to negotiate a discount to the current market price (we do this for our investors, and because we negotiate in bulk, we tend to get the best discounts). You’ll be able to pay down a lower initial deposit, and stage payments as the build progress. By the time the property is completed in, let’s say, two or three years, you could be sitting on a property that is worth 20% to 30% more than you paid (perhaps even more) if Hometrack’s assessment and forecast prove to be correct.

How do you buy off-plan property in Birmingham?

If you have never invested in off-plan property previously, it can be a daunting prospect. We’ve helped hundreds of beginner investors take those first steps, ensuring that they pass the sleep test – which says don’t do anything that makes you sleep poorly.

If you’re considering investing in off-plan property in Birmingham but aren’t sure if it’s for you, download your free copy of our eBook ‘Profiting from Off-Plan Apartments’. This is the definitive guide for property investors buying off-plan apartments and will help you to maximise your profits while minimising risks.

Otherwise, to find out more and receive an in-depth appraisal of the best property investment opportunities in Birmingham, get in touch with Gladfish today.

Live with passion

Brett Alegre-Wood

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