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I was delighted to be joined on the podcast by Alice Nock, a mother of 2 teenage boys who got into property so she could spend more quality time with them, and with her husband.
She graduated with a degree in Law before teaching in primary schools for nearly 10 years, but despite being a full-time property investor for only the last 13 months, that’s clearly where her passion now lies, and she’s done some amazing deals in that short space of time.
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Although Alice has only been a full-time investor for 13 months, she dabbled in property during her years as a primary school teacher. Realising she had some equity in her own home, she bought a house at auction which already had tenants in, and was successfully able to get an immediate cashflow going.
However, she says she didn’t consider that because the house was only 6 years old, she’d be unable to add value to it, and because all of her money went into the purchase, she wasn’t able to make another investment. In the end, she maintained the same tenants over 5 years before selling it on for a profit.
Since those early days, Alice has attended property seminars and built up her network. She’s currently concentrating on two investment routes, having started with buy-to-lets, and basic flips of 3-bed semi-detached properties while she was learning the ropes.
She’s since moved onto HMOs, primarily to increase her cashflow, but she also has a company she uses specifically for trading, LA Homes, which is where she undertakes larger renovations with much bigger profits. Through this company, she has also managed to begin her first ground-up development of a detached house.
Despite such a quick progression in property, Alice says she’s still looking to expand further by continuing with more HMOs, as well as moving into the build-to-rent market, with a view to buying larger plots of land to build 4+ rental units on before selling or leasing.
Advice for new investors
By continuing to study, cultivating her network, and investing through multiple routes, Alice has had an auspicious start to property, and with her background as a teacher, she already passes on her advice to two mentees.
She says it’s important to gain a thorough understanding of the industry before diving in, and maintains that although she’s found success, property isn’t a simple way to gain a passive income quickly. After running afoul of rogue tradespeople in one of her earlier projects, she also emphasises that new investors should always run appropriate checks on the people they’re employing – even if they come recommended.
It’s crucial to speak to other clients tradesmen have worked for, check over their qualifications, and ensure they are a member of the appropriate industry bodies, before allowing them to carry out the work. Unfortunately, Alice found out the hard way that without these checks, you could end up out of pocket.
She also suggests building a trusting relationship with agents in the area you’re looking to purchase property in, and to always follow through on your promises. If you say you want to buy a property, buy it, and you’ll soon become a client that agents are happy to work with longer term.
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