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Updates from around the business

Check in here for regular updates on what the team’s been up to and the latest property industry news.

14 Mar 2023

Sponsors for Southend Rugby Football Club for over 17 years!

On Saturday 11th March 2023, Ayers & Cruiks sponsored the final home match of the season at Southend Rugby Football Club. It was SAXONS against H.A.C, with the final score being 14 - 10 to H.A.C. It was a tough one to take as SAXONS fight back falls short. Nevertheless, It was a great event with live music and roaring on England as they faced France in the Six Nations Rugby game in the evening.   Ayers & Cruiks have been sponsoring Southend Rugby Football club for over 17 years and Nathan Strange, the SRFC Promoter, says this of the sponsorship ‘Ayers & Cruiks are one of our longest running continual sponsors. The club really appreciates the ongoing support that directors Steve Ayers & Kevin Cruiks have provided over the years. This support has really helped the success of the club and it has always been a strong professional relationship. 
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17 Jan 2023

We’re Expanding!

Due to the growth and demand of the company, Ayers & Cruiks have expanded by opening a secondary city centre office in Chelmsford. Come and visit us in our new city location at Burgundy Court, 64/66 Springfield Road, Chelmsford. Now we are conveniently located for serving our clients in North and West Essex.Get in touch for a FREE no-obligation valuation of your property today!
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01 Nov 2022

Landlords – Do your Buildings have an up-to-date and compliant EPC? The clock is ticking if you don’t!

One of the most wide-ranging pieces of legislation to affect commercial property will soon become even more relevant, as the deadline for compliance approaches.Just as we are all getting used to having current and compliant EPCs at the time of letting and lease renewals, from the 1st April 2023, landlords will no longer be allowed to continue with existing commercial tenancies, unless they reach a minimum EPC Rating of E or above. Therefore, come 1st April 23 any commercial property with a rating below E will be illegal and could leave the landlords subject to large fines.Quite often those buildings falling below the E Rating only need fairly minor improvements to bring them back into compliance, but with government strategy indicating that all buildings will have to reach a minimum of Grade B by 2030, with an interim target of Grade C by 2027, landlords should start to consider a longer-term strategy for improving their buildings to meet these new standards.To add further to the problem the government released The Heat and Buildings Strategy in Oct 2021 which requires that gas boiler sales to commercial buildings should cease by 2030/33.This leaves landlords of some buildings with a big problem and the thorny question of who will pay for these improvements is frequently asked, especially where buildings have service charges in place to pay for common facilities such as boilers, communal maintenance, etc.Each lease will be different in its interpretation of the repairing and the service charge clauses and not surprisingly the courts have been asked to consider this issue in a number of recent cases. The general tone of these decisions is bad news for landlords, as these works are generally viewed as improvement works and therefore outside of the service charge responsibility.Therefore, in general terms, landlords are expected to bear the cost of the works required to bring their buildings up to a level to comply, not only with today’s compliance levels, but those moving forward into the future.Ayers & Cruiks Commercial Management team can assist you and have connections with industry experts in this field to help you build a consolidated policy for energy management in your buildings.
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20 Sep 2022

Ayers & Cruiks Sponsor The Hawkwell Athletic FC

Ayers & Cruiks are proud sponsors of Hawkwell Athletic FC!They were up against an experienced team, The Woodham Radars, but all the girls kept their spirits high and grew stronger as the game went on, and walked away with a 2-2 draw. We are very proud to have sponsored the team and look forward to watching them go from strength to strength as the season goes on.Hawkwell Athletic Under 14 Girls team had their first match of the season over the weekend, the first match since winning the league last year and moving up a league. Good luck for rest of the season girls!
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21 Jun 2022

Ayers & Cruiks Partner with Havens Hospices supporting The Herd In The City

Ayers & Cruiks are delighted to be partnering with Havens Hospices, supporting The Herd In The City, a spectacular public art event taking place from July to September 2023. I am sure you remember the Hares About Town trial in 2021. This time Havens Hospices will be teaming up once again with Wild In Art in 2023, bringing the Herd In The City. For over eight weeks, Southend, Shoeburyness and Leigh will be brought to life by a herd of beautifully decorated elephants. To find out more about Herd In The City, visit www.herdinthe.city
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23 May 2022

New Regulations for Rented Properties - Compulsory Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarms

The new draft rules amend the Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm (England) Regulations 2015 where previously the requirement only applied to solid fuel combustion appliances, such as wood burners. The rules will, however, not extend to gas cookers. The amended rules (Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm (Amendment) Regulations 2022) include a new requirement to ensure when a tenant reports to the landlord or letting agent that an alarm may not be in proper working order, the alarm must be repaired or replaced.  The Draft Statutory Instrument was laid before Parliament on 11 May 2022 and once approved will come into force on 1 October 2022. The above information has been taken from Property Mark and can be found on their website here>>> Property Mark Carbon Monoxide Information - May 2022
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10 May 2022

Southend Networking Group has relaunched

We are pleased to announce the Southend Networking Group is back! There is a new team behind the event and we would like to thank Natwest and Tolhurst Fisher for their efforts over the years. AR Lee and FRP have continued with their involvement and are now joined by Ayers & Cruiks, Havens Hospices, Metro Bank and Nicholls Law. After a long period of uncertainty, we are relaunching this popular event for professionals to network over a drink and a buffet lunch. The event is to be held on the first Friday of every month (excluding Bank Holidays) and will be held at the Garden Terrace of Revolution Southend on Queens Road. We will have opportunities over the year for companies to sponsor the event where you will be able to give a brief talk about your company and if this would be of interest, please get in contact with one of the team. For more information contact us on sngrevolutions@outlook.com
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01 Feb 2020

How to purchase a buy to let property

Considering purchasing a buy to let property? Becoming a landlord can be a wise investment, providing you with another monthly source of income while owning a property that gains value over time. Whether you’re brand new to buy to let or already have a property you’d like to rent out, we’ve asked local mortgage specialists, CLS Money, for their answers on common questions about property investment and how the buy to let process works. From initial considerations on finding the right property to the criteria to get a buy to let mortgage, read on for some expert advice so you can start planning for an exciting investment opportunity.What is a buy to let property? Unlike a residential residence, which is bought by an individual for them to live in, a buy to let property is purchased with the intention of renting out to tenants and generating an income through the rent charged. What should I look for when investing in property? When looking for a buy to let property, there are a number of things you should consider, including: Finding a property that suits local demand and demographics Looking for a property that is close to shops, amenities, good schools and transport links Choosing an older property, as they are generally much larger and cheaper to buy than new builds Avoiding areas where there are already lots of other investors, as rents will likely be more competitive How much do you need to buy to let? To purchase a buy to let property, you will need a deposit between 20% and 40% of the property’s value. The costs tend to be more than standard residential properties, as buy to let investments are viewed as a higher risk to mortgage lenders. What is the criteria for a buy to let mortgage? In order to obtain a buy to let mortgage, your rental income generally needs to be between 25 and 30% higher than your mortgage payment. However, as buy to let mortgage criteria differs from one lender to another, it’s best to seek advice from a specialist mortgage broker, who will help advise you on all your available options and find the best mortgage product for your needs. What is a good yield on a rental property in the UK? A good rental yield for a buy to let property is typically 7%. Anything below this could put you at risk of not having enough money to cover your mortgage payments, expenses and maintenance costs for the property. Is it illegal to rent a house without a buy to let mortgage? If you are considering renting your home, even just a room whilst you continue to live there, you will need to obtain permission from your mortgage lender first. By not doing so, you are effectively committing mortgage fraud, which could result in you having to pay a penalty, such as a fee or a higher rate of interest. In extreme circumstances, your lender could even insist that the entire mortgage is immediately paid off in its entirety. What tax do I pay on a buy to let? When you purchase a buy to let property, there are a number of taxes you will need to pay as follows: Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT). An extra 3% on top of the standard SDLT bands Rental income tax. Declared on your Self Assessment tax return and charged in accordance with your income tax banding. From April 2020, this will be capped at 20% Capital Gains Tax. 18% or 28% depending on your tax bracket. However, this charge only applies when a buy to let property is not only sold for more than the purchase price. But, also above the £12,000 profit allowance, once you have deducted your fees. Our property management team here at Ayers & Cruiks have years of experience helping landlords through every step of the buy to let process. We can also recommend you to our preferred mortgage advisor to help you find the best buy to let mortgage for you. Need support managing your property portfolio? Call us today on 01702 343060 – we’re here to help.
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01 Dec 2019

Congratulations to our new directors!

Chris Lushey – Finance Director Chris, our new Finance Director, has been with us since 2014 and brings two decades worth of experience in property accounting with him. Chris has led the accounts team through a period of growth in our managed property portfolio to ensure that we’re on top of our client’s finances as well as our own. Get in touch with Chris by calling 01702 608033  for specialist property accounting expertise. Darrell Clarke – Associate Director Darrell, our new Associate Director, joined us in 2012 from a residential estate agency background. He’s now leading our commercial team to find the right tenants or buyers for our properties, a skill which has earned the company the Estates Gazette Most Active Agent award for the 9th year running. Get in touch with Darrell by calling 01702 608039 for expert commercial property guidance.
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