Remodeled House in Headstone Lane, Harrow  



Looking for advice on purchasing a BISF property in Harrow:

It's totally renovated and I am interested in this property but have been told that I need to be careful as it's BISF and should stay away from it. Looking to purchase this for investment and would welcome feedback on what type of survey I should do and whether it's worth getting this property as investment.




Hello Sujal and welcome to the forums.

Thank you for providing details of the property you are interested in. 

hutton lane bisf open plan property shop (6)
hutton lane bisf open plan property shop (11)
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hutton lane bisf open plan property shop (10)
hutton lane bisf open plan property shop (8)

The house appears to have undergone a major internal renovation which has been completed to a high standard and from an investment aspect, provides a turnkey opportunity, which is quite rare in itself.

I also like the fact that the ground floor has been opened up to provide an updated open plan aspect with large patio doors providing increased natural light and ease of access. In essence, all the most practical improvements have already been undertaken, which is bonus. The roof has also been replaced with a lightweight roofing system which lenders prefer, saving you around 10k or more to install yourself.

Moving on to your concerns, regarding the property being BISF construction and any advice you may have received or read.

The internet is littered with unfounded and often inaccurate bias toward all Non-Traditional constructed dwellings. The vast majority of this bias is sadly borne through ignorance and misunderstanding. Take a look through any property related investment forum and you will see many unfounded comments. One of the most common relating to BISF houses, is the suggestion that they were built to last just 10 years. This in itself is totally incorrect. The BISF House was constructed as a permanent dwelling with the same expected lifespan as a brick built property.

Others suggest that BISF houses don't increase in value as much as brick houses. False again, for despite having slightly lower list prices than like for like brick properties, values still increase proportionally with local property values.

Whilst it is true, that some non traditionally constructed properties do not make for good investments, there are many others that do provide excellent opportunities. I consider the BISF House to be one of the best, providing the purchaser carries out standard due diligence, which should be exercised no matter what property type is being purchased. The most obvious step, is to obtain a structural survey as opposed to a standard homebuyers survey. This will provide peace of mind that your investment will be as solid as the structure you are buying.

Second, make sure you approach a lender who does provide mortgages for non-standard constructed properties. Some do and some do not, but it only takes a few enquiries and a study of the providers lending criteria to establish if they are suitable.

Thi is why many people say you can't get a mortgage on these properties which again is totally untrue. You certainly can get a mortgage but too many people apply to a lender that does not supply this type of mortgage. Bad press like this is not due to the property being unmortgageable, but because the buyer has approached the the wrong lender and that is just one example of how negative comments sometimes arise, because the buyer was at fault, not the property.


The property is also being marketed by Hinton & Downes, who I consider to be one of the best estate agents in the area. They have vast experience in the marketing of BISF Houses and I am sure that they too will also be able to provide their own unbiased support of the investment opportunity here.

Finally, it's well worth taking a look at the rental yield. If you are looking to rent the property, your potential rental income is likely to be very similar to that of a more expensive brick property of similar size and number of rooms (in the area). This is another plus from an investment perspective.

Let me know what you think.






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