Channel Island Landlords

by Nigel Roberts

9:59 AM, 20th December 2014
About 4 years ago

Channel Island Landlords

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Channel Island Landlords

I live most of the time in the Channel Islands. Contrary to the popular imagination that was given out by John Netttles in the 1980s, the Islands are accessible and easy to get into (in the right Island). There are plenty of houses available to purchase at what (compared with London) are reasonable prices. Channel Island Landlords

I’ve bought and renovated one, and am currently on my second, which will become a holiday home rental.

Both property laws and landlord law is different here. The property law can be strange at times, but not too difficult to negotiate.

Landlord and tenant law is approximately what it was in England or Scotland in the 1950s!!!

I thought it would be a useful thing to have a topic where people looking for potential investment properties, with tax benefits (20% income tax top rate, no capital gains tax, no inheritance tax) could discuss things, and I can share what I’ve learned.

Any questions?

Regards

Nigel Roberts



Comments

Mark Alexander

10:10 AM, 20th December 2014
About 4 years ago

Hi Nigel

Great idea to start this thread.

What are the main differences in tenancy law? e.g. does section 21 and deposit protection law apply?

What is a typical price/rent of an average two bed flat - for comparison purposes?
.

Jacqs 3

14:11 PM, 23rd December 2014
About 4 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Mark Alexander" at "20/12/2014 - 10:10":

I am curious as to how Nigel has been able to purchase in Jersey, as you do need Housing Qualifications to buy there unless you are essentially employed or J Category (ie millionaires). The laws in Jersey are much more in the Landlord's favour, unless children are involved. Not 100% sure now, but you used to be able to remove tenants by entering property and leaving out on street, but obviously they have to be at fault in some way ie rent arrears.

Nigel Roberts

10:27 AM, 26th December 2014
About 4 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Mark Alexander" at "20/12/2014 - 10:10":

Well, the first thing to note is that deposit protection law does not apply.

The first thing to note is that each of the four legal systems in the Islands has its own laws.

Throughout the four Islands, the customary (common) law side shares a common root (it's an admixture of English common law principles with more ancient Normal customs on property, inheritance &c), while statutory laws depend whether the local parliament has chosen (or indeed, got round to considering) modern English developments such as (as you correctly point out) deposit protection law.

The starting point is freedom of contract. The written terms of the lease are pretty paramount.

So an approximate rule of thumb is that the landlord law here is similar to that as it was in England in 1948.

I'll give a separate indication about prices later -- they are wildly different in each island, and each island has their own little gotchs.

Nigel Roberts

10:35 AM, 26th December 2014
About 4 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Jacqs 3" at "23/12/2014 - 14:11":

Well, the simple answer is that I haven't bought in Jersey. I own three properties in Alderney.

Jersey is the most complex Island for residential property. It's also the most expens sve. The HNW route into the island used to be known as 11k after the section in the housing law -- so as you can probably guess, it wasn't Jersey I was referring to.

I shall be posting information about Jersey last, both because of the complexity, and because of the prices.

I do have a contact at the States there where I can get the most accurate information, and will be putting that together in the New Year since for very well-heeled property investors, Jersey might represent the safest investment.

But let's look at the entry-level first 😉

Nigel Roberts

10:46 AM, 26th December 2014
About 4 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Mark Alexander" at "20/12/2014 - 10:10":

CHANNEL ISLAND PURCHASE PRICES

For the purposes of this reply, I will skate over the occupation restrictions that might exist in some, but not all, parts of the Islands.

Maximum price: As you might imagine, the sky is the limit. There are some very nice properties in both of the larger Islands in the 2-5 million area.

Minimum price: This is, I suppose what readers will be more interested in.

As I write this, there is a one bedroom maisonette available with interior decoration to a very high standard in High St Alderney. Please note that I have no connection with the vendor!!

It's at an asking price of a mere 115k (reduced dramatically recently). "Conge" (i.e. stamp duty) would add around 5k to that.

There are no occupation restrictions whatsoever.

This should easily produce a rent of say, 120 per week, or 6.2k per year.

A large three bedroom house, again in High St, can be purchased for not much more than 200k.

Nigel Roberts

10:54 AM, 26th December 2014
About 4 years ago

Reply to the comment left by "Nigel Roberts" at "26/12/2014 - 10:46":

PURCHASING RESTRICTIONS (Guernsey, Alderney & Sark).

There are no purchasing restrictions in Guernsey, Alderney or Sark.

Guernsey does a system of occupation restrictions for some, but not all properties; but as a non-occupier, this should not matter to a potential landlord, as it is the /tenant/ to whom the law applies. (There is a system, in Guernsey whereby someone may not be employed unless they have proof they are lawfuly houses)

Alderney has no purchasing or occupation restrictions at all.

Sark has a law in place allowing dwellings created after 2011 to be restricted.

Jacqs 3

17:13 PM, 27th December 2014
About 4 years ago

Hi Nigel

Apologies, I did not realise you were referring to the other Islands. Yes Jersey is more expensive and the housing qualifications required are 'gold dust' - I owned a property there and it was my saddest time when I was forced to sell it due to an 'arrangement' I had with an investor. Apart from the fact Jersey is my home.. although I am lucky enough to go between Uk and Jersey as both homes. You certainly do not experience the problems I am now faced with my UK tenant!! She should be an one of those programmes, however, yes the CI are a great place to invest. One of the best advantages being NO capital gains tax! How Law should be I reckon.

I think your advice on Property 118 is very educational, many thanks. It's teaching me more about the other Island laws, very interesting, and also reminding why I love the Islands so much.


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