Image credit: BrickzWithTipz Founder Tayo Oguntonade
As an experienced Mortgage Broker, Property Expert, Investor and Influencer, Tayo Oguntonade regularly uses his expertise to break down complex and relevant property topics for the everyday person to understand. We caught up with the star of Channel 4's 'The Great House Giveaway' to talk about how he got into property, market predictions and tips and advice for home buyers...
We’ve seen you on our TV screens (The Great House Giveaway, Morning Live, Watchdog and more) offering advice on the property market. How did you first get into the property sector, and has it always been a passion?
When I got my first job I was always big on saving, however, it was always a challenge trying not to dip into your savings pot on eating out, going cinema or buying clothes. I quickly decided that I needed to 'crystalise' my money so I dip into it frequently but rather spent it all on one big item that I could possibly sell later - I chose cars. However, I quickly learned that spending so much money on cars wasn't the best financial move and there were better ways I could invest my money - that's where my passion for property was born. Shortly after university I saved as much as I could and bought a property in a town that I could afford.
It’s been a turbulent couple of years for home buyers, are we in any position to predict where the property market will be in 2022?
It's been very unpredictable over the past few years, the property market thrived in a time where most industries struggled. With interest rates going up and the cost of living for the everyday household increasing there are many that would predict a cooling of the property market. However, in the same breath, month after month it is evident that the demand for properties isn't changing and whilst external factors may make property purchases impossible for some, there are plenty who are still able and determined to get their first property.
What advice would you give to those trying to get onto the property ladder for the first time this year?
My advice to those trying to get on the property ladder this year would be to speak to a mortgage broker as soon as possible to find out what you can afford today. It is difficult to motivate yourself to take on such a huge challenge when you have no idea of where you are at the moment. Getting some mortgage advice will allow you to manage expectations and give you a clear indication of what is possible. My other piece of advice would be to stay informed, people underestimate how important it is to stay in the conversation and be up to date on what is happening in the property world. There could be announcements that benefit you massively, these come and go though and if you aren't in the loop you could miss your shot!
With the cost of living constantly increasing, are there any mortgage offers out there that potential buyers can take advantage of?
Interest rates on mortgages right now are still relatively cheap which presents an opportunity for first time buyers, for most people mortgage payments are cheaper than the rent on the exact same property. Mortgages are a lot more flexible now as well, you can do things like make overpayments when you have good months with some extra spare cash and then take payment holidays which will effectively draw money down from your overpayment pot when you need it. This allows people to have a reserve to prepare for the months they may be hit with huge energy bills.
You bought your first property at the age of 22. What advice would you give readers so that they can also realise their dreams of being a homeowner.
When buying at such a young age I think it's important to remind yourself that you are doing something many may not be willing to do. I moved out to Kent from London and a lot of people couldn't understand my decision to do so, which was difficult.
I think when you are chasing any dreams at such a young age there is an element of isolation where you have to go at things alone. With, my main bit of advice is that you have to arm yourself with information. This means historical information about house prices in the area, current information about transport links, amenities, schools & hospitals and finally check future information such as plans for further developments or government spending. Being well informed will help you with what may feel like a lonely road at times.
How did you get involved with ’The Great House Giveaway’ and can you briefly give us a synopsis of what the show is about.
I had a conversation with Sioned who is the mastermind behind 'The Great House Giveaway' and also the director of Chwarel which is an independent production company in North Wales. I believe she found my details from a YouTube video I made which was really surprising to me because at the time I was on YouTube for less than a year! The show gives two strangers an opportunity in which they are given a house and a renovation budget, they have six months to do it up and get it sold. If they make any profit, they get to keep it!
How important is it to make the world of property, and straight-forward advice, more accessible to buyers, sellers, investors etc?
It is extremely important, especially for the younger generation who almost rely on social media as a source of information on property. I worked as a mortgage broker and my successes as a broker are aligned with the successes of our property platform BrickzWithTipz. This is because in both the focus was making property accessible for all by empowering people with the tools and knowledge they require. On BrickzWithTipz we don't wear suits, we don't use jargon & we don't speak about £100,000 deposits - property is intimidating as it is and we ensure that we stay relatable.
What would you like decision makers to do in order to address some of the issues that home-buyers face (e.g more affordable stock) ?
I think the biggest thing to do is to build more, demand outweighs supply, and it has done for a long time. There also needs to be an increase in affordable homes. I was able to leave London to buy my first home but leaving your home to buy your property isn't that easy for everyone. Many rely on or are a support system for others close to where they live so moving further out isn't that simple. We need more affordable properties to be built that are ring fenced for local residents, giving them a chance on the property ladder.
You can find expert advice, tips on Antoinette & Tayo Oguntonade's website www.brickzwithtipz.co.uk, plus a wealth of free content for individuals who want to learn, invest or network. You can also follow Tayo on his social media channels by clicking below...