“Don’t worry, there’s no way they can get in” is a phrase I’m sure we’ve all thought to ourselves. Unfortunately cities like London are at bursting point and poor planning in the past has led to a shortage of housing. Coupled with a transient international population people are looking at all types of places to live…no matter what. This invariably makes squatting a huge risk in cities like London.
Conversely there is a way for all parties to achieve their results, Property Guardians. Methods such as boarding up buildings only highlight further that a building is vacant, and an opportunity. In most buildings there will be a number of fully employed, reviewed and checked people over the age of 21 who by living on site for reduced market rents provide the service of guarding the property against squatters, damage, and with the help of their management team bring the property to a state of good use ensuring that amenities and infrastructure remain in good condition. This is ideal for a property owner whose building will remain vacant over cold winter months with lettings planned for the New Year.
The unique side to this option that VSM offer clients, via a preferred management partner, is that Property Guardians occupation of a property does not conflict with planning. Therefore we’ve found this service to appeal to principally residential led developers working with PDR as well as our clients with city centre properties. Their track record throughout London is second to none and the due diligence performed ensures that although there are people on site in an empty building, it’s right for them to be there.
All of this wouldn’t be able to work without the numbers. Property Guardians are able to help reduce empty property rates liabilities by 90% and significantly reduce costs on security, alarm systems, walk through’s, broken pipes, smashed windows….the list can go on. Some strong case studies include a client who had a 70,000 sq ft former Metropolitan Police HQ in SE1 overlooking the Thames. Empty property rates were £694,000 pa, by placing 44 Property Guardians over 11 floors the liability reduced to £33,000 pa, saving the client £661,000. Another client owned a 10,000 sq ft former gym in Covent Garden with an empty property rates £150,000 pa. 9 Property Guardians were placed in the building and liability reduced to £2,650 pa, a substantial saving of £147,350.
We’d be lying by saying that this is a simple solution and worked everywhere. Buildings do have to be of a certain quality and in some cases capital investment is required. It is also a business based on demand. This is why our management team will produce a full schedule of requirements, measure this against the rates liabilities and likely duration of vacancy to provide our clients with a rounded and professional view on how to employ this service.
To speak further about Property Guardians in your property please contact Director Richard Artus.
VSM believe that Knowledge is Power.
Knowledge of the industry of the past and present helps us guide our clients to the future. This is our main USP to our clients.
Get In Touch
Please feel free to pick up the phone and call to speak directly with one of the partners or with the senior management team. Our team are split between the following offices.
Tel: 01908 660552
Vacant Space Management Ltd
335 South Row
Tel: 01908 660552
21 Abbeville Mews
88 Clapham Park Road
Tel: 020 3051 3299