The recent Landlord & Letting Show at City Hall in Cardiff, again proved a good show for us here at Signature Property Finance. The date had been moved back to the early autumn, to better suit the business schedules of those in the area; a decision which proved fruitful for both visitors and exhibitors.

In the past it is true to say we have exhibited at busier shows, but although visitor numbers appeared to be down on previous years, there was no doubting the quality of the enquiries we received on the day and in the weeks afterwards.

There has been a lot of speculation that many ‘accidental’ landlords have left the market given the recent and expected legislation changes and the conversations we had on our stand would appear to support this theory.

Almost all of those wishing to talk short-term property finance with us, were the owners of multiple properties and looking to grow their portfolios and increase their returns through the strategic use of bridging loans and auction finance.

Last year all the talk was about the Chancellor’s taxation changes in 2017. But this year, little was made of it, again suggesting the property professionals will adapt, move on and not let it distract them from delivering affordable rental properties across the region.

As in previous years, our CEO Tony Gilbertson was on hand to discuss property deals and display his thorough understanding of the property market in Wales.

The event isn’t all about the exhibition, but a series of seminars that offer attendees a range of presentations that cover a lot of relevant topics for landlords. For the most part these seminars relate to keeping landlords on the right side of the law and how they can find better tenants, with financial matters largely ignored – but that’s what we’re for.

We have made significant changes to our product offering in recent months and Cardiff proved another good opportunity to highlight our impressive and very competitive residential bridging loan rate of 0.45% (per month for the first 3 months).

Raising our LTV to 75% of OMV on residential investments and our improved Heavy Refurbishment product, which offers new opportunities to the more determined, also attracted interest from serious developers and a few brokers, looking for support for their clients.

Interestingly, this year we had more visitors to our stand from outside Wales, which perhaps demonstrates the shows are beginning to build a reputation for the quality of advice on offer from the seminars and exhibitors.

This year we had fewer enquiries to deal with, but expect more work from those we did receive. Within hours of the enquiries we had already supplied indicative terms and thanks to our new streamlined process we expect a higher conversion rate to loans, which makes for another successful day out of the office.