Property guardianship, despite a growth in popularity, is still a relatively unknown option for some owners of non-domestic vacant buildings. The same can be said for potential property guardians, who may not be aware of the schemes available or simply might not have thought property guardianship would be right for them.
There are benefits to being a property guardian and though it lacks the security and rights of home ownership, it is well suited to certain people’s requirements.
That’s not to say these schemes work for everyone, but there is great flexibility attached to the property guardian lifestyle, and that is just what it is for some people: a lifestyle.
Here is some key information on property guardians which may help you to decide whether it could be an option for you.
Live-in guardians are enjoying accommodation that is significantly cheaper than market rent
There are tens of thousands of empty properties in the UK and a vast amount of those are in London alone. Despite this, the price of rent in the capital remains sky high, averaging at an eye-watering £1,124 per month.
Property guardians can live in some of the most exclusive and convenient locations around London for a small fraction of the usual price.
The London-based Oaksure Property Protection specialise in live-in guardians and have been successfully occupying properties there for over a decade. They work with their guardians in the long-term and even pay for their SIA (Security Industry Authority) training. This has resulted in a loyal, trustworthy selection of property guardians who are prepared for moving at short notice and actually embrace it.
Similarly to most other live-in guardian companies like Camelot, Dot Dot Dot and Global Guardians, their prices are all inclusive, so there are no added bills or council taxes for guardians to worry about.
Ideal for young professionals and flexible workers
Being a property guardian means having a willingness to be mobile, so it’s not for everyone.
Those who are renting or tied down by a mortgage enjoy the idea of settling in one place for the long term. Many property guardians however are far more comfortable with the varied lifestyle that comes with this type of scheme.
According to a Sky news report, many property guardians are young professionals, mature students and recent post graduates who are looking to make a head start on their career in the capital, but cannot yet afford to get themselves on the housing ladder.
Guardians must be responsible
Property guardians have been labelled by some as ‘glorified house sitters’, and although they can often find themselves living in desirable spaces or locations for a low price, guardians must be responsible and maintain a level of professionalism throughout their time at any property.
Before any individual is allowed to take part in a scheme, they will be interviewed and required to provide references, a CV and a copy of their passport.
Property guardianship is not here to provide a solution to the housing crisis, and it does not claim to be. But for many individuals who are willing to be mobile when called upon, it is one of the better cheap housing options available.