Bricks and mortar have long been seen as a safe haven for investors.
In times of economic uncertainty there has always been something reassuringly solid about the idea of having your money sunk into property.
But with the pandemic causing volatility everywhere, has the property market emerged unscathed? Here, Stephen Cole speaks to Uma Rajah, CEO and co-founder of a new kind of property investment company, CapitalRise, to find out.
MEET THE EXPERT
Uma Rajah joined CapitalRise from leading online consumer lending business Wonga Group, where she held various Head of Product roles for Wonga UK Consumer Loans, Business Lending and Peer to Peer Lending.
CapitalRise was created to be a real estate lender in the prime property space, using a digital platform to create opportunities for the smaller investor in a sector which previously had only been available to institutions and those with ultra-high net worth.
WHAT DOES RAJAH SAY?
The pandemic has had a fascinating effect on the property market: "We've all been locked in our houses for unprecedented amounts of time, and that's made people reflect on whether they're happy with their surroundings," says Rajah. "Do they want to move? Do they want to buy an additional property?"
She says that lockdown has actually benefited the property market – pointing to a recent survey showing transactions in Central London alone rose 24 percent in Q4 of 2020.
"We've definitely seen a lot of trends being stimulated as a result of people being locked in their homes and anticipating remote working being an ongoing part of their lifestyle."
ALSO ON THE AGENDA:
Moira O'Neill, head of personal finance at Interactive Investor, explains why ethical investment is a trend that's here to stay and which sectors we should be watching for a decent return in a post-pandemic world.
Arturo Bris, professor of finance at Geneva's International Institute of Management Development, joins the show to discuss GameStop, Reddit and Robinhood – and whether this year's David and Goliath battle between the little people and the hedge funds is likely to change the face of investment as we know it.
And what about some of the more alternative investment opportunities out there? Dominic Brennan, director of Noble Rot Fine Wine, explains why a good Bordeaux or a fine Burgundy are much more than just a tasty tipple.