Interesting times is one way to describe the recent events of Brexit, and whichever camp you're in I think we can all agree 'the times they are a-changin'. I've been asked several times what as a company will we change; will it be our strategies, our due diligence or our financing model. If there was ever a time to emphasize how important location and margins are, it is now!
We are not making drastic knee jerk decisions other than making sure our margins are circa 30% on GDV and our locations have a high PTAL (Public Transport Accessibility Levels) rating. The developers with healthy margins and great site locations shouldn't have too much to worry about; it's the sites working on typical 20% margins that should be concerned as there isn't a sufficient security blanket in place. You only need to look at the 2008 crash where the majority of developers that went bust were working on 15-20% margins. Now, I'm not saying there is going to be a crash but every business should stress test its projects whether it's 2008 or 2016.
In fact, the councils' section 106 requirements should be amended as their requirement for a developer to make no more than 20% margin is poor business practice, a matter to be discussed another time.
So in short, at the Vincit Group we are not overly worried just concentrating on the fundamentals; in fact, we see this as an opportunity as no doubt 'Berkshire Hathaway' does. So to repeat: great locations (demand is high, high PTAL, high population density) and healthy margins close to 30%. One recent site we secured mirrors these fundamentals.