Well what a cold and miserable time of year it is! It can also be expensive and I’ve certainly had a burst pipe at one of my properties. At times like this it’s important to focus on the bigger picture and the larger strategy and vision – and that helps to ‘see’ the minor winter challenges in ’smaller’ focus. The challenges are always there of course but it’s important not to focus on them – as when you do, they then seem to get a great deal larger. So here’s some good news! House prices increased by 0.6 per cent in January when traditionally they are static at best, even after taking account of seasonal factors. Also, Jeremy Leaf – a former RICS residential chairman – says: “At the sharp end we have seen an uplift in terms of viewings and more confidence than we dared to expect”. That’s all good.

The other piece of news that caught my eye was that the Office of National Statistics have revealed that the self-employed are more likely to own property than employed workers, suggesting that their prospects are less fragile than might have been thought. Figures show that 73.1 per cent of employees aged between 35 and 54 have property wealth. This figure rises to 74.7 per cent for the self-employed. The numbers also reveal that 27 per cent of the self-employed aged 35 to 54 have property wealth of at least £250,000, compared with 17.6 per cent of the employed.

Now that’s interesting news – could it be that people are finally realising that being self-reliant and taking responsibility for yourself, your work and your money is a much ‘safer’ route to financial success than having a ‘JustOverBroke’!

Happy Investing!