A growing number of property professionals are looking at selling or building Self Invested Personal Pensions (SIPPs) compliant property after government changes mean that some six million people with an estimated £100bn could invest their underperforming personal pension into this savings type.

"These changes will give more flexibility and investment choice to people taking an active interest in the management of their pension fund," said UK Minister for Pensions Reform Mike O'Brien. "It will also be easier for individuals to transfer funds between different types of pension schemes, and to consolidate pension rights in one place."

Several companies are looking to take advantage of the changes by working to make their properties SIPPs compliant or looking to sell this type of stock.

Caribbean specialist Harlequin Properties is one of the latest to do so and has just become registered to sell properties into a buyers' SIPP, while investment specialist Landcorp is currently marketing SIPP-compliant pre-development land in Nova Scotia, Canada in conjunction with Terra Firma Development Corporation Ltd.

"Upon completion of our SIPP registration we invite hundreds if our agents and staff to a week-long seminar at our headquarters in the south-east to update and train them on the specifics of SIPPs and the opportunities this offers out entire network," said Dave Ames, chairman of Harlequin. "Investment into any Harlequin Property development is, and will remain, a profitable avenue, however our SIPP status will now aide us in attracting further investors."

UK-based investment specialist Assetz has also shaken up its business model and its new division, Assetz International, is now working to source and package UK and overseas developments for SIPP providers across Britain. It has also created a new division of Assetz Finance to help agents sell this property type to investors legally.

"Agents can now tap into the SIPP market as we give them all the relevant information on a plate," said Stuart Law, chief executive of Assetz. "Agents technically can't sell SIPP property. They can take the process through to near completion, then it must be handed over to an Independent Financial Advisor (IFA) which often suggest to the buyer that they are better putting their money into another asset class. What Assetz have done is set up an independent, non-competing SIPP compliant service, which gets the money applied to the sale, we train agents on how to sell SIPP property and we do all the regulated work to get it over the line, and of course, unlike most IFAs, are property friendly," he added.

Source: www.opp.org.uk