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The following information should not be taken or construed as financial or specific investment advice.
If the enjoyment you get from owning and displaying a personalised number plate on your vehicle ever subsides, you may one day become curious about what you might get were you to sell it.
The good news is that, for most plates, you'll probably find you're able to return a profit on your purchase.
This may get you thinking - is investing in number plates a good idea? The answer is a resounding 'yes'. Certain registrations have proven to be very sound investments, and a simple 'buy and hold' strategy can produce a significant return.
The demand for personalised registrations shows no signs of slowing down. The following chart shows how much money the DVLA have taken from the sale cherished registrations over the past few years. Every year has seen growth (even through tough recession years), and in the space of 5 years their portion of the market has more than doubled in value for them from around £85 million to over £200 million.
Personalised plates are as popular as ever, and they're bringing in a lot of money to the Government coffers.
Data supplied by https://www.gov.uk
As any good investor would, you'll want to perform some due diligence before investing your cash. There are a number of questions most investors need to answer before putting their money into anything.
What are your reasons for investing?
If you've selected a registration that is truly ideal for yourself, you may never get a return on your money because you'll never want to part with it! National Numbers serve many customers who buy purely as investments - they may own a reg they display on their vehicle day to day which holds significant meaning to them, but their portfolio will mostly contain registrations they have no sentimental attachment to. That makes it far easier to part with when the time comes to sell.
Are you willing to own the registration for 10, 15, or 25+ years?
Very few registrations will result in an immediate turnaround profit. Sitting on the registration for some time, as you may with other investments, will generally see it's worth increase. Number plates have a well established history covering over 100 years so the industry isn't going to suddenly vanish overnight. Patience is key.
Are there any charges?
Registration marks can exist on vehicles or on certificates. Currently the DVLA charge a fee to transfer a registration to/from a vehicle/certificate, and a fee to renew a certificate. When a registration is assigned to a vehicle there are currently no renewal charges to pay.
You don't need to put a registration onto a vehicle - it can remain on a certificate indefinitely - but if you're going to be sitting on a registration for some time you'll firstly want to make sure it doesn't simply expire and you lose your right to the mark, and secondly take into account any additional costs such as these fees. The DVLA may change these fees at anytime or introduce new ones - it pays to keep abreast of the DVLA's fees and policies.
What are the risks associated?
Like all investments values can go down as well as up. Number plates are a luxury item, but one that still fares well in times of global financial crises impacting everything else. Nobody has a crystal ball that can predict what will happen, but there's very little on the horizon to shake up the number plate industry until 2050 - which is when the new style of reg will run out and a new format will have to be introduced.
The DVLA govern everything and whilst that means they can change fees, rules and regulations at the drop of a hat, they're unlikely to make changes so dramatic that it causes hurt - they have a vested interest in keeping their not insignificant £200 million of annual income flowing.
How do I get started?
In a nutshell, pick a registration, buy it, keep the registration for a period, sell it!
National Numbers will be happy to advise you on buying registrations for your portfolio. As well as our large range of over 54 million reg to choose from (of which we have some 65,701 dateless registrations which traditionally bring the best returns), we also offer an auction service where we will attend DVLA auctions and bid on your behalf to secure registrations at the point of release.
No other dealer has more experience of DVLA auctions, with many satisfied auction clients. We'll walk you through the whole auction process from suggesting a realistic hammer price to listening to the bidding live on a lot.
Call our friendly sales staff on 01642 363738, or contact us here.
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