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Why Spring is the Best Time to Sell

Added on February 12th 2021

It does go without saying that a great estate agent will be able to sell your house at any time of the year, but it does seem that once spring is in the air, people’s thoughts turn to moving. Spring has traditionally been the best time to put your house on the market. Is it astrological? Is it hormonal? Is it because people have paid off their Christmas credit card bills and feel ready to face the commission?  As with most things human, it’s a complex combination of reasons, whims and practicalities. Here’s just a few as well as a tip or two on how to make the most of them. Your garden is looking great After yet another miserable cold ... Read more

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Don’t Worry About the Stamp Duty Holiday Ending

Added on February 12th 2021

Although there’s discussion in Parliament about extending the stamp duty holiday beyond the end of March or implementing a tapering-off of the tax savings initiative, the existing March 31 deadline is drawing nigh. Some buyers could save up to £15,000 with the holiday in place so it’s a big incentive to complete before time runs out. On the other hand, the fear of time running out and that purchase suddenly costing thousands more might make some buyers think about pulling out altogether. This may be a rash move, however, as there’s more to consider than just the stamp duty when it comes to moving house. You could lose more than just th... Read more

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Offset Mortgages Explained

Added on February 12th 2021

If you have a fairly healthy balance in your savings account and you’re about to look for a new mortgage deal, then an offset home loan cold be ideal for you. What is an offset mortgage? An offset mortgage lets you offset any savings you have against the outstanding amount of your mortgage loan so you only pay interest on this reduced amount.  For example, if you have £200,000 outstanding on your mortgage and £40,000 in your saver, you’ll only pay interest on £160,000 of the mortgage. It’s a good way to reduce your monthly costs or to pay down your loan faster. You do have to have your mortgage and your savings account with the same... Read more

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Getting the Most Out of a Virtual Viewing

Added on February 12th 2021

Moving in the Time of Corona might sound like a Marquez novel but, as UK buyers are finding, it’s very much not a work of fiction, with pandemic restrictions changing the face of house-hunting quite a bit. While in-person viewings are still permitted in some parts of the country, many buyers are choosing to stay cautious and conduct their first viewings (at least) via an online medium. This could be a 3D tour, a pre-recorded video walk-through or a live walk-through. If you’re scoping out potential new homes over the internet, then you can get more out of each viewing by following these tips. Take notes as the viewing goes along Make note... Read more

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What is Gazundering and How Can You Avoid it?

Added on February 12th 2021

You’ve almost certainly heard of gazumping, which is when a seller accepts a higher offer after they’ve sold (subject to contracts) to another buyer. This is always at the back of a buyer’s mind when they have their offer accepted, but there’s something sellers should be aware of too – gazundering. Gazundering is when the buyer lowers their offer just before contracts are exchanged and, if their backs are against the wall, the seller often feels forced to accept this low-ball offer or lose the sale entirely. Sounds sneaky! Is gazundering actually legal? You might wish it wasn’t if it happens to you, but it’s quite legal.  Is it... Read more

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Finding The One…You Want to Buy

Added on February 12th 2021

Buying a property is one of the biggest – and most expensive – decisions you make in life, so it’s important that you get it right. Making a mistake here can have long-lasting and often painful consequences, not to mention the financial side of having to move again. Here’s a Valentine’s season special on finding The One. Think a few years ahead Moving really is expensive, so you don’t want to do it more often than you need to. Think about what’s coming up in the next five or ten years. If it’s children, or more children, do you have enough bedrooms, an extra bathroom or space for one and a garden?  Are you about to retire? If... Read more

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Making the Best of a Small Kitchen

Added on February 12th 2021

Buying a new home often involves some sort of compromise and if you’re downsizing or moving to a smaller property in a fancier area, one thing that might have to give is kitchen space.  A smaller kitchen doesn’t mean the end of dinner parties and lavish Sunday roasts, or even sitting with your bestie at the kitchen table over a mug of hot chocolate. You just have to get clever with the space you do have and these tricks may help you out. Retrofit existing cupboards with spacers and racks If you have sturdy floor and wall cupboards then increase their storage potential by fitting them with pull-out racks and trays so that you can fill the... Read more

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How to Rent with Pets

Added on February 12th 2021

For many people, their pet is a family member with two (or more) extra legs and fur, feathers or scales. The Pet Food Manufacturers’ Association estimated in 2019 that around 40% of the UK’s households had a pet of some kind. However, only 7% of the country’s landlords will consider renting one of their properties to a household with a pet.  Some landlords worry about the potential damage caused by a tenant’s pet, as well as stains or stubborn smells, whereas some tenants’ groups argue that by welcoming the family pet, the landlord is more likely to retain their tenants for longer. If you’re looking to rent with pets… The good ... Read more

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How to Protect Your Home if You Lose Your Job

Added on January 10th 2021

In recent years, a third of the UK’s adults has had a financial shock – redundancy, an incapacitating injury or illness or bereavement.  Most people worry about what would happen to their mortgage and their home if they were to lose their income for any reason. Similarly, most of us plough on, believing that we’ll always be in the lucky two-thirds of the population.  Savings can help you to weather financial storms Having a buffer of savings can help you, especially in the case of temporary (hopefully) redundancy, but if you find yourself out of work for the long-term, you might soon burn through your stash. Start up your rainy-day po... Read more

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Making Your Rental Bathroom Yours

Added on January 10th 2021

You’ve just moved into a new rental property and while it’s nice and clean, airy and spacious, it’s a bit anonymous. It’s not yours. You know that you can’t knock down any walls, repaint the lounge or landscape the garden, so what can you do to personalise your space? One of the easiest rooms to personalise without making permanent changes is the bathroom. Here’s how to turn your rental bathroom into your own little sanctuary. Change out your shower curtain This has to be one of the easiest fixes out there. All you need to do is to remove the existing shower curtain from its hooks, make sure it’s dry, fold it up and store it awa... Read more

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