Posts tagged ‘estate agents’
If you are looking at a property listing, there are several items that you will undoubtedly cast your eye over first.
There’s the decorative order – does the living room suit your taste and standards? – and of course, the price – is the property within your budget? You’ll probably also look at the number of bedrooms, and may even need to consider what the local schools are like.
But there’s perhaps one item that you’ll overlook. Or at least, it may not be at the top of your list of priorities. And yet it can be a deal breaker if you get it wrong, estate agents warn.
It is none other than floor plans – those architect-type drawings that many buyers avoid clicking onto in favour of photos of more colourful cushions and bed spreads.
James Kendling, of estate agents Hamptons International in Buckingham, said: “Floor plans are especially useful in determining the versatility of accommodation. Often buyers are looking for the potential to extend a property or alter the layout to suit their own personal needs, it is in these early stages that a floor plan can determine whether the property is proceedable.”
“Typically buyers will view multiple properties at any given time and then take home the floor plans to compare and scrutinise each property to determine which layout is best suited to their needs.”
The warning comes amid a report from insurer LV= that the average British home has shrunk by two square meters in just a decade, down from 98.8 in 2003 to 96.8 today.
The report highlights the overcrowding present in family homes today, claiming 150,000 children have seen their bedrooms partitioned in two in an attempt to create extra bedrooms.
If you’re buying a property and want to make sure that it is big enough to meet your needs, you will need to first understand the dimensions of it – and for this you will need to study the area of the floor plan, measured in square feet or square metres.
So if a room is four meters by four meters, it means it is 16 square meters, which is another figure you may on the floor plan.
A similar calculation can be done for measurements taken in square feet, with a square foot being the equivalent to 12 inches wide by 12 inches long.
View the property floor plans listed on Zoopla:
1. For sale: Three bedroom detached house in Fareham for £309,950
2. For sale: Five bedroom semi-detached house in Tonbridge for £350,000
3. For sale: Five bedroom property in Newlands for £615,000
If you are looking for an affordable place to buy a family home within commuting distance of London, there are some hidden gems, according to estate agents.
The typical value of a home in London has increased by more than £41,000 in the past year to more than £500,000, pricing many people out of buying a home – particularly families needing more space.
But if your job is in London, you may need to be as close as possible to the capital to keep commuting times to a minimum.
Reading and Southampton are among the areas highlighted as the most attractive places to live in Britain in a recent report. They are within commuting distance of London and still offer three bedroom family homes in the region of £350,000.
The report by accountants PriceWaterhouseCoopers and the think tank Demos found the Berkshire town of Reading has the highest standard of living due to factors such as good health and a life work balance.
Smirthwaite said: “The property is a good size, with all the bedrooms being doubles.
“It has a great lounge, with a woodburner – which would be ideal to sit in front of with a glass of port.”
The property also has a modern bathroom, with a reasonably sized garden to the side of the property.
Smirthwaite points out that the property is next to a shop where customers park as well as being near a roundabout. “It gets busy around home time, but otherwise it is very quiet. It is a very nice property and I’d move into it tomorrow,” he says.
He explained Aldermaston is an old village with a basic infrastructure, which attracts a mix of people from young couples to retirees.
“If you picked that up and put it in nearby Mortimer, you would add another £100,000 to the price,” he said.
Elsewhere, between Southampton and Basingstoke, buyers can find a four bedroom property for sale at £375,000.
Alec Fry, of the Winchester branch of estate agents Hamptons International, said: “This four bedroom property in Sutton Scotney represents great value for money when you consider that it’s recently been refurbished and has off street parking.
“The area is well known for its good schools and links to the South – four miles from Micheldever and six miles from Winchester station and with links to London Waterloo in just over an hour, this is decent buy in a great location.”
This is a legacy post from the findaproperty.com blog which is now maintained as an archive within the Zoopla blog. Links have been preserved.
When FindaProperty.com was contacted last Tuesday about a new fly-on-the-wall documentary about estate agents called underoffer11.com we weren’t sure what to make of it.
The production company insisted it was real, but to our eyes, it had a decidedly mockumentary feel to it. The footage followed a day in the life of an unnamed West London estate agent. (Scroll down to watch the video). James and Charlotte – the two estate agents who star in the film – are portrayed in an unflattering light.
Instead of posting the video on this blog, as the production company had asked, we tweeted it out to our followers to see what they thought. While we felt it was funny (in a laughing at ourselves kind of way) we were under no illusions that others might not feel the same way – and they didn’t.
The problem with this film is that its aims appear to be confused. While it’s now been revealed that it was made by the estate agents Douglas & Gordon – an agent with a reputation for innovation – and features one of their negotiators James Turner in the leading role – the reason for the film is unclear.
On the one hand, Ed Mead, a director of Douglas and Gordon told the Daily Mail that it was intended only for industry insiders and the hype around the film has since “got completely out of hand”. Meanwhile, the production company have been touting it as a fly-on-the-wall, factual documentary.
Lee Helliar, the producer, emailed us last week and said: “We managed to capture the devious side of London estate agents, a side that’s normally shrouded in secrecy. We felt obligated to share our footage with the rest of the public to reveal the true colours of those who claim to help buy and sell our homes.”
She then asked: “I would add that as ‘the public’ do we really mind what our agent does to sell the house as long as we get the best price. Are we morally complicit?”
And that’s the problem with this film. It’s a film about estate agents that is essentially a piece of fiction. While Douglas & Gordon now say it was only intended for internal use, the production company Real Impact Productions says it’s something else entirely and is shopping it all over town.
So what’s at stake here? While this film, which clearly cost a good deal of money to make, is a much needed chance to have a laugh and blow off some steam, the shine is taken off because it’s not clear who is laughing at whom.