Posts tagged ‘property’

Selling your home in winter? Peter Everett of Hamptons International offers some tips

With the arrival of a new season it is important to identify some key, yet simple changes to ensure your home is looking its best if you are considering selling this winter, writes Peter Everett, regional manager of estate agents Hamptons International.

When selling your home, first impressions really do count. Capturing both the attention and imagination of prospective purchasers in those first crucial moments should not be underestimated. Often buyers will have formed their initial opinion before stepping foot inside the front door, with this in mind it is important to consider both the property’s curb appeal together with the look and feel created inside.

Often prospective sellers will take special care in preening their property to perfection during spring and summer months. But the same attention should be given during the winter months. Interestingly, it is in these gloomier seasons when the smallest of changes to a property can make the most impact, making your home stand out as warm and welcoming against the bleak backdrop of the British winter.

My top 10 tips: 

1. Make sure the entrance of your property is swept of leaves, and is snow and ice free.

2. Plant hardy plants in the garden that can withstand the colder winter months. Since winter plants are not particularly attractive in the summer months you may find it easier to use plant containers with winter flowers, berries and dramatic evergreen foliage.

3. Putting a seasonal wreath on the door can be immediately welcoming and can set the tone for the rest of the viewing.

4. It can be a nice touch to have a coat stand or free up some coat pegs at the front door for potential buyers to remove their coats when they come out of the cold and into your warm and welcoming home.

5. Make sure the heating is on for viewings, a suggested temperature is 21 degrees.

6. If you are lucky enough to have an open fire, make sure it is lit for viewings, fires are a great added asset to a property.

7. In the lead up to Christmas, decorate your home with tasteful decorations and pretty lighting to twinkle and sparkle throughout the festive season.

8. When possible light candles for evening appointments.

9. If any rooms need a fresh coat of paint you might want to consider warmer seasonal colours rather than neutral tones.

10. Our sense of smell is 10,000 times more sensitive than any of our other senses and recognition of smell is immediate so make some mulled wine and infuse the house with the smell of Christmas.

See all properties for sale and to rent from Hamptons International

November 6, 2013 at 3:47 PM Leave a comment

Top 10 #propertyoftheweek Picks

1.  A beautiful yet spooky old rectory


2.  From @faronsutaria - Simply beautiful


3.  From @beadnallcopley - a 67 acre estate with a vintage car museum, now that’s unique


4.  From @domusnovalondon - Loving this contemporary kitchen


5.  From @JBEstateAgents - Believed to be the oldest property in Nottinghamshire!


6.  From @TaylerFletcher - How about some timber cladding for a change


7.  From @johndwoodandco - A charming converted watermill


8.  From @FandCLakes - Life by the lakes


9. From @RichardMHHardie - Magnificent waterfront


10. Last but not least – fancy renting a property that was previously owned by Robbie Williams?


Send us a link via Twitter to your #propertyoftheweek on Zoopla and our pick of the Top 10 will feature on the blog every Friday.

November 1, 2013 at 1:59 PM Leave a comment

London’s top property hotspots revealed by estate agents

Property prices have soared in London, but there are still hotspots available for savvy buyers, according to estate agents.

22.10.13 Capital hotspots 4

For sale: Three bedroom house in Emerald Close, Beckton, E16, for £289,000

If you’re looking for an affordable place to buy in London, you’d be forgiven for thinking it is virtually impossible.

Values in the capital have risen by more than £28,000 during the past month, which is more than the amount a typical worker earns in an entire year.

It means even if a buyer has a substantial deposit, an average wage will be insufficient to keep up with soaring house prices as lenders typically only lend three or four times a salary.

So what is the current value of an average home in London? It is now £495,813, up more than 6 per cent during the past year, according to figures published by Zoopla.

Much has been written about foreign buyers and investors driving London’s housing market, particularly in popular, central areas.

But there are still bargains to be found in the capital, according to estate agents.

Yolande Barnes, director of Savills residential research, explains: “If you want to spot where the next price areas in London are likely to be, look for places that are new, novel or next door or a combination of all three.

“By novel, I mean newly fashionable areas, usually pioneered by the ‘creative classes’ of various types, including artists, tech entrepreneurs and even financial creative.”

She cites Shoreditch, Dalston and Brixton as examples.

Yolande goes on to define ‘new’ areas as those seeing regeneration. “Locations surrounding good large development schemes usually see value uplift – provided the nature of the location changed as a result,” she says.

Examples include the Kings Cross development or infrastructure improvements, such as the East London line.

And she defines ‘next door’ as locations with much lower prices than their neighbouring areas, which have ‘a great propensity to rise than those in an homogenous price band’.

Sam Mitchell, regional managing director at estate agents Your Move, suggests buyers look beyond traditional transport hubs, saying: “The whole of London feels like a hotspot at the moment. The rush in demand from first time buyers means that anywhere near good public transport links are particularly in demand – for example Tooting, whereas those trading up tend to look for more leafy opportunities in places such as Twickenham.

“Those looking to try and find more value away from the traditional transport hubs have been buying in places like Crystal Palace which has seen a huge surge in demand.”

Property for sale in Crystal Palace:

Location: Downsview Road, Crystal Palace

Property: Five bedroom bungalow

Price: £575,000

For sale: Five bedroom bungalow in Downsview Road, Crystal Palace, for £575,000

Canning Town in East London is also increasingly popular among estate agents.

David Karrass, senior branch manager at Haart Plaistow, said: “Canary Wharf is about five minutes away and Liverpoool Street is about 20 minutes.

Nearby is the London Excel Centre, 02 Arena and Westfield Stratford City Centre.

“Added to the convenient location is the relative affordablity. There’s also lots to choose from – luxury apartments, Victorian conversions, Edwardian properties and modern houses.”

Meanwhile, Jason Davis, sales manager at estate agent KFH, recommends Peckham.

“Prices in Peckham have increased quite substantially and in the past year with many properties seeing increases in the region of 30 per cent,” he says. “Good transport links have certainly influenced the areas desirability and the addition of Peckham Rye and Queens Road stations to the East London Line extension has resulted in a change of demographic for the area. City professionals have realised the potential that Peckham offers with good quality property stock available and also good capital growth being seen.

“Good examples which illustrate the strength of the market this year are two homes, both on Sturdy Road, SE15. They both offered three bedrooms, roof terrace, garden and around 1,020 sq ft. One sold for £442,000 and the other for £555,000.

“Our branch has seen an increase in first time buyers of 70 per cent compared to the same time last year as it offers better value for money than its slightly pricier neighbours, Dulwich, Camberwell and Brixton. Prices in SE15 have, however, risen extremely quickly and so most first time buyers tend to be focused on the North Peckham area above Queens Road rather than the more affluent Peckham Rye. Increasingly, they are also considering Nunhead.”

Property for sale in Peckham:

Location: Commercial Way, Peckham, SE15

Property: Three bedroom freehold Victorian terrace

Price: £499,950

For sale: Three bedroom terrace house in Commercial Way, Peckham, for £460,000

However, buyers ultimately need to purchase a property where they feel most comfortable living, suggest estate agents.

They advise buyers to make a final decision on what property – and area – they like, not because it will make them a lot of money.

Andrew Loveday, sales and marketing director of Countryside Properties, said: “There are not many people who are really happy to live somewhere they don’t want to be just because in a few years’ time it might appreciate quicker in value than a place they’d rather live.”

October 29, 2013 at 11:00 AM 3 comments

‘Neighbours from hell’ – Smart tips before buying a property


If you’re buying a home, there are certain things the seller has to tell you about problem neighbours – but don’t just rely on the law. Make sure you’ve found out all you can before you move in, writes HomeOwners Alliance.

What counts as ‘hellish’ neighbours is open to interpretation. Some people might see living next to a house full of lively children as a nightmare scenario, while others might think of it as a positive bonus. Likewise, living next to a party house might be the ideal scenario if you’re in your early twenties, but it’s not everyone’s idea of fun.

Your solicitors will help protect you. Before you commit to buying a home the previous owner should provide you with a Seller’s Property Information Form (SPIF). This outlines disputes with neighbours, such as written exchanges, complaints about them to the authorities, boundary disputes and whether any of your potential neighbours have ASBOs.

If your vendor deliberately withholds any of that information you can take legal action and may be able to sue them even years after you’ve bought your home. But you’ll want to do everything you can to avoid getting into any costly legal battles. So make the effort to do your own investigations before you buy. We’ve got some top tips to help you.

Six steps to taking control NoseyNeighbour

1. What does your future neighbours’ house look like? The odd dead plant and a fence panel on the move we can let go as a consequence of a busy life.  But a badly kept house with ancient peeling paint, broken windows and unwashed net curtains can be telling.

2. Knock on your prospective neighbours’ doors and ask them about the area, whether there have been any problems between them and the current owners and try to get a feel for whether you want to live next door to them.

3. Ask them about the other neighbours – are there any on-going disputes between your neighbours that could become an issue for you, such as overgrown trees that are getting bigger by the year?

4. If you are buying a leasehold there may be other leaseholders in the building – speak to them about whether they are satisfied with the management company or freeholder and ask how they deal with the building’s common areas

5. If the neighbours aren’t forthcoming rival estate agents will often dish the dirt on a property, particularly if they have previously had it on their books and failed to sell it.

6. It may even be possible to get hold of the previous owners. They will no longer have a vested interest in talking the property up, and may be more frank about the neighbours’ shortcomings. Putting the extra time in to finding out about your property may seem like a lot of effort but it could prove invaluable for years to come. So be confident and get knocking on doors. If they are willing to speak to you, you could learn some valuable information. If not, then you will at least have learned something valuable about whether you want to live next door to them or not.

Guest post via: “HomeOwners Alliance: We’re on your side at

October 28, 2013 at 10:15 AM Leave a comment

Top 10 Properties of the Week on Zoopla

Our favourite this week is this stunning 6 bed lighthouse!


2. From @johndwoodandco

24.10.13 Mirrors 2

3. From @homesproperty

24.10.13 Mirrors 2

4. From @YMChrisStonock

24.10.13 Mirrors 2

5. From @gordonandco

24.10.13 Mirrors 2

6. From @curchods

24.10.13 Mirrors 2

7. From @johndwoodandco

24.10.13 Mirrors 2

8. From @faronsutaria

24.10.13 Mirrors 2

9. From @domusnovalondon

24.10.13 Mirrors 2

10. From @brunsandwebber

24.10.13 Mirrors 2

Send us a link via Twitter to your #propertyoftheweek on Zoopla and our pick of the Top 10 will feature on the blog every Friday.

October 25, 2013 at 4:02 PM Leave a comment

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