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For a lot of older homeowners today, downsizing can be a great way to have a good clear out after your kids have left home, but also a fantastic way to free up some equity from your home. This financial boost also will most likely come with the added bonus of a reduction in running costs as you move to a smaller home. While there are plenty of benefits of downsizing, moving home can still be a complex and stressful experience, so we’ve put together a quick guide on what to consider to help make your move a much smoother transition.
Decide what you REALLY need
The most important step to a successful downsize - and a step you’ll want to take as early as possible - is taking a good look at all of your possessions and cutting away as much as possible. This is the part where you have to consider your day to day life and think about how much you use all of these items. You should ask yourself, do you still need all of that seating in the living room, or do you need such a large dining table? If the answer is ‘no’ to these sorts of questions, then it’s time to start dividing item into the ‘keep’ and ‘get rid’ piles. While it may be hard at first to get tough of some sentimental possessions you’ll benefit on moving day when you have less stuff to move and won’t have to worry so much about how you fit all of it in.
Don’t Throw Anything Away
Once you’ve decided which items don’t belong in the ‘keep’ pile, it’s time to see if you can get some extra cash from your unwanted possessions. Obviously there will be some items that may not be fit for use anymore and would be better off taken to be recycled, but the items that are in good condition can be used to help fund new items more suitable for your smaller home. As we said earlier, separating your items early is the best strategy as you will now have plenty of time to use websites such as Gumtree and Ebay, you might even be surprised by the how much interest some of your items generate and how much money they bring
Assess Your New Space
At this point you should have divided your items and possibly sold a few of them generating some extra cash. Even though you’ve probably gotten rid of a lot of possessions, it may still be a challenge fitting everything that remains into your smaller space. If you’re already part way through the moving process and have agreed on which house you’re going to buy, start looking at measurements of each room and compare them against the measurements of your furniture. Your King size bed may fit into your new bedroom, but will it leave room for much else? Start planning how everything is going to fit in and figure out how to get the absolute most out of each space. You may need to invest in smaller and more suitable items for your home such as a dining table that seats 4 instead of 8.
Prepare For The Big Day
Last time you moved home it was most likely into a house of roughly the same size or bigger, however, this time you have to consider that you’ll have less space to work with, meaning it won’t be just as simple as getting everything in and unpacking it later. Whether you want to label all your boxes with ‘Living room’, ‘bedroom’ etc. or use a colour coded system, it’s best to know what goes where before you begin shifting everything. As with any move, it’s wise to move the bigger items such as beds and chairs first, as this will give you a better idea of where to place all the small things. Get organised early and get the full use out of your new home.
Senior Lettings Negotiator, Emma Waring has achieved the National Federation of Property Professionals (NFoPP) QCF Level 2 Award in Introduction to Residential Property Management.
The Award, which is a nationally recognised industry qualification, meets the Association of Residential Letting Agents’ (ARLA) membership requirements to join the Association as a member agent. ARLA is the UK's foremost professional body for letting agents. It aims to promote better regulation and higher practice standards in the UK private rented sector.
Emma comments: “It was important for me to secure this recognised qualification as a letting agent. It is not only a personal achievement but also a mark of professionalism and trust; it provides reassurance to tenants dealing with Royston & Lund that the agency adheres to the highest professional standards, and that employees are qualified and knowledgeable letting agents.”
Melfyn Williams, Chair of the Governing Body, adds: “The NFoPP QCF Level 2 Award is an ideal first step in demonstrating a basic knowledge in the key areas related to residential letting and property management within the lettings sector. The NFoPP Awarding Body is committed to raising standards within the residential letting and property management sector through the provision of accredited, nationally recognised qualifications, such as the Award Emma has achieved.”
David Cox, Managing Director of ARLA, concludes: “I congratulate Emma on her achievement of the Level 2 qualification and hope to welcome her to full ARLA membership soon.
“ARLA strives for better regulation in the private rented sector; with the support of letting agents across the UK recognising the need for higher standards and integrity in the sector, gaining an NFoPP qualification counts as a real stamp of professionalism and supports the drive for better practice within the industry.”
2017 is already off to a strong start with UK property prices breaking the £300,000 mark for the first time.
Research by property site Rightmove has shown that in the month of January UK home values rose by 0.4% on average, which is the third highest monthly rise for property values since 2015. This new year jump has taken the national average to £300,245, breaking the £300k mark for the first time.
Asking prices were also up, with an average 3.2% rise year on year across the nation, but still quite varied from region to region. As expected, the South of the UK saw the largest jump with the South East rising by 5.5% year on year to £404,804 and Greater London rising by 2.3% year on year to £624,953.
Director at Rightmove, Miles Shipside said: “The 0.4% monthly and 3.2% year-on-year price increases are indicators of the continued market momentum from the autumn.
“Demand for a suitable home is such that visits to the Rightmove website are still up by 5% year-on-year, despite being compared to a period that was boosted by high demand from buy-to-let investors rushing to beat the stamp duty deadline."
Miles Shipside also pointed out that “Year-on-year comparisons for transactions in the first quarter of 2017 should also allow for the distortion of last April’s additional stamp duty tax deadline, as transactions were up 40% in the first quarter last year.”
There has also been a rise in supply of smaller properties hitting the market as it has seemingly cooled down from the property investor perspective, as many acted quickly almost a year ago to beat the stamp duty hike.
This could be a huge benefit to first time buyers, a sentiment backed by Shipside as he stated. “Those planning to buy their first home in 2017 have more choice of properties and less competition from other buyers than their counterparts a year ago. It’s a possible learning point for aspiring first-time buyers that a year ago buy-to-let purchasers acted more quickly and closed deals at a faster rate, appearing not to take a Christmas break.
“Admittedly they had the financial incentive of a deadline to motivate them, but first-time buyers still have time to act and currently have the incentive of stronger negotiating power to try and mitigate the upwards trajectory of property prices.”
Royston & Lund are delighted to announce that on Saturday 4th March we will be holding an Exhibition at our associated Office in Park Lane, London from between 10am and 4pm. The event will be hosted by representatives from our West Bridgford office who will be on hand to provide an expert and unique personal in-depth view of the area’s thriving property market as well as highlighting the extensive range of quality properties for sale and to rent.
We are the exclusive members of the Guild of Property Professionals for the West Bridgford area and are hosting this property exhibition at the Guild’s Head Office on Park Lane. The Guild are a national network of approximately 800 independent estate agents, delivering local, regional and national property exposure.
We would love to share with you on the day why we believe West Bridgford and its surrounding areas are such a great place to buy. With West Bridgford being just a short trip over Trent Bridge and only 3 miles from the centre of Nottingham, it is obvious why it has always been a favoured hot spot, popular for families as well as young professionals. An increasing number of shops, bars, restaurants and café’s make it easy to see why West Bridgford is regularly voted as one of the top 10 best places to live in the UK. It is an ideal location for sports lovers too, as it is home to the famous Trent Bridge Cricket Ground.
Gary Lund, Director said “We are really excited about our first London Exhibition with the Guild of Property Professionals and we urge any home movers to contact us in order to take advantage of this opportunity to access the lucrative London Market. I personally will be available on the day to answer any questions to members of the public, be it with regard to specific properties that we are marketing, the property market or general information about our area.”
Contact us today in order to arrange for one of our Valuer’s to visit you in your home with a view to discussing the marketing of your property to include showcasing the details at our London Exhibition, whether it be at our forthcoming date in March or any future exhibitions later on in the year.
The introduction of the new increased stamp duty, which came into effect on 1st April last year had a huge impact with buy-to-let investors hoping to complete sales and escape the increased tax as the deadline loomed. This aided with the market rising by roughly 5% in the early part of 2016 and up until the Brexit vote was announced. Due to the uncertainty and negative media coverage surrounding this, the market began to quieten.
House sales began improving post Brexit and September and October saw sales up by almost 20% on that of the previous year. We have ended the year needing more stock as there continues to be a high demand for properties in the area. Nationally house prices have increased by 7% according to house price index which is in line with what we are finding locally.
Val Shakespeare, Director comments; “We have started the year well, already having seen several instances of sealed bids and have every reason to believe this will continue throughout the year.
Due to new local developments coming to the market within the area, there are likely to be more properties coming to the area as many buyers begin their search with upsizing and in some cases downsizing. We are expecting that prices will continue to rise albeit at a steadier rate to that of previous years.”
Stephanie Caine, Head of Lettings says, “During 2016 a shortage of property to let in the area has left many tenants feeling disappointed and frustrated. There has been huge demand for all types of property and we have seen an increasing number of properties being snapped up as soon as they are listed and in some cases before they can be actively marketed. This demand has been consistent over the last 2 years and stock levels have remained low, especially during certain months. However, there has been a marked increase in new investor landlords towards the end of 2016 which has levelled the market to some degree. We have also seen a slight increase in monthly rental rates for new tenants of approximately £50pcm compared to the end of December 2015. During 2016, we have seen tenants’ expectations significantly higher in terms of modern décor, fixtures and fittings and this has helped us to persuade more landlords to invest in their rental properties to raise the standards of rental property in general."
We are delighted that we have retained our position as top Lettings Agent in the Rushcliffe area. Figures produced by Rightmove.co.uk show we gained the most Lettings instructions throughout 2016 due to our expertise and professionalism, whilst also successfully building our management portfolio due to our customer service focus.
Come and join us for our first event of 2017 where we will be showcasing our stunning new show apartment and sales suite, and details of the new Phase 2 homes. The event will take place on Saturday 28th & Sunday 29th January 2017 10am - 4pm each day.
Trent Basin is a new waterside neighbourhood of contemporary homes and apartments, located on the banks of the River Trent and overlooking a unique inland dock, yet within 1.5 miles of Nottingham City Centre.
Designed by the award-winning sustainable developer Blueprint, Phase 1 of Trent Basin, consisting of 45 apartments and homes, is now complete. With open views over the Hook Nature Reserve in Lady Bay, Trent Basin is only minutes from the railway station, the city centre and West Bridgford for access to restaurants, cafes and shopping. All of the homes at Trent Basin are designed with fabric-first principles that maximise the use of natural light and promote sustainable low energy living. Residents at Trent Basin will also be able to take part in a UK-first community energy scheme, which will deliver cheaper energy to all homes.
Apartments and homes from £225,000 to £400,000. Only 21 homes and apartments remaining!
For more information about the development and to register your interest in a property, contact us today on 0115 9811888.
Christmas Opening Hours 2016
Royston and Lund Sales and Lettings departments are open as follows over the Christmas period:
Friday 23rd December 9.00am - 5.30pm
Closed between Saturday 24th December - Thursday 29th December.
Thursday 29th December - open 9.00am - 5.30pm
Friday 30th December - open 9.00am - 5.30pm
Saturday 31st December - open 9.00am - 2.00pm
Normal office hours resume on 3rd January 2017
When our offices are closed, should you be a tenant of one of our managed properties with a potential emergency call out request please contact one of the listed contractors relevant to your emergency and leave a detailed message for them to return your call:
For general builders please try Matthew Hayes – 07980113746, Mark Adamson – 07973659775 Linton Vickers – 07800532269.
Boiler/heating or plumbing emergencies Matthew Heather 07879 897 437, Chris White 07403330745 or Steve Rollason for plumbing and drains on 07948406537.
Electrician Alton Electrical (Nathan) – 07565111789 / 01159 846 506.
Please understand that a contractor will only attend to genuine emergency concerns at their own discretion, with attendance being if there is a risk of further damage to a property or danger to tenant (this does not include the facility of attending to tenants being locked out).
We would also request that you check your move in letter for individual property information as to whether your landlord has got British Gas or Homeserve callout cover or a similar policy in place with a preferred tradesman. If this is the case please contact them direct and quote your postcode and the membership number. Royston & Lund are unable to authorise a contractor attending to any property where a landlord has their own cover in place.
Although harsh, we must state that if a call out request is non emergency upon the contractor attend, the cost will be bound to the tenant.
Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
Faith Davenport has just been awarded the Royston & Lund Sporting Achievement Award at Edwalton Primary School. In front of an excited assembly, Faith was confirmed as the deserved winner due to her sporting ability and the fact that she is a real team player; always wanting to help and support her team mates. She was presented with a trophy as well as a replica and £200 to spend on sporting equipment of her choice.
We are thrilled to be involved with the local schools as well as being able to offer some support to them and we are lookiong forward to finding out how Faith chooses to spend the winning funds! Gary Lund made the presentation to an emotional Faith whose parents were also in attendance.
First Time Buyers are often the key to the housing market, once they start moving, the rest of the market will follow suit. According to the latest Housing Market Report from the National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA), a third of total sales in October were agreed to FTB’s, a nine percent rise from September and the highest number since recorded began 16 years ago in 2000.
The report also confirmed that the supply of available properties has increased to its highest level since March this year with the average number of buyers having also increased to the highest level since February.
Mark Hayward, Managing Director, National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA) comments on the findings: “This month’s report paints a positive picture for the UK housing market. Our findings over the last few months indicated mild uncertainty immediately following Brexit – and last month we even saw sales to FTBs fall. After shrugging off the uncertainty, we have seen an increase in supply and a rise in the number of sales to FTBs this month – proof the market is beginning to bounce back.
“Clearly what we need now though is a clear plan as to how the Government is going to tackle the chronic shortage of homes that we are facing. During the Autumn Statement, the Chancellor announced a boost to house-building which is a start but sadly nowhere near enough. We have high hopes for the Housing White Paper as this will set the housing strategy and intent for this Government going forward.”
Graham Sheardown, senior valuer, confirmed that the local picture was just as optimistic. He said: "We are definitely seeing signs of this, we still have a shortage of houses for this type of buyer, who are also now competing with investors who have also returned to the market a similar price level. When we list houses that are more suited to our first time buyers we are getting lots of viewings on open days which often result in 'sealed bids' and in some situations achieving offers in excess of the asking price. We are very interested in listing more properties to sell to our growing list of buyers."
If you are considering selling your home, we would be happy to give you a free, no obligation market appraisal. Call us today on 0115 9811888.
BUILD Magazine has awarded Royston & Lund Estate Agents ‘Best Local Lettings Agent - East Midlands’ in the 2016 Real Estate & Property Awards.
Now in its second year, the BUILD Magazine awards celebrates the very best companies, and the talented individuals behind them, that have shaped the built environment globally over the past twelve months.
This does not merely include those who physically work to create the buildings, such as architects and surveyors, but also those working behind the scenes to keep the market moving: the estate agents, property lawyers and financiers whose expertise ensures that the clients successfully climb the property ladder and find what they need at the top.
Nathan Angell, Awards Co-ordinator, expressed his pride in the award winners: “The real estate and property market is of vital importance to the overall construction market, and as such it is great to be able to turn the spotlight on Royston & Lund Estate Agents and I would like to wish them every success going forward.”
Upon receiving the award Stephanie Caine, Lettings Director says “We are proud to have won the Real Estate Award for the East Midlands area. As a local independent agent we are delighted that our focus on high customer service working alongside our expertise of the industry has been recognised in the East Midlands region. With the forever changing legal aspects within the private rental sector it is of great important to us to make sure we strive to achieve our goal of providing our landlords with knowledge and integrity which in turn helps us in delivering results.
Have you got a rental property that we could assist you with? Are you considering becoming a landlord? Contact usnow to see how we can help you http://www.royston-lund.co.uk/contact-us
All our landlord help sheets and services are available to view here: http://www.royston-lund.co.uk/lettings/landlords
Our current available properties to let http://www.royston-lund.co.uk/lettings/tenants/properties-to-let