It’s Spring!. The sun is shining and snowdrops and daffodils are peeping through the brown Winter earth. Is this making you consider moving to a new home? Would like an idea on your property’s value?
Contact our Ripon Office on 01765 694800 or our Thirsk Office on 01845 522680 to arrange for a FREE Market Appraisal.
Are you thinking of purchasing a new home? Wondering about your homes’ value? Click on The Guild of Property Professionals‘ blog video below to find some handy tips to prepare your property so that it looks its best. We would be happy to come out to your property to discuss the value of your property and a marketing strategy.
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Research has revealed that around 80% of homeowners have at least one noteworthy regret regarding their home buying decision.
Here are our five top tips to ensure you make the right choice while on the hunt for your next home:
1. Focus is key
A property may appeal in terms of your wants, but not necessarily tick the must-haves boxes. Make sure that the property meets your main objectives otherwise it can’t be the right home for you.
2. Find the right solicitor for you
It is imperative that you choose and work with a solicitor that you not only trust but feel comfortable with too. A good solicitor will keep you well-informed and will guide you through the buying process. The service your solicitor provides can dramatically alter your home buying experience.
(Ripon and Thirsk both have local solicitors who will help you purchase or sell your property. Please do not hesitate to pop in and ask us who we would suggest)
3. Get a second opinion
Whether you have a close friend or trusted family member, it always helps to get a second, unbiased opinion. Better yet, hire someone to look at the property to give you an idea of the work that will need doing once you move in.
4. Check your finances
There are various unexpected costs of owning a home. Make sure you calculate what is within your budget, taking costs such as council tax, insurance and service charge into consideration.
5. Don’t engage in a bidding war
Focus on finding the right home for you, and don’t get caught up in a bidding contest. Walk away from the deal if it gets out of hand to ensure you don’t overpay. Remember, a higher price will mean a larger deposit, higher fees and thousands in additional interest on a larger mortgage.
Are you looking to sell your home? Contact your local Guild Member for help through the moving process.
What to avoid when buying a property for the first time …
First Time Buyers
Buying a home for the first time can be an emotionally driven experience, especially when you consider the various elements that need to be taken into account. While there are several new and exciting things that go into buying a home, it can be a complicated process to negotiate. Often, it’s easy to focus on the smaller details and lose sight of the larger picture while possibly making mistakes.
Here what you need to avoid along the way…
Not getting a mortgage in principle
Once you have made the decision to buy a property, the temptation to jump into the search with both feet will be overwhelming. However, rushing in before speaking to your bank about the mortgage they are prepared to offer you could lead to disappointment. Imagine you find a house you love, only to learn it is not within your price range when applying for the mortgage. While not a requirement or guarantee, getting a Mortgage in Principle will provide you with a written estimate from a lender, giving an indication of what you can borrow.
It’s possible to apply for a Mortgage in Principle through a mortgage adviser such as L&C or directly with a lender. They will provide you with the reassurance that you are looking at properties within your price range and they will let the seller know you are serious and qualify to buy the property.
Not working out what you can afford
There might be a difference between the mortgage you qualify for and what you can comfortably afford in real terms. It is always advisable that you leave some cushioning in the budget. Look at your finances and make a list of your expenses before determining a budget for a property to gain a clear idea of what you can afford. Don’t stretch your finances too thin, as this will make you vulnerable if unforeseen circumstances rear their head.
Focusing on the flaws
You shouldn’t compromise on your ‘must-haves’ but placing too much focus on the home’s flaws might have you miss the things that really matter. Fixtures can be replaced, rooms can be made open-plan or walls can be added to create your dream home with a property that meets your essential criteria.
Falling in love blindly
On the other end of the spectrum, you shouldn’t overlook a home because of its flaws, but don’t completely ignore them either. The look of a home is one thing, but more serious issues such as structural damage are quite another. Often, once a buyer sees a home that they think is the one, their decisions will be based on the emotional connection rather than the facts. Be fully aware of all the property’s issues before you put in an offer. Ask your Guild agent to explain all a property’s past and current major or structural issues, or seek advice from a surveyor.
Waiting too long
It is crucial to make an informed decision when choosing the right home, but don’t take too long, otherwise, you could lose out to a faster buyer. Once you have found the right home, be decisive and take action to avoid disappointment.
Not thinking about the future
Consider aspects such as the home’s resale potential as well as your future plans. It might seem strange to think about selling the home before you have bought it but much of the home’s potential return on investment is based on decisions you make when buying, not selling.
Factors that will affect the home’s resale value include:
• Type of property
• Number of bedrooms
• Garage or off-street parking.
• Investments in infrastructure, like HS2
Also, consider whether the home will meet your needs in the future. For example, you may not have children now but plan to shortly – this means needing an extra bedroom or ensuring that you purchase near a school with the desired Ofsted rating. Think about whether the home meets your situation now, but also if it can meet your evolving needs.
Are you looking for your first property? Contact one of our Guild agents today. Find your nearest office here.
The Ripon Sales Market, Post-Lockdown – the First 100 Days
With only around 1 in 5 Ripon house sellers actually selling their home in the last month, Ripon sellers and buyers will need to continue to be pragmatic if the surprisingly strong current levels of activity in the Ripon property market are to be sustained.
To start, we had the once in a lifetime event of the credit crunch in 2008, we then had another once in a lifetime event with the Brexit vote in 2016 and now the mother of all ‘once in a lifetime’ events, Coronavirus in 2020 – three once in a lifetime events in the space of 3 Olympic Games!
The doom-mongers forecast that the British property market would drop like a lead balloon on the scale of the 1989 housing crash (where property values dropped by 30.87% in a couple of years) but would be nothing compared to the tsunami that was Covid. Yet in the first 100 days of the property market coming out of lockdown, behavioural and economic changes mean that many Ripon homebuyers are now even more dedicated to moving home and the Ripon property market is doing quite well.
Going into lockdown, the effect on activity in the Ripon property market during those two months was expectable and predictable as it was placed in suspended animation during April and May. When the Ripon property market re-opened in mid-May, nobody predicted what happened next. Of course, many of us in the property industry estimated some release of pent-up demand from the Boris Bounce, yet nobody anticipated such a ricochet in activity in the Ripon property market.
This is particularly interesting when one considers GDP dropped by 20.4% in Q2 2020 (fascinating when compared to notable historic times when it dropped by 13.8% in WW2 and 16.7% in WW1), yet amidst the largest contraction in the UK economy ever in a single quarter, what wasn’t expected was an increase of potential property buyers and property sellers wanting to move post lockdown.
Some have cited this boost to the property market on a number of factors. Firstly, we have had the Stamp Duty Holiday, others have pointed at the never seen before 0.1% Bank of England base rates making mortgages cheap, then we had the furlough scheme which protected so many jobs and finally, the pent-up demand from the Boris Bounce.
Yet, when one actually talks with Ripon buyers and sellers, whilst all of them cite one or two of the above reasons, all of them mention and talk about how the lockdown has made them re-evaluate and reconsider how they want to live, their work-life balance and where they want to live. This is also reflected with tenants changing their requirements when looking for a property to rent (so Ripon landlords – be aware of this).
Demand for apartments in the centre of Ripon has eased off, whilst demand for property with a good-sized garden or other outside space has increased. One question we get asked all the time is also the broadband speeds, although they are quite decent in Ripon (the average broadband in our local Council area being 38.1 Mbps download and 7.6 Mbps upload).
So, with record numbers of Ripon properties coming on to the market – is it boom time for Ripon homeowners?
Of the 81 properties that have come onto the market in Ripon over the last month,
only 15 of them have agreed a sale
(a percentage of 18.5%)
That means around 4 out of 5 Ripon people that have placed their property onto the market have not found a buyer yet.
Yes, the Ripon property market is good, yet the number of people who have placed their property on the market has also gone up. Ripon estate agents have never been so busy putting property on the market and I feel sorry for the chap who is putting up all the for-sale boards – his wife hasn’t seen him in daylight for weeks!
But that does mean you are in competition with so many other properties on the market (the number of properties coming on to the market typically at this time of the year is about a third to half less). The Stamp Duty boost ends in March 2021, so that means you need to have found a buyer by November at the very latest. By overegging your asking price, to test the market, might mean you will lose out on this hiatus and could end up missing the boat!
The prices being achieved for the Ripon properties
that have been selling have been fair and realistic and have stood up much better
than many were originally predicting.
Yet as the country looks forward, given the ambiguous nature of the outlook for the British economy and the possibility that Covid-19 may be with us for a little while yet, I must implore Ripon property sellers to be realistic with their asking price so a greater number of you who want to make the move, are able to do so.
Packing up and moving to another city, or for that matter, another country, is a major undertaking. It takes a great deal of preparation and is imperative to do the necessary research and weigh up all the options before making the final decision. Regardless of whether it is relocating to another part of the country or abroad, there are essential elements that need to be assessed in each potential neighbourhood to ensure you will settle in. Continue reading →
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