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Your Move Property Blog

Thoughts, Opinions & Analysis of the UK Property Market

October 2014 Scottish House Price Index

December 18, 2014 12:05 by Your Move Press Office


HOUSE PRICES FINALLY RECOVER FROM REFERENDUM FEARS

· Scottish property prices jump 0.7% (or £1,200) in October, as market confidence returns
· Average house price in Scotland now stands only £717 below pre-recession peak in May 2008
· Million-pound property sales soar after independence vote concludes and buoys top of market
· Biggest annual rise in East Renfrewshire, but prices drop in East Lothian and Aberdeen City in October

Commentary:

Christine Campbell, Regional Managing Director of Your Move, comments:After a run of monthly house price stumbles on the way to the landmark referendum, the Scottish property market has recuperated. Growth regained ground during October, and property values bounced back by 0.7% (or £1,200) on average. This has returned overall annual growth in Scottish house prices to 5.7% (typically amounting to £8,850) over the past year, and property values in Scotland are making faster progress than across the North of England and Wales. Thousands of Scots are finally seeing the value of their home rebuilt from the ashes of the financial crash, with prices on average now just £717 (or 0.4%) off the May 2008 high.

 “Since the independence question evaporated, a new ray of confidence and certainty is radiating through the market, as normality is resumed. The feel-good factor is especially pronounced at the highest tiers of the property market, where political uncertainty froze activity most acutely. Sales of properties worth £1 million or above have more than doubled from September to October, as high-end homes begin to change hands again. In fact, October 2014 saw the biggest number of million-pound properties sold in a single month since September 2008."

Read the full index




Sunday Times Award Success for Your Move

December 15, 2014 14:11 by YOUR MOVE

We are very proud to announce our recent success at the national Estate Agency of the Year Awards on Friday 5th December. Your Move received five accolades at the award ceremony, which was held in association with The Times & The Sunday Times, and sponsored by Zoopla.

Your Move won three gold awards at the event for Financial Services, Marketing and Innovation, and two bronze awards: Training & Development, and Best National Estate Agency.

Here’s what the judges had to say:

Financial Services

“This business is hugely proactive. It is evident that the culture of high quality training leads to high staff retention and is a driving force of the business, allowing the team to maintain the highest possible standard of customer service. Your Move enjoys high customer satisfaction rates and maintains its service delivery through proactive preparation and investment in training and infrastructure.”

Marketing

“Your Move’s brand message is very simple; focus on the brand’s purpose of genuine helpfulness. When independent market research showed most people rate ‘agent helpfulness’ as one of the top three most important requirements, the team looked to reinvigorate Your Move’s look, feel and tone of voice to meet this stipulation.”

Innovation

“Your Move decided to implement a new online HR system and flexible benefits platforms across its business in 2014. Both systems give Your Move’s people greater control over their information, and also helps meet Your Move’s sustainability goals due to a decreased requirement for printing documents.”

Training & Development

“Your Move has invested heavily in its training and development provision over the past year and is delivering success with new initiatives. The mission of the Talent Development division is to enhance organisational effectiveness by creating a culture of high performance, and they are committed to supporting the continued growth and development of the most valuable asset - people.

Best National Estate Agency

“As the biggest single brand agency in the UK, Your Move takes the view that size isn’t everything and seeks to offer clients a service full of personal touches. Your Move offers an enviable range of services which is constantly evolved. They offer advice and guidance to carefully targeted customer groups, cementing their position as market leaders. It is clear that the team at Your Move take their position as one of the UK’s largest home moving companies seriously, and offer a service to match customer expectations.”

We are delighted that Your Move has been recognised at this national awards ceremony. The accolades demonstrate our ongoing commitment to our customers to provide them with an exceptional service. Customer service is at the heart of everything we do across the business and here in branch, that is why our motto is genuinely helpful.




A new appointment for Your Move

December 9, 2014 14:08 by Your Move Press Office

Your Move estate agent is pleased to announce the appointment of Richard Waind as the new Operations Director for the London division of the nationwide company.

 Richard brings with him a wealth of experience to the new role having worked in the property industry for the last 10 years at London based estate agents Foxtons.

 Your Move’s Regional Managing Director for London, Bryan Mansell comments:

This is a really exciting time for the business, as we are expanding the team in the London division due to an increase in customer demand and to keep up with the on-going development in the property market.  I am delighted that Richard has joined the Your Move team as our new Operations Director to support our branches across London and ensure that Your Move keeps offering excellent customer service."

 Richard Waind adds:

I am thrilled to have joined Your Move, and look forward to working with the teams and sharing my experience.

 I am excited to join the UK’s single largest estate agency brand(*). I have always worked within the London property market and Jon Cooke, Your Move’s Managing Director, vision and passion for Your Move was a key factor in my decision to join the organisation. The team in London have taken big strides in recent years and I look forward to helping build on that good work, and grow our business operation within the region.




Winter advice; for your property, for you and for saving money

December 9, 2014 11:04 by YOUR MOVE

Winter can be one of the most beautiful seasons, but it can cause damage to your property, yourself and also your purse. With the countdown officially on until Christmas we thought we would not only give you advice on preparing your property for the winter weather but also tips on how to save money -  very important with all those Christmas presents you may need to buy.

Preparing your property for Winter...

Winter can be a tough time for your property with everything from heavy rain, to thick snow and frost. Make sure you do all that you can to protect your property this winter.
 
1. Debris such as leaves can also cause damage from leading to flooding to causing slips, make sure pathways, gutters and drains are clear. Now is also the time to cut down any loose branches, secure loose fencing and put away garden furniture, take a look at our autumn gardening article for more advice.

2. Get your boiler checked, get your chimney swept and bleed your radiators that way you won’t go cold this winter, there are lots of guides available online to help you do this.

3. If you have any external paintwork that is peeling, now is the time to repaint this, it will only get worse through the winter as frost will encourage the cracks to get bigger.

4. Check your insurance covers you for damage caused by the weather. Some people think they are covered for certain things and they aren't, make sure your insurance covers for things like flooding but also accidental damage such as spillages. Lastly, make sure you meet any policy conditions there may be. Your Move can help with Building and Contents Insurance, click here to find out more.

5. It may sound dramatic but put together an emergency kit. Things like power cuts are more common at this time of year so put one together. Include things like;  a torch, matches, candles, blankets and some food that doesn’t require cooking.

6. Burst pipes can be expensive, make sure you insulate your pipes to help prevent this happening.

Ideas to stay warm and have fun...


It’s not all miserable, snow days can be great fun and there’s always lots to do in winter. Here are some fun ideas to keep warm and enjoy should this happen.  
 
1. Keep warm by investing in a Christmas themed jumper.

2. Put the oven on and cook up some delicious soup, stew or if you prefer something sweeter maybe a cake or some cookies. Not only will the heat from the oven warm up the house you will also have something delicious to eat!

3. Put on the fire - there is nothing nicer than popping on some thick pyjamas, having a cup of tea and sitting by a nice warm fire.

4. If you haven’t started your Christmas shopping, get online and do it, it’s safer than going in your car to the shops when its hazardous on the roads and a lot less stressful.

5. With all the electronics and technology we have available now it’s easy to forget about old-fashioned fun, dig out those board games from the loft and get everybody together to play.
 
6. Have a duvet day, set up camp with your duvet, some popcorn or other nibbles and sit and watch those boxsets, tv series or films you have been wanting to watch for ages but just haven’t had the time.


And some money saving tips...

Winter can be an expensive time for everybody and that’s without the expense of the festive season. The cold weather can see household bills rise. Here is a list of tips to help you save the pennies this winter.
 
1. Make a homemade draught excluder from some stuffing and a pillowcase, use this to prevent draughts sneaking under doors.

2. Find some magnets and place these over keyholes to prevent cold air entering your home.

3. If you can, use a fire, jumpers, hot-water bottles, blankets or duvets on colder days to stay warm, so that you don’t need to put your heating on all the time.

4. Turn off the lights – if you’re not in a room make sure the lights are turned off.

5. Turn electronics off rather than leaving them on standby.

6. Check around the windows and doors for cracks and make sure you seal them. Close the curtains, heat escapes out of windows and cracks, so close the curtains to keep the warm in.

7. Turning down your thermostat by just 1 degree can save you money over the year.

8. Swap your normal lightbulbs for energy saving lightbulbs.

9. When making a hot drink only heat up the amount of water you need rather than filling the kettle.

10. Keep radiators clear, don’t use them to dry clothes or put furniture infront of them. This stops them from heating the room as the clothes and furniture absorbs the heat instead.




Online Only Estate Agents Vs Traditional Estate Agents

December 4, 2014 10:41 by YOUR MOVE

 

With the number of online agents becoming more common, homeowners are considering which option to take to sell their home. With the attraction of cheaper fees it's important to weigh up the decision carefully.

Below is a recent case study that will make potential sellers think seriously before choosing.

"I have recently been dealing with a relative that chose an online agent, as unfortunately we had no office close by to offer our service. I had my concerns for various reasons but as it was so much cheaper they decided to take the plunge.

On having their property valued at £550,000 they decided to opt for a higher price to try their luck. Firstly the photo's that were taken were good, but didn't show the property's rooms off to their full potential, especially the garden. Having had no advice on how to dress the property I also advised them to make sure the second bedroom had a double bed in it to show off the space. This advice was not forthcoming from the online agent.

When marketing commenced all viewings had to be undertaken by the homeowners at considerable inconvenience as they both worked long hours. This is not the best way to secure offers either, as if the buyer had any concerns, they are more than likely to tell the agents rather than the sellers directly, and the agents can address any issues.

Most importantly, they had several offers, one of which was close to what they might accept and the agents encouraged them to take £550,000 when they had other viewings booked. I told them to hold out, on the basis of their interest levels, and gave them a script to go back to their agents with.....low and behold, when the buyers increased their offer to £560,000 my relative was quite impressed ! If they listened to their online agent they would have sold for £10,000 less"

Luckily, in this case, The seller had an estate agent with good knowledge close by to advise him, if it wasn't the case, they could have been more financially worse off by trying to find a cheap agent.

Other points that should always be taken into account are as follows;

1) Make sure the online agent financially qualifies the buyer who offers (This didn't happen in this case)

2) The agent should always advise the client in relation to getting the best buyer and best price, rather than urge to accept an offer to early

3) Can the agent provide enough comparable evidence to ensure the property is valued up correctly when the surveyor inspects

4) Does the online agent know the area ? Will they sell the fact that the school at the bottom of the road is the best school in the area, or the fact the deli round the corner is fantastic, what the local transport links are like?

5) Does the online agent progress the sale after the offer has been accepted ? If they haven't got the staff to do viewings, how many staff have they got to chase the transaction to completion ?

6) Can they provide good quality local solicitors ?

7) How may property portals do they advertise on to get you the maximum results ?

8) What will be the impact on your work life if you had to do all the viewings, and be available for surveyors and other contractors to inspect the property ?

9) Apart from the internet how else do they attract interest in your property ?

10) Take serious consideration before paying upfront fees. If the agent has already been paid, what incentive do they have in then selling the property ?

 

by Phil Gulvin, Branch Manager, Sutton




YOUR MOVE Blog

YOUR MOVE is a multi-award winning estate and letting agent with branches across England and Scotland

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