Tag Archives: Property

House being built or having building work including loft extension - homebuild and renovate in progress

Should you renovate or relocate in 2018?

The start of a new year is always a time for new year’s resolutions and new beginnings. After a busy Christmas, you may be thinking that one of those new year’s resolutions should be about your home. Have you outgrown it? Is there simply not enough space for all those new toys? Or will you need more space for a new baby in 2018? The question is: do you need to renovate or relocate?

If you are in need of more space, then there are two key options: to renovate or relocate. It’s a common question that people face – you only need to watch the Kirstie & Phil series of ‘Love it or List it’ to see that.

Here are our top tips for answering this tricky question and investing your money wisely:

  1. Write down your reasons for thinking about moving or renovating – and ask anyone else in the household to do the same. Then compare. Is it simply more space you need? Or actually a new area as well? Do you still love the property you are in or not? Think about neighbours, access to work, schools etc. Is your current property able to be remodelled or not? You may need to get some expert help with this.
  2. Consult a local builder or architect to get some advice about what may, or may not be possible to do with your existing home. On the one hand, you might not realise what could be achieved. On the other, your ideas might be virtually impossible or prohibitively expensive. Also check out the Planning Portal online which has lots of useful information about what may or may not need planning permission, and can direct you to your local council for more information.
  3. Consider all the costs of moving. To renovate or extend can seem expensive and doesn’t always add significant value to your home. However, when you take into account the cost of stamp duty, solicitors, surveys, removals etc, moving can be an expensive option too. Make sure you have a realistic picture of the cost of both options.
  4. Get your current property valued, and have a look at what’s available on the market. Many of us love to look at Zoopla and Rightmove to see what we could get for our money. But until you have actually had your own property valued, it can be a pointless exercise. You need to have a fair idea of what your current home would sell for, to see if you could afford the extra space or new property that you desire. Most estate agents are happy to provide free valuations. Just make sure you get a valuation from at least three agents. This will give you a more realistic picture and enable you to make a better decision.

Here to help

At Check 4 Houses we are passionate about supporting people through the sometimes stressful and emotional challenge of relocating to a new property. We offer personal contact from start to finish, from local property experts that know the towns and cities of FleetFarnborough, AldershotBasingstokeCamberleyYateley and Farnham inside out. Our internet-based approach means we can sell your home from just £599 or 0.5% +VAT – saving you thousands in agency fees. Please give us a call for a no obligation valuation of your home on 01252 819725 or email info@check4houses.co.uk.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year written on red background with snowflakes and stars

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year

With Christmas Day fast approaching we wanted to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

2017 has been another busy year for us at Check 4 Houses thanks to our fantastic clients. Over the past 12 months, we have saved our clients an astounding £248,000 when compared to standard agency fees. That’s an average of over £4,000 per sale. What would you do with the extra £4,000? It’s a long way towards a new kitchen or a new boiler.

Savings of over £10,000

Our single biggest saving for a client was £10,526 (excl VAT). We sold properties of all shapes and size during the year, with the most expensive sale at £735,000.

Many of the properties we sold were in our local area of Fleet, Frimley, Wokingham, Hook, Farnborough, Camberley and Aldershot, but we have also sold properties as far away as Southampton and London Docklands. Thanks to our internet-based approach we can sell properties anywhere in England from our head office in Fleet, Hampshire.

Going the extra mile for our clients

At Check 4 Houses we pride ourselves on our customer service, which means putting our clients first. This year, this has included even conducting viewings on Skype. Working for a client in Hong Kong, we walked around on Skype showing her the house, as she wasn’t able to view in person.

One sale we worked on was particularly challenging due to the number of cars on the road. Viewers consistently fedback that parking was an issue. After investigating the matter with the vendors and neighbours it turned out the two houses next door were trying to get permission to convert their front lawns into driveways, but one of the main service providers was not giving permission for a ‘box’ to be moved. Due to a personal contact, we were able to contact the service provider and get this authorised, so the work could be done. Once this was completed, the issue was resolved and a sale proceeded very quickly.

Ethical estate agency in Fleet

Whatever our sellers’ circumstances, we pride ourselves on our honest, professional approach and our personal contact from start to finish. As Mr Price from Fleet said “We discovered Check4Houses after viewing a property before selling our own. We hugely valued Paul’s experience of the area and honesty (a rarity I can tell you compared to some of the other independent high street agents in Fleet).  We marketed our property through Check4Houses and as well as Paul securing the best possible price, he was on hand throughout the frustrating completion process, dealing with other agents in the chain as well as solicitors. I will use Paul again and have no hesitation in recommending him. Keep up the good ethical work!”

After such a demanding year we will be taking a few days off over Christmas. The offices will be closing on Saturday 23rd December and reopening on Tuesday 2nd January. We are expecting the first six months of the year to be busy, as they are always a popular time to buy and sell houses.

If you are looking to sell your home in 2018 then please give us a call on 01252 819725. We would be delighted to give you a free valuation of your property as well as talk you through our competitive pricing options, personal service and price match guarantee.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from all of us at Check 4 Houses.

Table of results of estate agent 4 me in Fleet with Check 4 Houses at top

Independent survey continues to name Check 4 Houses as the best estate agent in Fleet

November’s independent survey results put Check 4 Houses at the top of the list again, rating us as the top performing estate agent in Fleet.

The best performing estate agents in your local area

Independent comparison website estateagent4me helps you find the best estate agent in your local area.  It compares estate agents against 4 key indicators:

  • Fees they charge
  • Average days they take to sell a property like yours
  • How close they might get to achieving an asking price
  • How successful they are at selling similar homes

The tool was set up in partnership with the HomeOwners Alliance.  The complex statistical engine is fed on a daily basis with property data from over 18,000 estate agents across thousands of different websites.  It provides accurate comparison data which is free and impartial.  It currently covers over 95% of all property advertised for sale in England & Wales.

Check 4 Houses best estate agent in Fleet

We are delighted that Check 4 Houses has been ranked again as the best performing estate agent in Fleet.  The statistics show we are delivering a 71% success rate of selling homes.  We take an average of 33 days to sell properties.  We have a track record of achieving 97% of asking prices.

Providing a genuine, reliable and professional service for half the cost of a traditional high street agent

Statistics are important, but it is always nice to hear from our customers that we are doing a good job too. Our latest Google review from Mr Price says “We discovered Check4Houses after viewing a property before selling our own. We hugely valued Paul’s experience of the area and honesty (a rarity I can tell you compared to some of the other independent high street agents in Fleet).  We marketed our property through Check4Houses and as well as Paul securing the best possible price, he was on hand throughout the frustrating completion process, dealing with other agents in the chain as well as solicitors.
… I will use Paul again,  and have no hesitation in recommending him here…. Keep up the good ethical work!”

From our head office in Fleet sell properties in Fleet, Farnborough, AldershotBasingstokeCamberleyYateleyFarnham and beyond. We can sell your home from just £599 or 0.5% +VAT – saving you thousands in agency fees. Please give us a call on 01252 819725 or contact us and we would be delighted to give you a free, no obligation valuation of your home.

Results from estateagent4me survey showing Check 4 Houses as best estate agent in Fleet

Independent survey names Check 4 Houses as the best estate agent in Fleet

October’s independent survey results are in and we are delighted to see that Check 4 Houses has again been rated as the top performing  estate agent in Fleet.

The best performing estate agents in your local area

Independent comparison website estateagent4me helps you find the best estate agent in your local area.  It compares estate agents against 4 key indicators:

  • Fees they charge
  • Average days they take to sell a property like yours
  • How close they might get to achieving an asking price
  • How successful they are at selling similar homes

The tool was set up in partnership with the HomeOwners Alliance.  The complex statistical engine is fed on a daily basis with property data from over 18,000 estate agents across thousands of different websites.  It provides accurate comparison data which is free and impartial.  It currently covers over 95% of all property advertised for sale in England & Wales.

Check 4 Houses best estate agent in Fleet

We are delighted that Check 4 Houses has been ranked again as the best performing estate agent in Fleet.  The statistics show we are delivering a 71% success rate of selling homes.  We take an average of 33 days to sell properties.  We have a track record of achieving 96% of asking prices.

Personal service from start to finish

Paul Hemmings, founder and director at Check 4 Houses said: “I am pleased that we continue to be ranked highly as one of the best performing estate agents in Fleet.  As an online estate agent we can sell property anywhere in England.  But as local experts in the towns of Fleet, Farnborough, Camberley and beyond, local reputation matters.  Our commitment to the whole process of selling houses – from realistic valuations through to personal service, right through to completion is clearly paying off.  These results prove that our approach not only saves our customers thousands of pounds.  It also delivers real results.”

At Check 4 Houses we deliver a genuine, reliable and professional house selling service for up to half the cost of a traditional high street agent.  From our head office in Fleet sell properties in Fleet, Farnborough, AldershotBasingstokeCamberleyYateleyFarnham and beyond. We can sell your home from just £599 or 0.5% +VAT – saving you thousands in agency fees. Please give us a call on 01252 819725 or contact us and we would be delighted to give you a free, no obligation valuation of your home.

hand signing a sales contract

Conveyancing: A simple guide

When you come to buy or sell a property, you will need a solicitor or conveyancer.  They will complete the conveyancing process on your behalf.  But what do they actually do?  What does conveyancing actually mean?

Conveyancing is the legal process of transferring home ownership from one person or company to another.

In conveyancing, the property is legally transferred from the buyer to the seller, or vice versa.  In this guide we will look at the key steps involved. The process is similar if you are buying or selling, but we will focus on buying a property in this article.

  1. Once you have had an offer accepted on a property you will need to find a solicitor or conveyancer to complete the legal process on your behalf.  It helps speed up the process if you have already decided which one you will use.  You can do this as soon as you start house hunting, then formally instruct them to start work once you have had an offer agreed.
  2. Your conveyancer will request draft contracts and other documents from your sellers.  You will need to go through these forms which provide further detail on the property you are buying, as well as what the buyers are planning to leave behind etc.
  3. Searches will be carried out to give you a full picture of external factors that might affect the property you want to buy.  For example, are there plans to build a new motorway just across the road?  Searches cover this kind of information as well as flooding and subsidence risks.  Data on water and drainage which may be important if you are planning any building works.
  4. Your solicitor will write to you with details of all the search results and highlight any areas of concern.  You can then address any of these issues with the sellers as appropriate.  Once you are ready to proceed, you will confirm a completion date and sign the draft contract.  You must also pay the deposit into your solicitors account.

From exchange through to completion

  1. Once you and the seller have agreed, your solicitors or conveyancers will exchange contracts on your behalf.  This is usually done by both solicitors/conveyancers making sure the contracts are identical.  They then immediately send them to one another in the post.  Remember, once you have exchanged contracts you are now in a legally binding contract to buy the property.  You can no longer change your mind or renegotiate, without risk of being sued.
  2. Completion day arrives!  The day you have been waiting for is here.  Usually you collect a set of keys from the estate agent, once they have confirmed that the purchase has been completed and the sellers have vacated.  Your solicitor or conveyancer pays the outstanding balance to the sellers’ solicitor, along with any mortgage funds.  Your solicitor hands over the legal documents that prove that ownership has now been transferred and the process is complete.

You can find out more about what to expect from the conveyancing process and how to find a solicitor or conveyancer from websites such as The Money Advice Service or The Home Owners Alliance.

At Check 4 Houses we are passionate about supporting people through the sometimes stressful challenge of purchasing a property.  We offer personal contact from start to finish, from local property experts.  We know the towns and cities of FleetFarnboroughAldershotBasingstokeCamberleyYateley and Farnham inside out.  Our internet based approach means we can sell your home from just £599 or 0.5% +VAT.  This could save you thousands in agency fees.  Please give us a call for a no obligation valuation of your home on 01252 819725 or email info@check4houses.co.uk.

hand signing a sales contract

Conveyancing: A simple guide to what happens when you sell your property

When you come to buy or sell a property, you will need a solicitor or conveyancer.  They will complete the conveyancing process on your behalf.  But what do they actually do?  What does conveyancing actually mean?

Conveyancing is the legal process of transferring home ownership from one person or company to another.

In conveyancing, the property is legally transferred from the buyer to the seller, or vice versa.  In this guide we will look at the key steps involved. The process is similar if you are buying or selling.  In this article we we will focus on the process of selling your property.

  1. Once you have accepted an offer on your property you will need to find a solicitor or conveyancer to complete the legal process on your behalf.  It helps speed up the process if you have already decided which one you will use.  You can do this as soon as you put your house on the market, then formally instruct them to start work once you have accepted an offer.
  2. You must complete a number of detailed questionnaires about your property.  They are standard forms which will be provided to you by your solicitor/conveyancer.  The forms include information on boundaries, utility providers, fixtures and fittings to be included etc.  It is really important you complete them as truthfully as possible and take the time to do so.
  3. Your solicitor or conveyancer then writes up a draft contract and sends this to the buyers for approval.  At this point there may be some further negotiation between you and your buyers about date of exchange and completion.  You may also need to negotiate any payments for fixtures included, and any issues arising from their survey or home buyers report.
  4. Once you and your buyer have agreed on all the details and a date and time to exchange contracts, your solicitor or conveyancer will exchange contracts on your behalf.  This is usually done by both solicitors/conveyancers making sure the contracts are identical.  They then immediately send them to one another in the post.  Remember, once you have exchanged contracts you are now in a legally binding contract to sell the property.  You can no longer change your mind or renegotiate, without risk of being sued.
  5. After exchange of contracts you should receive the buyer’s deposit – usually 10% of the property price.  However if you are purchasing another property at the same time, your solicitor may hold this on account for you. They will use it to pay the deposit on the property you are purchasing.
  6. Completion day arrives!  Once you have packed up and done a final clean it is time to hand over the keys.  Usually your buyer collects a set of keys from the estate agent.  You leave any spare sets and other keys in the property.  Your solicitor or conveyancer will receive the outstanding balance of sale price.  Any outstanding mortgage on the property can then be paid off from the proceeds of the sale.  Your solicitor hands over the legal documents that prove that ownership has now been transferred and the process is complete.

You can find out more about what to expect from the conveyancing process  from websites such as The Money Advice Service or The Home Owners Alliance.  They also have tools to help you find a solicitor or conveyancer.  Your estate agent may also recommend people they work with regularly.

At Check 4 Houses we are passionate about supporting people through the sometimes stressful and emotional challenge of selling their property.  We offer personal contact from start to finish, from local property experts that know the towns and cities of FleetFarnboroughAldershotBasingstokeCamberleyYateley and Farnham inside out.  Our internet based approach means we can sell your home from just £599 or 0.5% +VAT – saving you thousands in agency fees.  Please give us a call for a no obligation valuation of your home on 01252 819725 or email info@check4houses.co.uk.

House sitting on calculator with word mortgage on

Survey or Homebuyers Report: Do I need one and if so, which?

When buying a property you will probably think about having some kind of survey done.  In most cases you will have to organise your own survey.  Your mortgage company may complete a valuation.  However you may wish to organise a survey as well for your own peace of mind.

So what is a survey?

According to RICS, the professional body that represents Surveyors, A Home Survey is an in-depth visual inspection of a property.  At the end of inspection, the surveyor produces a report.  This provides an expert account of the property’s condition and highlights any problems.  If using a RICS Surveyor, the report communicates these in clear and easy to understand ‘traffic light’ ratings.

What are the options available?

There are 3 different options of home survey available, to allow you to choose which best suits your needs:

  1. A Home Condition Report: The simplest (and cheapest) of the options, this report describes the condition of the property.  It identifies any risks and potential legal issues and highlights any urgent defects.  It is most suitable for conventional or unmodified properties and new homes.  These are less likely to have significant issues.
  2. A Home Buyers report (may include a valuation): This mid-range option is most suitable for conventional properties which are in reasonable condition.  It gives more detailed information than a Home Condition Report about the current state of the property and any remedial works required or issues to be aware of.  It can include a valuation for mortgage and insurance purposes (though be aware this may be done separately by your mortgage provider).
  3. A Building Survey: This is the most expensive option – but the most comprehensive. It is particularly useful for larger or older properties or if you are planning to do substantial work to a property. The survey provides an in-depth evaluation of the current property condition.  It includes advice on any issues that need to be addressed or repairs that are required.

Why would I need one?

For most of us, property is the biggest investment we will ever make.  Whether you plan to live in a property or rent it out, you still want to be aware of any potential issues before you part with your hard-earned money.  A survey delivers expert advice on the condition of the property.  This enables you to make an informed choice.  It helps to ensure that your dream home does not become a disaster.

How can I find out more?

You can find out more about the importance of surveys and the different types available on the RICS website http://www.rics.org/uk/.  Their online tool enables you to search for registered surveyors in your local area.  You could also ask for recommendations from your estate agent or solicitor.

At Check 4 Houses we are passionate about supporting people through the sometimes stressful and emotional challenge of purchasing a property.  We offer personal contact from start to finish.   As local property experts we know the towns and cities of FleetFarnboroughAldershotBasingstokeCamberleyYateley and Farnham inside out.  Our internet based approach means we can sell your home from just £599 or 0.5% +VAT – saving you thousands in agency fees.  Please give us a call for a no obligation valuation of your home on 01252 819725 or email info@check4houses.co.uk.

House being built or having building work including loft extension - homebuild and renovate in progress

Last chance to have your say on the future of Rushmoor

Rushmoor Borough Council, which covers the key towns of Farnborough and Aldershot, have been working on a new development plan called the Rushmoor Local Plan. This document provides the overall development strategy for the area. It guides the location, scale and type of future development for 2014 to 2032. Other local councils such as Hart District Council have been going through similar processes, in order to meet government requirements for new housing.

Time to have your say

The Rushmoor Local Plan has now entered its final stage and local residents are invited to give their views through an online consultation. The consultation is open until Friday 21st July, so you still have a few days to make your comments count.

You can view a copy of the draft plan, along with its supporting documents on the Council website. You can also view the documents at the council offices, Farnborough Library and Aldershot Library during office hours.

A ‘spatial strategy’ for residential development

The plan covers many key aspects of living in Rushmoor including sustainability objectives, the employment environment and more. A major part of the plan is the ‘spatial strategy’. This identifies the potential capacity in the Borough for around 8,700 new dwellings between 2014 and 2032. Of these, approximately 3,850 new homes will be created at Wellesley, Aldershot. At least 4,000 new homes will be built from the rest of the region. Around 1,700 will be situated within Aldershot (outside Wellesley) and 2,300 from within Farnborough.

To submit your comments on the proposal you can use this online link. You can also download and complete a representation form from the website and email or post it to the Council.

At Check 4 Houses we pride ourselves on being local property experts. We know the towns of FleetFarnboroughAldershotBasingstokeCamberleyYateley and Farnham inside out, yet we also recognise that 90% of property searches in the UK take place online.

Our internet based approach enables you to save thousands in agency fees – giving you more to spend on your new home. Please give us a call on 01252 819725 or contact us for a free, no obligation valuation of your property. We can sell your house, flat, bungalow or apartment from just £599 or 0.5% + VAT.

hand signing a sales contract

What is a property sales contract?

When you agree to sell your property with an estate agent, the sales contract becomes a vital document.  It clearly sets out what is and is not expected of you, as well as what you can and cannot expect of your agent.  It might seem like lots of small print, but it is important you carefully read and evaluate the sales contract, so you know what you are signing up for.

Here are five key things to look out for on any property sales contract:

  1. Your property address details

Always make sure the property address details are correct including the postcode.  Mistakes can happen – but they can cause confusion with solicitors further down line, should you proceed with a sale.

  1. Asking price

Double check this is the price you discussed and agreed with the agent.  However do remember that this isn’t a valuation or any guarantee of the price you will actually achieve.  It is simply what you and the agent have agreed to start marketing the property at.

  1. Sole / Joint agency

Most property sales contracts are for sole agency.  This means that you cannot ask another agent to sell your property at the same time.  Even just a one-off viewing because they happen to have the ‘perfect candidate’ is not allowed.

  1. Minimum term and notice period

This area is vital as it sets out your rights, should you not be happy with your agent.  Everyone goes into an agreement hoping it will all go perfectly.  But things don’t always go to plan.  You don’t want to get stuck with an under-performing agent for months so check and question if needed what is written here.  Don’t sign for more than 8 weeks and expect to see a notice period of no more than 14 days.

  1. The fees

Confirm that the fees you will pay are what you have discussed with the agent, including when they have to be paid.  Historically all estate agency costs were paid on completion which was when you received the money from your sale.  Your solicitor paid the fees directly to the estate agent.  But with the rise of online estate agents this has changed. Some have up-front costs.  Others have fees that are payable on exchange.  This can work well as long as you receive sufficient deposit from your buyers or have the cash available.  Also don’t forget the VAT in your own calculations as it can make a real difference.  We don’t recommend you pay more than 1% for any estate agent and do consider up front/one off payment options as they can save you thousands.

Finally, ensure you read through other items such as whether you will be required to agree to or pay for extras such as For Sale boards.  Confirm how offers will be dealt with so you know what to expect during the process.

Whether you choose an online or offline estate agent – a major national chain or a local self-employed agent – the principle and importance of the sales contract remains the same.  Don’t be afraid to ask questions if you are not sure.  Taking the time up front to get things right should ensure a swift and successful sale will follow.

At Check 4 Houses we offer a flexible and reliable service that is as stress free as possible.  We can sell your property from as little as £599 or 0.5% + VAT, saving you thousands compared to some high street agents.

Please give us a call on 01252 819725 or contact us and we would be delighted to give you a free, no obligation valuation of your home.

estate agent 4 me report best estate agent in Fleet is Check 4 Houses

The top performing estate agent in Fleet is …. Check 4 Houses

We are delighted to have been selected as the top estate agent in Fleet by independent comparison website estateagent4me.

The best performing estate agents in your local area

Estate agent 4 me helps you find the best estate agent in your local area.  It compares estate agents against 4 key indicators:

  • Fees they charge
  • Average days they take to sell a property like yours
  • How close they might get to achieving an asking price
  • How successful they are at selling similar homes

The tool was set up in partnership with the HomeOwners Alliance.  The complex statistical engine is fed on a daily basis with property data from over 18,000 estate agents across thousands of different websites.  It provides accurate comparison data which is free and impartial.  It currently covers over 95% of all property advertised for sale in England & Wales.

We are delighted that Check 4 Houses has been ranked as the best performing estate agent in Fleet.  The statistics show we are delivering a 70% success rate of selling homes.  We take an average of 42 days to sell properties.  We have a track record of achieving 100% of asking prices.

Personal service from start to finish

Paul Hemmings, founder and director at Check 4 Houses says: “I am pleased to see that we continue to be ranked highly as one of the best performing estate agents in Fleet.  As an online estate agent we can sell property anywhere in England.  But as local experts in the towns of Fleet, Farnborough, Camberley and beyond, local reputation matters.  Our commitment to the whole process of selling houses – from realistic valuations through to personal service, right through to completion is clearly paying off.  These results prove that our approach not only saves our customers thousands of pounds.  It also delivers real results.”

At Check 4 Houses we deliver a genuine, reliable and professional house selling service for up to half the cost of a traditional high street agent.  From our head office in Fleet we sell properties in Fleet, Farnborough, Farnham and further afield across England, from just £599 or 0.5%+VAT.

We work together with our customers to ensure the house selling process is as stress free as possible.  Please give us a call on 01252 819725 or contact us and we would be delighted to give you a free, no obligation valuation of your home.

 

 

Pleased to