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So it’s January and another year awaits, and for some of us it might be time to make a big change, to move house. Traditionally the busiest period (when the most properties are listed on Rightmove) is spring, with March being one of the biggest months for sales and Feb-June being the peak period. So if you are thinking of moving this year January is the time to start getting things into place, if this seems daunting, it really isn’t, this is where a really good estate agent can make things as painless as possible and did we mention we are a gold award-winning agency for three years running now?
Here is our advice on choosing an agency;
1. Ask around for recommendations from friends and colleagues, ask on your local Facebook group, google “award-winning estate agents Bristol”
2. Look for For Sale and Sold signs in your local area – who has good visibility?
3. Check industry credentials – look for logos and accreditation on the agents’ websites
4. Go undercover – pose as a buyer and see how you are received and what you are offered
5. Invite at least three agents to value your property and don’t be lured into a quick decision
6. Ask questions – the most important are;
- What is the sole agent charge and tie-in period? (sole agency is where one agent has exclusive right to sell your house for x period)
- What is the multi-agent charge?
- How long has estate agent been in business and are they familiar with your area?
- How will your property be promoted? Online, print, more?
- Will the agent be there for all viewings including evenings and weekends?
7. Read the terms and conditions of the agreement – ask questions
8. Review your agent's performance after a few weeks and ask for feedback
Here are our top tips of things NOT to do / common errors that can reduce your chances of a successful sale;
1. Selling your home on your own – this can be incredibly time consuming and end up costing you more if you don’t know where to start / what to do.
2. Choosing the wrong estate agent – Not doing research when choosing a good agent can lead to issues down the line, don’t always go for lowest rates, again it may cost you more.
3. Being realistic re sales price – A good agent will advise on price if you want a quick sale or are prepared to wait for right buyer.
4. Making your house “ready” for a sale – try to look at your house impartially, a bit of decluttering and tidying or even a bit of painting can make the world of difference in some cases.
5. Don’t put off fixing “red flags” – If your house has any obvious maintenance issues, the cost of repairing them before the sale in most cases is well worth it to counteract the negative impact it may have on most buyers.
6. If you have pets consider a carpet clean - It’s a relatively cheap thing to do but whilst you don’t maybe notice “eau de dog” any longer other buyers will, plus your carpets will look almost brand new afterwards
7. Not using modern methods to assist sale – You can help your agent get the word out by using local social media groups to tell people about your property being for sale, also mentioning to friends and colleagues, be proactive yourself.
8. Reading everything thoroughly – Read the fine print, ask questions, as many as you want, it’s one of the biggest transactions you will do in your life, be sure what you are signing and clear on what it covers.
All being well, with a bit of thought and preparation your property sale will go smoothly and in a few months’ time you will happily ensconced in your fabulous new home. We would be delighted to help get you there!
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Well it seems 2017 is nearly over somehow, and Christmas is FAST approaching, so we thought we’d get into the Christmas spirit and offer some quirky no-clutter gift ideas plus also some hints and tips if you are thinking of selling your home over Christmas.
Every week in Bristol we seem to have another Christmas market that pops up on the street, which is of course, lovely, but it can also get a bit overwhelming the sheer level of stuff / things out there to buy to gift to your friends and family. Shiny and or edible things at Christmas are so hard to resist…
But really…no-one is a fan of clutter…so here are a few present ideas that won’t break the bank; don’t take up much space and all under £30
For the family why not order your own personalised family poster from £20
(image credit www.posterhaste.com)
For the person who loves a tipple why not get them these gin-filled festive baubles (plus consumable = less clutter – win win!)
(Image credit www.gettingpersonal.co.uk)
For your plus one who loves to laugh…a comedy experience for two
(Image credit www.virginexperiencedays.co.uk)
And if you fancy splurging just that teeny tiny bit more….how about this deluxe summer house at just under £19k...
(Image credit www.johnlewis.com)
Staging your house if you are looking to sell over Christmas and New Year
Should you be looking to sell your house over Christmas and are worried about not being able to follow the usual “rules” of depersonalising / decluttering before viewings then here are our three top tips to ensure you manage to enjoy your home at Christmas whilst still maximising viewing opportunities;
1. The Tree - firstly if we are selling your house we will make sure to have taken photos using wide-angled lenses to make the space look as big as possible even with a big tree in the corner of the room, and whilst on the tree theme, do make sure the tree is suitable for the size of your rooms and not dominating the whole room
2. The Décor – use what you have and love, then maybe reduce it by a third, subtle is best, and beware of ceiling decorations, they can make ceilings look lower than they are, but equally enjoy your home, and people will expect to see decorations in viewings over Christmas so as long as you try for elegance and understatement rather than a 10 foot high flashing Santa singing Ho Ho Ho on repeat…you should be ok.
3. Lighting – can be actually great if you have a small or somewhat darker home with not much natural light, you can justify having lovely warm twinkling lights on at all times in December, just go for clear or gold warm lighting and a gloomy December room at 9am can be instantly transformed.
And don't miss NEW on our website we now have an online instant valuation tool so if you are thinking of selling now or next year and just want an idea of your property value click here to do the valuation; it takes 1 minute and is instant and free
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from all at Bristol Property Centre
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Autumn has well and truly arrived, and with the clocks having just gone back it’s time to settle in for the winter and enjoy all the delights living in Bristol has to offer. This week we had Halloween, love it or loathe a carved pumpkin does brighten up the front doorstep or window, plus bonfire night this weekend with some fabulous displays to enjoy in and around Bristol – enjoy! Take a look here for a list of the events https://visitbristol.co.uk/whats-on/bonfire-night-displays-bristol.
An interesting government report on Buying and Selling homes was published last weekend; it surveyed 2,000 people on their experiences of buying / selling and some key findings stood out. It seems that 83% of people in the survey still preferred to use traditional estate agents. And sadly for many (38% of buyers and 41% of sellers) the time taken from offer to exchange of contracts took longer than they expected, with then 40% of people incurring additional costs such as accommodation or storage. It was found that people who experienced delays tended to hold the other party’s solicitor or licensed conveyancer responsible with nearly half (47%) of buyers blaming the seller’s solicitor as did 58% of sellers for the buyer’s solicitor. Low levels of satisfaction in the conveyancing process area which is unfortunately a common thread in these type of reports. Happily for us, satisfaction with estate agents was high (81% among buyers and 84% among sellers) whilst consumers were most likely to express dissatisfaction with the other party’s solicitor; with 32% of sellers and 28% of buyers dissatisfied with the other party’s solicitor.
Source: Research on buying & selling homes, Dept for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy, Research paper number BIS/283
Here at Bristol Property Centre we do pride ourselves on a personalised, one-to-one service for everyone, we are accredited by the standard industry bodies and we are a multi-award winning Estate Agent and Letting Agent. We do our utmost best to ensure the house selling / buying process is transparent and as stress-free as possible. One of our key strengths is that any seller / buyer will have a dedicated person who will be their sole point of contact throughout the whole process, no waiting endlessly for a call centre rep to call you back; we are there for you every step of the way.
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How to Declutter Your Home Before Moving
Christmas is nearly upon us, and this time of year is perfect for decluttering, especially if you are about to move to a new home. The New Year brings the possibility of a fresh start, so why not start your new life in your new home by enjoying a decluttered existence. There's no better time to go through all the junk you've collected than before you're about to move. Getting rid of all that clutter is a liberating experience, and you'll love your new simpler and more organised experience.
However, decluttering can be tricky. If you’re not a hoarder personally, you know someone who is. For some of us, we can always find a reason to hold on to something. That’s why following the tips and tricks below can silence that inner voice. If you need more motivation, consider the fact that the cost of your move will be directly tied to the amount you need to move. So, by slashing your belongings in half, you could save a lot, particularly if you’re moving overseas.
So, here are the tricks you need to sort through the junk, and only hold on to the treasures.
The Rule of Multiples
The best place to start on your decluttering journey is with anything you have multiples of. You only need one of most things, for example, if you have more than one kettle or sandwich toaster, you can get rid of all but your best one. You can also consider things like DVD players and hair dryers. Once you’ve gotten rid of the multiples, you’ll have made a terrific start.
The One Year Rule
This is a famous decluttering rule. It's a great one because it removes the fear of throwing things away. It's straightforward, all you have to do is get rid of anything that you haven’t used in a year. Obviously, heirlooms and treasures aren’t subject to this rule, but for anything else, if you haven’t used it in a year, you really don’t need it.
Go Through Your Clothes
Wardrobes are a notorious place of clutter. When going through your closet, keep the one year rule in mind. This allows you to get rid of anything you haven't work in a year while still accounting for season.Turn the hangers round on clothes in your wardrobe and then one year later if some hangers are still not turned the other way round you know what you haven't worn.
What Does It Do?
Most of the things in your house should serve a function. There's space in your home for a few purely decorative items but limit these as much as possible. Your house will quickly become cluttered if you fill it with things merely because they ‘look nice.'
How Does It Make You Feel?
The impression that an object makes on you can be useful while decluttering. If you pick something up and it immediately makes you happy or nostalgic, you can make a case to keep it and ignore the rules above. If you feel nothing, or you're unsure, get rid of it. This brings us to another rule, ‘if in doubt throw it out.' Anything you're unsure of should be sent to the ‘not keeping' pile right away.
For more hints and tips, take a look at the How to Declutter Before Moving House Checklist.
Decluttering = a cleaner state of mind and more room for the important things in life.
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As well as the cold weather, January brings with it the promise of new beginnings. So it’s no surprise that it’s the time of year when a huge number of people put their house on the market.
However, finding the right estate agent can be daunting, so we’ve put together some ‘tips of the trade’ on what to avoid and how to choose wisely.
All that glitters: if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Some agents will over-value a property to get your business, rather than be realistic. Make sure you get two or three quotes to get a rounded view from several experts.
Bogus buyers: be wary of agents that tell you they have a buyer ‘lined up’ for you on their valuation visit. This could genuinely be the case, but unfortunately it can sometimes be a way to get you to sign up with them without a buyer existing.
Sole purpose: look out for contracts with ‘sole selling rights’ in the terms of business. If you end up selling to a friend or your cousin for example, the agent could still try and take a fee due to this clause.
Shop around: some agents offer access to their own in-house solicitors and mortgage brokers. But don’t feel obliged to use these, be sure to shop around and make sure you get the right deal for you.
Quality counts: be sure to check out the industry qualifications of the agency you are thinking of using. An agent that is a member of the National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA) for example, has to undergo regular training and keep up to date with the latest regulations to ensure quality standards