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Archives October 2017

What is ‘gazumping’?

Communities Secretary, Sajid Javid, has announced the Government is launching a probe into ‘Gazumping’. They are calling for evidence from estate agents, solicitors and mortgage lenders over the next eight weeks in an attempt to make the house-buying process “cheaper, faster and less stressful”.

 

So, What is Guzumping?

Gazumping is the practice where people who have already put down an offer on a property are outbid by rival buyers.

In England and Wales, even though an offer has been accepted, a house purchase is not legally binding until contracts have been exchanged.

Gazumping rarely happens in Scotland, because the agreement is legally binding earlier in the process – as soon as seller’s solicitor provides a signed written acceptance of a buyer’s offer, which may be ‘subject to survey’.

 

When does gazumping occur?

About 25 per cent of house sales fall through after the offer has been made and before exchange and one reason for this is ‘gazumping’.

In the period leading up to exchange the seller – or buyer – can pull out of the sale with no financial repercussions.

The exchange of contracts doesn’t happen until all paperwork is in order: the survey has taken place, the mortgage arranged, searches conducted and legal documents completed.

This generally takes three months, depending on the number of people in the chain, how long it takes to have a survey done and how fast (or slow) the solicitor is.

In most cases gazumping happens because a higher offer has been made. However, it may also happen because a buyer is in a better position to move more quickly.

5 Surprising Things That Will Boost The Value Of Your Home

Forget good schools, a new bathroom and a south-facing garden, it’s the elements you can’t control that really affect your house value.

 When you’re looking to improve a property’s value, there’s a whole heap of accepted wisdom out there. Improve the curb appeal by adding a few flower pots and getting rid of that rusty bath in the front garden. Install a new bathroom and do up the kitchen.

But a new study has shown that simply living near a big-brand supermarket can add £22,000 to the value of a property, or even more depending on the shop. And that’s just one factor that can have a huge effect on the value of a property, no matter how nice the kitchen is.

Here are five surprising things that will affect the price of your property. Sadly, they’re almost entirely out of your control.

 

Be near a big supermarket

Research by Lloyds Bank shows that living near a well-known supermarket can add £22,000 to the value of a home, but that rises to an average of almost £40,000 if it’s a Waitrose.

Sainsbury’s adds an average of almost £28,000, while Tesco provides a house price premium of just over £22,000. Sadly, living in a proximity to an Aldi store adds just £1,333 to the average house price.

Mike Songer, Lloyds Bank mortgage director, explains: “There is definitely a correlation between the price of your home and whether it’s close to a major supermarket or not. Our figures show that the amount added to the value of your home can be even greater if located next to a brand which is perceived as upmarket.”

 

Don’t live on a ‘road’

It’s no surprise that the name of the street affects the value of a property to a degree.

Zoopla’s analysis, which showed that properties located on “Hills” and “Lanes” are worth 50 per cent more than the national average; while “Streets” and “Terraces” have the lowest average property values.

In fact, the average property on a street named “something Hill” is worth £185,000 more than the average property on a “something Street”.

 

Your neighbours

Even if you don’t want to spend your free time shopping at the organic farmers’ market or dining out, it’s better for your house price if your neighbours do. If more upmarket businesses open nearby then your house price could soar.

Mark Hayward, managing director of the National Association of Estate Agents says: “Aspirational amenities such as a Michelin-starred restaurant, organic farm shop or a local dining club can have a positive impact on the saleability of nearby homes. In addition, areas with high-value sporting and recreational activities like pony clubs and chess societies for children are also desirable, and when combined with successful local schools can see premiums on house prices of up to 10 per cent. 

“Parental competition is rife and many can regularly be seen battling to ‘keep up with the Joneses’ in order to provide the best possible upbringing for their children. This will in turn differentiate homes in certain areas from others on the market.”

 

Live near a sporting venue

One historical study by Halifax showed that houses near Premier League football grounds increased faster than average over 10 years. In the decade, up to 2012 house prices in the postal districts of 20 clubs rose by an average of 137 per cent, compared to an average hike of 90 per cent across England and Wales.

That’s a finding that estate agents say has been replicated across other sporting arenas. Mr Gosling says: “Living near a top sporting venue can really boost house prices. It’s well known that you’re likely to pay a premium to live close to Wimbledon.

“But we carried out some research on living next to an Open Championship golf course, and found that golf fans pay a 139 per cent premium. For example, the average property price next to Royal Birkdale, in Southport, was just over £1m, more than 400 per cent higher than the average property price in that postcode.”

 

Open all hours

Lastly, it’s a very good thing if a decent pub opens within walking distance of your front door. Research from Sarah Beeny’s online estate agency Tepilo shows that a good quality pub is a major selling point for 23 per cent of buyers, adding to demand and competition for nearby homes.

OK, perhaps that one isn’t that surprising.

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