Walton & Allen featured in Best Estate Agent Guide 2021

Walton & Allen has been featured in the Best Estate Agent Guide 2021.

The Best Estate Agent Guide is an independent company which surveys estate and letting agents across the country. They have teamed up with Rightmove to map out the perfect customer experience for sales and lettings across the country.

To do this they conduct the ‘biggest mystery shopping review process ever undertaken of the property industry’.

The criteria they looked for is as follows:

  • How well properties perform and are marketed on Rightmove
  • Time taken for the listing to go ‘SSTC’ or ‘Let Agreed’.
  • How good the customer service is via email and telephone
  • Market share compared to other agents

Analysing over 25,000 branches across the UK, Walton & Allen featured in the top 5%.

Walton & Allen achieved the “Exceptional” rating. According to the Best Estate Agent Guide, branches with this rating ‘showed an outstanding level of service and care towards prospective clients’.

You can find out more by going to their official website, www.bestestateagentguide.co.uk.

Do you have a property to sell or to rent out to tenants? Call us today on 0115 924 3304 or email info@waltonandallen.co.uk to see how we can help you too.

New 2020 Help To Buy scheme announced

A newly reconfigured Help To Buy scheme will open to applicants from 16th December 2020.

The equity loan initiative will run from 2021 to 2023.

As with the previous scheme, buyers will be able to borrow 20 per cent of the cost of a new build home. Buyers will be required to pay a further 5 per cent.

This loan is interest free for 5 years.

The new scheme is very much the same as the old one, except regional price limits will be set. This will be at 1.5 times the average first time buyer price in each area of England.

This means that the cost of these homes will be closer to the average first time buyer price in each area.

Home builders will also have to follow more rules this time round if they wish to be eligible for the Help to Buy scheme. They must agree to follow rules set out by the Consumer Code for Homebuilders, the New Homes Ombudsman, the Building Safety Charter, and fulfil planning permissions and building regulations.

Are you a first time buyer? Walton & Allen estate agents can help you find your dream home. Talk to us to discuss our available properties for sale or to receive first time buyer mortgage advice. Just call 0115 924 3304.

Gedling Selective Licensing: What you need to know

Gedling Borough Council will soon introduce licenses for Colwick, Carlton Hill, Daybrook and Newstead Village

Gedling Borough Council are soon to introduce Selective Licensing to other areas of Nottingham. The City Council introduced a similar scheme for most of their district in 2018, with Gedling Borough soon following suit for Netherfield. Now they are planning to expand to cover further areas.

To talk to our team about Gedling Selective Licensing, please call 0115 924 3304.

What is a Selective Licence?

A Selective Licence is a mandatory scheme for landlords who rent their property to tenants in specific areas of Nottingham. The Council is concerned that many tenants in Nottingham are renting properties which are not safe or of a ‘decent’ standard. The aim behind the scheme is to ensure all properties are kept to good standards.

The scheme also aims to ensure that all properties are managed by ‘fit and proper’ landlords.

Does my property need a licence?

If you own and rent out a property to tenants in Colwick, Carlton Hill, Daybrook or Newstead Village then it is likely that you will need a Selective Licence.

When will the scheme begin?

The licensing scheme is estimated to begin in 2021. A 12 week consultation period will run from 12th October 2020 to 4th January 2021.

After this consultation period the Council will publish more information on the scheme and suggest a start date.

You can have your say about the scheme by visiting https://www.gedling.gov.uk/slphase2/.

What is the cost of the licence?

There are several different costs for the Gedling Borough Council Selective Licence, depending on your circumstances as a landlord.

The fee is split into two different payments; the first when you apply and the second when your draft licence is issued. The total fee lasts for 5 years.

Standard fee

Total = £700
Part 1: £520
Part 2: £180

Accredited landlord fee

The proposed licence holder is accredited with either DASH, NLA, RLA, Unipol or equivalent landlord accreditation body.

Total = £585
Part 1: £430
Part 2: £155

What if I don’t have a licence?

The Council can prosecute you and issue criminal proceedings. They are also able to fine you an unlimited amount of money.

What are the licensing conditions?

The licence holder will be subject to conditions to keep both the property and tenant(s) safe. Below is a summary of these conditions.

  • If gas is supplied to the property then the property will need a valid gas safety certificate
  • Supplied electrical appliances should be kept safe and have PAT tests where necessary
  • The licence holder should ensure smoke alarms are working and maintained throughout the tenancy
  • Supplied furniture should be safe and fire safety labels left in place
  • A carbon monoxide alarm should be installed in any room in the house which is used wholly or partly as living accommodation and contains a solid fuel burning combustion appliance
  • The licence holder should ensure that repairs are dealt with in a timely manner
  • Any unwanted household items or garden rubbish should be removed
  • Security issues should be dealt with within 24 hours of being reported
  • Security locks and systems should be kept in good working order at all times
  • The tenant should be supplied with security alarm instructions if one is fitted in the property
  • Lock changes should be made for new tenancies if the previous tenants fail to return all keys
  • The licence holder should provide written information on bin collection dates, bulky waste collection services and what each type of bin is used for
  • The licence holder should ensure that the tenants’ right to enjoyment of the property is respected
  • At least 24 hours written notice should be given to tenants before entering the property
  • Inspections should be carried out every six months to ensure the property is fit to live in. A written log must be kept and provided to the Council within 7 days, if requested.
  • At the beginning of a new tenancy, the licence holder must provide the occupier(s) with written information, including contact details, explaining how they can make a complaint about the property and the arrangements in place to deal with emergency and other repairs. Complaints should be dealt with within a reasonable timescale
  • At the beginning of the tenancy the licence holder must provide an information pack which includes a true copy of the property licence, emergency contact details and copies of safety certificates where applicable
  • Written terms or a tenancy agreement must be provided
  • The licence holder should comply with all lettings and landlord laws during the tenancy
  • References need to be sought for each tenants and written evidence kept, should the Council require them
  • Information on the deposit scheme you use, if applicable, should be made available to the tenant(s)
  • The licence holder shall ensure that all reasonable and practical steps are taken to prevent and respond to anti-social behaviour
  • The licence holder must inform the council within 21 days of any material change in circumstances including change of address, change of management or ownership, any criminal charges or any proposed changes to the property layout
  • The licence holder must attend training every 3 years which covers lettings law and legal requirements

All these requirements can be managed on your behalf using our fully managed lettings service. To find out more, call 0115 924 3304 or email info@waltonandallen.co.uk.

Need more advice on Selective Licensing?

If you need more advice on this scheme then you can contact the Walton & Allen lettings team. You can call us on 0115 924 3304 or email info@waltonandallen.co.uk.

Highest house price rise in 16 years

House Prices

New figures released by Nationwide reveals house prices are increasing year on year by 3.7 per cent and in the last month alone by 2 per cent. This means that the annual rate of increase has more than doubled since the Coronavirus lockdown.

This is the highest monthly property price rise since February 2004 and has pushed the average UK house price from £224,123 to £220,935.

One of the main contributing factors for this is likely to be that demand for property is currently outstripping supply. Some home owners are still reluctant to put their house on the market even though they wish to move. So, as more buyers fight for the same property, offers are rising.

Nationwide state that they feel momentum has fully returned to the housing market and they feel that it has recovered fully from the Covid-induced downturn.

From Walton & Allen’s point of view, almost every one of our available sales properties have been snapped up quickly since coming to market. We had record sales figures for the months of June, July and August and we expect this to continue for a much longer period.

Mortgage Applications

Mortgage brokers across the country have reported a record number of applications post-lockdown.

Due to this, lenders have increased interest rates slightly to try and deter new applications. The lenders hope that this should help to reduce demand and will provide them with more time to get through their backlog.Interest rates could continue to rise so we would advise to act now if you’re looking for any form of mortgage, whether it’s a first time buyer mortgage, buy to let or remortgage.

How much is your house now worth?

It’s very likely that you will have made money on your current home in the last few months. If you’re considering moving and want to know more you can find out how much your house is worth in several ways.

Either call our Senior Valuers, Richard and Joe, on 0115 924 3304 or email salesteam@waltonandallen.co.uk.

If you would prefer to simply find out how much your property is worth online, you can use our estate agency online valuation tool.

Nottingham Property Market 2020

The property market is booming.

Since the lifting of Coronavirus lockdown restrictions we have seen a huge influx in sales and lets agreed.

Many estate agents across the country are running out of stock as there are more buyers and renters coming to the market than actual properties.

This has also pushed up sales and rental prices. An increase in demand means that prices are rising.

We need more property

The current surge in interest has seen us sell and let property faster than in the last several years. Buyer and renter demand is outstripping stock by a long way.

Are you considering selling or letting a property? Talk to us today on 0115 924 3304.

New stats from Rightmove

Don’t just take our word for it! Rightmove have released some stats to back this up.

Sales are on the up

  • The average asking price of property has hit a record month; up 2.4 per cent since pre-lockdown and the highest increase since December 2016
  • Year on year buyer enquiries up by 75 per cent
  • 44 per cent of properties which were listed in May have sold already (compared to 34 per cent the previous year)
  • Number of monthly sales agreed up 15 per cent
  • Some low deposit mortgages are now being introduced again for first time buyers

Record rents outside of London

  • Asking rents have achieved a record average price of £845 per month outside of London
  • Demand for rental property is 40 per cent higher than the same time last year

Nottingham Property Market

Hometrack have released their latest report on UK house prices. Nottingham now stands at the top across the whole of the UK for property price growth in the last 12 months.

Nottingham prices rose by 4.3 per cent over the last year. In second place was Manchester with 3.9 per cent growth and in third place was Leicester with 3.5 per cent growth.

How much is your property worth?

How much have you made on your property post COVID-19? Find out by calling us on 0115 924 3304, email salesteam@waltonandallen.co.uk or use the form below.

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    Stamp Duty Cuts 2020

    Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak, has announced a ‘holiday’ on stamp duty up to 31st March 2021.

    This is part of a Coronavirus recovery package to kick start the housing market following the lockdown period.

    Stamp duty will be axed for any property purchase below £500,000. This is to be kept in place for the next eight and a half months and starts immediately from 8th July 2020.

    Until now, home buyers pay zero stamp duty on the first £125,000 of the property value. They then pay the tax on two per cent of the value of the home up to £250,000 and five per cent on the next £675,000.

    First time buyers are already exempt from stamp duty up to £300,000 outside London and £450,000 in London.

    This could potentially save home movers and property investors thousands of pounds.

    Considering your next move or a buy to let purchase? Have a look at our property for sale or call our estate agents on 0115 924 3304.

    2020 Covid UK property prices remain unaffected

    Property prices in the UK are still yet to be affected by the COVID-19 Coronavirus. This is despite the country grinding to a halt during the lockdown period and government recommendations which advise against moving home.

    Data released by Nationwide shows that house prices increased annually by 3.7 per cent in April. It is important to note, however, that this data is based on mortgage approvals and many were submitted before Coronavirus took hold of the nation.

    Of course, we are still living in uncertain times and property prices could change for the short term in the coming weeks. However, our own data also supports the positive statement released by Nationwide.

    Here at Walton & Allen estate agents in Nottingham, we have seen little change in the market apart from an obvious slowdown. We are still receiving enquiries every day, agreeing sales and letting properties to tenants. People still need to move and our email inboxes certainly prove this point!

    This suggests that as soon as lockdown restrictions are lifted, property transactions should return to normal fairly quickly. If the demand to buy property remains similar to the start of the year then we should see little reductions in prices across the UK property market as a whole.

    Estate Agent Virtual Video Viewings

    Walton & Allen Estate Agents Nottingham are producing virtual video viewing tours to keep the property market moving.

    We have produced over 25 video tours so far for both sales and lettings and will continue to produce more over the coming weeks.

    If you are interested in any of our available properties, either to buy or to rent, please check with our team to see if a video is currently available.

    Some are unlisted on YouTube for privacy and will only be made available upon request.

    Video viewings

    Here are a sample of our video viewings below.

    Cavendish Road in Arnold, Nottingham

    Hardstaff Road in Sneinton, Nottingham

    What happens after viewing online?

    If you have viewed a property online via video tour we are still accepting offers and reservations. Please get in touch with either our sales or lettings team to take the next steps to securing your dream property.

    Sales can be contacted on salesteam@waltonandallen.co.uk.

    Lettings can be contacted on lettingsteam@waltonandallen.co.uk.

    Help To Buy scheme may be extended

    The Help To Buy scheme is set to be extended once the Cornavirus lockdown ends.

    The scheme currently helps buyers or new build homes by providing them with a 20% property value equity loan. This was due to be phased out between Spring 2021 and 2023.

    The idea behind the extension is to boost market confidence once the COVID-19 isolation period has ended.

    Help To Buy has been a great help for many first time buyers. It has enabled many to move into better quality homes than they originally would have been able to buy with their savings alone.

    Advice for first time buyers

    Those looking to purchase their own first home this year should continue to look for their dream property during the pandemic. Walton & Allen are still receiving buyer enquiries and sales are still being agreed. We would encourage everyone to act now to avoid disappointment.

    Many of our sales and lettings properties are available to view via video tour. Please email us for more details whilst our offices are closed.

    Properties with Help To Buy

    Walton & Allen Estate Agents in Nottingham have stock available to buy now which is eligible for Help To Buy. Contact us today to find out more on salesteam@waltonandallen.co.uk.

    Nottingham Housing Market Update 2020

    How is the current crisis effecting the housing market?

    Everyone has an opinion on the housing market, whether or not they work in the estate agency industry. Well, my experience over the last 25 years is that most predictions get it wrong. There seems to be a habit of talking down the market whether it be Brexit, a national vote or referendum or indeed a global pandemic. The past few decades show the market has its ups and downs but the general overall trend is the market goes up and prices go up in the long term.

    With the country now in lockdown and many agents temporarily closing, it is almost impossible to get to view a house. Everything is on hold. Yet Rightmove are reporting a significant increase in traffic on its website. Why? Well it would seem there are some obvious factors. We are all at home and have access to the internet. Those of us that share a house with friends or relative, wish we had our own place, those of us with kids wish we had more space. Some wish they had less space and less would like to downsize, and some want to be closer to family. We would all love an independent income that an investment property provides.

    The crisis, whilst terrible at the moment, will come to an end and when it does, the temporary halt on the market which has led to a build up of frustrated interest will boom.

    Lets face it we have less to spend our money on. This could this mean people have the opportunity to save for a bigger deposit? The only thing that could change this is the mortgage market. The mortgage lenders appear to have suspended their deals at the moment, understandably so. But will this change when the crisis is over? It has never been cheaper to borrow, the bank of England base rate is at a record low, surely the lenders will take advantage of the current crisis and reboot their mortgage deals. We still do not have enough houses nationally and we are still not building enough to satisfy this demand.

    So, despite everything and the doomsayers talking down the market, here’s my prediction. Once the current situation is finished there will be increased demand for property. Both residential and investment. Mortgage lenders will offer fantastic mortgage deals and people will want to move. So get looking, use this time to short list that ideal property and once the crisis is over get buying, prices are going to rise. There’s one thing to be sure, ‘We live in interesting times’.