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23Aug

Why Swindon Is The Perfect Place To Buy Or Rent?

 

Are you considering buying or renting a new home and want to explore a new town? If so Castles Estate Agents would highly recommend looking at the latest offerings of properties for sale or rent in Swindon. 

 

Swindon is a large town in the county of Wiltshire in South West England. The town is situated 35 miles away from Bristol and Reading the same distance to the east, the town is also only 75 miles away from the Capital of London which makes it the perfect location for commuters. The town also tops the list of the best value town for renters. 

 

 

A recent survey showed that only 11.5% of a workers monthly salary goes towards rent, which is 50% lower than the national average of 22.1%. This means that whilst living and working in a bigger city like London may sound appealing the majority of citizens have little money left after paying rent compared to Swindon residents who can use the money elsewhere. 

Property 

What Swindon is praised for the most is for its variety in the different houses it has to offer. If you are looking for a more traditional home then the Old Town may be the right place for you, a hugely popular area due to its traditional style of Victorian and Edwardian terrace homes on offer. If you are looking for a slightly larger home, there is an area in the South-East close to Coate Water Park which is extremely popular for its 1930s detached style homes and new builds. 

Employability 

The national average employment rate is around 75% and the employment rate in Swindon is around 80% which is a lot higher than the national average. This could be due to the incredible commuting opportunities in Swindon, the town is close to Bristol, Reading & Bath because of its close proximity to the M4. London is also only an hour commute from the city which gives residents the opportunity to live in the country life whilst still working in the hustle and bustle of the city. Big companies such as Nationwide, NPower, WH Smith and First Great Western are also all based in the heart of Swindon.

Transport

Swindon has easy access to the M4 motorway which connects the town easily to the rest of the UK. Swindon also has its own railway station which has regular services to London Paddington which only take around an hour. 

In regards to airports, Bristol International Airport is only 50 miles away and Heathrow Airport is only an hour away in the car. The city of Cardiff is only 70 miles away and the beautiful Cotswolds are only a short drive up the A419. 

Education 

You will not be short of choices when it comes to schooling in the Swindon area. You will have over 50 primary schools to choose from and if you have older children you will have 11 secondary schools to choose from as well as many colleges. If you have children looking to go to University there are many amazing Universities that will also allow them to have a short commute home such as; 

 

  • The University of West England, Bristol

  • The University of Exeter

  • The University of Bath 

  • The University of Bristol 

  • The University of Gloucestershire 

Houses To Buy & Rent

Swindon enjoys an array of different areas to live in from turn of the century properties in the town and Old town to the most modern of properties to the North and East of the town. A large majority of homes that are sold in Swindon are terraced homes, with prices starting circa £160,000 and averaging circa £202,763. Semi-detached houses average a price of £250,000 and detached homes sell at an average price of £360,000. Flats in sale in Swindon average around £153,948.

 

The majority of the town’s rental opportunities are flats and terrace properties. These flats on average are around £564 for one bedroom and average at £728 for a two bedroom flat. Houses are also available to rent in Swindon for an average rent of less than £1,000 per calendar month. 

Castles Estate Agents 

 

Castles Estate Agents are a leading estate agent in Swindon who are able to help you with every aspect of your housing journey. For help and advice on selling or renting a property in Swindon check out our website or call us today on 01793 611 677.

23Aug

The Benefits Of Using An Estate Agents 

 

It is not imperative that you use an estate agent to sell your property, however, it is preferred. It is the most popular choice for selling a home as it is the best way to ensure that you are attracting the vast range of people who may potentially be interested in buying your home. 

 

Estate Agents have a huge amount of experience and information about the housing market from prices to competitors and more. Estate Agents work in the industry every day and know all of the do’s and don'ts like the back of their hand allowing you to sell your home with ease and be in safe hands throughout the process. 

 

What Does An Estate Agent do? 

  • They help you to set the value of your home. 

  • Market your home for you.

  • Conduct viewings

  • Manage negotiations

  • Deal with the paperwork 

  • Keep up to date with trends in the relevant property market

What Are The Advantages Of Using An Estate Agent? 

One of the main advantages of using an estate agent is that they are able to help you set the value of your home. Putting your home on the market at the right price is imperative as it could make the difference between selling your home within a couple of days or the property sitting on the market for months to come. When people sell their homes privately it can be hard to say what the suitable price may be, however, an estate agent will have a world of expert knowledge and information to make sure your home is on the market for the correct price. 

Castles Estate Agents have some examples of how their services have helped homeowners sell their properties quickly and efficiently; 

24 Hawkins Street 

 

 

This home is located in Swindon, Wiltshire. The guide price for this home was placed at £125,000. The home has two bedrooms and was in need of a complete refurbishment which meant the property had a lot of potential. The property had an open house on a Friday and was sold by the Monday in excess of the guide price. The home received 15 viewings and also had 5 people bidding for it.

Pittsfield

 

This home is located in Cricklade on the outskirts of Swindon and was priced at £295,000. 

The home has three bedrooms, two bathrooms and was advertised as a perfect first-time purchase or family home. The garden is low maintenance, includes a single garage and driveway parking for two cars. The home was valued on Friday, instructed on Saturday and then was sold (STC) for the full asking price on Sunday. 

 

Portmore Close

 

This home is located in Swindon, Wiltshire and was put on the market for £212,000. The stunning property included two bedrooms, a garage and driveway situated in a cul de sac in a popular area. The home was sold (STC) for the full asking price to the second viewer who viewed the property within 36 hours of it being put onto the market. The property was subsequently down valued to £200,000 by the surveyor but Castles managed to not only keep the sale together but more importantly managed to retain the price of £212,000 for the vendor. 

Other Advantages Include

Estate agents are experts in their industry and fully understand how to solve problems if need be. They will also be able to give you the most accurate marketing price which will allow you to sell your home a lot quicker. As well as this, they will also know where who the best potential buyers will be and how to target them directly.Estate agents also understand that selling your home can be an emotional experience which is why they can help take this emotional side of selling your home away, which will be a lot different if you sold your home privately. 

 

As estate agents have a lot of experience in the field they will also have a lot of knowledge on the local area. This means they will know local home prices and even little things like schools in the area, job opportunities and more. They also organise and conduct the viewings and help with their negotiating skills. 

Castles Estate Agents 

Castles Estate Agents can promise you industry expertise as well as local knowledge of the market and the area. We will use our knowledge to help our clients get the best deal for their home. We will help you through the process from start to finish leaving you stress free and relaxed and will also help you through the emotional aspect of selling your home. We are able to guide you through any problems and help you get the best exposure for your property across the UK market. If you would like more information on selling your property or would like a free valuation on your home please visit our website today or call us on 01793 611 677






17Jul

Everything You Need To Know About The Tenant Fees Act 2019

You have just found the perfect property for you and now you have to pay the deposit, one month's rent and ‘referencing fees before you are given the keys. Not anymore, on Saturday, June 1st 2019 the law surrounding what tenants can be charged for when starting a tenancy changed. The Tenant Fees Act will apply to all tenancies from now on meaning that the landlord and the letting agents will be banned from charging any tenant fees such as inventory checks, referencing, credit checks and more. As well as all of this tenancy deposits have been capped to five weeks. All of these changes could save tenants hundreds of pounds. 

 

What Were The Fees For? 

Letting Fees usually cover a range of different services, these generally include arranging a guarantor form, credit checks, reference checks, inventory and having the house cleaned before moving in. The fees also include drawing up the official contract between the landlord and tenant. One of the key arguments to the tenant fees debate was that the fees were paid by the tenant but they are not actually for the tenant. After two years of debate, it was agreed that the fees would be abolished. 

Which Fees Are Now Banned? 

For tenants, the law is very helpful and will save them a lot of money. Now the tenant only will have to pay the monthly rent and a protected deposit to put down home and pay absolutely nothing to take it off the market. Whilst you may be thinking, “ Can’t the landlord just put up the first month's rent to cover the costs?” The law ensures that this is not possible. However, they are able to raise the rent for the duration of the tenancy to cover any costs.

 

Put simply, any fee that is in the tenancy agreement will be void. An example of banned fees includes; charging for a guarantor form, credit checks, inventories, cleaning services, references, administration charges and gardening services.

What Type Of Tenancy Does The Act Apply To? 

  • Student Accommodation 

  • Assured Shorthold Tenancies

  • Licenses

What Might I Have To Pay? 

For properties in England, The Tenant Fee Act 2019 means that in addition to rent letting agents can only charge tenants for the following payments: 

 

  • Holding deposits

  • Deposits 

  • Payments to change the tenancy

  • Payment for early tenancy termination 

  • Communication services 

  • Interest payments for late payments of rent

  • Reasonable costs for replacement of lost key

  • Contractual Damages

 

The act also states that estate agents and landlords do not have to return any money they have charged a tenant before June 1st 2019. 

Restrictions On Holding Deposits & Deposits

The holding deposit is taken before the tenancy is granted, whilst the pre-contract checks are made ie: references. This holding deposit will be limited to one week’s rent maximum and this must be refunded where a tenant later enters into a tenancy agreement. The deposit must also be returned if the tenant does not go ahead with the tenancy if the tenant is not at fault.

 

In regard to restrictions on deposits, for annual rent below £50,000, this will be limited to five weeks rent and for annual rent above £50,000, the deposit will be limited to six weeks rent. 

Breaching The Act 

If a free is charged wrongly, this can be recovered for a tenant via the County Court System. The first offence can carry a £5,000 penalty and the second offence if within five years can carry a £30,000 penalty.  

Castles Estate Agents

 

The Castles Estate Agent’s team are here to help. We are here to advise you on the action you need to take to comply with the Tenant Fees Act 2019. If you are thinking about selling or renting your property or if you are looking to buy or rent a property and would like to find out how Castles Estate Agents can assist you please contact us today on 01793611677 for more information. 



17Jul

Getting Your House Ready To Sell

The idea of selling your home can seem daunting, luckily, before you put your home on the market there are some simple steps you can take to make sure you increase your chances of getting the offer you deserve. From the initial research to the viewing process, Castles Estate Agents have created a guide for you to get your home ready to put on the market. 

Do Your Homework

Before you start anything it is important to brush up on your local housing market knowledge. You should take a look at the prices that houses in your area are selling for and figure out what an appropriate price for your home would be. You should pay special attention to the different homes location, features and square footage and think about how they compare to your home. Castles Estate Agents will be on hand to help you with this research and will also guide you towards a price which is perfect for your home, you can also request a free valuation to have an expert work this out for you. 

 

Perfect Presentation

First impressions count, which is why it is important to show off all of your home's assets to a potential buyer. Most people who are looking to buy a home will search online, which is why it is imperative to include professional quality photos on your online listing. If your photos do not look good online unfortunately your property could be overlooked by potential buyers. At Castles, we take pride in the photos we take and are confident that we will emphasise the positives of your home, photos of your home. However, if you wanted to explore the opportunity of employing the services of a professional photographer, Castles Estate Agents would be only too happy to point you in the right direction.

 

From The Outside In 

A recent study showed that more than a quarter of potential buyers would be put off a home altogether by an overgrown garden, which means it is important to spend some time on yours before any potential viewings. Add flowers, some outdoor seating or anything you think will give your garden that wow factor. 

 

Declutter & Clean

Decluttering and organising your space could go a long way with potential buyers. When your home is clutter free, potential buyers can solely focus on the home instead of any personal belongings or clutter surrounding the area.

 

After you have decluttered and before listing your home, give your home a deep clean, this means every room of the house in detail. When people come to visit your home they will want to envision themselves there which means you should show your home in the best possible way that you can. 

 

Leave Your Usual Parking Space Free 

If you have an allocated parking space at your home, you could consider leaving it free for the potential buyers. It’s convenient for them, especially if they are not familiar with the area and it offers them an experience of what it would be like for them to live at your home. 

The idea of selling your home can seem daunting, luckily, before you put your home on the market there are some simple steps you can take to make sure you increase your chances of getting an offer you deserve. From the initial research to the viewing process, Castles Estate Agents have created a guide for you to get your home ready to put on the market. 

Thinking About Looking For Your Next Home

In the event that your home is sold quickly, it may be time for you to start looking for your new home too. If you want to buy a new home you need to be prepared to move quickly to avoid missing out altogether. Ensure you have researched areas that you would like to live in, look up information such as schooling, crime levels and local facilities to find an area that suits you. Castles Estate Agents have provided you with a Buying Tips guide to help you choose the perfect home for you. 

 

Castles Estate Agents 


Castles are one of Swindon’s top selling agents and have been for many years. Castles Estate Agents have been chosen by the Relocation Agent Network & The Guild Of Property Professionals as the best estate agent in Swindon to represent their networks. If you would like more information on how to get your home ready to be put on the market, Castles Estate Agents have created a sellers checklist for your convenience and to save you time. If you would like to list your property today, contact Castles Estate Agents on 01793 611677 for more information.

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