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01May

One thing we can all agree on is that we all feel a bit uncertain. The property market may be on hold, yet there is one thing we can all be certain about - now is the perfect time to lay the groundwork for moving home later this year.

Here at Castles Estate Agents, we are experts on property in Swindon. So, to help you put your mind at rest, we've looked deeper into the effects the coronavirus will bring to movers, to help you get ahead of the game. To find out more about our properties, or the valuations we can provide on your current property, please get in touch with a member of the team today on 01793 611677.

How Will The Property Marketing Be Affected During 2020?

At the start of the year, following December's general election, we saw an increase in sales by more than 12%. Though now the market is experiencing a significant slowdown, with UK residents told to stay at home and put any movers on hold.

So, of course, no matter whether you're buying or selling, you'll be wondering how this slow down will affect the property market. Experts have said that this could result in house sales plunging by as much as 60% in the second quarter of the year, compared to the same period in 2019.

What Does This Do To Housing Prices?

One of the most reliable barometers of housing prices is the Land Registry's UK House Price Index.

The latest data goes up to February 2020. The index shows that property prices have fallen by 0.6% compared to the previous month, but have grown by 1.1% year-on-year to reach an average of £230,332.

Of course, this timeframe isn't wholly useful in terms of predicting how the Coronavirus will impact housing prices, but with that in mind, we're unlikely to be completely sure of the effect the virus will have on prices for at least a couple of months.

Will The Coronavirus Affect Housing Prices?

As mentioned above, it is too early to be able to give an exact amount that the outbreak will have on the property market.

In the short term, it's very likely that the house price growth will stagnate as there will be fewer transactions. Though, we were shown during Brexit that the UK property market is very robust, so it is very unlikely that housing prices will completely crash over the next couple of months.

It has been forecast that UK prices could fall by 3% this year, then come back a further 5% in 2021.

What if You Are Currently in The Process of Moving?

Remember, everyone is feeling uncertain and those who are in the process of moving are feeling this even more so, as they are faced with the uncertainty as to whether their deal will go through.

The government has urged people who have yet to exchanged contracts to put their plans on hold. Though they do understand that some agreements may simply be too far down the line to pause.

Following government guidelines, people should only continue their purchases now if they're moving into a vacant property. If the property is currently occupied, all parties should do all they can to arrange alternative moving dates to a time where lockdown measures are relaxed.

There is however an exemption for critical moves in the event where a new date can't be arranged. In these instances, social distancing rules should be observed.

How Will Coronavirus Affect Your Mortgage?

You may be relieved to hear; we have good news. Now is an excellent time to get a mortgage as, now, mortgage rates are incredibly low. We have access to, in our opinion the best mortgage advisors in Swindon to give you up to date mortgage advice.

How Are Lenders Helping Homeowners?

The government has announced that any homeowners which are affected by the Coronavirus will be able to benefit from mortgage repayment holidays of up to three months.

Borrowers who have found themselves worrying about financial hardship have been advised to contact their lender directly to discuss their options, which will likely include temporary deferring interest payments, extending the term of the mortgage or moving to an interest-only basis for a short period.

Of course, we can't influence how the housing market is affected due to the Coronavirus, nor can we influence the property journey you choose. As estate agents, we are here to simply give you the advice you need and help you get your property sold as quickly and efficiently as we can and government advice allows.

Here at Castles, we have proudly supported thousands of people selling their properties and can offer our expert advice and market experience to help you continue your journey on the property ladder.

If you are considering selling or buying property, be sure to give us a call on 01793 611677 and speak to one of our qualified, experienced estate agents about selling your home in Swindon. We'll be more than happy to give you further advice.

 

In the meantime, stay safe, stay at home and thank you to all the key workers and NHS for all they do.

16Mar

It is completely normal to be cautious when you are purchasing your first home. After all, buying a home is a big investment and you will want to make sure you’re making the best possible choice for you. How you will know when you have found ‘The One’ varies between people. Some people have a gut instinct and others may need more convincing. Castles Estate Agents have listed a few of the ways you will be able to tell if a house is ‘The One’ for you. If you would like more information on buying a property in Swindon, please get in touch with us today on 01793 611677

Does The Home Meet Your Basic Criteria? 

We all have a list of basic requirements we want our new home to meet. Whether that’s a number of bedrooms, a garden, a garage, office space or in close proximity to different modes of transports such as the bus or train station. If the home doesn’t tick all of your non-negotiable boxes, then it isn’t the home for you.

The Price

There is no denying that buying a home can be expensive, which is why it is important to make sure any houses you visit are within your budget to avoid any disappointment

You’re Already Planning To Go Back 

If you have already got back in the car, chatted to your spouse and have immediately planned your next visit to the property before you have even left the drive, the house could be ‘The One’. You want to see it at different times of the day or even want to take a family member or friend with you next time just to show it off. Ask your estate agent to send over any seller disclosures to make sure the house is in tip-top condition. You may want to start discussing offers too because this house could be the one you have been searching for.

You Begin To Imagine Furniture Arrangements

Are you already imagining which wall your bed will be placed against, or where the perfect spot for your Christmas Tree will be around Christmas time, then you may already be hooked to the house?

You Don’t Want To Leave

How many times can you convince your estate agent to show you a house before you make an offer? If you simply can’t stay away from your house it may be time to make it your own. Driving by, lingering for a long time during viewing and appearing at every open house can all be signs that you’re ready to seal the deal. 

Choosing The Right Estate Agent



Choosing an estate agent is an important choice as they can help you find the home of your dreams. Take your time and make sure you know exactly what services are being offered. But you may be asking yourself what should you expect from an estate agent? 

Frequent Communication 

When you set out to purchase a home, you should expect frequent communication. A top estate agent should acknowledge any forms of communications within a few hours or less. Communication is extremely important especially, in such a competitive market. They should be letting you know when new listings are available, and let you know if you had any interest in a home that you're selling. 

 

Professionalism

When you’re buying a home professionalism should be expected. When buying a home you should expect that if your estate agent says they will meet you at a property at 11 am for example that they are there at 11 am or before. Being late for an appointment shows a lack of professionalism

Knowledge Of The Local Housing Market

The housing market can change drastically from one town to another. It is important that you expect your estate agent to have knowledge of the local housing market that you’re looking to buy a home in. 

 

Proven Track Record & Success

 

When buying a home, you should expect that your real estate agent has a proven track record and a sales history. One big mistake that buyers make when choosing an estate agent is not asking about their sales success. A real estate agent who hasn’t sold a single home or only a couple is not going to have the same level of experience and knowledge as an agent who has been in the market for a long time. 

 

Make sure that when you choose an estate agent they have a proven track record and you know what their sales history is. When you’re interviewing prospective estate agents, make sure to ask to see reviews or testimonials from previous clients. 

Castles Estate Agents

Castles Estate Agents are a leading estate agent in Swindon who can help you with every aspect of your housing journey and will ultimately help you find ‘The One’. For help and advice on selling or renting a property in Swindon check out our website or call us today on 01793 611 677.



16Mar

Spring is well known in the industry to be one of the best times to sell a home. Starting on March 20th going right through to June 20th the housing market is in full swing. Every aspect of the season can work to a seller’s favour, with the sun shining and the flowers in bloom. This not only allows your home to look the best it can be but also encourages buyers to get out and start searching for their brand-new home. If you are interested in selling or buying a property in Swindon this spring, call Castles Estate Agents today on 01793 611677.

 

Convenient To Buyers

 When you are looking to buy a home most people will say that location is one of the most important things to think about, but timing is just as important. Most buyers want to be settled into a new home before the new school year with the summer months to settle in. Even people without children find this to be the best time to move home. 

Longer Days 

In March our clocks spring forwards which means we get longer days,  more sunlight and more time to search for a home. Buyers usually use the winter months to do their research and prepare themselves for the warmer months. You have a whole pool of buyers than available who have done their research and are ready to purchase a new home.

Curb Appeal

You have to admit, everything looks better in the sunshine, so why not make the most of it. Your garden or patio will look very inviting right now compared to other times of the year. Sellers should take advantage of this free curb appeal in the Springtime. 

Competition

More buyers mean more competition from other buyers, which means there are more chances of bidding wars and ultimately a higher sale price for your home. Since prices are higher there tend to be more closed sales during this period.

Moving On

Even though you’re probably focused on selling your home, you may also be thinking about moving into a new home. All of the reasons mentioned above do translate to your own experience as a buyer too. 

Castles Estate Agents

For advice on selling your home this Spring, speak to our expert advisors at Castles Estate Agents in Swindon. We can guide you through the entire process. We have years of experience in helping people with buying and selling their homes. We have the knowledge and experience to help you make your selling or buying process as smooth as possible. Contact us today for more information on 01793 611677.

 

25Feb

If you are selling your home the first thing you will need to know is how much your current property is worth. This is the key to working out your affordability and calculating your moving budget. Having a property valuation is a vital step when it comes to selling your home. If you don’t know the value of your property, you could market your property too low which means you will be losing out on money or too high which may leave your home on the market longer than you first thought. 

 

If you are unsure about what is involved in property valuation or how to prepare for one, Castles Estate Agents, have put together some information which will help you learn everything you need to know about property valuation. If you would like a valuation on your property in Swindon or would like more advice on valuations as a whole please get in touch with a member of the team today on 01793 611677

 

So, let’s start with the basics…

 

What Is A Property Valuation? 

A property valuation is when you get a guide of how much your home is worth from an estate agent or an independent valuer. The valuation will depend on a range of different factors including location, size, condition etc. Your estate agent should be able to provide evidence of how they have come to their valuation and should give you the advice you need to decide the best way to maximise the value of your home and the initial asking price to enter the market.

 

A valuation should be a priority when you are selling your home and there are two main reasons for this; firstly you will learn what price your current home is worth and secondly, this figure will help you work out the budget for your next home. 

The Asking Price

Property valuations help you to decide on the right asking price based on the current value on your home, in order to maximise the price of your home. The estate agent should clearly state the difference between the asking price and what they expect to achieve for your home, this allows you to budget correctly.

Budget

Once you have established your asking price for your property, you are then able to work out what you will be able to afford for when you move. 

What Happens During A Property Valuation? 

Firstly, you will meet the estate agent at the property and they will provide you with the recent selling prices of the properties in your local area as well as the current prices of properties already on the market. This helps to inform the decision and will give them an estimation straight away. After the initial meeting, the valuation will start and will likely last around an hour. The estate agent will assess each part of your property, so it could take a little bit longer depending on the size of the property. On the other hand, they may have visited your property before and simply wish to update their records. 

 

Your homes worth is determined based on many factors such as the properties age, location, size, layout and special features. At the end of the valuation, you should fully understand the recommended market price from each agent and be able to use this information to choose what price to advertise your property. You may now be asking yourself, “How Can I Make My Home’s Worth Greater?” If you are then the answer is simple, Preparation. 

What Shall I Do To Prepare For My Property Valuation? 

Being prepared before your valuation will ensure you will get the most out of your appointment. There are three simple things to do which can allow your valuation to run as smoothly as possible. 

Paperwork 

It is extremely important to have any paperwork to hand whilst you’re having your valuation. This paperwork on the property will help get the estate agent or valuer up to speed. This paperwork will include building plans, rate information, leasehold and any maintenance charges you may have. 

Don’t Be Afraid To Ask 

It is important that you think about any questions you may want to ask the estate agents before they arrive. Having these questions prepared will help you establish any key information you need or would like to find out from the valuation. You never know these questions may spark even more queries. 

Spring Cleaning 

Your home doesn’t need to be perfect as estate agents will look past the day to day and focus on what’s important but it can help just to have a little spruce up as this will help to highlight your properties key features. Having a spring clean & a declutter will help to maximise the space in your home too and will help the estate agent see the key selling points of the home. 

Castles Estate Agents 

Castles Estate Agents offer free property valuations on our website today. You can get a comprehensive market appraisal with a first-class estate agent who is dedicated to helping you get the best price for your property. For more information on our property valuations, please contact us today on 01793 611 677




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