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Latest Property News

At Check 4 Houses we aim to keep you up to date with all the latest news in the property industry, as well as our local area of Hampshire & Surrey.

Managing stress when buying and selling your home

Managing stress when buying and selling your home

3 November 2014

This Wednesday 5th November is National Stress Awareness Day and we all know that moving home is one of the most stressful things you can do. With high costs, uncertainty, a lack of control and significant emotional involvement, buying and selling a property can be one of the best things you ever did, but getting there can feel like an endless journey.

Here are our top tips to make sure your next move is as stress free as possible:

  1. Set realistic expectations - for both yourself and the process. Pinning your hopes on a beautiful house that you just can't afford, or being in a new home for Christmas with just 4 weeks to go are likely to leave you disappointed. Take the time to work out what a realistic budget is for your next home and the kind of timescale you hope to move in.
  2. Choose the right estate agent - make sure you get valuations from at least 3 estate agents and don't always go with the one that offers you the highest price for your home - they might not be able to deliver it. Always check the small print to ensure you are not being tied into a long contract with an underperforming agent. Above all, find someone that you feel comfortable with working with during what can be a stressful time.
  3. Be flexible and open minded. Just because you have a dream house in mind and a south facing garden is an absolute must, don't always discard other properties that agents might suggest. Sometimes something that doesn't look ideal on paper can actually turn out to be exactly what you were looking for. The same applies when it comes to price - you may have a particular figure in your head for what you think your property is worth, but if you aren't getting the viewings or the offers in then you may need to reconsider.
  4. Choose the right solicitor - the right solicitor can make or break a sale so talk to family and friends for recommendations. Don't always choose the cheapest solicitor - choose one that you feel confident can actually get the job done, as smoothly as possible.
  5. Stay positive! - Buying and selling houses may be a stressful process but with the right preparation and partners you can make it as stress free as possible. Once you are settled in your new home it will all have been worth it.

We would be delighted to help you sell your property and pride ourselves on providing a smooth, stress free service - that also saves you thousands in agency fees. Our customers clearly agree as Mr Quick from Fleet said: "Fantastic service. We had a buyer within a matter of a week - a smooth transaction throughout. Thank you for making it hassle free."

We would be delighted to give you a free, no obligation valuation and can sell your property from as little as £599 or 0.5%+VAT so give us a call on 01252 819725.

Image: © Oliver Le Moal - Fotolia.com

South East of England takes the property 'boom-town' crown

South East of England takes the property 'boom-town' crown

27 October 2014

The South East of England is now the strongest performing region in the country over the last 12 months, with new seller asking prices up 10% on a year ago, higher than London's current annual rate of 9.6%.

This new report by Rightmove and Oxford Economics suggests that buyers are seeking better affordability and value 'out of London town', and upwards price pressure is being fuelled by a shortage of home owners willing to sell. The analysis predicts that this trend will continue with the South East seeing the highest increase in property values in the next five years, driven by a continuation of this imbalance between supply and demand. While the national average is a 30% uplift, the South East is forecast to be up by 37%, ahead of London at 33%.

Miles Shipside, Rightmove director and housing market analyst comments: "The South East has kick-started its journey on the five-year road to the highest growth in values by overtaking London in this month's index. Those looking for the best price appreciation in the country should seriously consider the South East…. This is not an opinion-based prediction but the most comprehensive data-driven forecast ever produced, and it shows gains of over 40% in those areas. They are either due a price over-spill from neighbouring areas, have good transport links with London, or both."

So now may be the best time to sell your home in the South East!

At Check 4 Houses we sell a wide variety of houses, flats, apartments and bungalows across the South East including towns and cities with excellent transport links with London such as Fleet, Farnborough and Basingstoke. With all the knowledge of a local high street agent, but at the cost of an online agent we can sell your property from as little as £599 or 0.5%+VAT, saving you thousands. Please give us a call on 01252 819725 and we would be delighted to come and give you a free, no obligation valuation.

Image: © kosoff - Fotolia.com

The first ever Fleet Fashion Week starts on 27th October

The first ever Fleet Fashion Week starts on 27th October

20 October 2014

Fleet Fashion Week takes place from 27th October - 1st November and features a host of events to showcase the amazing shopping that we have locally in Fleet. The town's fashion, hair and beauty business are joining together to include a range of activities including free pampering sessions, family sewing sessions, an 'in store fashion fix' and a 10% discount throughout Fleet Fashion Week across participating stores.

The highlight of the week will be the actual Fleet Fashion Show which takes place at the Harlington on Wednesday 29th October. This exclusive event will showcase the very best of this season's trends to ensure your Autumn Winter wardrobe is bang up to date.

The Wardrobe Workout High Tea takes place at the delightful Lismoyne Hotel on Friday 31st October and offers guests the chance to munch their way through a scrumptious traditional afternoon tea including some of their yummy cakes whilst finding out how you can transform your existing wardrobe into new looks and revamp your old clothes to ensure you are on trend for the Autumn Winter season.

Children are also being encouraged to get creative and enter the free Young Designer competition with prizes available for children in Year 3 through to students in Year 11. For the older students the prize includes the opportunity to work with a seamstress to create the outfit they have designed and have it displayed in the town - giving them the chance to see what it feels like to be a real designer.

More information on all the events and tickets can be found at www.fleetfashionweek.co.uk

Fleet is a thriving community and we are sure the event will be a big success, following on from the first ever Fleet Food Festival held earlier this year.

If you are looking to relocate to Fleet or surrounding areas then why not check out our properties currently for sale in Fleet, as well as some comments from happy customers in Fleet who have sold their property through Check 4 Houses.

Wrap up your property for winter

Wrap up your property for winter

13 October 2014

As the weather turns cold and wet after our unseasonably warm and dry September, now is a good time to start preparing your home for winter.

Here are some top tips to ensure you and your property are ready for whatever the weather throws at us this year:

  1. Clear out the gutters - Before the weather gets too bad, now is a good time to make sure all gutters and drains are clear of obstructions. Falling leaves can quickly form an obstruction and damage can occur. A simple check and sweep can ensure rainwater can drain away freely.
  2. Check windows and doors - with colder weather arriving you'll be turning your heating on, but check windows and doors for draughts to ensure any heat you're putting in is not escaping out. Don't forget adequate ventilation to avoid any build-up of moisture and dampness, particularly in key areas such as bathrooms.
  3. Give your home a warm blanket. - If you haven't already, consider improving your loft and cavity wall insulation to keep heat in. Although the Insulate Hampshire free offer has now closed, Action Surrey can refer home owners and private tenants to their Network of Installers for a free no obligation survey and there are national schemes running through suppliers such as British Gas.
  4. Clear out the clutter! - Christmas is fast approaching and the festive season often brings with it an influx of visitors and gifts. Get your home ready by clearing out what you don't need now, or storing away summer items until next year to make space.
  5. Be prepared - for rain, wind or snow. Ensure you have stock of salt, shovels and candles or torches if you are in an exposed area for snow. Check roof tiles all look well attached and put away any items in the garden that may get blown around. If you are in a flood risk area, consider moving higher risk items upstairs now, to avoid any problems nearer the time.

Winter can also be a great time to wrap up warm, sit by the fire and enjoy a hearty winter stew. Taking a few steps to prepare your home can ensure you are able to make the most of it.

If you think you'd actually rather be spending this Winter in a different home entirely then why not give us a call on 01252 819725. We would be delighted to give you a free, no obligation valuation and can sell your property from as little as £599 or 0.5%+VAT.

Housing Development in Hart: Have your say

6 October 2014

Housing Development in Hart: Have your say

Hart District Council is preparing a new local plan, and is inviting views on where new homes should be built. Around 4,000 new homes are required between now and 2032.

The Housing Development Options Paper proposes five options for growth and they want to know which one you prefer, or whether there are any other options which they should consider.

Option 1 - called 'Settlement Focus' involves concentrating new housing development within the existing boundaries of the main settlements and larger villages within Hart and could deliver up to 875 homes

Option 2 - 'Dispersal Strategy' spreads the growth around the edges of the main towns and villages within Hart and could deliver as many as 4,000 homes

Option 3 - 'Focused Growth (Strategic Urban Extensions)' focusses the growth on the edges of one or two of the existing towns in Hart like Fleet and Hook. This could deliver around 3,500 homes

Option 4 - 'Focused Growth (New Settlement)' is the creation a completely new town or village. This could deliver 4,000 or more homes but could take up to 10 years before any homes are built so would need to be combined with another option.

Option 5 - Special Protection Area Avoidance Strategy - This pushes the growth away from the environmentally sensitive Special Protection Area covering the north and east of our district down towards Hook, Odiham, North and South Warnborough and Long Sutton and could deliver 1,500 homes

Only option 2 delivers the entire 4,000 homes required on its own. The other options would need to be combined to meet the target.

The consultation documents are available at www.hart.gov.uk/local-plan and you can use the online survey on the consultations page www.hart.gov.uk/consultations to give your feedback on the options. You can also email your feedback to planningpolicy@hart.gov.uk.

The consultation closes at 5pm on 10th October 2014 so act quickly if you want to have your say

Fleet top place to raise your family

29 September 2014

Fleet Pond in Fleet, Hampshire

After the exciting news earlier this month that William & Kate are expecting another baby and moving to Norfolk, leading Newspaper The Telegraph looked at the top 20 places to raise a family - and Fleet was lucky to be ranked amongst them!

From schools and parks, to affordability of housing and community activities, Cheltenham came out on top, closely followed by North Norfolk, Stamford in Leicestershire and Great Missenden in Buckinghamshire. Coming in at number 16, Fleet was commended for its 'warm and semi-rural feel' and the excellent schools and surrounding woodland were highlighted.

Based in Fleet ourselves, we know our town all too well and thought we would add some of our personal highlights:

Paul, 37, says "I grew up in Fleet and enjoyed playing in Oakley Park and Basingbourne Park and Woods. A keen sportsman, I made great use of the sports centre including swimming and football. The new Hart Leisure Centre will be a fantastic asset to the town once it is completed and open next year."

Lorna, 23, says "I also grew up in Fleet and was lucky to go to some great schools. With 5 outstanding Ofsted rated schools in our area and the rest majority rated Good, parents in Fleet can certainly feel confident about their children's education."

Along with our fabulous green spaces like Fleet Pond and Edenbrook Country Park there's also some excellent events coming up in Fleet soon including the first ever Fleet Fashion Week from 27th October - 1st November, and the ever popular Christmas Festival - complete with its own rink for 2014. See you there!

Read the full article and list of top 20 places to raise a family please visit

Hints and Tips for selling your home - as seen in Farnborough and Fleet Connection magazines

24 September 2014

Here are our hints and tips on how to get your house ready for sale to maximise its value and ensure a speedy sale.

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UK inflation rate down to 1.5% as food and petrol costs fall

16 September 2014

In some good news for home owners, inflation has fallen as the price of petrol, food and non-alcoholic drinks has declined due to increasing supermarket price cutting and better conditions for farming.

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