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What Does A Home Report Consist Of?

  • A Single Survey
  • An Energy Report
  • A Property Questionnaire

To help you understand what each of these entails, here’s a breakdown for you:

The Single Survey
This is designed to assess the condition of the home in question, providing information on the roof, walls, plumbing, fittings, and more. A valuation is also included, alongside an accessibility audit for those with specific needs.

The Energy Report

Knowing a property’s energy efficiency rating is crucial for buyers when looking to buy a home. The higher the rating, the more energy efficient a home is. This meaning lower energy costs which is often a big incentive when purchasing a new home.

The Property Questionnaire

This contains additional useful information on the property, including parking arrangements, alterations, whether there are extra costs, and more. This gives buyers a greater insight into the home, helping them to make a more informed decision on a home.

Despite many being reluctant to make use of home reports initially, buyers eventually embraced when they saw the many benefits of them. Although a mortgage valuation isn’t required under the home report, it is a prerequisite for buyers to get a mortgage on a property.

Mortgage Valuations

Though not compulsory, mortgage valuations are offered by professionals who specialise in home report preparation. Reputable companies recognise the importance of mortgage valuations, which are prepared with the buyer and seller’s best interests. Without a mortgage valuation, sellers need to commission a separate home report, which costs additional time and money, but can cost a sale too.

What Should Sellers Consider When Selecting a Surveyor to Prepare a Home Report?

  • Local Knowledge: The surveyor of choice will be knowledgeable and experienced.
  • Pricing: You get what you pay for. Obtaining a cheap report is risky, and can crucially effect the sale of your home. Well-trained professionals come at a premium, but are well worth it considering the importance of your venture.
  • Independence: Surveyors must remain independent of sellers and buyers, to avoid influence/bias.
  • Reliability: Mainstream firms are renowned for their reliability, particularly through their strong relationships with surveyors and solicitors.
  • Quality: Fully qualified surveyors are equipped to provide comprehensive reports. They are trusted by all parties involved, which adds value to the selling process.

How Much Does It Cost?

Home reports generally cost between £500 and £700, and sellers are entitled to charge buyers a small sum for the report. Though sellers can arrange for buyers to cover the cost of a survey upon completion, there is no legal requirement to do so.

Who Receives the Home Report?

A home report must be sent within nine days of request. Anyone who is interested in buying a home must receive a copy, however if a seller determines the buyer isn’t serious or can’t afford the property, they may decide not to send a report. If you put a property up for sale, you must provide a home report for potential buyers, though there are exemptions.

If you are a seller looking to obtain a home report, there are several reputable providers who you can go to to have one created.

Problems?

When a home report highlights problems, sellers can fix the issues under their own volition, but aren’t required to do anything. Sellers must however understand how defects can affect the price they get for their property. This is advantageous for buyers, who prior to home reports were exploited through insufficient honest information being available. Sellers can ask their surveyors for advice regarding whether it’s worth correcting problems at hand.

I hope you have found this article informative, and have a better understanding of how home reports benefit buyers and sellers. If you have any questions or would like to continue the conversation, please comment below or connect with us here.

The post Beginner’s Guide To a Home Report appeared first on Moving Home Made Easy.

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1. Start Planning as Early as Possible

Summer is typically the busiest season for movers, with many families taking advantage of the school holidays to relocate before the start of the school year. If you have your mind set on moving during the summer, then we highly recommend that you begin your preparation as far in advance as possible.

Decide on a move date as soon as you can, as it will be very difficult to organise anything else until you know exactly when you’ll be moving. Once you’ve chosen your date, apply for quotes from different removal companies; the earlier you begin, the better the chance of being able to secure your desired date. Having your date confirmed with a removal company will also remove a lot of the stress, letting you focus on other things.

2. Make child arrangements

Since it’s the middle of the Summer, school will be finished meaning that your kids will likely be hanging around the house.

We recommend organising for a friend or family member to watch them if possible, as seeing everything being taken away could unsettle them, and they may hinder the work of the removal men. If you can’t organise for somebody else to look after them, then you may want to keep them in a dedicated room for as much of the process as possible and ask the removal men to work on that room last.

3. Consider what can and cannot be transported

Transporting your belongings in a van in hot weather is less than ideal, so you may want to think about different ways of transporting some of your goods. If you intend to take fridge or freezer items with you, you will definitely need to invest in a cooler bag or box (if you don’t already have one) to keep them cool during transit.

Also note that items such as paints and flammables are not permitted to be carried in the removal van so be sure to exclude these from carriage.

4. Keep cool

Okay, we understand that this is Britain, so there’s a good chance that it might not be roasting, but it’s important to be prepared regardless. Staying hydrated is very important, especially since you will likely be fairly stressed, so remember to have water on hand at all times.

It is probably also a good idea to bring portable fans with you, as the journey might get quite stuffy.

If you have any pets, you should think about them too. You don’t want them overheating during the moving process, so make sure they have enough fresh air and water if they are being transported in a vehicle.

5. Sort out your bills

There’s nothing worse than having no air conditioning in the middle of Summer! Make sure you inform your utility provider of your move, and get gas and electricity sorted for your new home before you move in.

6. Relax

Remember, Summer should be a time to chill out, so try your best to forget about the move and take the opportunity to relax and enjoy spending time outside in the sun

Hopefully you’ve found this article useful! If you want any more advice regarding your move, or would like to get in touch about our 5-star home moving services, get in contact with us or apply for a quote here.

The post 6 Things You Need To Know When Moving Over Summer appeared first on Moving Home Made Easy.

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Failing to secure your home can leave it at risk to burglars while you’re away enjoying your holiday. With the Summer almost here, we thought it would be useful to make a blog post about the best precautions to take to protect your home during your time away.

Ask a neighbour

A good way to keep your home safe while your away is to have a neighbour, friend or nearby family member keep an eye on your property.

You may also want to ask them to pop in every so often to appear as though the house isn’t unoccupied and water any plants you have. This won’t just keep them healthy until you return but will also prevent them appearing wilted which could be an indication of an absent owner.

Stay off social media

It’s best to hold off posting about your holiday until after you have returned. Yes, we’re sure your friends will love the pictures of you on the beach, but you never know who may be looking through your Facebook or Instagram feed to identify your home as a target.

Staying off social media for a while will probably also do you good; it will let you take full advantage of your time away and properly recharge.

Use smart security technology

Home devices such as a smart security camera can be set up in your home and have features such as infrared recording, face recognition, two-way communication (meaning you could potentially speak to a burglar) and you can control all of this through your smartphone.

It may also be a good idea to invest in smart lighting, as you can have the lights in your house turned on and off at different times throughout the day to appear as though you are home.

Stop all deliveries

If you have things such as newspapers or milk delivered on a regular basis, it would be a good idea to have all deliveries temporarily stopped until you return.

A pile of items outside your front door is one of the biggest giveaways that a house is vacant.

Inform your alarm company

If you have a security system for your home, you should have a friend or family member setup with access and the keyholder information. This will mean that they will be notified if the alarm were to go off and would able to deactivate it if it were to go off accidently.

You should also test your alarm prior to departing to ensure that it is still working correctly.

Consider hiring a house of pet sitter

If you’re leaving your pet behind or don’t like the thought of leaving your home empty, you could hire someone to live in your house while you’re away. If you aren’t fortunate enough to have a relative or know a friend who’d be willing to do this for you, there are a number of house-sitting and pet-sitting websites which can put you in touch with someone reliable.

This method of keeping your home safe may not necessarily be the cheapest, but it is likely the most effective.

The post Your home is at risk over Summer! Here’s how to protect it appeared first on Moving Home Made Easy.

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When listing your house for sale, one of the main objectives is always to fetch the highest price you possibly can. After all, who would say no to some extra cash to perhaps put towards your new place?

One of the best ways to do this is to make improvements to your home, as presenting it in its best light will increase the chances of a potential buyer falling in love with the property, meaning they will be willing to pay more.

Here are some of the best ways to add value to your home before you list it for sale:

  • Convert the loft

This is probably the easiest way to add on an extra bedroom and bathroom, automatically boosting the value. According to mortgage lender GE Money, a loft conversion adds an average 12.5 per cent to the selling price.

Just remember to make sure that there is good access (i.e. a stair case) and it fits in with the rest of the house both on the interior and exterior. Also ensure that the roof is high enough to allow a fully grown person to stand up, as you don’t want to restrict the options of future owners.

  • Mirrors

Hanging up a few mirrors, especially opposite to windows, is a simple and cost-effective way to increase the natural lighting in your home. This will also make rooms appear bigger and more open.

  • Build an extension

Adding square footage is virtually guaranteed to boost the value of your home, whether it’s adding a kitchen or dining area with a single-storey extension, or a double-story extension to add on extra bedrooms. According to peer-to-peer lending company Zopa, adding an extension onto your house will earn you an average of 71% return on investment.

Even if you can’t afford to build an extension, purely getting planning permission will elevate the value of your property by removing a big element of doubt from a buyer’s mind, they will no longer have the worry of not being able to expand

  • Spruce up the garden

Having an appealing, well-kept, nicely arranged garden significantly increase the value of a property. Instead of having an empty expanse of grass, try and make the garden feel like a nice place for eating, entertaining or relaxing. Even a well-designed area of decking creates the sense of having a large usable living space.

Nonetheless, it is crucial to remove any dead plants, clear pathways and cut back any overgrown trees or bushes. It may also be a good idea to plant some flowers or fruits to give the garden some colour.

Hopefully you have found this post helpful!

Don’t forget to connect with us on Facebook if you have any questions.

The post The best ways to add value to your home before selling appeared first on Moving Home Made Easy.

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Moving home can be expensive, but that doesn’t mean it has to be. Here are our top tips for relocating without breaking the bank.

  • Declutter before packing

This is easily one of the most effective ways to save money when moving home. Cutting down on the amount that you bring with you will reduce your transport costs and storage costs if you plan on putting your belongings into storage. Additionally, selling items which you no longer need will give you some money to put towards your removal costs or new furniture after moving in.

If you’re struggling to decide what to throw out, you can read our blog post on our top tips for decluttering your home.

  • Move mid-week

It’s important to keep in mind that the day of your move can have a significant impact on the cost. Removal companies are almost always busier on Fridays and the weekend than during the week, and therefore will often charge more. Opting to move mid-week will allow you to negotiate a better price on your move.

  • Don’t pay for boxes

Removal companies will often offer free packing materials to their customers. However, if your chosen company does not (shame on them), or you simply need more, then you can obtain free boxes from a number of places such as your local supermarket. Supermarkets are generally happy to let you take some of their empty boxes, as they would otherwise just be recycled.

  • Order food to your new house

The first couple of days in your new home are always busy, and you’re unlikely to have much free time to go and do a big shop in a supermarket. This can mean that you just by food as and when you need it, or opt to order takeaways which will be significantly more expensive.

To avoid this, we recommend doing an online grocery shop the night before your move and ordering the items to your new home. This will mean that all your food will be there soon after moving in, saving you additional money.

Hopefully you’ve found this article helpful! If you are looking to move house, but don’t want the stress that typically comes with it, then contact with us here and we’ll get back to you with a free quote on our 5-Star moving service!

The post Top tips to cut costs when moving home appeared first on Moving Home Made Easy.

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Moving home is a stressful experience, and there are a number of major mistakes which are often made during the process. These mistakes can lead to a host of complications and make the move even more of a headache.

We’ve made a list of some of the most common mistakes to avoid when relocating.

  • Leaving everything too late

Procrastination affects us all, but you should try your best to beat the temptation keep putting it off and begin preparing for your move.

People often underestimate just quite how long it will take to pack up their belongings; don’t be one of them! The earlier you start, the better, but we typically recommend that you begin packing at least 2 to 3 weeks before move day; this should give you plenty of time to go through all of your old things and decide what you’re bringing with you and what is getting thrown out.

  • You try to DIY

You might think that hiring a van and asking your friends or family to help move your stuff will save you a ton of cash, but some things are worth paying for. DIY-ing some moves can make sense financially, but trying to move home without professional assistance will only lead to even more stress. Depending on the distance you’re moving and how much stuff you’re bringing with you, but you will almost certainly be better off hiring a professional moving company.

If you want to ensure a stress-free move, you can request a free quote here.

  • Not packing a survival kit

A survival kit, with regards to moving, is a small box containing all of the things which you will need on move day and your first night in your new home, and you will carry it on you at all times. This will include things such as your toothbrush, snacks, some teabags, toilet role and some dog treats (if necessary).

  • Not labelling the boxes

Forgetting to label or your boxes will only lead to problems when you get to your new home as you’ll have no idea where each box should go.

We recommend colour coordinating each box with a corresponding room or just sticking on a label with what is contained in that box and where it should go. This will save both you and the removal men a lot of time.

  • Forgetting to make plans for your children

As much as you love your kids, organising for a friend or family member to watch them on move day is probably best. Not only is seeing their things being carried away likely to cause them anxiety, but they might be a hindrance to the removal process. If you can’t have someone else look after them on the day of the move, try to keep them in one specific room for as much of the process as possible, and ask the removal men to work on that room last.

Hopefully this article helps you to avoid the most common home moving mistakes which we see. If you have any questions, feel free to get in contact with us here.

Also, if you want to ensure your move goes as smooth as possible, you can apply for a quote on our 5-Star moving service here.

The post Common mistakes to avoid when moving home appeared first on Moving Home Made Easy.

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Before moving

The more time you can give your child to come to terms with the idea of moving the better, so try to tell them as early as possible. The chances are they’ll feel mixed emotions; they will probably think about all the things that they will miss (i.e. friends, school, local football team etc), so make sure to let them know that they will be able to come back and visit. Also try to remind them of all the positives that will come from the move.

It may be a good idea to research your new area with your child so that they can get excited about all of the opportunities there. You should also consider visiting the new area a few times in order to familiarise them with their new home before the move itself.

During the process

The packing and de-cluttering process is a great opportunity for you involve your children in the move and give them a sense of control. Seeing their things being packed away may upset the children, so if possible, we recommend giving each child their owns box to fill with their favourite belongings.

If you have young children, try to pack their favourite toys as late as possible. This will help them to maintain a sense of comfort on the lead up to the move.

Make sure you welcome any questions from your children about the move, and walk them through what will happen on the day of the move.

Something which is often overlooked but would help you and your kids settle into your new home a lot quicker is a good homemade meal. So, in the couple of days before move day, make your children’s favourite meal and freeze it to enjoy on the first night in your new house.

Move day

Try your best to keep your children out of the house on move day, as seeing everything being taken away could unsettle them, and they may hinder the work of the removal men. If you can’t organise for somebody else to look after them, then you may want to keep them in a dedicated room for as much of the process as possible and ask the removal men to work on that room last.

Upon moving into your new home, try to setup your children’s rooms first as this will give them a place to relax. Also, try to position furniture similar to how it was in your previous home to help them feel at home quicker.

During the move, try your best to remain calm and composed as your children will look to you for guidance and will feed off of your emotions. You could also play your children’s favourite songs throughout the move to keep them calm.

Settling in

Aim to keep your routine the same as it was in your old home (i.e. have meals and go to bed at the same time). Doing so will help them to regain a sense of structure and routine and help them to settle in wicker.

Don’t be surprised if your children behave slightly differently after the move, this is completely normal. Just encourage them to meet new people and make new friends as soon as possible. One way to do this is by attending clubs and, obviously, school.

The post Tips for moving house with young children appeared first on Moving Home Made Easy.

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Moving home isn’t easy, nor is it something you’d want to do on a whim. However, sometimes it’s very, very necessary. Here are some of the biggest signs that it’s time to relocate.

You’re bursting at the seams

Are things getting a bit tight in your household? Perhaps you’re fed up of waiting in line for the bathroom every morning? If so, then it may be time to look for somewhere a bit bigger.

You plan on expanding your family

If you’re seriously considering adding to your family (be it kids or pets), moving to a bigger house makes sense. Aside from the obvious need for more space, aspects such as good local schools or good parks may be more appealing than they had been previously. Even if you don’t intend on having children in the near future, great local schools are still a huge benefit when it comes time to sell.

Your neighbourhood is on the decline

If unemployment or crime rates are on the rise in your current location, it may be a good idea to sell and move on before it gets increasingly difficult to sell or prices crash. There’s nothing worse than the feeling of uncertainty in your own home.

You’re ready for an upgrade

If you’re getting restless in your current house, or your financial situation has improved, then upgrading to somewhere nicer may be something you find yourself thinking about fairly often.

If you don’t have the creativity or patience to make improvements to your current home, then moving might be the best option.

You can’t bear your commute

If you’re tired of getting home late, and losing hours upon hours every week due to your commute, then it’s understandable that moving closer to your work may be a big consideration. If you’re in a steady job and the long-term prospects look good, relocating nearer to work could be a great reason to pack it up!

You’re in a serious relationship

If you think you’ve found that someone special, and you are both ready to progress the relationship forward, then moving in together is the logical next step. This may mean that one of you has to sell your current place, or you may both decide to move in together somewhere completely new.

Family

As time goes on, being closer to family may become a bigger priority in your life. Furthermore, as your parents age they may need you to be around more often. Whatever the reason, family is a common reason why people decide to pick up and move.

Here are MovingHomeMadeEasy, we know that moving can be a hugely stressful and tiresome process. That’s why we strive to make the experience as straightforward and painless as possible.

If you’re looking to move home, we’d love to be of assistance! Click here to apply for a free quote on a 5-Star move

The post 7 Signs it’s Time to Move House appeared first on Moving Home Made Easy.

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The idea of paying off your mortgage in full probably seems fairly far-fetched, and unless you happen to win the lottery or have a wealthy relative die, it probably is. However, there are some realistic ways that you can shave years or even decades off the payment term, increasing your equity and saving you a heap of money in interest payments.

  • Refinance with a shorter term mortgage

Got a 30-year mortgage? Refinancing it as a 15-year loan will not only mean that you pay your mortgage off a whole lot faster, but since shorter-term mortgages often carry lower interest rates, you’ll probably also end up saving a fair amount of cash. Additionally, thanks to the shorter time frame, you’ll pay a lot less in interest over the duration of the mortgage.

  • Overpay

Most mortgages allow you to ‘overpay’ by a certain amount each year without facing a penalty, even if you are locked into a fixed rate deal. Generally, that’s about 10% of your mortgage balance. If you pay more than that, then you may have to stump up an Early Repayment Charge, so it’s best to contact your lender and enquire.

Increasing the amount of your monthly mortgage direct debit – even just slightly – will shorten your mortgage term and reduce the total amount of interest you pay.

  • Through lump sums of ‘found’ cash at the mortgage

Instead of (or as well as) paying a little extra each month, pour in any financial windfalls you run into, be it a work bonus, inheritance, return on past investments (etc). Doing so will have a similar effect to regular overpayments in regard to reducing the total amount of interest you pay.

Bear in mind, however, that in order to do this without penalty, you’ll need a fully flexible mortgage. This is because you could end up overpaying by more than 10% of your outstanding balance in a year.

  • Switch to a better deal

If you’re strapped for cash and can’t afford to pay your mortgage off quicker by overpaying, you may still be in luck! When you reach the end of your current deal, such as a fix, discount or tracker, you should shop around to ensure you are getting the best possible interest rate.

Just be aware that many of the lowest mortgage rates that you see advertised come with the highest set-up fees, so remember to factor these in when doing your calculations.

Even though you’re already a homeowner, your credit score will still be considered when you apply for a new mortgage so it’s wise to keep yours in check and take steps to improve it if necessary. To find out more about improving your credit rating, read our blog post here.

The post 4 Realistic Ways you Could Pay your Mortgage Off Faster appeared first on Moving Home Made Easy.

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Although public awareness of financial scams, particularly those involving pensions, is increasing, so is the complexity of the scams themselves, making them even harder to spot. This means that many of us are continuing to fall victim to these fraudulent schemes and are putting our live savings at risk.

In this blog we will cover the three simple steps to avoiding pension scams.

  1. Spotting them

As previously mentioned, pension scams are constantly evolving, and the fraudsters are getting smarter in their methods. However, regardless of how complex the scam is, the tell-tale signs remain the same:

  • Being contacted unexpectedly by phone, text message, email or in person and/ or offering a free pensions review
  • Told they know of legal loopholes, or promise extra tax savings
  • Claiming you can unlock your pension before the age of 55 (as this is only very rarely possible)
  • Promising amazing rates of return with minimal risk
  • Offering to help you trace lost pensions or obtain a pension statement
  • Pressured into making a quick decision
  • Encouraged to take transfer money quickly

If you spot any one of these signs, there’s a good chance it is a scam.

  1. Avoid

Now that you have a good idea of what to keep an eye out for, how do you prevent yourself falling victim to one of these fraudulent schemes? Here are some tips:

  • Reject any unsolicited contact – Legitimate companies will not get in touch without you asking them to. If you are contacted by a company out of the blue, it’s best to hang up.
  • Check the name of the company against the FCA register – If they’re not on the register then they aren’t a legitimate company, which means they should be avoided.
  • If you’re looking into pension schemes, seek reliable advice from an FCA regulated firm.
  1. Report

If you’ve been targeted, or even if you think you have, it’s essential that you report it as soon as possible.

If you’ve already signed something or agreed to transfer some money, you need to contact your pension provider immediately.

To report a potential scam, you can use the FCA reporting form, or if you’ve lost money as a result of a scam, report it to ActionFraud.

Beware of follow-ups

If you have previously fallen victim to a scam, this could increase your risk of being targeted by future scams. For example, you might be contacted by companies trying to take advantage of your misfortune who claim they can get your money back.

The post 3 Tips to Avoid Pension Scams appeared first on Moving Home Made Easy.

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