Posted on

Every Crediton Homeowner & Landlord to Receive up to £5,000 Grant for Roof Insulation & Double Glazing from September

future green energy

The Chancellor announced on Wednesday 8th July in his mini Budget some interesting news for homeowners and landlords across the UK. Rishi Sunak is going to give ‘The Green Homes Grant’ of up to £5,000 to cover two-thirds of the costs of environmentally friendly upgrades to your property, with the homeowner covering the other third. There are also enhanced grants of £10,000 for the poorest households where 100% of the cost will be met by the Government.

This is nothing new mind you. The coalition Government in 2013 announced The Green Deal. That deal was in theory to have been a help for the builders, energy saving and home improvement industry, as the Government hoped many would take up environmentally friendly improvements to save energy (and ultimately greenhouse gases). Yet by the time it was brought to an end two years later only 14,000 households had applied, costing the taxpayer £238m (or £17,000 per household). That doesn’t sound good value to me – yet who am I to comment?!

Anyway, let’s not be negative, as improving our homes makes sense – after all, research shows Brits have the draughtiest homes in Europe. A recent survey suggests UK homes “leak” heat up to three times more quickly than more energy-efficient homes on the continent.

Data from 80,000 smart thermostats across the EU were reviewed to measure how quickly a home at 20°C inside cooled once the heating was turned off (when the outside temperature was 0°C). Within 5 hours, the average British home dropped by 3°C, the French came in second at 2.5°C yet the Germans came in at just 1°C, meaning British homes clearly need more heating (i.e. greenhouse gases) to keep them warmer.

The chancellor has allotted £2bn to the scheme, which pays for two thirds of the cost of the upgrade and stated that more than 650,000 homes would be upgraded. This could save those households a total of £195m a year in heating bills (or the equivalent of £300 a year per household), cutting greenhouse gases and saving jobs in the construction industry. The grant can be applied for from September and is open to Crediton homeowners and private sector Crediton landlords. Applications must be made before March 2021 and the Treasury have stated about half of the fund would go to households with the lowest incomes (how low is still to be announced), with an enhanced grant of up to £10,000, saving them up to £600 per annum each on their heating bills.

The average Crediton home annually produces 5.011 tonnes of CO2, compared to the national average of 4.101 tonnes

Due to the particular individual nature of the properties in Crediton and their construction type, with suitable improvements in insulation, double glazing and draught proofing, Government statistics state that this could be reduced to 2.748 tonnes for Crediton homes if suitable work (as per the Green Homes Grant) was carried out.

Why is this important? Well UK householders spend £34.735bn a year on their electric and gas bills – this is a lot of money. In fact, looking specifically at Crediton properties …

Crediton householders spend £814.40 per year on  heating their homes (compared to the national average of £669.34 per year)

Yet, if Crediton householders carried out the energy improvements that ‘The Green Homes Grant’ suggests their energy bills for heating alone would reduce to £570.26 per year … quite a saving over a decade and beyond (enough to buy a decent holiday – whatever one of those is!).

So, with Crediton homeowners and Crediton landlords being able to spend the grant on loft, floor and wall insulation, low carbon gas boilers, heat pumps, double or even triple-glazed windows, energy-efficient doors and low energy lighting … everyone should win – the environment, the economy and household budgets. More details on the scheme should be released by the Government in August. We’ll keep you posted on any updates!

Posted on

Crediton Home Buyers & Landlords Set to Save £580,970 in Stamp Duty Over Next Nine Months

The British are infatuated with owning their own property and politicians know that. Margaret Thatcher used it as a vote winner in 1979 when she allowed council house tenants to buy their own home. Coming to the present day, Boris Johnson’s Conservative government have anxieties that the Brits have not been buying nearly enough homes lately and, as with all countries in the world, the British property market was put ‘on ice’ for several months to help contain the Coronavirus, exacerbating the problem.

The Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, announced on Wednesday plans to boost the property market by momentarily scrapping Stamp Duty Tax (a tax paid by homebuyers) when they buy a property that costs less than £500,000.

Interestingly, Stamp Duty was originally introduced in 1694 as a way to raise funds for The Nine Years’ War (1688–1697) against Louis XIV of France and applied to property and some legal documents.

Why is this important? Well the Government recognise that when the property market is working well, the economy also tends to work well, yet one of the barriers to people moving home is Stamp Duty. Even before Coronavirus, Brits were moving 40.21% less than they were at the start of the millennium, and now with this dreadful situation, the natural reaction is for people to stay put in their own homes, meaning another potential nail in the coffin for the economy.

Stamp Duty has raised not an insignificant £166.53bn since 1998, impressive when you consider the NHS costs £129bn per annum. Looking at more recent figures, the Government currently raise £1.045bn per month from Stamp Duty Tax and this statement will remove a good chunk of that from the Chancellors coffers each month, yet the Government knows a healthy property market will help the wider economy.

As Stamp Duty is a transaction tax, it restricts labour market mobility, making people who are thinking of switching jobs think twice before moving. Stamp Duty also holds back elderly homeowners from downsizing to smaller homes, which is an issue for the UK, as we don’t have enough homes to meet supply and also curtails first time buyers as it forces them to use some of the savings on the tax, as opposed to using for a deposit.

Before the changes, the Stamp Duty thresholds were as follows: 

  • Zero percent up to £125,000
  • Two percent of the next £125,000 (the portion from £125,001 to £250,000)
  • Five percent of the next £675,000 (the portion from £250,001 to £925,000)
  • Ten percent of the next £575,000 (the portion from £925,001 to £1.5 million)
  • 12% of the remaining amount (the portion above £1.5 million)

and between the 8th July 2020 and 31st March 2021 the thresholds are:

  • Zero percent up to £500,000
  • Five percent of the next £425,000 (the portion from £500,001 to £925,000)
  • Ten percent of the next £575,000 (the portion from £925,001 to £1.5 million)
  • 12% of the remaining amount (the portion above £1.5 million)

Landlords and buy to let landlords will also benefit from these reduced rates yet will still have to pay their additional premium for second homes (as they have since April 2016).

To give you an idea how significant this is, if these rules had been in place exactly a year ago for Crediton properties purchased under £500,000 (i.e. between the 8th July 2019 and 31st March 2020).

Stamp Duty would not have been paid on 210 Crediton properties, worth in total £53,620,300

Anyone buying any home in Crediton over £500,000 are also winners in this, as they will save having to pay the first £15,000 in stamp duty (under the old scheme). This is because during these 9 months, stamp duty is only paid on the difference over £500,000 (so if you buy a property for say £620,000 – one only pays the stamp duty on the difference between £620,000 and £500,000 i.e. £120,000).

I’m all for reducing Stamp Duty, which is imposed progressively at higher rates the higher a property costs (as you can see from the tables above). Yet, short-lived changes to property taxation risk warping the property market and generating a ‘property market hangover’ in Spring 2021. I am part of a group of 2,500 estate and letting agents from the UK, and most of us were running at 150% speed before this announcement, coping with the post Coronavirus explosion in demand.

Now it seems that the ‘feast’ will continue until the end of March 2021 as many more people will move to take advantage of the cut in tax. However, some are suggesting this could lead to ‘famine’ down the line as it will stop people moving into the late spring and summer of 2021.

History tells us different stories on the influence on transaction volumes from changing Stamp Duty rates. In 1991 the Tory’s raised the Stamp Duty threshold at which house buyers started paying and Gordon Brown did so in 2008 when we went into the Credit Crunch. More recently, both George Osborne and Philip Hammond fine-tuned Stamp Duty so that landlords had to pay an additional Stamp Duty Premium after March 2016 whilst first-time buyers pay less Stamp Duty and the purchasers of more expensive homes (over £1.5m) pay more.

The Stamp Duty changes for landlords in 2016 affected the property market only for a short while and by the autumn, transactions levels had returned to normal. However, in 1991, John Major’s Stamp Duty change encouraged home buyers to bring forward home purchases but nevertheless the property market ground to a standstill again once the benefit ended (although the steps up the 1990’s Stamp Duty levels were much harsher as the tax applied to the whole purchase price, not the margin steps as it had in the 1990’s).

So how much money will Crediton people save when buying a home under £500k?

The average Stamp Duty paid by those Crediton home buyers in the 9 months between the 8th July 2019 and 31st March 2020 was £2,767.

Being objective, I can see why the Chancellor could see this as a suitable way to motivate spending because when people move home, they are more inclined to spend comprehensively on property renovations and the services of solicitors, home removal people, tradesmen and estate agents. So, drastically reducing Stamp Duty will undoubtedly help the UK economy, or at least contain some of the damage from the Coronavirus.  

Also, the experience of being in lockdown will have confirmed to many Crediton people that they need a bigger home or one with a bigger garden. I also suspect other people may be able to work from home on a more long-lasting basis, meaning there could be a shift from the larger cities to outlying towns and even a move to the countryside.

So, these are my thoughts, what are yours? I’d love you to post them in the comments below! 🙂

Posted on

We’re All Going On A Stamp Duty Holiday!

Confused about the new Stamp Duty holiday announcement? Check out our simplified 2 minute guide!

What is Stamp Duty?

Stamp duty is simply a tax paid by people buying properties. The amount of tax is based upon the purchase price of the property. In England and Northern Ireland buyers pay Stamp Duty, and there there are different schemes for Scotland and Wales.

The amount of tax you pay depends on the purchase price of the property and whether you are buying it as your main home, or an additional property, buy-to-let etc.

What’s Changed?

The Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced changes to Stamp Duty on 8th July meaning any buyer purchasing a primary residential property will pay no stamp duty on the first £500,000. This means the most property buyers will benefit from some whopping savings!

So, getting down to the nitty gritty of it: on a property purchase over the £500,000 threshold, buyers will pay a 5% Stamp Duty but only on the portion from £500,001 to £925,000. Then it’s 10% on the portion from £925,001 to £1.5 million and 12% on any portion over £1.5 million.

Some Examples

If you are buying your main home for £500,000 you would have paid £15,000 in Stamp Duty. Now you pay nothing.

If you are buying your main home for £750,000 you would have paid £27,500. Now you pay £12,500.

Second homes

There’s been a lot of confusion about purchasing a second home but we can confirm that there are large savings to be made here too. The higher additional rates remain, with a 3% higher rate on top of the new revised rates.

So, if you are purchasing a holiday home up to the threshold value of £500,000, you will pay 3% Stamp Duty.  If it’s over the threshold of £500,000 you’ll pay 8% on the portion from £500,001 to £925,000, 13% on the portion from £925,001 to £1.5 million, and 15% on the remaining portion over £1.5 million.

Visit gov.uk for more information

Why have the Government made these changes?

This move by the Government will keep the post lock-down property market momentum going strong and help the broader economy.

This is because when people move, they often spend thousands of pounds doing up their new home to suit their lifestyle and tastes. Think about it: when you move home, you often spend money on new carpets, curtains, kitchen units, and even new furnishings etc.

So when does all this end?

From 1 April 2021, the Stamp Duty holiday ends and the old regulations will revert to what they were before these temporary changes were announced, unless the Government decide otherwise, of course. We can live in hope!

Our thoughts on it all

The change means now is a great time to put your property on the market as we’re expecting a surge of buyers looking to make their move while they can save a large chunk of hard earned cash.

We’re primed and ready to take your calls and answer any questions you have around the new Stamp Duty changes. So, if you are thinking of buying or selling in 2020 the time’s never been better thanks to this news!

Posted on

The Crediton Post Lockdown Property Market

So, what have we learned in the first month?

From talking to a lot of other estate agents and our from own findings, it might surprise you to learn that new enquiries from homebuyers, tenants, landlords and home sellers have been at record levels since lockdown was lifted from the property market in mid-May.

There are a number of reasons for this. Firstly, we had the pent-up demand for Crediton property from the Boris Bounce in January and February. Next, many Crediton people were planning to move this spring yet were prevented doing so because of lockdown, and finally, surprisingly, an advance wave of home movers seeking to bring their Crediton moving plans forward because of a fear of a second Covid-19 wave later in the year.

So, what does all that look like and how does it compare to the last 12/18 months?

Data from Yomdel, the live chat and telephone answering service for a quarter of UK estate and letting agents, is able to track objective and more current information from across the UK on what is really happening. Each week, they are dealing with thousands of enquiries including:

  • Seller enquiries (i.e. house sellers looking to put their property on the market)
  • Buyer enquiries (i.e. people looking to view a property on the market with the intention of buying it)
  • Landlords enquiries (i.e. landlords looking for tenants for their rental property)
  • Tenant enquiries (i.e. people looking to view a property on the market with the intention of renting it)

They have created a rolling weekly average of those enquiries for the whole of the UK for the 62 weeks before the country went into lockdown. Then they compared that 62 week average with specific time frames, namely the 10 weeks of the run up to the General Election, the 8 weeks of Post Boris Bounce in January and February 2020, the weeks of lockdown in March, April and early May and then finally, from mid-May, the post lockdown.

You might ask why tracking estate and letting agency enquiries is so important?

Enquiries in letting and estate agencies are the beating heart of the property market – they are the ECG machine of the estate and letting agency. Of course, house price data has its place and is lauded by the national press as the bellwether of the property market, yet it takes 6 to 9 months for the effects of what is happening today to show in those house price indexes, whilst these enquiries are what is happening now.

Have a look at the data in the graph and table, it can be seen in the 8 weeks up to the General Election, every metric was down. Next, the post Boris Bounce saw house seller and house buyer leads increase yet note how low tenant enquiries were (hardly any change from the run up to the election), everything dipped during lockdown as expected, yet look at all the metrics post lockdown … amazing! (e.g. if a number in the graph/table below is say -25%, that means its 25% below the rolling 62 week average, yet if it were +20%, then that would mean it would be 20% more than the rolling 62 week average)

The numbers speak for themselves!

So, what is happening in the Crediton and mid Devon property market? Well, there is plenty of activity, yet that doesn’t mean everything is back to normal. Enquiries are an important metric, yet another way to judge the health of the property market is to look at the number of property transactions (i.e. people moving).

Now the Land Registry data isn’t quite as exhilarating, yet it is less volatile. Nationally, it shows that property transactions were at their lowest level since its records began in April 2005. The seasonally adjusted estimate of UK residential property transactions in April and May 2020 was 90,210, 53.4% lower than the 193,500 transactions of April and May 2019. Again though, this was because of the restrictions on moving during Covid-19. The stats for Crediton are still to be released, yet rest assured I will share them in due course. But of course, Land Registry figures are somewhat out of date as they are based on completions not agreed sales, so don’t reflect what’s actually happening on the ground right here right now.

So looking again at what is happening now:

24 Crediton and mid Devon village properties have come onto the property market in the last 14 days alone, and some 29 properties in the same area were sold subject to contract. From our Helmores office we’ve agreed 42 property sales in the whole of June which is above where we would normally be by about 20%.

So, what of the future of the post-lockdown Crediton housing market? While a stern recession seems fairly likely, a housing market crash most definitely not. Many newspapers are predicting property values to fall in 2020, then rise reticently from the ashes in 2021, but so far there are no signs of any falls – quite the opposite. The fact is, nobody knows!

The property market is driven a lot by sentiment. Buying a home is not like buying stocks and shares – it’s a home to live in … and those Crediton landlords who are looking for an investment opportunity, often let their heart rule the head (again sentiment) when investing in property.

Property always has, and always will be, a long-term investment. Many of you Crediton people reading this, especially potential first time buyers, have been putting off buying your first home because of Brexit, now its Covid-19, and in a few years, it will be something else. There will always be ‘something else’… and you could get to your 50’s and 60’s, still renting, waiting for the ‘next thing’ to pass before you buy … and end up buying nothing.

Nobody knows what the months or years ahead will bring … yet what I do know is, people will always need a place to live. Please let me know your thoughts in the comments. Tell us what your experiences are as a Crediton landlord or homeowner, tenant or buyer so we can all learn from each other.

Posted on

Five good news stories from the world of property

feelgood friday Helmores

It’s a Feelgood Friday Property Special this week! Check out our 2 minute read of good news property stories from around the globe:

Micro homes for rough sleepers

Six “micro homes” have been built on church land in Cambridge as part of an innovative project to help the homeless.

As well as getting a roof over their heads, rough sleepers who move into the self-contained pods will receive counselling and support.

The micro-homes, which are easy to relocate, will stay on their present site for three years.

After this time, they could be moved to a new location. Let’s hope we see more being done to help the homeless.

Eggs-citing design

Architects have designed a floating chicken farm. Yes, really. The three-storey creation will nestle on a concrete pontoon in a Rotterdam waterway, in The Netherlands. It will house 7,000 hens, an egg processing plant, and a cress farm.

So, what do the neighbours think?

As the chicken farm will go next to an existing floating dairy, we don’t expect them to have any beef with the plans.

Market rebounds

New figures from the Zoopla Property Index show house prices are on an upward trajectory.

Zoopla found house prices were up 2.4% year on year in May. It also predicts property prices in the next quarter will grow by between 2 and 3%.

Coastal dreams

New research from Rightmove shows that Whitby in Yorkshire is the most in-demand seaside location in the UK – up in popularity by almost 5% in a year. The figures are based on inquiries for properties available for sale in the area.

Whitley Bay, Tyne and Wear, was second, followed by Troon in Ayrshire, Scotland.

The most expensive seaside destination though remains Sandbanks, in Poole, where the average cost of a home is £1,243,364.

Back to business

Another positive sign that we’re all getting back to normal is that the Scottish housing market will reopen for business next week. Lettings and estate agents can open their doors from Monday (June 29). Viewings can also take place as long as social distancing measures are observed.

This follows the partial reopening of the housing market in Wales. Viewings can now take place at unoccupied Welsh properties. House moves can also go ahead providing the property has been vacant for 72 hours.

The world of property is emerging strongly after the lockdown, which is good news for anyone looking for a new home.

We want the people of mid Devon to know that we are optimistic about the future and determined to continue to serve our community. Whatever your property needs are, we’re here to help 🙂

Posted on

Enjoy another weekly dose of positive news in Crediton!

Fluffy retriever

It’s Friday AGAIN! Where is the time going? Here’s our regular two-minute dose of good news to lift your mood this Feelgood Friday!

Canine companions

A yellow Labrador called K9 Raider is in the running to be named America’s top dog. K9 Raider is a Courtroom Therapy Dog who sits with young victims of serious crime when they give evidence. He provides a calming presence during what can be a traumatic experience. Another frontrunner in the American Humane Hero Dog Awards 2020 is Dolly Pawton, a Labrador who can detect when her owner’s blood pressure or heart rate drop and raise the alarm. Then there’s MacKenzie, a Chihuahua born with a cleft palate who now spends her time cuddling up to young, abandoned animals at a New York shelter.

Cycling surge

The number of Brits cycling has skyrocketed. New official figures reveal a 100% increase in people cycling on weekdays and a whopping 200% rise on weekends during lockdown. The trend has been welcomed by environmentalists, fitness campaigners and bike shops – where sales have gone through the roof. Such is the demand that bike stocks are running low, prompting some to say, “bikes are the new toilet paper”. Not one of our favourite expressions, but we know what they mean.

Toy story

You could be forgiven for thinking the nation’s little people have spent the whole of lockdown glued to screens. But new market analysis from a data collection company called NPD shows strong demand in recent months for old fashioned toys. Demand for puzzles and jigsaws rose by 43%. Meanwhile, outdoor toys, like sandpits and waterslides, were a hit in May when the glorious sunny weather arrived, prompting a 31% spike in sales. Building sets like Lego increased by 17%. (Figures cover January 1 to May 23 this year, compared to the same period in 2019).

Ingenious invention

Two resourceful brothers have invented a mobile handwashing unit to help stop the spread of Covid-19 in Ghana. Richard Kwarteng Aning and his brother Jude Osei built the Solar Wash from an old barrel and items bought at their local market. The nifty solar-powered basin has a sensor-triggered soap dispenser (so no need to touch anything) and an alarm to ensure you wash your hands for 25 seconds before rinsing. Solar Wash units will be rolled out to communities in Ghanaian cities so people with limited access to freshwater can keep their hands clean.

We want our community in Crediton and villages across mid Devon to know we are here to help you as life slowly gets back to normal.

We wish you all a safe, happy, and enjoyable weekend!

Posted on

It’s Feelgood Friday time again!

feelgood friday

Gosh, it’s that time of the week again! Here’s we go with another two-minute dose of darn good news to get you smiling!

All we need is radio Ga Ga!

While some sectors have struggled in the pandemic, radio has enjoyed a resurgence. The BBC has recorded an 18% increase in listeners during the pandemic. Meanwhile, many of the nation’s 300 community stations have also thrived, with people seeking out local news and the chance to interact with their community while in lockdown.

When I’m Cleaning Windows

A mystery man in Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, has washed the windows of some 700 properties – for free! The Eastern Daily Press reports that the window cleaner, known only as “Scott”, wants to do his bit to aid the recovery of the local economy. He hopes that by keeping the area spic and span small business can “bounce back quickly when this is all over”.

Wooop to our volunteers!

This week is Volunteers’ Week, a chance to celebrate the 20 million people in the UK who give up their time to help others. This year has been particularly challenging for volunteers due to lockdown and social distancing rules, but that hasn’t stopped them doing good work. Volunteers at London’s Slipstreamers Cycling Club, for example, have devised a range of virtual spinning workouts to keep their young charges active until they can get back out on the track again. Then, of course, there are the tens of thousands of NHS volunteers who have helped alleviate pressure on our health service. You’re all heroes.

Neighbours, everybody needs good neighbours

It’s official: Pemberton Road in Winstanley, Wigan, has the UK’s nicest neighbours. This week it was named Britain’s Friendliest Street in an online poll. Despite being a long and busy thoroughfare, Pemberton Road has bucket-loads of community spirit. During the lockdown, residents pulled together to ensure anyone who was self-isolating was kept stocked up on essentials. The road also has its own quiz master, who organises regular brain teasers to keep people occupied, and a videographer, who compiled a video of neighbours dancing to the Madness song Our House to keep spirits up.

Crafty Kids!

Two young brothers in Derby have made more than 100 cushions for key workers. Ronnie and Reggie Cockroft, aged ten and seven, wanted to do something special for NHS staff and supermarket workers who have been putting in long hours during the pandemic. Their mission is made even more special because Reggie was born prematurely and has cerebral palsy. The boys’ family credit the NHS with saving Reggie’s life.

We want our community in Crediton  to know we are here to help you as we were in the past, as we are in the present and as we will be in the future.

Posted on

Revealed – The healthiest and wealthiest place in your Devon Home

Helmores Kitchen

In this 60 second Fast Thursday read we look at some simple ways you can turn what you do indoors into protecting your immune system when you are outdoors.

On average there’s one room in peoples’ homes across Devon which is more valuable than others.

And that’s your Kitchen. Kitchens are often the room in a home that people spend the most money on. The good news is it’s a wise investment in more ways than one.

A well designed, smart looking and functional kitchen will add value to your property – potentially thousands of pounds. More importantly, it’s also the place where you can add value and quality to your life by preparing food which will boost your immune system.

We’ve all been advised recently about the importance of a robust immune system. Below are three simple ways you can boost your immunity as recommended by the NHS:

Fantastic Five – Yes, as many of us know, getting your five a day of fruit and veg is a cornerstone of better health.

Sugar Slowdown – Fancy a sugary treat? Reach for an orange or some dried sweet fruits like cranberries or mango instead of the biscuit tin.

Hygiene Heaven – A clean kitchen not only looks great, but it’s a great way of reducing germs that can attack immune systems.

And any health-conscious kitchen should be stocked with immune-boosting foods such as these recommended by the NHS.

Broccoli – Watermelon – Yoghurt – Wild Mushrooms – Citrus Fruits – Garlic and Bell Peppers.

 Have you learned some new healthy recipes during lockdown? We’d love you to share your delicious dishes with our community in Crediton!

Thanks for reading, and we hope you and your loved ones are staying healthy, happy, and safe.

Posted on

It’s Feelgood Friday!

its feelgood friday helmores

Good news is coming in from different sections of our everyday lives!

As we enter a different phase in life under lockdown, we’re starting to feel more positive about the future and here’s why:

Health

Public health officials in England have approved a test to see whether people have been infected with coronavirus in the past. This may well be rolled out UK wide. It spots antibodies in people who could now have some level of immunity.

Sport

Football fans will be pleased to know the German Bundesliga is restarting this weekend with games in closed stadiums. We’re waiting on news from the UK’s football and other sporting authorities.

Environment

A group of volunteers have been isolating themselves in Scotland to save more than 100,000 native trees from being lost. They are from a charity, Trees for Life, which had its work planting new trees to restore the Caledonian Forest to its ancient glory, threatened by the outbreak. Thanks to the volunteers, the essential work needed is still being done. Tree – mendous. (sorry, couldn’t resist it).

Community

We’re proud to be a part of a group of agents across the UK who donate to national and global community causes every month via something called The Karma Club. It is organised by estate agency industry supplier the Estate Agent Content Club. So far, we’ve played our part in donations to care homes, food banks and youth groups during the outbreak.

Kindness

Flying the flag, literally, to bring a smile to people’s faces is artist Julian Wood. Julian has created small fabric flags bearing messages of kindness and hope, and he has left them in public places around Bristol to cheer people up. The messages include ‘You’re sweet’ ‘Thank you NHS’ and ‘You look great.’

We want our community in mid Devon to know we are there for them during these surreal times. Please let us know if we can help you in any way.

Thanks for reading. Stay safe, stay sensible and be kind to each other!

Posted on

Our Stay Safe Policy

the property market is open for business helmores

At Helmores we’re all very excited about the prospect of being able to help you find your dream home BUT the safety of you, our colleagues, and our clients is our utmost priority, so it’s really important that you read and understand our stay safe policy:

For viewings, the government are advising that you should view properties “virtually” in the first instance, and then only physically view properties that you have a strong interest in. This will help reduce the number of properties you need to visit before finding your new home. Many of our sale properties already have interactive virtual tours and we’re working hard to ensure all properties will have this facility as soon as possible.

In addition to this we recommend that you use Google Maps and Street View to check out the location of any property before you make a viewing appointment. It’s great fun scoping out different areas!

We will do everything possible to make your viewing enjoyable and informative, whilst keeping you and us as safe as possible.

Viewings

  • Please provide and wear your own face covering and gloves.
  • Viewing times will be limited in order for us to have time to ensure surfaces such as door handles, worktops, cupboard doors etc are cleaned.
  • Please only one person or a couple from the same household on a viewing at any time.
  • Please wash your hands before you leave your home and ensure that during the viewing you don’t touch any surfaces.
  • Please follow social distancing rules and keep at least 2m distance from our team member.
  • Please ensure you have viewed the interactive virtual tour or video on our website beforehand.
  • Ideally you should at least have your own property on the market, sale agreed or sold. If you need to sell a property but you’re not on the market, we’d love to speak with you about this!
  • If you arrive early at a property viewing, please wait outside for our team member to arrive.
  • If you or any of your household have symptoms or have been asked to self-isolate please don’t ask us to arrange any physical viewings – although we’d still love to chat with you over the phone and keep in contact with you for when you have fully recovered.

Visitors to our Offices

  • If you or any of your household have symptoms or have been asked to self-isolate please stay at home. We’d love to chat to you over the phone though!
  • Please call or email us to fix an appointment to visit us 01363 777999 or [email protected]
  • Only one visitor to enter at a time (two people from the same household may enter).
  • If the front office space is already occupied please wait outside for them to leave.
  • Please follow social distancing rules and keep at least 2m distance from our team member, keeping behind the hatched floor tape.
  • If handing over paperwork or keys please place on the desk at the front of the office.
  • We will sanitise keys with an antibacterial wipe or spray prior to hand over.
  • We are aiming to be a paperless office so documents or property details will be emailed as a PDF document to minimise contamination risk
  • Please use the hand sanitiser by the front door when you enter our building.
  • Please use your own pen to sign paperwork.

Finally, if you need any help with ANYTHING property related we’d love to hear from you – no question is too silly or too small! Just pick up the phone or drop us an email 01363 777999 or [email protected]