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27Jan

In this 2-minute read, we look at ways people in Medway can stop wasting their hard-earned cash.

“What a waste of money.”

It’s something we’ve all heard someone say. And if we’re honest with ourselves, something we’ve all done at some point.

Buying that jumper that never saw the light of day.

The gym membership that got about as much use as a sun lounger in Antarctica.

Or forgetting you were subscribed to that ‘it’ll change my life’ monthly service you never ended up using.

But don’t feel too bad because your money spending mistakes probably pale into insignificance compared to the one below.

Not so friendly

In 2005 ITV bought the social networking site Friends Reunited for a reported £175m. Then Facebook popped up in 2006. Uh oh.

ITV sold Friends Reunited for £25m in 2009. The website closed down in 2016.

The good news is at the end of this article we’ll share a link on how to make your cash go further from Mr Moneysavingexpert himself, Martin Lewis.

Across Medway we see people wasting their money by using estate agents who charge a cheap fee to sell a home BUT end up getting their client a lot less for the property due to a lack of knowledge, skill or will.

This difference can be tens of thousands of pounds in some cases.

Cheap Agencies are Not Cheerful

Look at this simplified but relevant example. 

An agency says they’ll charge you a 0.5 per cent fee to sell your home, which they put on the market for £100,000. 

You’ve chosen them over an agency that charges a 1.5 per cent fee. You wanted to save a few quid.

But the cheaper agency only gets you £90,000 for it – they blame the market and tell you this is the best you’ll get for your biggest tax-free asset. After their fee you have £89,550 left. 

In a parallel world, the other more motivated and skilled agent gets you the asking price of £100,000. They put more money into marketing your property, the quality of their staff and are much better negotiators.

They take their well-earned £1,500 fee leaving you with £98,500 — nearly £9000 more.

So, the ‘cheaper’ agent, who at first glance looked to be saving you dosh, ended up wasting it.

We hope that’s given you some valuable food for thought.

Remember folks, caring is sharing so if you found this article interesting, please share it with a friend.

Let’s Talk

If you have any property related questions, please get in touch as we’d be delighted to answer them for you.

Oh, and here’s a link to that money-saving page that might come in handy.

https://www.moneysavingexpert.com/shopping/chat-tips-gold/

23Jan

In this 90 second read, we share why Monday 20 January is the calendar’s gloomiest day and how you can use as it as a springboard for better things.

Bob Geldof KBE sung about his dislike for Mondays in the classic Boomtown Rats’ hit.

It’s safe to say then, that Bob REALLY wouldn’t like Monday 20 January.

Psychologist Dr Cliff Arnall has identified the date as being the most depressing day of the year.

And here’s why Dr Arnall came to his conclusion.

1)         The weather this time of year is usually rubbish. 

2)         The Christmas feelgood factor is long gone and the credit card bills from the festive period start arriving. 

3)         Add to that a lot of us have broken our new year resolutions and the long summer days and evenings seem far, far away.

But it need not be all doom and gloom – here are seven super simple things you can do to lift your mood – at any time of the year.

Listen to a song you love.

Get outside in the fresh air. Medway has lots of nice places to walk around.

Have a tidy up.

Treat yourself to something nice – a cake, a book or a day out.

Call your best friend.

Do something nice for someone else with no expectation of getting something back.

Get up, dress up and list three things you are grateful for.

If the above fails, you can always put a note in your phone/calendar/diary looking forward to Friday 17 July which according to Dr A’s formula is the happiest day of the year.

At Greyfox, we take pride in putting smiles on our clients’ faces and doing our bit to add some cheer to the community in Medway.

Remember folks when it comes to looking after your mental health sharing is caring.

 

So, if you found this article interesting, please share it on social media and tag a friend or forward it to them.

13Jan

In this two-minute read, we gaze into our crystal ball while doing a quick Google search, to see what homes in 2030 might look like, work like and contain.

Back in 1989 the BBC technology show Tomorrow’s World looked at what the average UK home of 2020 would look like.

Its predictions were hit and miss, but they did forecast technology would play a huge part in how we lived.

They said we’d be able to control our lighting, music and heating by voice commands (Alexa, Google Assistant, etc.). That our homes would be more energy efficient (we’re getting there) and that our windows would be able to turn into TV screens at the flick of a switch (not just yet).

And as we ease into the new decade, people who look ahead to see how technology will shape our lives (they’re called futurists), have been making some predictions of their own for the homes of 2030.

These include:

1)     Ditch your keys – Facial, fingerprint and voice recognition that opens your doors could become commonplace meaning that the scramble to find your keys becomes a thing of the past.

2)      Modular Homes – Think LEGO on a grand scale. Futurists suggest technology will make it possible for people to increase or reduce the size of their property to fit their needs.

3)      E-cars - Electric vehicles and charging points will become the norm. As our homes become smarter at storing energy, futurists predict we will be able to share surplus power with our neighbours more easily.

4)      Technology free rooms – People will start seeking refuge from gadgets in low tech, screen-free ‘quiet’ spaces.

5)      Wow Wardrobes – Struggling to choose what to wear? Smart wardrobes will receive data from your schedule and weather updates to suggest what clothes you own that are best suited to your day ahead.

The big changes will involve what happens in our homes, not how they look from the outside.

As wonderful as technology can and will be, at Greyfox we never forget our clients love ‘old fashioned’ things like courtesy, personal service and expert local knowledge.

Remember folks sharing is caring, so if you found this article interesting please share it on social media and tag a friend or forward it to them.

07Jan

 

In this 90-second read, we reveal why there’s a lot more happening in January than new diets, broken resolutions and returning to normality.

 “Nothing happens in January, does it?”

It’s a question we hear a lot from homeowners in Medway who are thinking of selling but considering putting things off until spring.

While that statement might be true about the number of events on people’s social calendars, it doesn’t apply to the property market because there’s plenty of activity happening.

The truth is January sees five out of the ten busiest property searching days on the internet, according to the portal Rightmove.

The five dates when new home seeking souls hit the web in huge numbers are:

  1. 13th January

  2. 21st January

  3. 27th January

  4. 2nd January

  5. 12th January

January is a time when serious buyers re-enter the market. It’s a time when the people most motivated to change where they live get moving and start looking with real intent, as the above stats shows.

So, things do happen in the Medway property market in January.

We’ve already seen buyer confidence returning following the General Election.

Now is an ideal time to get your home on the market and get noticed by those record internet numbers throughout January.

Plus, if you put your home up for sale this month, you’ll avoid the spring stampede and stand out from the crowd.

Feel free to get in touch with us for a chat about what we can make happen for you this month.

Thanks for reading and from all the team at Greyfox we wish you a happy, healthy and successful 2020.

 

03Jan

In this 2-minute read, we look at how you can make your New Year resolutions last longer and why there’s one big lifestyle change we’re experts at helping you stick to.

We all know making New Year’s resolutions are simple but sticking to them is a lot harder.

The top six most popular changes people usually want to make are to exercise more, lose weight, get organised, learn a new skill or hobby, drink less alcohol and spend more time with people they love.

Easy to say – harder to do.

The good news is an American psychoanalyst has come up with five easy tips to help you keep your resolutions in 2020.

Own up– Identify the areas where your life really needs changing and be honest with yourself.

Write it out– Write down your goals and create an action plan with realistic, time-scaled steps you can work too. There’s loads of information around this on the internet.

Find out why? - Start a journal on why you do the things you want to change. Why do you overeat? Drink too much? Avoid the gym like it’s been overtaken by a swarm of angry wasps? This will help you understand your triggers and motivations.

Reward yourself - Lost five pounds of weight in a month – treat yourself (maybe not to a family-sized pizza though). Incentives keep us going.

Tell someone– Perhaps the most powerful tip. When you tell someone what you are trying to change it helps keep you on track and be accountable for your actions. If you are feeling really determined, share your resolutions on social media.

And while we can’t help you change what you eat, drink or do, we can assist you with another popular resolution. We can help you move home successfully in 2020

Next year will be a busy year for the property market in Medway. Buyer confidence is bouncing back and getting your home up for sale early in January helps you stand out from the crowd that will follow in the spring months. 

If you are thinking of selling, give us a call for a no-obligation chat.

Whatever your resolutions for 2020 are go for it and good luck.

All of us at Greyfox would like to wish everyone in Medway a Happy New Year and may the next decade bring you all you wish for.

Remember folks sharing is caring, so if you found this article interesting please share it on social media and tag a friend or forward it to them. 

Thanks for reading. 

18Dec

 

In this 60-second read, we take a very quick look at what happened last week and what it means to the property market in Medway.

Here is a Non-party political broadcast by Greyfox Sales and Lettings.

Boris Johnson and the Conservative Party have won a large majority following Thursday’s election.

It’s very early days into the life of our newly elected Government. But one thing seems crystal clear and that is we will be leaving the European Union.

So, what does this new political clarity mean for the property market in Medway?

Well, we’ve seen over the three years which followed the referendum that uncertainty was damaging confidence in the market.

Sellers were concerned about selling, buyers about buying. Often the reason for this was people wanted to know exactly what was happening with Brexit. Were we staying or were we going?

People needed certainty and it would seem we now have the answer.

This means we are expecting there to be a lot more activity in the Medway property market next year.

There is still a lot of dust to settle as things get sorted.

And while we wouldn’t dare predict what will happen politically, our commitment to helping people buy and sell in Medway is guaranteed.

So, with the election done, maybe it’s a good time to focus on Christmas parties rather than political ones.

Remember folks sharing is caring, so if you found this article interesting please share it on social media and tag a friend or forward it to them.

Thanks for reading.

 

10Dec

 

In this two-minute read, we share some of the jaw-dropping amounts of cash millionaires splash out when celebrating Christmas. And, why they’re probably wasting their money.

Everyone celebrates Christmas in their own way.

It’s that time of year when many of us get a little looser with our grip of the purse strings, and the credit card gets a little (or lot) more use than usual.

But for some of the World’s wealthiest people for whom cost is not an issue the festive season is a time to splash out – Big time.

Check out these big spenders.

A hotel in Marbella, the Kempinski Bahía, has laid claim to having the World’s most expensive tree, costing a cool £11.9 million. It’s decorated with handmade diamond baubles, jewellery from luxury brands including Bulgari, Cartier, and Chanel and edible 3-D decorations.

If that doesn’t get you shaking your head in disbelief Tiffany & Co unveiled the world's most expensive advent calendar. It’s a four-foot-tall creation, containing a piece of jewellery for each day in the run-up to December 25. Oh, and it’ll set you back an eye-watering £104,000.

And what do you get the millionaire (or in some cases billionaire) who has everything? How about a Christmas wreath studded with 16 rubies, 32 diamonds and brimming with bling? A London florist sold one for £2.8 million making it the World’s most expensive Christmas wreath.

But don’t despair if you’re not a tech billionaire, lottery winner or Russian oligarch. And that’s because a recent research study showed that three factors need to be present for people to have a very merry Christmas – and none of them involve spending a penny.

They are:

  1. Accept that everything will not go perfectly.

  2. Experience ‘helpers’ high’. Those that gave to charity or did something nice for a neighbour or friend felt merrier.

  3. Make time over the festive period to do …….nothing. Just relax and take time out for yourself.

Which goes to show that while money may make the world go round the best things in life, especially over Christmas, are free.

Remember folks sharing is caring, so if you found this article interesting please share it on social media and tag a friend or forward it to them.

Thanks for reading.

 

07Nov

The short answer to this is no, yes or maybe. For some investors the buy-to-let market has proved very lucrative and successful and will fund a very comfortable retirement and lifestyle. For others it has provided stratospheric wealth well beyond their initial expectations. However, for some unlucky individuals it has been one of the worst experiences of their lives and a costly mistake.

 

The lettings market at the moment has never been in such a state of flux. Legislation affecting landlords appears to change on a daily basis and adherence to these changes can be critical to their continued prosperity. Falling foul of these sometimes minor technicalities can at the least stop an eviction and at the worst result in a severe financial penalty. There have been significant changes to tax law in regard to the buy-to-let market and in 2019 the tenant fees ban will come into force, which will forbid agents from charging tenants referencing or other fees. We’ll skip over the rights or wrongs of all sides of this particular argument, what will definitely happen over time is that landlord fees will rise, so will rents and numbers of unscrupulous and fraudulent tenants will also rise for the unwary.

 

Looking forward buy-to-let still looks a good bet for many people. I would suggest that the one buy-to let property as a retirement vehicle may not be the best strategy, although this was always the most fragile investment vehicle as one bad tenant or agent could ruin it. For the professional investor adding to their portfolio then action can be taken to mitigate the changes and business will continue as usual. The investor with plans to build a portfolio from scratch could really seize the moment though. 

 

Many accidental and single or small portfolio landlords are selling and realising the asset, leaving an opportunity to purchase a competitively priced property, in good condition with a tenant in situ. This is a great basis upon which to realise instant capital value and monthly income. There are now a great number of buy-to-let deals available and even an increasing number of buy-to-let mortgages available for limited companies should you wish to take advantage of the tax breaks that a limited company vehicle may offer.

 

More than ever a good letting agent will prove their worth over the next few years in helping to source and build a profitable portfolio and protect the landlord from making potentially life changing errors. Our letting team are always available to discuss the current market and how we can help and we’re quite willing to spend time with those looking to embark on building a portfolio but just want questions answered. For those questions that we can’t answer then we’ll always be able to point you in the direction of people who can, from accountants to specialist solicitors and wealth advisors.

08Oct

The most common question an estate agent is asked is ‘what’s the market like?’. If you read everything that’s in the news at the moment regarding the UK housing market then there’s a good chance that you’ll fear that no one will ever sell a house again and that it’s all Brexit’s fault.

 

Whilst we can’t comment on the whole country and wouldn’t presume to contradict our esteemed economists, after all, they’ve never been wrong before (ahem), it does seem that everyone has very short memories and have forgotten that a correction in house prices is a pretty regular occurrence and that a raging housing market for too long is rarely a good thing. So, let’s get some facts straight about the local market. Houses are still selling, it’s just taking a little longer and prices aren’t rapidly rising, although still higher than twelve months ago. In addition there are fewer buyers around as the buy-to-let market and overseas buyer numbers have diminished. Neither of these are necessarily a bad thing.

 

Finally, a first-time buyer has time to look at a property a couple of times and make a considered purchase without competing with another forty people and without mild indecision costing them thousands of pounds. This hasn’t been the case for many years now. If I were a first-time buyer then this is exactly the type of market in which I would look to buy. As for sellers looking to move for reasons other than profit, genuine reasons like having a baby, down-sizing, job moves, wanting a house with a garage, needing a bit more space, needing an annexe for a relative, essentially all the reasons that we really need to move house, this is exactly the sort of market to move in. By the time you’ve agreed a sale the housing market hasn’t moved on so fast that it’s no longer feasible to move. You’re not finding it impossible to secure a property to buy because of too much competition and the process does not have to be conducted at quite such a breakneck pace lowering the potential stress levels.

 

Let’s also look at the other positives to a calmer property market. Interest rates are still low and don’t look to be increasing hugely any time soon. This allows savvy buyers the opportunity to make overpayments on their mortgage and become mortgage free sooner in life. Property prices always rise over time as there still isn’t enough property being built to fulfil long term demand, with property values in some areas, fifty percent higher than ten years ago, coincidentally the last time the market suffered a correction. If you’re upsizing then you don’t want rapidly rising house prices, as the gap in monetary terms between your purchase price and sale price is forever getting greater. In fact, if this is your situation, you might actually be better off long term if house prices were to stay level for some time.

 

Obviously, this type of market doesn’t suit everybody but there are many advantages to it if you’re willing look beyond the headlines. Moving house is a complicated process and we feel it’s important to look at the bigger picture about your personal circumstances and not only what your house is worth.


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Rainham Office
67C High Street
Rainham
Kent ME8 7HS

Tel: 01634 377737
Email: rainham@greyfox.co.uk



Walderslade Office
Unit 2, Thetford House, Walderslade Village Centre, Walderslade Road, Chatham,
Kent ME5 9LR

Tel: 01634 672227
Email: walderslade@greyfox.co.uk

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Greyfox Investments LTD t/a Greyfox Sales & Lettings are registered in England at: Unit 2, Thetford House, Walderslade Village Centre, Walderslade Road, Chatham, Kent, ME5 9LR. Company Reg No.: 06504741