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101 Ways How To Sell Your House Faster (And For More Money, Too)

101 Ways How To Sell Your House Faster (And For More Money, Too)


If you’re considering moving house, or your home is already up for sale, the following list of 101 ways to sell your house faster will be right up your street.

In many cases, implementing as many of these suggestions as possible will also increase the likelihood of you achieving a higher sales price too! It’s a win-win!

Internal Improvements

There are a number of improvements you can make to the interior of a property to help give it that ‘wow’ factor and ensure it will appeal to more buyers.

1. Paint Old Wall Tiles – Dated bathroom or kitchen tiles can easily be given a fresh, new look with a lick of tile paint. You’ll need to clean and sand the tiles first, then apply both primer and tile paint to get the best results. Multiple coats will probably be needed but it’ll be worth it.

2. Refresh Grouting – The grouting between tiles can soon become discoloured and stained over time. If the grouting is otherwise in good condition, a grout pen can be bought for just a few pounds to repaint the grouting and make it look clean and fresh again.

3. Repaint Walls In Neutral Colours – Houses with neutral decor tend to sell faster than those with unusual or strong colours. That’s because they are more broadly accepted and make it easier for people to imagine themselves living there.

Repaint any walls that are particularly strong with more neutral colours.

4. Change The Carpets – Old carpets can make houses feel dated and uncared for, they can even make rooms feel smaller and darker. Swap any dated carpets for fresh neutral ones to give a room an instant lift.

Install A Log Burner - Ways To Sell Your House Faster

5. Install A Log Burner – Log burners are very much ‘in’ at the moment as people love the idea of sitting by a fire on a cold winters night.

With the ever-rising cost of gas and electric, they are seen as a good way for homeowners to reduce energy bills, making log burners an attractive addition for potential buyers.

6. Create A Kitchen-Diner – Kitchens are no longer seen as simply the place where people prepare meals. Families increasingly are spending more time in the kitchen, or certainly at the kitchen table. That’s why many buyers put a combined kitchen-diner on their ‘must-have’ list and why, if you can create one in your home, you should.

7. Change Kitchen Cabinets – Better yet, if the cabinets themselves are in good structural condition, save yourself some money and just replace the cabinet doors and worktops. This can give the impression of having a brand new kitchen but at the fraction of the cost of a complete revamp.

8. Update The Bathroom – According to many property experts, the kitchen and the bathroom are the two most important rooms in the house.

Therefore, if your bathroom is looking dated, it might be worth having it replaced, although keep in mind that while your home may sell faster, the sale price may not rise by as much as you spend on the bathroom refurb.

9. Use Mirrors Wisely – A well-placed mirror can make a small, dark room feel bigger and lighter. Place them opposite windows so they can bounce the light around the room and put them at eye-level to give a ‘never-ending’ feel to a room.

They work particularly well in hallways as people also like to check they look OK before leaving the house.

10. Re-arrange Furniture – You’ve probably had your furniture laid out in their current positions for years, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t a better way to position things.

Have a go at moving furniture around to see if you can find another layout that makes the room more practical or feel larger. Don’t be afraid to get rid of some furniture if this helps your cause.

11. New Blinds & Curtains – Another easy way to revitalise a tired looking room is to replace old blinds and curtains with new ones. Stick to fairly neutral, modern-looking designs to ensure they appeal to as many prospective buyers as possible.

Use Lampshades To Sell Home Quickly

12. Use Lampshades – Every light fitting in the house should have either a proper decorative light fitting or a nice, fresh lampshade to make the house feel more like home.

13. Add A Loft Conversion – Extending into the roof space isn’t cheap and isn’t for the light-hearted, however, when done well they can add as much as 12% to the value of a home. The extra space can also help you appeal to more buyers, making it one of the best ways to sell your house faster.

14. Convert The Garage – Who uses garages for parking cars in these days? Hardly anyone. Therefore, if your garage is attached to your house, consider converting it to turn it into an extra bedroom or living space.

Houses with converted garages tend to sell for around 10%-20% more than similar properties that haven’t carried out a conversion. Again, the extra space you create can also help you find a buyer more quickly.

15. Knock Down A Wall – Open-plan living is all the rage now with many people specifically seeking out free-flowing properties were the main living spaces merge into one.

If knocking down walls to create open-plan living is possible, it’s worth considering. Just keep in mind that not everyone prefers open plan living and so it may not be worth the cost. Check with a local estate agent first to get a feel for the desired trend in your area.

16. Uncover Original Features – If you live in an older property, you’ll often find that some of the original features have been covered up over time. Beautiful old fireplaces and beams can often be revealed with a little bit of work to make for stunning focal points in a room, adding plenty of character to your home.

External Improvements

Never underestimate the importance of first impressions. Spending some time improving the exterior of your home will help to boost the kerb appeal of your home.

17. Add Extra Parking – Paving or concreting over part of your front garden to provide additional parking is a great way to appeal to more buyers. Owning a car is no longer a luxury and more than 30% of households now have two or more cars, that’s why good parking provisions are a must-have for many house hunters.

18. Add A Juliet Balcony – Juliet balconies are the ones where you have french doors on an upper level protected by a railing. You can’t walk out on to them but they do allow you to let much more light and air into a room making them popular amongst buyers.

If you have the option of adding a proper balcony, even better!

Add A Conservatory To Increase House Value

19. Add A Conservatory – Perhaps not the cheapest option but conservatories remain very popular amongst house hunters. In fact, they are said to increase the value of a house by around 7%.

20. Put Up A New House Number – Kerb appeal counts for a lot and putting up a clear, modern house number won’t just help people find your house, it will increase it’s attractiveness to potential buyers too.

21. Refurbish Your Front Door – Sticking with the kerb appeal angle, a tatty front door can give potential buyers the wrong impression before they have even stepped foot in the house! Clean or upgrade the door handles, letterbox, or the whole door itself to ensure you don’t put people off.

22. Make Front Gardens Low Maintenance – With busy modern lives, many buyers prefer not to have to spend hours working in their garden, particularly the front garden. If you can pave or gravel over areas to prevent the need for cutting the lawn or weeding the flower beds you can make your property a more appealing proposition for potential buyers.

23. Install Decking – Decking has a number of benefits, it’s cheap and simple to install yet it still looks great and spruces up any garden. It also helps to create a space that needs much less maintenance.

Better yet, decking is thought to add around 2% to the value of a house. Just make sure it’s in tip-top condition so that restaining or repairing it doesn’t make it on to a prospective buyers ‘to-do’ list.

24. Re-lay An Uneven Patio – Whether you can afford to completely replace the patio, or can get away with just pulling up the slabs, re-levelling the ground, and relaying the existing slabs, giving some love to an uneven patio can help you find a buyer and is a great way to sell your house faster

Internal Maintenance

You may have got used to the little quirks of your house, but they will stand out like a sore thumb to potential buyers, so it’s best to sort them out before showing viewers around.

25. Fix Dripping Taps – You know that tap that’s been dripping so long you’ve just got used to it? It needs fixing. Dripping taps alone are unlikely to put buyers off, but if combined with other problems it could indicate to a potential buyer that you haven’t taken care of the property and there may be other issues yet to be found.

26. Add More Storage – A house with little or no storage can be a turn-off for potential buyers, especially those with children. Look at ways you can add storage with custom-made cupboards or by boarding out the loft space.

27. Oil Creaking Doors – Like dripping taps, a creaking door alone shouldn’t put a buyer off purchasing your property if it’s right for them. However, it’s one of those things that’s so easy to fix, there’s no reason not to do it!

28. Install More Electrical Sockets – You’ll need to ensure you use a qualified electrician, but, adding more sockets to a room can help increase the layout options for potential buyers. This can aid their imagination when thinking of where their furniture could go, a vital step towards securing a sale!

Check Lightbulbs Work When Selling Your Home

29. Check Lightbulbs Work – Replacing any blown or missing light bulbs is simple to do and helps make rooms feel more light and airy.

30. Replace The Shower Curtain/Screen – Shower curtains and screens usually develop black mould spots over time which makes them look old, uncared for, and possibly unclean. Give them a good scrub, but if the stains won’t shift, replace the entire thing!

31. Replace Silicone Sealant – Silicone sealant is used around the edges of baths and sinks to create a nicer join and prevent water seeping into unprotected areas. Over time, like with shower curtains, mould spots can appear. Replacing the silicone is a relatively simple job and can make a bathroom or kitchen feel clean and new again.

32. Replace Misty Windows – If you have condensation that forms between the panes of glass on a double glazed window, that means they are no longer effectively insulation your house. It also indicates the windows may need replacing soon.

Save your prospective buyers a job by replacing the windows that are misting up. It may even be possible to just have the existing windows resealed which will save you considerable money.

33. Fix Damp Problems – Damp issues will show themselves as stains, marks, or mould on an internal wall or as ‘spongy’ feeling floorboards. Usually damp is caused by an external problem such as a leaky gutter or blocked drain.

Solve the cause of the damp first, then rectify the damage. If left untreated, damp can lead to serious issues and so will often put buyers off.

External Maintenance

You need to create an impression of a well-maintained home to avoid scaring off buyers who may think that smaller issues could lead to finding larger issues once they have moved in.

34. Repoint Cracked Walls – Cracking of external walls is fairly common. It usually indicates that some kind of movement has happened in the past. If this movement is long-standing and non-progressive, repoint the cracks to make the building look like it’s been properly cared for.

34. Repair Leaky Guttering – Leaking or blocked gutters can cause significant damp issues if left untreated. Fixing them not only helps avoid this, it also makes your property look like it’s in better overall condition.

35. Add Outside Lighting – This is particularly important when the nights draw in and viewings in the dark become commonplace. Outside lighting will make your home look more welcoming from the moment a potential buyer arrives, helping to make the right first impression.

Replace Missing Roof Tiles

36. Replace Missing Roof Tiles – Damaged or missing roof tiles have the potential to cause problems if water is able to penetrate into your property. Get them replaced now to prevent any costly further damage.

37. Get The Pressure Washer Out – It’s amazing how much dirt can accumulate on paths, driveways, patios, and even walls. In fact, you probably won’t even realise how dirty things are until you start cleaning them. Use a pressure washer to quickly lift off the dirt and significantly increase the kerb appeal of your home.

38. Refelt Flat Roofs – If any part of your roof is flat, check whether it’s in need of refelting. Properly installed, well-maintained flat roofs can last for 20-25 years.

39. Clean Fascias – The boards which your guttering is attached to is the fascia, while the board underneath is called a soffit. Cleaning the guttering and fascia board is a great way to give the outside of your home a facelift in advance of selling.

40. Check Your Doorbell – The last thing you want is to miss a potential viewing because you didn’t hear them at the door! Check your doorbell is working as it should be.

41. Repair Broken Fences – If your fencing is damaged in some way, make sure you repair it in advance of putting your property on the market. Often you’ll be able to repair it without spending much, but be prepared to completely replace the fence or panels if needed.

The Property Listing

The property listing is the advert for your home. It will directly influence how many viewings get booked and the level of offers you receive, so, it’s important to get it right.

42. Use Online Estate Agents – As the homeowner, you know what it means to live in your property. You can therefore probably do a better job of selling your property than any estate agent (see this video). And that means you may be able to sell your house faster with an online estate agent where you can conduct viewings yourself and make almost instant changes to your property listing.

Online estate agents also tend to have longer opening hours, meaning it’s easier for potential buyers to book viewings. If you need some help in choosing the right agent for you,  make sure you read our online estate agent reviews.

43. Lower Your Asking Price – Obviously, you’ll want to get the highest possible price for your property so you shouldn’t do this unless absolutely necessary. But, if you feel your home is overvalued or you want to sell quicker, drop your asking price a little to attract more interest.

44. Upgrade Your Property Listing – Property portals such as Rightmove offer property listing upgrades to make your listing more visible to potential buyers.

For an additional fee, they can bump it to the top of the search results, highlight it in a different colour, and add various other upgrades. Talk to your estate agent to see what’s possible.

Use Better Property Photographs

45. Use Better Photographs – Don’t think you have to go with the first set of photographs your estate agent produces. If you feel they can get better photos, ask them to redo them or provide your own. Equally, you can try using different photographs as the main image on your property listing to see which one produces the most interest.

46. Add A Virtual Tour – Make sure you make use of all options on your property listing. If your estate agent offers a virtual tour, get it added to your listing. The more you can do to draw people into booking a viewing, the better.

47. Sell To An Investor – Depending on the type and price of your property, it may appeal to an investor. If you can find an investor who wants to buy your home, the advantage is they’ll usually be chain-free and cash buyers, helping the sale go through more quickly. On the downside, you might have to accept a lower price than you would if selling to a normal buyer.

48. Use Social Media – According to research, the average person now spends 1 hour and 40 minutes on social media platforms every single day. That means sharing your property on Facebook, Twitter, and other platforms is a great way to generate additional exposure for your home.

49. Sell At An Auction – Like selling directly to an investor, property auctions mean you might have to accept a slightly lower price for your property than if you find a buyer on the open market. However, despite that, property auctions are one of the best ways to sell your house quickly so shouldn’t be entirely discounted.

Internal Staging For Viewings

To successfully sell your home, buyers need to feel like it’s already theirs as soon as they walk in. Correctly staging your home for viewings will help to increase the likelihood of someone falling head over heels for your home.

50. Take Magnets Off The Fridge – If you have magnets, photos, or even children’s drawings stuck to your fridge, remove them for viewings. Doing so helps to de-personalise your home, making it easier for potential buyers to imagine themselves living there.

51. Clear Kitchen Counters – Removing as many things from the kitchen worktops as possible will help to create a tidier, more spacious looking kitchen and help show you are not pushed for storage space.

52. Remove Personal Photos – This is really important but overlooked by many sellers. Like removing fridge magnets, taking down personal photos during viewings will make it easier for potential buyers to picture their own photos and furniture in the property.

53. Put Beds In Bedrooms – If you’re currently using a bedroom as a study, storage room, or anything that isn’t a bedroom, it’s time to revert it back to it’s intended use.

Placing a bed in a bedroom makes it much easier for people to imagine the room as a bedroom and get a sense for how much space is available in the room once a bed is in there.

54. Have A Spring Clean – Get right into the nooks and crannies of every room to dust away dirt and cobwebs. Doing so will create a cleaner, fresher environment and show you are house-proud and have taken care of your home.

55. Declutter – One of the single, most effective ways to sell your house faster is to have a full declutter and sell or dispose of any unwanted items or furniture. Doing so will help de-personalise your home, make it look larger, and make your job of packing much easier!

Start Packing To Be Ready To Move House

56. Start Packing – Similar to decluttering, if you have places where you can store boxes out of sight, it’s never too early to start packing a few non-essential items.

Packing early will have a similar effect as decluttering, but will also help you move more quickly when an offer does come in. Just don’t overdo it and leave your house looking empty and soulless!

57. Turn Up The Heating – If the weather outside is frightful, it’s time to make your home delightful! When potential buyers come out from the cold into your nicely warmed property, they’ll immediately feel more welcome and more at home. It also helps to show your heating system is in full working order.

58. Put Bread In The Oven – The smell of freshly made bread has long been known to influence our buying behaviour. That’s why supermarkets often deliberately let the smell drift around their store and why estate agents often recommend baking bread just before a potential buyer arrives.

If you don’t have time to make a dough, the part-baked loaves of bread you can buy at the supermarket are a good compromise.

59. Use Air Fresheners – Most homes have a distinctive smell, but as the owner, you probably don’t notice it. It’s not necessarily a bad smell but it’s still worth using air fresheners to help make your home more inviting. This is particularly important if you have pets that could cause odours.

60. Turn On Lights – If a property feels dark it can also feel colder and smaller. Even the lightest room can feel a little dark on overcast days. Turn on lights throughout the house just before a viewing to ensure your home feels warm, light, and welcoming.

61. Open Blinds – Similar to turning on lights, making sure all blinds are open will help make your home look more light and airy as the natural light floods in.

62. Play Calming Background Music – Music is used all around the world to set the right atmosphere in bars, restaurants, and even shops, so, why should your home be any different?

Playing gentle, calming music in the background as you show people around your home helps people relax and feel at home

63. Remove Pet Bowls, Toys, And Bedding – Have a quick sweep around your house before a viewing appointment arrives and pick up and items belonging to your pets. They not only make rooms look untidy but can also omit pet odours that will put some buyers off.

64. Get A New Doormat – Doormats are one of those things that are easy to get used to, even when they are dirty or in poor condition. Yet, they are one of the first things a visitor to your home will see.

Making sure you have a nice new, clean, doormat helps to give the right impression the moment (literally!) someone steps through the door.

Put Fresh Flowers On Table

65. Put Fresh Flowers On Tables – Flowers are great at brightening up a room and adding a subtle, natural fragrance. Use them to your advantage and place them in the centre of a table, on a sideboard, or on the mantlepiece for best effect.

66. Clean The Oven – A clean oven is a sign that you have cared for your property and the items in it, and yes, some people DO check inside ovens during viewings! Make sure it’s clean and sparkling to create the right impression.

67. Polish Door Handles – Dirt and finger marks on door handles is a big turn-off for many potential buyers. If your door handles are looking a little grubby, make sure you give them a good clean and polish to bring back a bit of sparkle!

68. Wash And Put Away Pots – Leaving dirty plates out on kitchen worktops is a big ‘no-no’ when showing potential buyers around your house. They signify a lack of love for the property and can make it look like there isn’t enough storage space.

69. Turn Off The TV – Unless you want to deliberately mask noise from outside (in which case, see tip 62), turn the TV off to give viewers a chance to really image themselves living there.

70. Get A Smaller TV – As technology has improved, our television sets have got larger and larger. And, a large TV makes a room look smaller so downgrade at least for a little while to avoid people dismissing your property as too small.

71. Make Sure All Rooms Have A Purpose – And no, a storage room does not have a purpose! You want to give people creative ideas about how space can be used, they’ll find that harder to do if a room is unused or just being used for an unusual purpose.

72. Freshen Up Your Sofa With A Throw – Worn or tatty sofas can be brought back to life with a nice new throw to cover any unsightly bits and give a better first impression when someone enters a room.

External Staging For Viewings

As soon as a potential buyer pulls up outside your home, they are already judging it to make sure it’s right for them. Making sure it looks at it’s best from the moment they arrive is key to finding a buyer fast.

73. Mow The Lawn – Long, uncut grass gives the impression your home is uncared for and may have hidden issues. Therefore, cut the grass regularly, particularly if you have a front lawn so that you create the correct first impression.

74. Plant New Flowers – The colours and smells of fresh new flowers growing in your borders will brighten up and garden and ensure your outside space is welcoming and appealing to potential buyers.

75. Restain Sheds & Fences – Nothing makes a garden look old and unkempt than sheds and fences that haven’t been restained or treated for years. A fresh link of wood stain or paint works wonders on the overall look of your garden.

Weed The Garden For Viewings

76. Weed The Garden – Who wants a garden full of weeds? It’s one of those tedious jobs we’d all rather not do, but having a good weeding session before a viewing is like giving your garden an instant facelift.

77. Clean The Windows – A layer of dirt on your windows and window frames instantly gives the impression your house has been left to deteriorate. Don’t let that put off potential buyers, get the squeegee out!

78. Tidy The Garage – For some reason, many sellers forget that a buyer may want to see inside the garage. A tidy garage shows you are organised and have everything in order – attractive qualities when it comes to progressing a sale.

79. Trim Overgrown Bushes – Keeping bushes neat and tidy helps to create a better impression. That said, it’s best to avoid trimming bushes between March and August when birds may be nesting inside.

80. Hide Wheelie Bins – We know you can’t make them disappear, but placing wheelie bins somewhere discreet creates a better impression.

Try and avoid leaving them on display at the front of the house. If needed, buy purpose-built wheelie bin storage to keep bins hidden.

81. Check Your Neighbours Gardens – We know this can be tricky but if your neighbour has an untidy garden, it could put someone off buying your house. Offer to have a tidy up for them if necessary.

The Viewing

‘Selling’ your property during a viewing is vital to achieving a sale. The good news is, you’re probably much better at it than you think!

82. Include ‘Extras’ – To encourage a quicker sale or attract a higher sales price you can include extra items such as sofas, sheds, white goods, etc in the sale.

Buyers may like the fact they can save themselves money on some furnishings and you end up with one less thing to move or sell. It’s win-win!

83. Move Pets – We don’t mean permanently! Making provisions for someone to look after your pets during viewings can stop them putting off buyers who aren’t into pets.

84. Know Your Area – The more you know about your local surroundings, the better you’ll be able to ‘sell’ your property during viewings. It’s, therefore, one of the most powerful ways to sell your house faster.

85. Know Your Property – Likewise, the more you know about your home, the type of heating you have, when the extension was added, and so on, the better you’ll be able to ‘sell’ your home.

86. Know Your Buyer – Understanding exactly what your potential buyer is looking for is vital if you want to be able to point out the best bits of your house that they’ll be interested in.

87. Understand Benefits – When you show people around your property, be sure to mention the benefits of any features you point out. For instance, the new combi boiler you just had installed isn’t just a new boiler, it’s more efficient so saves money on heating bills.

Remember that it’s the benefits that really sell something to a prospective buyer, not the features. You can read more about this in our article on how to conduct your own viewings.

Host An open House To Sell Your House Faster

88. Host An Open House – An open house is where, rather than having specific time slots for each viewing, you allow everyone who is interested to turn up and view the property during a specific time slot.

The advantage of an open house is that multiple people will be looking at the property at once, that adds some competition and fear of missing out, which helps to get more offers and drive up the price.

89. Printed Brochures – House hunters will often view more than one property in the same day. Therefore, having a properly prepared printed sales brochure at hand means your viewers can take something away to remind them what your property offered.

90. Use A ‘For Sale’ Board – A ‘For Sale’ board is a great way to advertise your property for sale to passers-by. In fact, you would be surprised at how many people book viewings after driving past a ‘For Sale’ board.

91. Check Out The Competition – If any of your neighbouring properties are up for sale, be sure to check out their property listings to see how they differ from your home.

That helps you understand what you’re up against and ensures you know how to put your property in the best possible light compared to your neighbours.

92. Be Ready For Unexpected Viewings – Once your property is on the market, it’s not unusual for you to get last-minute viewing requests. By ensuring your house is always well-presented you won’t have to turn any of these viewings away.

93. Leave Your Driveway Free – When someone views your property, you want them to feel like they already live there. That will allow them to fall in love and put in an offer. Leave your driveway free for them to use to enhance the feeling it’s already theirs.

94. Arrange Viewings For The Right Time – There are probably good times and bad times for people to view your property. If you live near a school, this could be during school rush hour when parking becomes difficult. If you live near a pub, this could be a Saturday evening when things can get a little rowdy.

Think about what times of day would put your property in a lesser light and try and avoid arranging viewings for these times.

95. Put The Kettle On – Again, you want people to feel at home when they view your property. So, one of the best ways to sell your house faster is to offer them a cup of tea or coffee when they arrive so that they feel more at home.

96. Don’t Leave A House Empty – Many people lack the imagination needed to picture how a property will look with furniture in. That’s why in new builds, there’s always a fully furnished show home you can view.

So, don’t leave a house or even a room completely empty. If you need to, pick up bargains from charity shops or freebies from places such as Freecycle in order to kit out an empty property.

Helping The Sales Process

There are several things you can do to help speed up the process and ensure a quick sale even once an offer has been accepted.

97. Move Into Rented Accommodation – Your house instantly becomes more attractive to buyers if you’re not in a chain. Not only that, taking yourself out of a chain by agreeing to move into rented accommodation means at least one fewer cog in the chain that could break and cause the sale to fall through.

It also means there are few complications likely to slow the whole process down, allowing you to reach the point of exchange far, far quicker.

Conduct A Survey On your Own Home

98. Conduct A Survey – If you do decide to stay in a chain and find somewhere to move to, make sure you get a survey carried out as quickly as possible to show you are serious and give yourself plenty of time to deal with any issues it highlights.

You could also conduct a survey on your own property and provide it to the buyer in order to avoid having to wait for them to carry out their own, thus speeding up the process. Just be sure to use a fully qualified chartered surveyor.

99. Appoint A Solicitor – The earlier you can appoint a solicitor to handle the conveyancing process for you, the better. Even if you’re not ready to give them the go-ahead yet, at least do your homework now so you can move faster when you are.

100. Apply For Planning Permission – If your property is likely to attract buyers who will want to develop the property through an extension or other work that would require planning permission, apply for it in advance.

Not only could this add a substantial amount to the value of your home, it could also help the sales process go more smoothly once you’ve accepted an offer.

101. Keep The Pressure On – You might need to regularly chase your estate agent and/or solicitor in order to keep things moving forward. Don’t be afraid to put the pressure on to keep the sale on track.

Phew! You made it! So, that’s a massive list of 101 ways to sell your house faster. It might be a long list but it’s still not a comprehensive list.

Get creative and think logically and you may come up with even more ways to sell your house faster!

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Home insulation grants: can you get help paying for loft and cavity wall insulation?

Home insulation grants: can you get help paying for loft and cavity wall insulation?


Home insulation grants can help you get loft and cavity wall insulation, potentially saving you more than £1,000 on your annual energy bills.

Winter is approaching and even with the government’s ‘energy price guarantee’, keeping bills down is a priority for many households in the face of rising inflation and costs.

But you can save costs by keeping the heat in your home with loft and cavity wall insulation.

Here we explain how much insulation can save you, what grants are available to help pay for it and how you can insulate your own home.


A quarter of heat is lost through the roof if not insulated, Energy Saving Trust(opens in new tab) explains. This is the case with all types of roofs including sloped, flat or loft space.

According to EDF(opens in new tab), both cavity wall and loft insulation can save you up to £1,060 per year on energy bills.


If we break it up into the type of home you live in, here’s how much you could save annually if you get cavity wall insulation alone, according to Energy Saving Trust:

Detached house £480.00
Semi detached house £285.00
Mid-terrace house £180.00
Detached bungalow £195.00
Mid-floor flat £145.00

These figures are based on the current energy price cap of £1,971 set by Ofgem(opens in new tab).


Energy Saving Trust also worked out how much you could save annually if you get 270mm of loft insulation:

Detached house £580.00
Semi detached house £255.00
Mid-terrace house £230.00
Detached bungalow £365.00

Before looking into it, you should also check if your home needs loft or cavity wall insulation as it depends on how old your house is and its wall type.

For example, Energy Saving Trust(opens in new tab) says houses built after the 1920’s are likely to have a cavity wall, which are 2 walls with a gap, the gap being the ‘cavity.’ Houses before this time might have a solid wall, in which case you don’t need cavity wall insulation.


The Energy Company Obligation (ECO) scheme, means there are grants available to insulate your home.

Big energy firms like British Gas, E.ON, Scottish Power and Octopus Energy are taking part in the ECO scheme, and they are offering to insulate your roof and cavity wall for free (subject to terms). You can find yoru firms contact details on the Ofgem website(opens in new tab)

The government says(opens in new tab) you could be eligible if you live in private housing (for example you own your home or rent from a private landlord) and get one of the following benefits:

  • Child Tax Credit
  • Working Tax Credit
  • Universal Credit
  • Pension Guarantee Credit
  • Pension Savings Credit
  • Income Support
  • income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA)
  • income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
  • Child Benefit
  • Housing Benefit

The energy rating of your home also matters.

  • If you own your house, it must have an energy efficiency rating of D, E, F or G to be eligible.
  • If you rent from a private landlord, the house must have an energy efficiency rating of E, F or G to be eligible. You must have the owner’s permission to do the work.
  • If you live in social housing that has an energy efficiency rating of E, F or G you might also be eligible for help with insulation or installing a heating system for the first time.

You can use the energy performance certificate register(opens in new tab) to find your property’s energy efficiency rating, or ask your landlord.

The criteria includes the homeowner must be claiming benefits which is listed on the government website, and it depends on the energy efficiency rating of your home.


Energy Saving Trust advise that cavity wall insulation is not something you can do yourself and you should get a professional in to do the job, someone who is registered. For a detached house, having cavity wall insulation put in costs around £610.

To find some trustworthy to carry out the work, you should look out for a tradesperson who is a member of one of the following:

When it comes to loft insulation, if you have easy access and there is no condensation or damp issues, then you could do it yourself, saving you money in the short term and long term.

If you prefer to get a professional in to do the loft insulation for you, then you can do so. It’s good to check that they are part of the National Insulation Association(opens in new tab) to ensure they are trustworthy.

Whether you’re looking for a tradesperson to do loft insulation or cavity wall insulation, you can also check on the Trustmark(opens in new tab) website to see if they are trusted by the government.

Labour costs average around £250 per day. Depending on the type of roof insulation you want, material costs can vary between £10 to £40 per square metre, according to Checkatrade(opens in new tab).


Yes. It’s a relatively straightforward DIY task for a fit and healthy person.

DIY retailer Wickes(opens in new tab) recommends you first, clear the loft to ensure you have a safe working space.

  1. Lay walkboards on the loft ground so you can use it to walk across, lean on and place the insulation on.
  2. Then, measure the insulation roll and the space between the loft joists and cut the roll according to the size of the gap. You usually get 400mm or 600mm roll sizes.
  3. Once cut, put the insulation down covering the walkboards. Start from the furthest corner and make your way to the loft hatch. It’s important that you have to squeeze the insulation in with a ‘friction fit’ so there are no gaps, otherwise heat can be lost.
  4. Also remember not to press down hard on the insulation as this can reduce how well it insulates. It’s good to keep any off cuts you have to fill any small spaces.
  5. Once the first layer is complete, unroll the second layer over the top of the first (which doesn’t need to be cut to any particular size, as long as it’s covering the first layer).
  6. Lastly, don’t forget to insulate the loft hatch.


After having loft or cavity wall insulation installed, new or old problems can occur. You may find damp after a loft or cavity wall insulation.

This can be for several reasons, a damp problem could have occurred at the time of the installation, the house might not be right for the measured insulation, the insulation wasn’t done correctly or there might have already been a damp problem that was never resolved.

Energy Saving Trust(opens in new tab) recommends that if you can’t put your finger on the problem, then you should look out for damaged/ blocked gutters, missing slates or tiles, damaged bricks, plumbing leaks or excessive moisture.

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Solar panel sales boom as energy bills soar

Solar panel sales boom as energy bills soar



The energy bills crisis has prompted a big rise in demand for solar panels.


Just over 3,000 solar installations are being carried out every week, according to trade association Solar Energy UK, up from 1,000 a week in July 2020.

One provider said this month it had seen enquiries about solar panels rise tenfold.

“More solar panels are being put on British roofs than ever before,” said Chris Hewett, chief executive of Solar Energy UK.

The fact that renewable energy helps protect the planet has always made it an attractive option.

The way they work is simple: the panels absorb sunlight through photovoltaic cells which convert it into electricity that can be flowed through your home, or into a battery.

The process significantly reduces the amount of electricity you will need from the network.

People who have successfully installed solar panels report saving hundreds of pounds on electricity bills.

But they are not the answer for everyone, as installing them means an upfront investment of thousands of pounds and you’ll need the right type of property.

Soaring energy prices, however, have slashed the time taken to recoup your initial costs.

How much does it cost?

A decade ago a typical solar panel system cost around £20,000 and would take around a decade to cover those set-up costs.

But prices for solar panel systems have fallen by more than 60% since then, meaning it takes between four and five years for a system to pay for itself.

The price includes installation and the number of panels will depend on how much space you have on a roof. A typical 20sq m roof could hold 12 panels.

The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors suggests a standard solar panel system costs between £9,000 to £11,700, while Solar Energy UK lists the cost of a “typical” 3.1kWp system for a three-bed house as £3,925.

What you’ll end up paying will depend on the size of the system, the type of panel you choose, the quality of components, the accessibility and state of repair of your roof, and the individual installer, says Which?

What types of properties are suitable?

Not everyone will own a home that can benefit from solar energy, especially if you own a north-facing property, or your home is largely shaded.

“Solar panels are perfect for residential properties with a south, east or west-facing roof, preferably without any shading,” says Mandip Bhamra, head of renewables at SaveMoneyCutCarbon.

“Depending on how old your house is, you may want to check your roof is structurally sound before fitting the solar panels onto it,” says Brian Davenport, owner of The Solar Centre .

He says most installers will have access to a structural engineer for calculating the wind-load should a roof show any signs of distress.

“There should also be a small amount of room made available in your loft for the inverter, which is roughly the size of a microwave,” he adds.

If you live in a flat you’d need to discuss the issue of installing solar panels with other residents and the freeholder.

“For a block of flats, most roofing should be fine, and with some flats where there is excess land, these can be placed in the ground too,” says Mandip Bhamra.

How much could solar power help reduce your bills?

The amount of electricity solar panels generate depends on the type and size of system and home.

A report for Solar Energy UK suggests that a typical home could cut electricity bills by more than £300 a year. Households with electric heating could be more than £900 a year better off, the report said, although most UK households remain on gas central heating.

If energy bills rise as predicted this winter, then the value of electricity generated through solar panels could almost double, says Kevin Holland, managing director of The Solar Shed, a Norfolk-based renewable energy business.

He says a typical solar panel system could generate £1,200 worth of electricity in a year at current prices.

If energy bills rise by 80% in October plus a further 50% in January, as forecast, then the value of electricity generated by a typical system could climb to around £3,240.

Also, if you don’t actually use all the electricity you generate, you can sell that surplus to an energy firm.

‘Solar panels help me save £80 a month’

Colin Froude installed solar panels on his detached home in Salisbury, Wiltshire 11 years ago.

“I’ve never regretted it. It paid for itself in about seven or eight years and now my energy bills are just £67 a month, a saving of up to £80 a month,” says Colin, who used to be in the Royal Air Force but is now retired.

“Paying that by standing order means I’ve actually built up a £330 credit in recent months so even when bills climb in October I won’t increase my standing order as that credit should see me through into the New Year.”

He spent £18,000 on installing 19 solar panels on his home in 2011 and says that has since generated £21,000 worth of electricity.

He spent another £12,000 installing a battery, new transformer and optimisers fitted to each panel a year ago but says that has improved efficiency enormously.

The move paid off. The system generated 1,600kwh in three months this summer.

“I did it to future-proof the house as protection against power cuts but it’s rapidly paying for itself.”

He cooks with electricity and says the solar panels generate all the hot water the household needs, so in the summer months when the heating is off, he pays nothing for gas.

“Given the rising cost of energy I would recommend solar panels to anyone,” he says.

What else should you bear in mind?

It’s a big investment so there are several things to consider.

“Well-chosen solar panel systems can provide a reliable source of renewable electricity for decades, helping to cut your carbon footprint, but buying an inappropriate system could leave you out of pocket,” says Which?

In other words it’s important to do thorough research and get a variety of quotes.

It is also worth considering that however much you splash out, it may not add an equal value to your home. Ageing, unattractive old solar panels could well put some potential buyers off.


“As long as you can’t see them, solar panels are a great idea,” says Charlie Wells, managing director of estate agency Prime Purchase.

Estate agents are unlikely to offer a higher valuation if a property already has solar panels installed,” says Brian Davenport.

But some buyers will be attracted by renewable energy and the chance to save cash on energy bills, says Kevin Holland.

“If there are two houses in the street for sale, one has no solar and a £4,000 energy bill, the other has solar and a £1,500 energy bill, which one are you buying?” he says.

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Collapse of supplier Bulb could add more than £150 to energy bills

Collapse of supplier Bulb could add more than £150 to energy bills


Households could end up paying more than £150 extra on their energy bills because of the collapse of Bulb, as the price of bailing out the failed supplier threatens to top £4bn by next spring.

The cost of bailing out the UK company, which has about 1.4 million customers, has escalated because of rising wholesale gas prices since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The Office for Budget Responsibility said in March that the bailout would cost £2.2bn over two years. The consultancy Auxilione forecasts that Bulb could lose a further £420m for the six months to October, when households use less energy, and £1.6bn during the colder winter months.

Bulb is in a special administration overseen by the UK government and run by the restructuring firm Teneo. The government has refused to allow it to hedge – where companies buy energy at a fixed price for a certain period – exposing it to rising gas prices.

Bulb was one of 29 suppliers to have collapsed during the energy crisis, with many caught out by sharp rises in prices combined with a lack of hedging.

The Auxilione director Tony Jordan told the Financial Times the government “was paying a high price for the lack of hedging, and costs could rise even higher if gas prices continue to soar”.

Bulb was considered too large to fail and the government stepped in to handle its administration. However, it has yet to find a buyer, with only Octopus, the UK’s fourth largest supplier, still interested in a deal.

Octopus has offered to take over Bulb’s customers if the government buys gas and electricity in advance at a cost of £1bn, the FT reported. Octopus has also offered terms under which it would share in the profits of Bulb’s customers with the government should they become profitable. The Octopus chief executive, Greg Jackson, declined to comment on the report.

Wholesale gas prices soared again on Monday – with the UK month ahead price up 16% to 535p a therm.

The Russian state energy company Gazprom said on Friday – after financial markets closed – that it would halt natural gas supplies to Europe through its main Nord Stream 1 pipeline for three days at the end of the month.

The unscheduled maintenance on the pipeline under the Baltic Sea will take place on 31 August until 2 September.

Industry watchers fear that Russia will not switch supplies into Europe back on, forcing countries to cut their gas consumption and risking a recession in Germany, which relies on Russian gas imports.

The energy crisis in Great Britain is expected to deepen this week when the regulator Ofgem announces the level of the industry price cap, to be introduced in October. It is forecast to rise from £1,971 to £3,582.

Dale Vince, the founder of the supplier Ecotricity, said Britain’s energy supply system is “broken” and consumers should not have to pay for the cost of suppliers’ failures in their bills.

He told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “This problem predates the Ukrainian war. We have a systemic failure in the energy market; the government does need to intervene. We shouldn’t expect customers to pay the cost of this failure and the Ukraine war.”

Jackson said energy supply retailers were a “profit-free zone”. “You can’t expect the energy customers or indeed retailers to carry the cost of a war.” Jackson said gas prices are nine to 11 times higher than normal. “If this was beer, we’re talking about the wholesale price being £25 a pint,” he added.

Vince backed the idea of a deficit fund, which energy suppliers have proposed to the government. Under the plan, energy bills would be frozen and suppliers would be able to access a fund to cover wholesale costs, which would be paid back over 10 to 15 years.

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A Couple of Price Falls Don’t Yet Add Up to a Housing Correction

A Couple of Price Falls Don’t Yet Add Up to a Housing Correction


There was a time, not so long ago, when many people expected the housing market by now to be in the throes of a full-blown correction.That was even before we knew how high inflation was going to get, how much interest rates would rise and that the Bank of England and others would come up with gloomy forecasts of recession.Well, we are now getting some price falls, which have been as rare as hen’s teeth over the past couple of years.

The Halifax said that prices edged down by 0.1% in July, which had the effect of cutting the annual rate of growth from 12.5% to 11.8%.

Though the fall was “only fractional”, it noted that a slowdown in annual house-price growth had been expected for some time.

And: “Leading indicators of the housing market have recently shown a softening of activity, while rising borrowing costs are adding to the squeeze on household budgets against a backdrop of exceptionally high house price-to-income ratios.”

Another fall, rather larger than 0.1%, was reported by Rightmove, the property portal.

Its August report recorded a 1.3% drop in the average price of properties coming to the market, which fell by £4,795 to £365,173.

Old hands will recall that summer falls in asking prices are by no means unusual and that August is a time when many potential buyers forget the market in favour of buckets and spades or pina coladas.

That is true, as Rightmove pointed out, though it also noted that this was the first fall in asking prices this year, a period which has seen several hikes in interest rates, the Russian invasion of Ukraine, with its huge impact on energy prices, Boris Johnson deposed and taxes going up.

So is this the start of something bigger?

Can we expect a sustained fall in prices now under the impact of dire recession warnings, higher mortgage rates and prolonged economic uncertainty?

You can never say never on these things, and the Halifax was right to say that a slowdown in annual house-price growth has long been predicted, including by your columnist.

It is important, however, to read the small print with these things, and this case the small print is mainly reassuring.

The Halifax also pointed out that, while July’s small fall was the first in a year, the fundamentals of the housing market remained strong.

They included the hundreds of billions of “involuntary” or excess savings built up during the pandemic, investment demand and changes in the way people regards their homes as a result of the working from home revolution.

Halifax also pointed, quite rightly, to the shortage of homes coming to the market.

This is a point which was also emphasised by Rightmove, in its small print.

There was, it said, a “massive imbalance” between supply and demand.

Though buyer enquiries are down by 4% on 2021, when the market was red hot, they are 20% higher than in the “normal” year of 2019.

New listings, in contrast, are up by 12% on a year ago, but are 6% down on 2019.

Available stock at agents is 39% lower than it was in 2019.

One agent near me has an impressive array of properties in its window, but all are emblazoned with “sold” signs.

Another perspective on this was provided by RICS (the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors), in its latest residential market survey.

It reported a balance of -25% of surveyors reporting a drop in new buyer enquiries, in other words, significantly more reported a fall rather than a rise.

New listings were also down, though the negative balance was a more modest -5%.

Average stock per surveyor, at 36, was close to an all-time low.

12-month price expectations remained buoyant with a balance of 30% expecting a rise, though this was down from a recent high of 78%.

Adding all this up, what should we conclude?

Demand is softening in the market, but this is at present balanced by falling supply, leaving prices generally well supported.

That may change if the winter ahead proves to be as grim as some fear and if the Bank continues to raise interest rates, as it has indicated it will.

It still looks like a slowdown rather than a big correction, however.

By the end of the year annual house price growth should be comfortably down into single figures.

Expect a few predictions that the dam will break and that prices will fall significantly.

But don’t be at all surprised if, because of some of the factors outlined above, that does not happen.

The market looks resilient.

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Council will fine landlords whose properties do not meet minimum EPC ratings

Council will fine landlords whose properties do not meet minimum EPC ratings


Caerphilly County Borough Council’s Cabinet has agreed to take enforcement action on private landlords who fail to meet Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES) in their properties.As a result of this decision, officers from the Council will now be able to issue fines to landlords who rent property that have an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of F or G; with fines reaching £5,000.The Energy Efficiency (Private Rented Property) (England and Wales) Regulation 2015 sets out the legal obligation for landlords to provide energy performance certificates of E or above to existing, new and prospective tenants in most rented homes unless they are exempt such as listed buildings or officially protected.The regulations impose a minimum energy efficiency standard to help reduce fuel poverty and carbon emissions.

Cllr Shayne Cook, the Council’s Cabinet Member for Housing, said “The Council has a dedicated team in place to tackle this issue and support landlords in bringing their homes up to the minimum standard of energy efficiency set out within the regulations.

“Ensuring properties are energy efficient is vital not only in reducing the harm to our environment but also in keeping tenants’ living costs to a minimum and improving their overall health and wellbeing.

“I’m pleased to say that over 90% of landlords in the county borough who have engaged with our officers are working with us to improve the energy efficiency of their homes.

“Enforcement is a final resort for us as a Council, but the approval of this approach comes as welcome news as it provides officers with additional tools, when needed, to tackle this issue.”

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Agents report property market ‘returning to normal’

 Agents report property market ‘returning to normal’


Agents have begun experience a ‘more traditional’ market with demand dropping and offers coming in slightly under asking price, research claims.The latest Housing Market Report from Propertymark claimed normality may be creeping back into the market.The agency trade body said the number of new buyers registering per member branch in June echoed levels seen in the winter months, with more of a peak over spring. This is what estate agents would expect from a traditional market.
Supporting this trend, the average number of viewings per property has fallen from 6.2 in April to 4.4 in June – a reduction of 29%.There were nine sales agreed on average per member branch in June – the same number as the previous two months. This figure is also in line with the pre-pandemic average for June of nine.Sales agreed as a percentage of stock remains high – at 33% in June. This is compared with the pre-pandemic average of 17 per cent of stock sold in the month of June between 2010 to 2019.However, some buyers are starting to secure homes under the asking price, with 27% of branches now reporting that most sales were completed below asking price compared with a low of just 15% in March, Propertymark said.

Supply also remained flat, with the average number of properties available to buy per member branch at 26 in June and the number of new instructions per member branch holding steady at 10 in June – the same figure as the past three months.

Additionally, 72% of member branches told Propertymark that the average time from offer accepted to exchanging contracts in May was 13 weeks or more. This compares with a March figure of only 54%.

Nathan Emerson, chief executive of Propertymark, said: “For the past two years agents have seen a relentless market which defied patterns that we as practitioners had become accustomed to.

“However, this summer is seeing seasonal trends return. This cooling down is allowing the number of homes available to buy to recover, and interestingly, a subtle but telling change is in the prices being achieved.”

It adds: “The Millennial rent bill has fallen by nearly half from 2017 as many renters between their mid-20s and early 40s bought their first home. Despite tumbling homeownership rates over the last two decades, it is likely that Millennials collectively will be paying less rent than their predecessors, Generation X by next year.”
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Keys to the council – Hill Group gifts SoloHaus to house the homeless

Keys to the council – Hill Group gifts SoloHaus to house the homeless


An initiative by award-winning housebuilder, The Hill Group, saw that keys were officially handed over for six SoloHaus to Southend-on-Sea City Council on July 7 2022 – the first city council in Essex to utilise these purpose-built modular homes as follow-on accommodation for people experiencing homelessness in the local vicinity.Joining forces, Regional Director Eastern Partnerships, Robert Jack at The Hill Group and Captain Tracey Bale of The Salvation Army joined the council for the official handover of these purpose-built homes, which will provide much-needed safe and secure housing for individuals to rebuild their lives after a period of rough sleeping.All associated external works and installation have been finalised by The Hill Group making these units turnkey. The Salvation Army, a church and charity that own and manage the project, will provide ongoing support to residents on their journey to independence.
A philanthropic initiativeThe need for safe accommodation for people experiencing homelessness across the UK remains acute, and to this end, the new homes will assist those affected to rebuild and stabilise their lives – a process that is far more daunting to undertake from a hostel or hostel room.First developed as the housing solution to Hill’s charitable Foundation 200, SoloHaus is a £15 million pledge to manufacture and donate 200 modular homes over the course of five years to charities working in homelessness.Chancellor Ian Gilbert, cabinet member for housing and regeneration at Southend-on-Sea City Council, comments: “We are very pleased to support this joint initiative which will help people move on in a safe and secure environment.  We are extremely thankful to The Hill Group for making this happen and gifting these six brilliant modular homes.  They are sure to make a huge difference to people in Southend-on-Sea getting back on their feet after facing a period of homelessness.”“Tackling homelessness remains a priority and during the pandemic, we offered emergency accommodation to many that were sleeping rough. We are determined to continue these efforts and help people off the streets through longer-term support initiatives such as this.”

The gift that will keep on giving 

Specifically designed, fully furnished, and equipped for a single person, these homes are ready to move straight into. Each modular home aims to provide a sleek independent space that is safe and comfortable for residents to transition to independent living in more permanent accommodation.

Built to last for at least 60 years, these homes have energy costs of £5 a week and are designed to Future Home Standards, which exceeds building regulations for energy efficiency and sound insulation.

Andy Hill, Group Chief Executive at The Hill Group, said: “We are pleased to be working with Southend-on-Sea City Council and The Salvation Army to gift the first purpose-built modular homes in Essex.  We designed SoloHaus to aid vulnerable individuals with nowhere to call home and I am confident that this scheme will be life-changing for many Essex residents.”

Systems in the form of a dedicated staff team from the Salvation Army will work with Southend-on-Sea City Council to provide specialist support to enable residents to adjust and settle into their new homes, as well as prevent the recurrence of homelessness.

Captain Tracey Bale, Salvation Army leader in Southend, said: “We are looking forward to welcoming our first residents into their new homes in Leigh on Sea. People that are transitioning away from homelessness are often the most vulnerable in society, and here at Malachi Southend, they will be able to adjust to life off the streets, which for many, will be the first time in a long time that they will experience a period of calm and hope in their lives.”

Bale concluded: “Residents will have access to 24-hour support and The Salvation Army is working across the public and community sector to deliver wider support to the local area through our work.”

If you are concerned about someone sleeping rough in Leigh-on-Sea, please sign up for the StreetLink service to help them get the support and access services they might need.

For more information on SoloHaus, you can contact Rory Lowings on [email protected].

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How real estate can embrace the use of smart-tech

How real estate can embrace the use of smart-tech


The incredible speed at which organisations were able to transition to remote working when the pandemic hit in 2020 was a testament to the innovative and ever-evolving tech emerging in business operations.Now, two years on, even with social distancing restrictions behind us, employees up and down the country continue to work within either full-time remote or hybrid working patterns. For instance, ONS figures from May show that 24% of workers in the UK are still working hybrid.As a consequence of spending more time at home, many have started to take stock of the aspects of their property they find most important to them. In fact, research by FJP Investment at the end of last year revealed that nearly a quarter (23%) of UK adults had changed their property priorities as a result of the rise of remote working. And one area of housing demands where preferences are notably on the uptick is smart technologies.
Indeed, digital technologies have become increasingly integral to people’s personal and professional lives, and this integration has resulted not just from incremental consumer demands but also from significant societal upheavals that were brought about by the pandemic.As a result, consumers now expect digital amenities that create a comfortable environment that supports both family and professional life.Advances in smart homesInstalling smart-tech isn’t about having the newest gadgets on the market; instead, it’s a way for homeowners to make their lives easier, safer, more affordable and eco-friendlier.A centralised system that can control speakers, TVs, lighting and heating all in one is ideal for most, but for home workers, the added convenience and efficiency can ensure that they have full control of both their home and workplace. Certainly, recent research indicating a boost in smart kitchen appliances would support this. Figures from Wise Living show that Google searches for smart dishwashers are up by 62%, and smart overs have risen by 61%, alongside increases in other appliances such as smart fridges and washing machines.

Aside from handy productivity boosters, it’s likely that their money saving attributes will have also contributed greatly to the rise in smart-tech appliances. With inflation currently sitting at a 40-year high of 9.1% and energy prices through the roof, households feeling the financial squeeze are looking for ways to offset soaring bills.

Unsurprisingly, homeowners are turning to smart-tech to reduce these costs. Smart thermostats and heating are an effective way to control the temperature of a home – either through a smartphone or voice-activated smart home network. More efficient control over the thermostat will be particularly appealing for consumers when taking into account estimates by the Energy Savings Trust, that turning the thermostat down by one degree can drop energy bills by 10%.

The digital technology that accompanies smart appliances can also monitor and calculate energy efficiency and costs, therefore allowing users to stay on top of their bills. For example, a 4E report found that greater control over the use of energy and lighting through smart-tech could reduce a property’s energy usage by 30%.

Developers must stay on track

The shift in homeowner and investor preferences has come at speed; therefore, property developers and construction companies must remain on their toes when it comes to smart technology.

Keeping up with such trends will be key in increasing the properties’ value. A recent Whathouse? survey found that of 80% of estate agents, smart-tech had helped them sell houses. At the same time, more than 50% has sold property with smart-tech at a higher asking price than comparable properties.

Developers should therefore factor in smart-tech at the construction stage. Doing so will ensure that the integrated systems will work a lot more efficiently than if the tech was to be installed later on, in turn, allowing enabling to remain competitive through higher asking prices.

Moreover, developers will have the opportunity to meet another vital shift in investors’ preferences: sustainability. Recent research from FJP Investment revealed that for 39% of UK homeowners the sustainability and energy efficiency of their property become more important to them since remote working patterns became more normal. As such, embracing smart-tech will be key in ensuring new homes are meeting investors’ sustainability goals.

Since the onset of the pandemic, there has been a clear acceleration of technological and sustainability demands amongst buyers and investors. Clearly, technologies that facilitate a comfortable home working environment and can, somewhat, protect from soaring energy prices have come to the forefront of these introspections. This provides the property industry with an opportunity to assess its current construction procedures and anticipate the future needs of buyers and investors, in order to deliver sustainable and future-proof assets in today’s competitive market.

*Jamie Johnson is the CEO of FJP Investment

It adds: “The Millennial rent bill has fallen by nearly half from 2017 as many renters between their mid-20s and early 40s bought their first home. Despite tumbling homeownership rates over the last two decades, it is likely that Millennials collectively will be paying less rent than their predecessors, Generation X by next year.”
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Energy price rises may be even higher than previously predicted

Energy price rises may be even higher than previously predicted


New forecasts from an energy industry consultancy suggests that the average domestic consumer’s energy bills could soar to £3,363 a year from the start of 2023.This is significantly more than the £3,003 figure released by the government.The typical bill now is around £2,000 a year – this follows a rise of £700in April.
Some 23m households in England, Wales and Scotland have their bills governed by the energy price cap – including the vast majority of privately rented properties. The cap limits the amount suppliers can charge per unit of energy, and the standing charge, and from this winter, it is expected that a new cap will be announced every three months.The consultancy making the prediction – Cornwall Insight – says the ongoing uncertainty regarding Russian gas flows into continental Europe, as well as more recent concerns such as the halted strike by Norwegian gas workers, have led to an increasingly volatile energy market, driving the rise in wholesale energy prices which ultimately trickles down to consumers.While there is the potential that cap levels for Q1 2023 onwards could fall if the wholesale market retreats, with the Q4 2022 price cap currently due to be announced next month, “we are unlikely to see any significant decrease to these predictions” the consultancy warns.Dr Craig Lowrey, principal consultant at Cornwall Insight, says: “As the energy market continues to grapple with global political and economic uncertainty, the corresponding high wholesale prices, and the UK’s continued reliance on energy imports has once again seen predictions for the domestic consumer Default Tariff Cap rise to what are even more unaffordable levels.“There is always some hope that the market will stabilise and retreat in time for the setting of the January cap. However, with the announcement of the October cap only a month away, the high wholesale prices are already being ‘baked in’ to the figure, with little hope of relief from the predicted high energy bills.“[Industry regulator] Ofgem are continually reviewing the cap and there are a raft of consultations and potential reforms which could impact these forecasts. However, as it stands, energy consumers are facing the prospect of a very expensive winter.”

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