Category Archives: Property News

MOVING HOUSE TO CANTERBURY? LEARN ABOUT THE CITY

Are you thinking about moving to Canterbury, Kent or have you just moved there? This beautifully historic city has much to offer. In fact, some call Canterbury the jewel in Kent’s crown. It has some amazing history, combined with a youthful vibrancy that is hard to match. Whether you’re into café culture, architecture, education or an energetic nightlife, Canterbury is hard to beat.

Canterbury Tales

Canterbury High Street and CathedralThe heart of the historic city is obviously the Cathedral. You only have to walk around the grounds, through the cloisters and view the stain glass windows to realise why this city is ranked as a World Heritage Site. Other cultural attractions you should visit include the Marlowe Theatre and Canterbury Museums and don’t forget to visit Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales .

Canterbury is the second most visited city in England. This brings lots of benefits and money into the area but the downside is overcrowding at times. Over 160,000 vehicles enter the city every day, creating lots of congestion around the ring road and feeder routes. The good news is there is a plentiful supply of museums, shops and entertainment for all to enjoy. If you are into shopping check out the cobbled streets around The King’s Mile, the Millennium Shopping and Leisure Centre or you could visit the refurbished Marlowe Arcade.

Cost of Moving

At the time of writing the average property price in Canterbury, according to Zoopla, is £341,219. Semi-detached properties were selling for £280,825 and terraced houses achieved an average value of £275,336. Over the last year the city has seen house prices increase by 4.42%, period properties demand a premium. If you can afford it, check out the areas around St Dunstan’s or Old Dover Road. Moving out of the city – check out Chartam or Wye.

Canterbury West GateEducation

If you are worried about education, the city has 11 schools rated good or above by Ofsted. The primary schools Blean and St Thomas of Canterbury Catholic and secondary schools Simon Langton’s Boys’ Grammar and Barton Court Grammar are all rated as ‘outstanding’.

Don’t forget that Canterbury is also served by a great family removal company, us – Colin Batt Removals. So if you like what you’ve read, give us a call and we’ll come and give you a free no-obligation quote for your move. Click here to read more about our removals services.

Leave us a comment and let us know what you think of this great city and what it is like to live there.

Thinking of Moving Home to Wye?

Thinking of moving home? Have you checked out Wye in Kent or the surrounding villages? Wye is a great medieval village on the outskirts of Ashford in the fold of the picturesque North Downs. In 2013 Wye was voted the third best place to live in the country by the Sunday Times and you may have seen the village in the TV series Perfect Village.

The village cum town is quintessentially British, with a farmers market twice a month. At Christmas you can also enjoy a street party and in the summer take walks along the Devils Kneading Trough.

Wye History

Medieval Wye-Moving to KentWye has been an important crossing in Kent for centuries lying on the Pilgrims’ Way. The Romans built a settlement at the fording point of the River Stour on their road between Canterbury and Hastings. The village grew a meeting point and resting place for the weary medieval travellers. Since then the village has grown and now the travellers are mainly commuters.

Wye Properties

Like many of the villages in Kent, Wye boasts some beautiful houses, check out the medieval houses on Bridge Street. In fact in Wye you can find almost any type of property you fancy, from Georgian to 60s.

Transport Links

The train station allows you to get to Canterbury in 15 min and Ashford in a mere 6 min away, you can also reach London by train in 90min. By road Canterbury is only 12 miles away with the coast, Maidstone and London easily accessible from the M2 and M20.

Wye Schools

If you are looking for a primary school Lady Joanna Thornhill’s is graded as ‘outstanding’ by Ofsted as is Challock Primary School, which is only a few miles away. For secondary schools Highworth (Girls) in Ashford and Canterbury’s Simon Langton Grammar School for Boys  and Barton Court Grammar are all also graded as ‘outstanding’.

Activities

Enjoy a walk along the North Downs and enjoy the views from the Devil’s Kneeding Trough or the Wye Chalk Crown. Further afield you have some great golf courses in Ashford or check out Chart Hills Golf Club in Biddenden. After all of this you might want to refresh yourself with a meal or a drink in the Tickled Trout or the New Flying Horse Inn. Wye Church - Moving to Kent

First Time Buyers on the Rise

The number of first time buyers has risen to its highest level in the UK since the beginning of the recession in 2007. According to Halifax the number of first time buyers topped 326,500 in 2014, an increase of 22% compared to the previous year. Experts say that this increase has been the result of an improving economy and governmental polices such as the Help to Buy Scheme. Good signs if you’re looking to move house in 2015.

House Price Affordability for First time Buyers

First Time BuyerAlthough house prices have continued to rise, first time buyers are finding house purchases more affordable. They are benefiting from low mortgage rates and reduced deposit requirements, Halifax say average deposits have reduced by 7% last year.

Whilst house prices have on average increased by 9% first time buyers now spend 31% of their disposable income on mortgages, down from 47% in 2007. Overall mortgage affordability has improved since the recession and is helping first-time buyers to get on the ladder. More people entering the market means more movement everywhere, more home moves and more house removals. Good for us all.

It is an interesting to see that the average age of first time buyers has risen from 28 in 2009 to 30 in 2014, with the average being 32 in London. The average house price paid by first-time buyers rose 9% to nearly £172 000 and about 80% of those using the Help to Buy scheme are first time buyers. This obviously means that people are either renting  or living with their parents for longer. Hopefully we will see a reversal in this trend allowing more people to move into their own homes earlier.

The data produced by Halifax has shown that the growth in the number of first-time buyers has steadily increased for the last 3 years. All of this points to growing confidence in the current housing market and the overall economy, first time buyers are essential for a healthy and properly functioning housing market.

This is all good news if you’re looking to move home in 2015. With more potential house buyers entering the market, there will be more house moves all round. We are here to help with any aspect of your house removal if you do plan to move house in 2015.

Read more at:

http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/3053531e-9580-11e4-b3a6-00144feabdc0.html#axzz3OQSMyyVL

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-30684286

More Homeowners Moved House in 2014 than have since 2007

More people moved house last year than have in the last seven years, according to the latest Lloyds Bank Homeowners Review. In total an estimated 365,400 people moved house in 2014, up 8% on 2013. This is good news for the housing market and demonstrates the growing levels of confidence.

Moved HouseMoved House Prices Up

Lloyds report that house prices also rose 8% in 2014. This is good news for people previously in negative equity and it also makes it easier for people to make their next move up the property ladder. As Andy Hulme, Lloyds Bank mortgages director, said:

The resulting higher levels of equity in their property are providing homeowners with more funds to finance the purchase of their next home.

The number of people who moved house has grown by 16% since the bottom of the housing depression in 2009. Even though the number who  moved house has increased over the last few years, it is still  way below the record set in 2004 (886,700) and just above the average between 2004 and 2007 (717,025).

Lloyds predict that house prices will continue to rise in 2015 allowing those people who bought properties at the peak of the housing boom to move back into positive equity. This should all help to keep the housing market moving and allow people to continue to climb the property ladder. The expectation is the 2015 results will show more people moved house yet again.

Whilst that is all positive, there remains a regional pricing divide for those trying to get on the second rung of the housing ladder. In the South East house house prices have risen by 33% in the last 5 years and London has seen 50%  growth, vice price changes of 16% and 14% in the North and in Wales respectively.

The report provides an indication of how busy the housing market is again becoming, as well as all the associated businesses, such as estate agents, solicitors and, of course, removal companies. Therefore anyone looking to move home should plan well ahead and book the services of their preferred agents and house removals firms as early as possible. The earlier you contact your removal company the sooner they can begin to help you manage your move, even if you haven’t got a moving date.

Were you one of the lucky ones that moved house in 2014? If so we’d love to know what your 3 top tips are for moving house. We’ll collate the results and pass them on to future house movers.

www.lloydsbankinggroup.com/globalassets/documents/media/press-releases/lloyds-bank/2015/150117-homemover-review-2015-final.pdf

Five Kent Towns in Top 50 Best Places to Live in UK: Sevenoaks, Tunbridge Wells, Ashford, Maidstone and Tonbridge

Five of Kent’s towns have been ranked in the top 50 best places to live in Britain according to the Halifax Quality of Life Survey 2014, great news if you are moving to Kent or the South-East. We all know that Kent has some of the best places to live and it is nice that this is recognised.

The highest placed Kent town was Sevenoaks, which ranked 14th, followed by Tunbridge Wells which achieved 31st place. Ashford ranked in 38th, Tonbridge and Maidstone were 42nd and 44th respectively. If you are thinking of buying a house and moving to Kent you can’t go far wrong with these towns, they offer something for everyone.

Local Councillors of the top towns were very pleased. Leader of Ashford Borough Council, Gerry Clarkson, said:

Being named as the 38th best place in which to live in the UK is pleasing. It echoes everything residents have told us about the borough as a desirable place to live.

Nicolas Heslop, leader of Tonbridge and Malling Borough Council, said good schools, transport links to London and leisure facilities played a part in the borough’s placing.

As a region the South East dominates the survey, with over half of the towns found in this area. Hart in Hampshire was crowned the winner, as it has been for 4-straight years. Though, interestingly, only two London boroughs, Kensington and Chelsea and Bromley, made the top 50.

This is the ninth year that Halifax has completed the survey, which takes into account a variety of factors such as the labour market, housing, physical environment, health, education and personal well-being. Data is compiled from public agencies such as the Office for National Statistics, the Met Office and the British Crime Survey to produce the report.

What do you think – do you agree with the survey? We would love to hear your views on the best places to live in Kent and the South East. Where would you move to if you had the choice and why would you move house? Leave your comments and views below.

Kent Towns in Best Places to Live in UK

Top 50 Best Places to Live in the UK 2014

 

To find out more about the Quality of Life Survey check out the following link:

www.lloydsbankinggroup.com/globalassets/documents/media/press-releases/halifax/2014/quality-of-life-2014-final.pdf