Property news - January

PUBLISHED: 16:36 21 December 2009 | UPDATED: 16:27 20 February 2013

Property news - January

Property news - January

This month's property news


Paul Peattie from The Property Finders explains why the highest valuation is not always the smartest move
Getting a house on the market in Kent at the right price, right from the start, is probably the most important decision a seller has to make, but perhaps even more so in todays topsy-turvy conditions. We heard recently of a case where an estate agent recommended a price reduction within a month of a property going on the market, so the question has to be asked: did they over-value to get the instruction?

They had suggested a figure of 1,695,000 while other valuations were around 1,500,000 and the agent who won the instruction is now suggesting a reduction to 1,495,000. It is so tempting to go for the highest valuation but it is not always the smartest move. Of course, sensible sellers should get several valuations from reputable agents in the local area, but be prepared to really quiz them about how they justify their suggested figure and what comparisons can they give to back it up.

On the one hand, sellers and their agents endeavour to get the highest price for the property while on the other, buyers want to pay as little as possible and in todays confused market it can be very difficult to get to get the real picture of what is happening in one area.

Statistics arent much help as they tend to look at national trends or across a whole county, whereas property professionals know that street-by-street statistics are often needed to explain the differences between similar houses. Small things can make big differences.

From a buyers perspective it can be very cost effective to retain their own agent to advise them on a purchase. They can expect to get privileged information, may well get to see houses before they are on the open market and in general both sellers and their agents appreciate working with a buyers representative because they understand that the prospective purchaser will have been thoroughly qualified.

For further information, contact Paul on 0800 622 6745 or email:

Swale Borough Council has granted outline planning permission for 320 homes to be built at the edge of the village of Iwade.

The builder, Hillreed Homes, says that Iwade has a lot to offer home owners, being close to the A249 linking quickly with M2/M20 and the Isle of Sheppey and with easy access to Sittingbourne, Faversham, Canterbury, Rochester and Maidstone.

The village itself has grown considerably in recent years via carefully managed expansion and the street layouts, road calming and open spaces make it an agreeable place to live. For newcomers, there are schools, local shops, bus services and good local community facilities and activities.

If youre looking to add a little drama to your life, then look no further than coastal Kent. A dramatic new home, Sea House, has been built at Littlestone-on-Sea near New Romney, by Kent-based architects Clague.

Just a few yards from the beach, Sea House makes use of natural materials including untreated cedar cladding and slate floating roofs, creating a notable landmark in the area.

Its design recognises that the house is located in an area designated for low density development and while it provides a generous amount of internal space, 4,288 sq ft/398 sq m, to create a fully equipped, five-bedroom family house, its design provides airy and light accommodation and yet gives the impression of being smaller than it actually is. Essentially a four-storey house, it has an elevated ground floor designed to mitigate the effects of any possible flooding and still benefits from a lower ground floor, which is not visible from the front. It also has a roof floor at the top of the house which disappears into the eaves, creating the visual impression of a traditional two-storey design.

For more information, contact Phillip and Stubbs, tel: 01797 227338

What hasnt worked in Tunbridge Wells since the 1940s? Give up? Well, after almost a 60-year wait, town residents will once again be able to tell the time by the clock on the old West Station building.

New owners, restaurant group Smith and Western acquired the historic building in October 2008, and with it a sense of responsibility to the premises.

Troy Cox, director of Smith and Western, says: It was always our priority to restore the clock tower, and we have worked closely with the conservation team at Tunbridge Wells Borough Council.

The clock, which dates from 1877, has been restored by Michael Flannery of Fine Antique Clockmakers over a period of nine months, and he describes it as a pleasure to carry out the restoration work.

The Tunbridge Wells Smith and Western is the fifth American-style restaurant in the family owned groups portfolio. For more information, tel: 01892 550750

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