Why should you use a buying agent to find your perfect house? In fact that was the question that I asked myself when Katie & Diggy launched Hatchards Homefinders, back in 2010. I had bought and sold twice in Richmond, London during the late 1990s & early 2000s and had then been lucky enough to buy our forever home from a relative in the village that four generations of my Mother’s family had been born into, so you could say that I had landed on my feet.
How wrong I was and how Hatchards has changed my views over the last four years. There doesn’t seem a harder time to buy a house and the Hampshire Market is very different from the London market. The shrewd buyer knows that they need a head start to succeed and that is where a Buying agent like Hatchards comes in very handy.
And at its most basic level it all comes down to the most basic form of economics; supply and demand. The London market is very aggressive at the moment and house prices continue to rise simply because supply for a nice Victorian Terrace house in a popular area of London is finite and will always be sought after. Areas like Balham & Tooting, which were historically the poor man’s Clapham & Fulham, are now exceeding all expectations in terms of value.
When moving out of London, as most of our clients and friends are doing, there is a more exaggerated problem. When you are looking in a specific area and expecting a nice, family house, depending on your requirements you are looking at a much small pool of fish in an equally booming area. House prices in the South East rose by 4.4% in 2013, 5% in the Winchester area, 7.9% in the Alresford area and 12.8% in central Winchester (according to Charters Estate Agents). And what we are seeing is that demand for the right type of house far exceeds supply, meaning that many families are missing out on our dream house, and often moving into rental accommodation upon completion in London. This then creates twice the interest locally for any house coming on to the market. This is where a good property finder earns their money.
Reasons to use a Hampshire Buying Agent
- Local expertise. We cover Hampshire & surrounding areas and we know it well. We cannot offer expertise in areas we don’t know like Dorset, Wiltshire or Devon and we are honest enough to admit it. That is why Hatchards is working to build relationships with other Homefinders like Jaquie at Locate Homefinders ( www.locatehomefinders.co.uk) who can offer what we can’t
- Good relationships with the people that matter. Estate Agents always like dealing with a home finder because they are dealing for serious customers in a position to sell. Similarly because we are dealing with them on a daily basis, we are more likely to get in and view a property before it has come onto the market or had particulars drawn up, meaning that we are first through the door. We also have a network of contacts meaning that we see houses that are not being officially marketed anywhere
- Scouting out locations. The internet is a great tool but we lose count of the number of houses that we have viewed that are immediate NOs, due to location, road noise, proximity to undesirable areas etc. We do the leg work so you don’t waste your time doing it. Similarly we have bought houses that looked terrible on the particulars but were beautiful once viewed
- Researching the Area. This is not just checking out the local pubs, but checking school Ofsted reports, times in stations, season ticket prices, school availability, future development in the area, flood issues etc.
- Giving an honest and impartial view on Properties. We are not here to sell a house but to find the right house for our clients. We’ll obviously highlight dodgy roofs, damp cellars, bad broadband access, so that if you fall in love with a house, someone is there playing devil’s advocate
- Price Negotiation. Again it is easy to fall in love with a property and overpay. Using our knowledge of the local market and negotiating skills, we will endeavor to make sure that you get the best possible price for the house and save at least enough to cover our fees
- Contacts. From builders to architects, solicitors to surveyors to removal companies, we have a phone book full of people to help make your purchase as easy and stress free as possible
With all these benefits, don’t miss out on a house in 2014. Give us a call or drop us an email for an informal chat on what Hatchards Homefinders can do to help.