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April 30, 2015

Property as a political see-saw must stop

Filed under: Latest News — Tags: , , , , , , , , — Four Communications @ 11:14 am

Leading property Nicholas Leeming today called for an end to all the major political parties exploiting housing and the property market as a political see-saw – as the latest figures from the Land Registry shows a monthly price decrease of 0.8 per cent.

Nicholas Leeming, Chairman of national estate agents Jackson-Stops & Staff, with 44 offices nationwide, blamed the cooling in the London market on political uncertainties and the risk of higher value property taxation. London saw a monthly increase of 0.2 per cent, although the annual increase is the highest at 11.3 per cent.

He said: “Our politicians are indulging in see-saw politics, causing confusion and uncertainty among homeowners and investors. Many vendors are failing to adjust to current market conditions with unrealistic guide prices and this has resulted in the number of property transactions reducing substantially. International buyers are showing caution and some will not commit to purchases for as long as the outcome to the election remains in doubt.”

Nicholas Leeming welcomed the news that the economic upturn is continuing to deliver good news to areas outside the capital. He said:” The market outside London is seeing increased activity with values up by an average of 0.8 per cent in the South-east as the regional economies prosper, the cost of mortgages remain low and confidence feeds through into this sector.

“Higher value properties outside London are also affected by political uncertainties: sales of between £1 – 2m and above remain slow with values reflecting more limited demand.”

April 27, 2015

Property intergenerational war being stirred up by Labour

Filed under: Latest News — Four Communications @ 3:00 pm

Labour is stirring up an intergenerational war – pitching young adults against their parents and grandparents, with promises to help young people while taxing their parents and grandparents who are property owners and have invested in property buy to let for their pensions, according to Nick Leeming, Chairman of national estate agents Jackson-Stops & Staff, with 44 offices nationwide.

Nick Leeming said:

“We want to avoid an intergenerational conflict where the young are pitched against the old over property ownership. This is not helpful and doesn’t represent the reality of how much has changed in the property market over the past 40 years.

“We need policies that do not distort markets as this has a short-term effect, rather than delivering a long-term benefit. We support help for first time buyers but Labour promises to fund the abolition of stamp duty under £300,000 through a series of measures against landlords which are neither specific nor realistic.  Landlords and property investors are to be encouraged so that the young can opt to rent or buy.”



April 24, 2015

Rags to riches renovations

Filed under: Latest News — Four Communications @ 2:25 pm

The story of Cinderella is the ultimate rags to riches tale; with Charles Perrault’s original work inspiring a flurry of interpretations in both fiction and film. The recent film release, starring Downton Abbey’s Lily James, is set to capture the public imagination, emphasising the potential for beauty and elegance in even the most dilapidated of things. Cinderella homes are those which have been lovingly restored, undergoing a transformation from derelict to highly desirable. We have selected a collection of beautifully renovated properties which have undergone a fairy tale makeover.

Situated in Betchworth, Surrey, Reygate House is a three-bedroom imposing townhouse meticulously converted from its original use as a mill. Perfectly balancing period grandeur and modern design, the natural brick of the original water mill has been left exposed in a number of the rooms, while additions such as underfloor heating, luxurious bathrooms and a beautiful contemporary kitchen have been made. The principle reception rooms benefit from wonderful views over a tranquil pond, once used as a power source for the mill. The open plan design of the living space makes optimum use of the space, with cleverly placed light-wells ensuring the property remains flooded with light  The property is on the market for £895,000 with our Dorking office (tel.: 01306 887560). For more information please click here.

Originally built as a brick grain store for the nearby farm at the turn of the 20th century, The Tower, in Ramsdean, Hampshire, has been transformed into an unusual home with cutting edge design. The top floor is taken up entirely with the master suite , with the windows bordering the parameter of the room allow for panoramic, far reaching, views of the surrounding countryside.  There are two further bedrooms and open-plan living space, orientated to take optimum advantage of the striking views. The property is on the market for £1, 350,000 with our Midhurst office (tel.: 01730 812357). For more information please click here.

Situated in the small and charming town of Lound, Suffolk, The Great Barn has undergone multiple improvements over the past eight years. As the name suggests, the property was once used as a barn but now represents a spacious five-bedroom family home with over 4,000 square feet of living accommodation. Originally converted in 2008, the barn benefits from contemporary additions to its classic structure, including floor to ceiling windows and cutting-edge fittings.  Further enhancements were made in 2010 including the installation of a solid wood fitted kitchen. Many of the rooms benefit from high vaulted ceilings, with period features including exposed oak beams and a large brick fireplace in the sitting room. The property is currently on the market for £725, 000 with our Norwich office (tel.: 01603 612333). For more information please click here.

Once completely derelict, Eden Kiln, in Old Wives Lees, Kent has been renovated into a stunning four bedroom home. Grade-II listed, the property comes with characteristic chequered brick construction, distinct white towers and a slate roof.  Previously a Kentish Oast House, used for drying hops as part of the brewing process, the tastefully redesigned interiors include underfloor heating and new fittings throughout. Nestled in the North Downs area, known for its beautiful orchards and woodlands, this 19th century property is the perfect home for those seeking a classic piece of architecture with modern comforts. The property is on the market for £799, 950 with our offices in Canterbury (tel.: 01227 781600). For more information please click here.






April 14, 2015

Right to Buy alongside strong lettings market

Filed under: Latest News — Four Communications @ 9:21 am

Right to Buy should go hand in hand with encouraging an active lettings market, unencumbered by government legislation, according to Nicholas Leeming, Chairman of national estate agents Jackson-Stops & Staff.

Nicholas Leeming said: “The property revolution continues and we are delighted to see the right to buy being extended to Housing Associations. Jackson-Stops supports any initiative that enables social housing tenants to buy their own property, provided that the funds realised are reinvested in the sector. But while encouraging the principle of home ownership this should go hand in hand with an active and vibrant lettings market, unencumbered by government legislation and with the ability for landlords and tenants to agree the length of lease.”



Inheritance tax change investment in stability

Filed under: Latest News — Four Communications @ 9:20 am

Tax exemptions on inheritance tax “is an investment in stability and local communities”, according to Nicholas Leeming, Chairman of national estate agents Jackson-Stops & Staff, with 44 offices nationwide.

Nicholas Leeming said: “Exempting the majority of home owners from IHT is a very positive step and one that we welcome as an investment in the stability of families staying put in communities. This means that older people will be able to hand on their properties to the next generation without the penalty of taxation that high, prevailing property values have previously involved. This is a positive move for property ownership in the UK and will help families to retain the value of assets that they have worked hard to enjoy.”


April 10, 2015

The pub is the hub of the village

Filed under: Latest News — Four Communications @ 3:41 pm

The village pub has long been the centre of a community – bringing neighbours together to gossip, share stories and clink glasses. In the past century these very British institutions have changed dramatically, morphing from male havens to a place to spend time with the family. Ales and stouts are still there, but now the most glamorous village pubs also boast award-winning restaurants and stylish interiors. Not only do pubs benefit a village socially, but they also have economic benefits – recent research by Newcastle Business School has shown that the launch of a rural pub will inject between £80,000 and £120,000 into the local community. We have selected four properties located close to some of the country’s favourite watering holes.

Tatton, situated within the exclusive Eden Park development, is conveniently located within walking distance of the fashionable village of Alderley Edge in Cheshire. The six bedroom property includes separate staff quarters and an impressive subterranean spa with swimming pool, steam room, gymnasium and wine store.  Surrounded by beautifully landscaped gardens, the house is completely private whilst close to the village centre. The Botanist, an innovative gastropub, is situated in the village and hosts unique community events such as cocktail classes and live music gigs. Tatton is on the market for £3,195,000 with our Wilmslow office (tel.: 01625 540340). For more information please click here.

Court Cottage East is situated in Swinbrook in Oxfordshire, home to The Swan Inn, a pub owned by the estate of the late Duchess of Devonshire, who grew up in the village with her five sisters, the Mitford girls, who have inspired books and films. The pub was the location of Francois Hollande and David Cameron’s pub lunch last year and boasts a number of awards. Believed to date back to the 17th century, Court Cottage East is an idyllic three-bedroom cottage, with the potential for extension. Constructed of local stone, the cottage benefits from a private walled garden overlooking the surrounding green fields. The property is on the market for £650,000 with our Burford office (tel:01993 822661). For more information please click here.

Keepers Cottage is situated in the centre of the sought after village of Aston Tirrold, in south Oxfordshire. The village is home to The Sweet Olive, a popular gastropub with impressive reviews. The menu changes seasonally and is complemented by a carefully selected wine list sourced from France’s finest vineyards. The beer garden is popular with local families during the summer. Grade-II listed Keeper’s Cottage dates back to the 17th century and benefits from a range of period features, such as exposed oak frames and red brick fireplaces. The five-bedroom family home is surrounded by unspoilt green farmland, views of which can be enjoyed from the spacious reception rooms. The property is on the market for £1, 150, 000 with our Goring office (tel: 01491 871111). For more information please click here.

Originally a stable block, Field Barn is an attractive four-bedroom 19th century home that was converted in 1953 and extended in the early 1970s.  Covered in ivy and surrounded by beautifully landscaped gardens, the property benefits from all of the desirable characteristics which make up a family home, including an open plan kitchen/ dining room with Aga and garden room with doors leading onto the terrace. The home is situated in the heart of Micheldever, a pretty village just south of the Dever valley in Hampshire. The Half Moon & Spread Eagle, a local pub is only a 10 minute walk away. The establishment is the epitome of a traditional English pub, serving classic comfort food staples in an easy-going environment. The property is on the market for £965,000 with our Winchester office (tel: 01962 844299). For more information please click here.