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Seven Reasons Why People in South Devon Are Moving This Year

Seven Reasons Why People in South Devon Are Moving This Year

In this two-minute read, we look at seven reasons people in South Devon are upping sticks and moving out, on, and upwards.

Over the years, we’ve helped thousands of people across South Devon move home successfully.

The reasons why people move are varied, but in our experience, they tend to be one of the seven ‘L’s.

What are the seven ‘L’s? Fear not, dear reader, because we’re about to reveal them below.

  • Love

A new romantic relationship is a beautiful time in people’s lives. And when things get serious in the love stakes, the decision to move in together is one that fuels the moving market.

  • Loss

Sadly, on the flip side, when a loved one dies, or a relationship ends, this can also be a catalyst for people to want to move out and on to a different chapter of their lives.

  • Learning

When love turns into a family, then the demand for being near good schools motivates movers as much as anything we come across. That’s why people will pay a premium to be within the catchment areas of great places for their children to learn and develop.

  • Lifestyle

A change is as good as a rest as the old saying goes. People’s lifestyles change as they get older, and their circumstances change. This is the driving force behind people upsizing, downsizing, and relocating.

  • Location, location, location

One of the main motivating moving factors. It might be about being nearer to loved ones, an open space, good schools, transport links, even a view. Location is always up there as one of the most popular reasons people move.

  • Leaving

When children get older and spread their wings to seek their own nests, the family home can often seem a little too big. This can be the cue for people wanting to downsize and free up some of the equity in their current home.

  • Lockdown

The pandemic has made many of us re-evaluate our lives. And spending so much time indoors and at home has made many people want somewhere new to live. It could be because of a lack of space, a need for a garden, or to be nearer loved ones.

Whatever your reason for thinking about moving, we’re here to help you every step of the way.

© Chamberlains 2021

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Top Tips for First-Time Landlords in South Devon

Top Tips for First-Time Landlords in South Devon

In this three-minute read, we share five top tips if you’re thinking about renting out your property for the first time.

Deciding to become a landlord is a big step.

It can be both exciting and daunting.

Here at Chamberlains, we’ve got some tips on what you need to think about when renting out a property so you can make your first venture a smooth one.

Do some market research

To work out how much rent you could be expecting, have a look at similar properties in the area. If you’re not sure much you should be asking for, arrange a valuation with us. We can also help you make sure your property is aimed at the right tenants.

Make sure your property is ready for your tenants

It’s vital to ensure that your property is tenant-ready. A well-maintained home is more attractive to any new occupants and a few improvements could make all the difference. Ensure that outstanding repairs are complete before any viewings take place.

Consider whether to offer your property on a furnished or unfurnished basis. The option you choose will depend on the type of tenant you want to attract. If you decide to furnish your property, choose neutral colours and simple styles to allow your tenants to put their own stamp on their new home.

Understand your responsibilities

Being a landlord can take up a lot of your time. It’s your responsibility to take care of any major issues which may arise and these can occur at any time of the day or night. Some, like a gas leak, may require your immediate attention. Your tenants will also look to you to carry out repairs, and maintenance unless you appoint a letting agent to manage your property. Speak to us to find out how we can help.

Make sure you comply with the law

When it comes to being a landlord, there’s a jungle of laws and regulations that you need to navigate through. All tenancies begin with a right to rent check and you must make sure that you’ve taken the correct steps to register and protect your tenant’s deposit.

Ensure that the property has working smoke alarms, carbon monoxide detectors and an up-to-date gas safety check – which should be carried out on an annual basis. Your property must also have an Energy Performance Certificate before you can offer it for rent. We ensure all the properties we rent out and manage are fully compliant with all the relevant legal requirements.

Use a letting agent

You may decide that you want to manage your property yourself.

However, the right letting agent can make your first experience as a landlord stress-free, act as a buffer between you and your tenants, and provide expertise and support if things don’t go according to plan.

Here at Chamberlains, we’re with you every step of the way. Get in touch with your questions and one of our experts will be happy to help.

©Chamberlains 2021

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Struggling to sell your home in South Devon? Try these four tips

Struggling to sell your home in South Devon? Try these four tips

In this two-minute read, we look at the reasons why people struggle to sell their homes and what can be done about it.

Monday last week was officially the most depressing day of the year, as if we needed reminding.

Scientists claim it’s the perfect storm for a downer. Money is tight, resolutions have fallen by the wayside, and the weather is rubbish. Add to that the lockdown and you have a recipe for doom and gloom.

And if you have a home that won’t sell, you can feel down in the dumps.

But at Chamberlains, we believe it shouldn’t be that way.

So, we’ve come up with four ways you can beat the home selling blues.

Is the price right?

 The right price is vital to securing a sale. Buyers have budgets, so if your home is just over their limit, they won’t find it if they are searching online. Mortgage lenders are also put off by an overvaluation. Check what similar homes in the area have sold for and get a new valuation from another agent, but be mindful of any contractual obligations you may have with your current selling agent.

Are your photos up to scratch?

Nowadays, online searches are the most popular way people look for properties, which means photos are crucial. An excellent agency takes the time to get these super important parts of the marketing puzzle in place and looking good. Bad photos cause buyers to scroll past your property.

Try the mystery shopper approach 

A good agent will let you know what prospective buyers think of your home and the interest it is generating. If this isn’t happening, get a friend or family member to pose as a mystery buyer, with a budget in your property’s price range, and phone the agent to see if they mention your home. If they do, great, if they don’t, it’s a cause for concern.

Are your chances being clogged up by clutter? 

Choosing a new home is a big step. Buyers want to visualise what your property will look like after they have moved in, complete with their choice of décor and their belongings. Make it easier for them to do this by making your home look and feel more spacious.

Rooms should be clutter-free and well lit – small touches can make a big difference, and first impressions count.

We hope that’s helped. Please feel free to get in touch if you have any questions about banishing the property selling blues.

*You can still sell your home at this time. Chamberlains strictly adheres to the government’s Covid-19 restrictions.

Copyright 2021 Chamberlains

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Calling all businesses and individual local school children need you!

Calling all businesses and individual local school children need you!
Through no fault of their own, or their schools, local children may be missing out on learning due to lack of devices.
To help, we’ve purchased £7,500 worth of new tablet computers and are in the process of delivering them to 21 schools across Teignbridge. 💙 There is a HUGE need from schools and so we’d really like to encourage other local businesses to do the same and donate equipment if they can.💻
We need to invest in our future generations, especially during this pandemic. Just one device that gives a child a chance to keep learning during lockdown is invaluable.
If businesses or individuals would like to donate new laptops or tablets to local community please do get in touch by emailing – we’d be happy to give tips and advice.
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Three Ways South Devon Landlords Can Beat Blue Monday

Three Ways South Devon Landlords Can Beat Blue Monday

In this three-minute read, we look at ways to prevent the tenant/landlord relationship from turning sour.

We hate to be the bearers of bad news but today is the most depressing day of the year – otherwise known as Blue Monday.

It’s the time of year when we fall into a post-Christmas slump because the weather is rubbish and money is tight.

And as a landlord living through lockdown, your relationship with your tenant may also be under strain.

Here at Chamberlains, we can’t conjure up sunny skies or a lottery win, but we can help you improve your tenant situation.

We’ve come up with three ways to combat common issues which can make Blue Monday even more miserable for landlords.

Property damage 

Every landlord hopes their tenant will treat their property with respect – but unfortunately, that doesn’t always happen.

It’s not uncommon for a landlord to be left to fix broken cupboards, holes in walls, carpet stains and doors that have come off the hinges – or worse.

The best way to prevent your property getting trashed is to conduct an in-depth inventory at the start of a tenancy.

Photograph and detail all furniture, fixtures, and fittings so both parties are clear what the property and its contents should look like when the lease ends.

That way, if there is any dispute, you’ll have evidence to back up your case.

Rubbish removal

There’s nothing more infuriating than a tenant who does a runner and leaves behind a mountain of rubbish and old tat for the landlord to bin.

Sometimes these items are large – for example damaged white goods or broken furniture – and the landlord has to get a skip to remove it all.

To prevent your property resembling a junkyard, you must carry out regular inspections. If you notice the rubbish piling up on a visit, you can act early – before your house or flat looks like the set of a horror film.

The silent tenant

You may think it’s a positive thing if you never hear from your tenant, but no news isn’t always good news when it comes to managing a property.

Sometimes tenants are reluctant to tell their landlord about a leaky pipe or dodgy electrical socket because they don’t want to make a fuss.

But that leak could cause costly water damage over time, and a faulty electrical socket could spark a serious blaze. You need to maintain an open dialogue with your tenant so that any maintenance issues get sorted promptly.

You don’t have to go over the top, but be proactive and personable. It’s in everyone’s best interests if the tenant/landlord relationship is a constructive one.

One big reason to be cheerful this Blue Monday is that we can look after all of the above (and a whole lot more) for you.

If you have any questions about managing your property in Chamberlains or would like to find out about our property management services, please get in touch. 

Chamberlains strictly adheres to the government’s Covid-19 restrictions.

Copyright 2021 Chamberlains

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Four Changes to Leasehold Law that South Devon Property Owners Should Know About

Four Changes to Leasehold Law that South Devon Property Owners Should Know About

In this three-minute read, we look at England’s new leasehold reform package.

What will the new leasehold reforms, announced last week, deliver for leasehold property owners in South Devon? Here’s what we know so far.

Now, ‘leasehold reform’ may not be the sexiest of subject matters, but if you are one of the 4.3 million people in England who owns a leasehold property, don’t doze off as these changes could significantly impact you.


England’s medieval leasehold laws are loathed by leaseholders who have dubbed them ‘fleecehold’ laws. Key gripes include:

  • The cost of lease renewal or freehold purchase. This can be tens of thousands of pounds, or even more. If negotiations with the freeholder break down, the leaseholder can go to a tribunal, but this takes time and can be expensive.
  • Escalating ground rents. In the worst cases, the ground rent on a leasehold house doubles every ten years, leaving the leaseholder with an ever-growing bill and making it impossible to sell the property.
  • Exorbitant service charges for maintaining communal areas and gardens at apartment blocks.
  • Freeholds being sold off to a cash-hungry third party.

Here’s a rundown of the proposed reforms.

No 1: Owners of leasehold homes or flats will be given the right to extend their lease by a maximum term of 990 years at zero ground rent. (Currently, leaseholders of houses can only extend for 50 years with a ground rent while leaseholders of flats can extend as often as they wish at a zero ‘peppercorn’ ground rent for 90 years.)

Benefit: In theory, the change would provide security and eliminate ground rent. However, it’s not yet clear how much it would cost to secure a 990-year lease so it’s impossible to do a cost versus benefit analysis.

No 2: Owners of leasehold flats in apartment blocks will be able to shift to a Commonhold Agreement model.

Benefit: Flat owners could take control of the upkeep of their building, ending rip-off maintenance charges. Getting all the relevant parties to agree to move to a Commonhold Agreement may be difficult though.

No 3: Introduction of an online calculator to simplify determining the cost of buying a freehold or lease extension.

Benefit: This would take some of the hassle out of the negotiation process but much depends on the formula used to calculate costs.

No 4: The abolition of ‘marriage value’.

Benefit: ‘Marriage value’ is a rather cumbersome rule that has probably caused a few divorces in its time. It means that if a lease falls below 80 years, the cost of renewing it shoots up.

When will these changes be introduced?

Legislation regarding change No 1 will be brought forward in the upcoming session of Parliament. The rest will take longer to realise. (If you’d like to be kept informed on the progress of these reforms, we’ll be monitoring the situation closely, so please get in touch with us here at Chamberlains.)

To learn more about the leasehold changes and how they could affect the value of your property, get in touch with us here at Chamberlains

Copyright 2021 Chamberlains


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The property market remains open despite new lockdown

The property market remains open despite new lockdown

The South Devon property market remains open despite new lockdown

The Prime Minister announced at 8pm on Monday evening that people in England will be going back into lockdown following a surge in Coronavirus cases.

The tighter restrictions include schools shutting until the February half-term for most pupils. People must now work from home if they can, and only essential shops can remain open.

Which leads us to how these new measures will affect people wanting and needing to move home.

According to the Government’s latest advice issued on its website, people CAN still move home as long as they follow the guidelines in place.

At the end of this article, there is a link to the information the Government issued this evening.

The section which addresses the property market states.

Moving home

You can still move home. People outside your household or support bubble should not help with moving house unless absolutely necessary.

Estate and letting agents and removals firms can continue to work. If you are looking to move, you can go to property viewings.

Follow the national guidance on moving home safely, which includes advice on social distancing, letting fresh air in, and wearing a face covering.

We’re Here for Our Community

We will be available to take calls and respond to any property related questions you may have about this latest twist in what’s been a traumatic time for many of us.

But unlike the first lockdown hope is now on the horizon.

We will get through this together. Remember ‘it’s always darkest before the dawn.’

All of us at Chamberlains are committed to ensuring our clients, colleagues and communities remain safe. We will do everything in our power to play our part in the fight against this awful disease.

Here is the link to the Government’s latest Coronavirus guidelines. Page 17 features the Moving Home advice.

Stay safe South Devon.

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8 Ways Homeowners in South Devon Can Reduce Their Heating Costs

8 Ways Homeowners in South Devon Can Reduce Their Heating Costs

A 60-second speed read that could save you a lot of money.

Here’s a question for you.

What happens when you have a national lockdown in winter?

Well, there a few things but one that’s guaranteed to happen is heating bills rocket.

More people are at home whether to work, learn or stay safe, which means the thermostat gets turned up to keep everyone warm for longer than usual.

The good news is the National Energy Foundation charity has shared eight tips to keep the costs down and cut the amount of energy we use. Here they are.

  • Understand how your heating system and its controls work.
  • Turning your thermostat down by just 1 degree can save you money, and you won’t even notice the temperature difference.
  • Move furniture away from radiators – they block heat getting further into a room.
  • Don’t dry clothes on your radiators – they limit the effectiveness of the heat the rads emit.
  • Think small to save big – letterboxes can let a lot of heat escape, so think about insulating them.
  • Ditch the electric blanket – a hot water bottle is cheaper.
  • Draw the curtains at night and let the sun flood in during the day.
  • Take the advice handed down from dads over the decades and put a warm jumper on when you get cold at home instead of instantly reaching for the thermostat.

At Chamberlains we’re proud to serve the community in South Devon. That’s why we’ll be sharing regular articles throughout the latest lockdown to help you stay entertained, informed and safe.

Now, where did we put that woolly pullover?

Thanks for reading.