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Are You Ready for an Electric Car in South Devon?

electric cars

Electric vehicles (EVs) are everywhere. They’ve been steadily growing in popularity and are now a serious consideration for anyone thinking about buying a new car. So, are you ready to go green and drive electric?

It’s estimated that by 2025, the sale of electric cars will overtake that of traditional petrol/diesel vehicles. And in just seven years’ time, the government plans to ban the sale of new petrol and diesel cars completely (although used cars will still be sold).

Many potential EV owners are holding back because of the lack of charging points, but is this a valid concern? If you’re thinking about making a change or just want to find out more about charging an EV, this article is just for you.

Types of chargers

Ok, it’s a fact – charging an EV is not as easy as pulling into a petrol station and filling up. There are three different types of chargers: rapid, fast and slow, which will make a huge difference to the time it takes to charge your vehicle. There are also ultra-rapid chargers, but these aren’t widely available yet. It is estimated that a rapid charger can charge a battery to about 80% in under an hour, whereas a slow charger can take up to 12 hours.

As you’d expect, rapid and ultra-rapid chargers can be found at petrol stations and motorway service stations, whilst slow chargers are found in lamp posts on residential streets.

Where to charge

Currently, the most popular places to charge are at home, at your workplace or at public charging points.

Government grants

Homeowners and landlords have access to a variety of government grants which will either pay a lump sum towards the cost of installation or 75% off the total price of purchase and installation (whichever is lower). Employers are also able to apply for workplace charging schemes to install charging points for staff.

National funding

Not everyone is fortunate enough to have a driveway or enough space to install a personal charging point, which is why local councils are being given millions of pounds to start installing more charging points throughout the country. Local authorities must also have charging strategies in place that set out how they plan to improve EV charging over the coming years.

Free charging points

If you’ve been driving an EV for some time now, you’ll probably know all about those magical free charging points that exist in your local area. But if you’re new to the EV phenomenon (or have just been ignoring it), this is something worth thinking about. There are only around 4,000 free points around the country, and they can be found at supermarkets, tourist attractions and some car parks. However, if you live in Scotland, count yourself lucky, as you have the most free charging points in all of the UK.


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Is your garden summer-ready?


Whether you’ve got a huge garden or a modest balcony, making the most of your outside space matters. Especially as the weather warms up and you can spend more time enjoying the fresh air. So, what are the big garden trends of 2023?

In this quick read, we look at this year’s top garden trends and how you can make your space a design dream.

  • Choose resilient plants

With temperatures becoming hotter each year and rainfall less predictable, garden geeks recommend investing in drought-resistant plants that will cope with the strong sunshine and drier days. It means less waste and a gorgeous garden all year round.

While it’s difficult to predict how plants will get on from season to season, consider species like long-flowering salvias, which are widely available and insect-friendly. Crab apple trees are also a good choice if you’ve got a bigger space.

  • Get mulching

For those of us less experienced in gardening jargon, mulch is basically a loose covering that goes on top of soil (most commonly, bits of bark or pebbles). Mulching can help reduce the growth of weeds, keep moisture in and protect your plants.

This year, it’s all about organic mulch, a great sustainable option. It includes straw, hay, grass clippings and leaves. Whatever you choose, mulching is key to retaining plant life and is very 2023.

  • Create a garden for mental wellbeing

Time outside can be a great way to lift your mood and reduce stress, and this year, one garden trend is all about creating a space to enhance emotional and mental wellness. Plant seeds, move garden furniture around and create somewhere that you want to spend time in.

No matter how good (or bad) you are at gardening, just getting outdoors and changing how your space looks will give you a sense of achievement.

  • Garden furniture

You might not want to spend a fortune, but if you’ve got tatty plastic chairs and a three-legged table, consider investing in some new garden furniture. This year’s top trends include natural materials like wood and rattan that will soften the look of your outside space. Colours like brown, terracotta and even soft pastels are also on trend.

How will you make your garden fashionable this year? Will you follow gardening trends, or do you just like to get your hands dirty? 

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A Pet Lover’s Guide to Selling a Home

A Pet Lover’s Guide to Selling a Home

Don’t let your beloved family pet stop you from achieving top selling price for your property. Follow these tips to ensure buyers don’t get sniffy about making an offer on your home.

Given that 62% of British households have a pet*, you might assume buyers wouldn’t bat an eyelid at the prospect of viewing a property where a furry or feathered friend resides.

But many property hunters are put off when they visit a home where there are obvious signs and smells of pets.

The reasons for this aversion to animals can vary; a buyer may have an allergy, have had a bad experience in the past, or love their own animals, just not other people’s.

Whatever the rationale, as first impressions are so important when selling a property, it’s best to get rid of, or at least minimise, the signs of pet life in your home. Here’s how:

Prepare your property for sale

  • Give your home a deep clean to remove dirt, paw prints and animal hair; this will hopefully reduce pet odours, too. While your home is on the market, be super vigilant regarding cleanliness.
  • Repair any damage caused by your pets, such as chewed or scratched woodwork, mucky skirting boards or holes dug in the back garden.
  • Ensure all pet toys, bedding, litter trays, crates and food bowls are out of sight when the marketing photographs are taken.
  • If there are pet items that you can’t hide from view, at least ensure they’re neatly organised.
  • Devise a plan for managing viewings because, ideally, you don’t want your pets at home when buyers turn up. Arrange for your pets to stay with a friend or pet sitter or lodge at a kennel or cattery while open days and viewings occur.

On the day of a viewing

  • Transport your pet to wherever they’ll be staying for the day.
  • Minimise signs of pet life from display.
  • Light a few scented candles to mask any pet odours.
  • Check the back garden to make sure there are no droppings.

For more advice about presenting your home for sale, contact us here at Chamberlains

*Statista, 2022.





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Can you make a house move less stressful?

Can you make a house move less stressful?

Just the thought of moving home can make you break out into a cold sweat. It’s a life experience that many people think of as one of the most stressful things you can do. So how can you minimise those feelings of panic?

April is Stress Awareness Month, and if you’ve got a move coming up, you’ll need to keep your wits about you to get it all done.

In this quick read, we look at ways to make selling your home a little bit less stressful and more manageable.

  • Start packing early

Whether you’ve found a property or you’re still looking, getting ahead of packing is always a good idea. Start with decluttering your space. Reducing the amount of stuff you take with you is the first step, and you could always make a few extra pounds by selling items you no longer need.

Pack the items you rarely use first. Clearly label boxes with what items have been packed away and where they belong. Work room by room to try and keep some order.

  • Find an agent you trust

It’s essential to work with an agent you trust. A good agent is invaluable and will help with a realistic valuation, marketing your property and proactively organising viewings.

Many agents can also organise open days, so you can get a whole load of viewings done at once without the need for frantic tidy-ups every few days.

Unfortunately, you might not find a property through the same agent, but it’s always worth talking to them about what they have available, so you can keep things more streamlined.

  • Appoint a solicitor and broker early

Getting a good solicitor on board before you actually need their services reduces the panic of having to find one at short notice. The same applies for a mortgage broker. Instead of looking for a mortgage yourself, use the services of a professional. They’ll have access to deals that you might miss or that aren’t widely advertised.

  • Make it easier for kids

If you’ve got little ones, you’ll know that change can be quite overwhelming for them. Make them part of the move by creating their own special moving box with all their favourite things in it. If you can visit the property you’re moving to with them, show them their new bedroom, ask them how they’d like it decorated or where they want to put their toys.

If you’re searching for a new home, Chamberlains can help. We’ve got the experience and know-how to reduce your worries about moving. Check out our free, downloadable sellers guides .

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Should You Drop the Price or Your Agent if Your Home’s Not Selling


If your dreams of a speedy property sale have hit the skids, it’s time to change strategies. Read on to discover the best way to get your sale back on track.

No one likes admitting they’ve got something wrong. But if your home has been on the market for some time and interest has gone cold, it’s time to reassess the situation. Before you can determine your next move, you need to identify if:

  • The price is too high and you need to reduce it; or
  • Your agent isn’t up to scratch and you need to replace them.

Consider dropping the price if: 

  • Lots of buyers have viewed your property, but there have been no offers.
  • An open house generated lots of footfall ­– and raised eyebrows at the asking price.
  • Something has changed in your local area that has negatively influenced the market, such as a controversial building project getting the go-ahead.
  • A buyer withdraws an offer because their lender thinks the property is overvalued and won’t agree a mortgage deal.
  • The asking price breaks the ceiling for your road/local area. Unless there’s something exceptional about the property (for example, it’s much bigger than neighbouring ones), the price could be unrealistic. Recent interest rate hikes mean buyers are cautious about over-extending themselves.
  • You need an urgent sale for personal or work reasons and a cash buyer is driving a hard bargain.

Consider dropping your agent if: 

  • Your home is well presented but you’ve not had much buyer interest.
  • The marketing is lacklustre. The photos look amateur, and your agent is less active on social media than your great granny.
  • They’re slow to return your calls and always seem to be full of excuses.
  • You’re underwhelmed by their people skills and drive. 

But wait, there’s one more important thing…

While a modest reduction might be justified in some circumstances, if a drastic price drop is required, you’re entitled to ask how your agent got it wrong in the first place (and are they the person to turn things round now)

In some cases, a seller might need to drop their price and their agent to get their sale moving again.

Contact us here at Chamberlains for an honest valuation and no-nonsense selling advice.


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A Landlord’s Guide to Selling a South Devon Rental Property


Over the last 12 months, it’s been reported that many landlords have decided enough is enough and are exiting the buy-to-let game in their droves. And whilst these headlines may or may not be accurate, one thing is for sure, selling a buy-to-let property is very different to selling a residential property.

So, if you’re a landlord considering selling a rental property, what do you need to know?

In this quick read, we look at some important factors you should be aware of – from the property’s condition to the tax implications of selling.

 Vacant or tenanted?

This is the first thing you need to consider. Is your rental empty, or do you have a tenant living there? If it’s the latter, you should be aware that there are certain obligations and duties you still have as the legal landlord. For example, if the tenant is within contract, then they can stay put until their tenancy agreement expires, and you are responsible for repairs and maintenance until the property is sold.

For the above reasons, it often makes sense to wait until a property is empty before putting it on the market.

Get a trusted agent

When selling a rental property, it’s essential you team up with a reputable local agent. They can provide invaluable insight into matters such as who the property might appeal to, whether you should sell to another landlord or a residential buyer, how much it’s worth on the current market and so on.

If you decide to market it to other landlords, an established agent will be in a great position to contact other landlords they work with to gauge interest – which could result in a quicker sale. Alternatively, they can advise on how to make it appeal to residential buyers and what works need to be done to increase the value.

Understand tax

This is vital when selling a buy-to-let property as you may be liable for capital gains tax (for example, if you sell it for more than you purchased it for) if it’s in your personal name. Or, if you bought it under a limited company, there will be other tax considerations. Make sure you know the full tax implications before you decide to sell.


If a rental is tenanted, you can’t control the condition of the property before a viewing. It might be messy or unclean, which isn’t the best impression to leave with potential buyers. Additionally, you must give your tenant 24 hours’ written notice in advance of a viewing, and they can refuse entry if it doesn’t suit them.

Selling a vacant rental is much easier as you can ensure it’s clean and tidy and have a lot more flexibility to arrange viewings.

If you’re looking to sell part or all of your rental portfolio, please contact our sales team at Chamberlains.

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Guide to Selling Your Home after a Relationship Breakdown


Research shows that moving house and getting divorced are two of the most stressful things you can do. So, if you’re selling up in the wake of a painful split, you really are in the thick of it. Read on for some helpful advice on navigating the process.

Selling a home after the breakdown of a long-term relationship can be a daunting prospect that throws up a mix of emotions and challenges.

You may be sorry to say goodbye to your home but eager for a fresh start. Or keen to stay put but unsure of the financial practicalities.

Whatever your situation, there’s a lot to sort out and some big decisions to make. But you don’t have to figure it out alone.

Here at Chamberlains, we’ve helped many clients sell a home in the wake of a divorce or separation.

We’ve compiled this simple explainer to help you understand what’s involved. =

Legal advice

You’ll need a good lawyer to explain the process and answer questions specific to your situation – for example, what happens if children are involved, or one party wants to buy the other out. Most lawyers recommend staying in the property until the settlement is finalised. If you feel it’s imperative to move out, seek legal advice first.

Mortgage considerations

Tell your lender that things have changed. Sometimes it’s possible to negotiate a mortgage holiday but only stop making repayments if your lender has agreed to the change.

Speak to your ex

Okay, this one can be tricky, and sometimes, it’s not feasible. But to get the sale moving, you’ll need to agree on an agent and selling price and then prepare the property for sale. If the two of you can’t talk it out, consider using a mediator.

Select an estate agent

Tempted to get things done and dusted quickly by using a quick sale company? Don’t! Hold your nerve. They’ll knock you down on the price in return for a speedy deal. Instead, get three valuations from traditional estate agents and choose the one that impresses you most. You’re looking for professionalism, market insight and people skills (they might come in handy later!).

Moving preparations

The next steps can be draining, so enlist a friend or family member for support. Once you’ve accepted an offer, divide your possessions with your ex-partner and prepare for the removalists. If you’re squabbling over who gets what, try and compromise or sell the item and divide the money evenly. Emotions can run high at this particular point but remain focused on the end goal – starting the next chapter of your life.

If you have any more questions, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us at NAME. We’re here to help. You can download are full guide here.


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Four Ways to Make Maths Fun for Your Kids


Helping your child understand basic maths concepts doesn’t have to be a chore or a bore. Follow these four tips to discover how it can be child’s play. 

Maths is like Marmite: some people love it, while others loathe it. But there’s no escaping the fact that it’s a crucial life skill.

That’s why schools across the country will celebrate Number Day this week (3 February) by hosting maths games and competitions*.

A solid grasp of functional maths is vital for managing day-to-day finances and accessing educational and work opportunities. (It’s not just accountants and bankers who need to be confident with numbers. Many jobs, from nurse to builder, chef and estate agent, require good numeracy skills.)

The good news for parents is that they don’t need to be experts at algebra or trigonometry to get their child started with maths. It just takes a bit of time and a sense of fun. Here are four top tips.

  • Play games

Dominoes, checkers, chess and Uno help improve number and pattern recognition, while dice games like Yahtzee are a great way to practise calculations. And then, of course, there’s that old favourite, Monopoly, which will give your child a crash course in maths, banking, property management and conflict resolution.

  • Bake

Whipping up a batch of cupcakes or cookies is an excellent way for children to learn about counting, measuring and time. And they can enjoy eating the fruits of their labours afterwards.

  • Shop

A trip to the corner shop can be a great learning opportunity. Compare products and prices and talk about which items represent the best value. When it comes to paying, use cash. Explain how much you’re handing over and the change you expect in return. When your child is old enough, let them handle the coins and notes themselves; they’ll revel in their newfound sense of responsibility.

  • Trade

Have a stall at a school fair or car boot sale – and get your child involved. Encourage them to sell toys or clothes they no longer want and let them decide on the pricing.

From all of us here at Chamberlains, thanks for reading.

* Number Day is an initiative of the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children.


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How Do Agents Value Your Teignbridge Property?


If you’re planning to sell your property, the first question that you’ll inevitably ask is how much it’s worth. Your home may be invaluable to you and your loved ones, but it’s also got a market value.

But how is a property valued? Is there a magic formula? How does an agent decide its worth? And why might your property be valued less than the house two doors down?

In this quick read, we look at different factors that affect the value of your property.

The important thing to remember is that estate agents live and breathe house prices. You might think they’ve plucked a number out of thin air (especially if you don’t agree with their figure) but there’s a lot they consider before pricing your home.

Facts and figures

Before valuing a property, it’s important to consider what other sales have achieved in the surrounding area (that’s sold prices, not listing prices). Agents will look at similar properties to yours and what they have sold for. To avoid overvaluing your home, they will also take into account similar properties that haven’t sold at all or have sold for considerably less than they were priced at.

Another factor in valuing a home is the price per square foot. This amount varies from area to area. Unsurprisingly, city locations such as Central London boast the highest price per square foot, while many rural areas can come in at considerably less.

The property

When valuing a property, an agent will look at its general condition. Does it need lots of repairs? Has it been renovated recently? Is there potential to extend? In addition, things like the heating system and boiler, electrics and plumbing will play a part in determining the overall value.

The way the property is presented will also influence the selling price because a cluttered, messy home is harder to market (regardless of the décor) making it more difficult to attract potential buyers. (That’s why an agent will always advise sellers to have a clear-out before pictures are taken.)

Since the pandemic, the outside area of a property has had a huge impact on its value. Gardens now play a much bigger role in the sale of a home and factors such as size, whether it’s overlooked, if it’s steep and/or potential for improvement could affect the overall value of a property.

Other factors that an agent will consider when valuing a property include:

  • Number of bedrooms
  • Size and layout of the property
  • Potential to extend
  • On or off-street parking
  • Location and proximity to schools and amenities
  • Type of road (e.g. a cul-de-sac location or busy high street).

The seller

A good agent will know and understand a seller’s position before valuing a property. There’s a difference between sellers who need to sell ASAP and those that can wait a while for the right offer to come along. So, if a seller needs a quick sale, it might be worth valuing the property at a slightly lower price to attract more viewings.

If you’re looking to sell your property, contact Chamberlains – we’ll value your property accurately and get you on the move.







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Why the Highest Offer for Your Home Isn’t Always the Best Offer


So, you’re selling your home. You’re looking for the highest price and crossing your fingers for a smooth sale. But is the greatest offer always the best choice?

Well, we wouldn’t be writing this if the answer was yes. Unfortunately, the biggest offer won’t always be the best and there are many reasons why.

It’s not about selling your home for less than it’s worth, but it is about looking at the bigger picture. Is the buyer with the highest offer ready to buy? Can they move quickly enough to meet your timescale?

Remember, the highest offer means absolutely nothing if the sale falls through.

In this quick read, we look at reasons why the highest offer isn’t always the best, and why you should analyse all offers before making a decision.

Is the offer subject to mortgage funding?

Your highest bidder might be keen, but do they have the money to buy your property? If they don’t yet have their mortgage sorted out, you might be in for a nasty shock. Possible scenarios include: no mortgage offer at all, not qualifying for the loan amount they need, having their mortgage application rejected or down valuing your property.

Where does that leave you? Well, nowhere. By chasing the biggest number, you may have overlooked someone with a mortgage in principle ready to get the sale going. Worse still, you may have had a lower offer from a cash buyer (the property equivalent of a pink unicorn) which would have made the whole sales process faster.

Is the offer subject to sale?

This basically means the buyer won’t buy your home until they sell their own. Welcome to the dreaded property chain. The buyer might be offering you the highest price, but it means nothing if they can’t sell their own property.


There are lots of issues when it comes to timing. For example: maybe the buyer is in such a hurry to move that you can’t meet their time expectations, perhaps their mortgage in principle is coming to an end and they need to speed things up. Or, what if you’ve found your dream property but the buyer wants to take things slowly, putting you at risk of losing your next home?

How to analyse offers

Quite simply, you need to communicate with your agent. They’ll have an outline of each buyer’s situation so you can make an informed decision rather than being swayed by £ signs.

Ask your agent questions such as:

  • Are they a first-time buyer?
  • Are they in a chain?
  • Are they a cash buyer?
  • Does the buyer have any contingencies?

Understanding who your buyer is and how fast/slow they can move forward is invaluable and no one will know more than your selling agent.

If you’re selling your property, get in touch with Chamberlains today. We’re ready to help you make your next move.