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The West Sussex Property Blog

Let's D E A L

Estate agents or online-only wannabes offer cut-price commission rates to tempt sellers, and the press bombards the public with alarming commentary on falling prices, the Brexit effect and the state of the market in central London. But selling a home still only boils down to two questions - how much can I get and how quickly can I get it?

The Art of Negotiation from your local Estate Agent

Some people are good at negotiating. Some people, it turns out, aren't. Some people hold all the cards and know it. Some people hold weak hands and don't know it. So here are two important elements - prompted by ongoing political events - to think about when negotiating for your next home.

Avoiding the Feeble

We find that there is not only life in the property market this spring, but also some wonderful opportunities. If you are selling now, when availability of stock is low, please choose your estate agent wisely. It is such an important choice. Inexperienced agents offering low fees might be too feeble for this market. Avoid feeble agents like the plague and make sure you chose a strong firm with the people, experience and track record to achieve the best sale for you.

Reading the Market...

We reflect on a property market affected by Brexit and uncertainty, but showing some clear signs of resilience.

More appreciation for Estate Agents

It seems that new data from Zoopla is showing a surge in appreciation for Estate Agents and acknowledging their expertise and service. 

Cutting through the jargon of a Homebuyers report

Paperwork and jargon come hand in hand when buying or selling property and some of it is easier to decipher than others! One of the documents is the HomeBuyer Report, which is basically a survey detailing the state of the property you are about to buy.  The cost of having one of these is around £400, but can save you money in the long run and some use it as a tool for further negotiations.

Love Is All You Need

We take a romantic look at the property market this February.

Top Tips to help you sell quicker!

House buying and selling can be one of life's stresses, so you want it to be as quick a process as possible.  So being prepared and taking some sensible actions to get your home looking its best, can substantially reduce a possible lengthy house sale. 

What a no deal Brexit may look like for the Property Market

Encouragingly, despite Brexit uncertainty, the long-term outlook for the real estate sector remains positive...

Some positive trends for 2019, despite Brexit.

Despite uncertainty across all markets, there seems to be, according to this very interesting OnTheMarket.com article, some positivity surrounding the housing market, during Brexit year.

To Brexit and Beyond

If you are thinking about moving in 2019 you have choices. Consider them wisely. But also recognise that this is an extraordinary time. Nothing is certain. Don't bank on the killer sale. Do aim for a great purchase. Be realistic. Price, price, price is as important as location, location, location. Don't put your biggest asset in the hands of the inexperienced. 

Annual house price growth holds steady

Considering the pressures in the current UK's political and economic climate, it is good to read a positive article in Property Reporter. It seems that Nationwide's recent analysis has shown that the housing market is bearing up. 

Has the housing market escaped the Brexit uncertainty?

None of us have a crystal ball to look in to the housing market future surrounding Brexit, but it seems that, according to a recent index, during the 2 and a half years since the referendum, there seems to have been limited impact on the housing market.

Figures point to First Time Buyers increase market share

It seems that FTB's are showing no signs of slowing down, with the help of competitive mortgage rates being one of the main reasons.

High street Estate Agents can achieve more for you...

The view from the GL Offices remains positive, especially when we look at a recent article from Property Industry Eye showing research done by The Advisory - the independent customer advice group for house sellers.  This tells us that high street agents achieve more viewings, more offers, and in almost three-quarters of cases a 5% better price than online-only firms.

A Friend in the Business

We take a look ahead at the 2018 autumn/winter property market in the final months of the pre-Brexit period.

First Impressions Count!

The front of your house is the first think that potential buyers will see when they do a drive by or come for the viewing appointment. Their first impression will be very important to both them and you, so you should make the most of this important aspect of your property.

What's happening in the Private Rental Sector...?

The latest news from ARLA and other property industry experts and articles, is that average rent is up year on year, in virtually all parts of England and Wales, with the returns to landlords remaining competitive. 

What designs are trending, for your home in 2019

Following the recent design shows in London and Paris it seems there are some new design trends for your home coming this season!

Home Sweet (smelling) Home!

It seems that prospective buyers are becoming more particular than ever, so a lick of paint is no longer enough to tempt buyers to purchase your home - you need to consider how to make it smell appealing!

Half Term & Halloween with National Trust in Sussex!

With October Half Term just around the corner and Halloween soon to be upon us, this is the best time to get out in the countryside and enjoy the Autumn colours. 

Should you stay or should you go?

That is the question some property owners are asking themselves with Brexit in mind. Is it right or wrong to sell before Brexit or after Brexit? It seems there is no right or wrong answer according to a very interesting article in the Guardian.

Premium renters pay for furnished properties

An ARLA article makes interesting reading if you are pondering the question furnished or unfurnished...? 

Technology that can make your home 'greener'

What springs to mind when considering how to make your home 'greener'...solar panels, recycling gadgets?? According to this Property Reporter article, technology is transforming the way we can make our homes greener than ever and not all the ideas are for the rich or fanatical.

Do we go with logic or love when buying a home?

It seems that one in two people buy their new home after just one viewing! According to figures, 53% of people took only one visit, with another 25% only needing two, before they made their property purchase.

Tips for baby proofing your new home!

More and more young families are able to buy property, with Help to Buy schemes etc, so Barratt homes have come up with their top tips to ensure your property is safe when you move in.

Latest data suggests property transactions hit a 2 year high

Recent data has revealed that house prices have fallen but new buyer demand is up year on year. 

How do you choose the best Estate Agent for you

You're considering putting your property up for sale, you want the best possible price but you also want to get your property sold. The prices and services vary from Estate Agent to Estate Agent, so how do you ensure you choose the right one for you and your property sale or property purchase even.

Do your garden buildings need planning permission?

We have all spent a considerable amount of time in our gardens this year but have you ever considered the buildings in your garden and whether any planning permission or restrictions should be considered. 

We look at the positives in the Autumn property market

As we look forward to the autumn season in the 2018 property market the naysayers may well be citing Brexit as reason enough not to make a house move. They may say there is too much uncertainty. They may have would-be movers, wait.

Londoners are still on the move out of the City

According to an interesting article in Property Industry Eye, there has been a record number leaving the Capital to move out to cheaper areas of the Country.  With most of these moving to the South East of England, we are perfectly placed to benefit!

Conveyancing explained

Property jargon can be confusing, so a recent onthemarket.com article concentrating on Conveyancing, what it means and how it happens, makes for some very interesting reading.  It goes some way to explaining this important area of your solictors work.

Tips for First Time Buyers

Purchasing your first home is a massive commitment and one that needs careful consideration and thought, along with support and advice from your local Estate Agent. 

To be in your new home by Christmas - act now!

According to the House Price Index and an article on Rightmove, if you want to be in by Christmas, you need to act now! 

People still see a value in high street Estate Agents

More than half of buyers and sellers still want face to face, high street Estate Agents to talk to and support them with the sale/purchase of a property, according to a recent survey.

Now the heatwave is going, is now the best time to sell?

Putting your property on now whilst stock levels are lower, could pay dividends....according to an article in Property Reporter.

Seasonal repairs are a must - tips for Landlords

We have seen temperatures soaring and no doubt in a few months time we will see them tumble to near freezing, so what repairs should Landlords be considering following the heatwave and to get ready for the Winter?

The Art of Negotiation - 5

The property deal is agreed but not finalised, there is a willing buyer and a willing seller. Both sides have argued their points, compromised a bit, decided on a price and appointed solicitors. The buyer has arranged finance, and a surveyor. What could possibly go wrong?

First Time Buyers have saved money since stamp duty cut

According to figures recently released by the Government, First Time Buyers have saved millions of pounds since the stamp duty cuts last year.

20 Things that put off potential buyers!

According to a recent NAEA article a survey has told us that, damp, bad smells, poor maintenance and broadband blackspots are amongst the top 20 things that put off home buyers and can be potential deal breakers!

The heatwave prompts us to spend more on our gardens

We are in the midst of what is probably the best summer in decades, with temperatures soaring and what better way to spend time, than in your garden! A lovely looking outdoor space, whatever the size, is always appealing to buyers, so if you can spend some time and money on it whilst the sun is out, we here at GL, would highly recommend it, especially if you are considering a sale in the future. 

The rise in first time buyers!

According to an article in the Guardian  the number of new home owners rose in May this year. In fact there was an 8.1 % increase in first time mortgages over the same time last year. 

Could you spot Japanese Knotweed in your garden?

You may be aware of the damage that Japanese Knotweed can do, but could you identify it in your garden...?

How long is too long when it comes to the timeline of buying a home?

Should it be 6 weeks, 3 months, 6 months? In an ideal world a freehold sale should be 6 weeks and a leasehold sale of around 8-10 weeks - but this isn't always happening. 

Where to retire to when you don't want to slow down!

The image of those retiring with little to do other than playing bridge and chatting to fellow retirees over tea in 'the lounge' of their retirement home, lingers on with some, but you'd be wrong!

A Spanner in the Works

Ask anyone who is putting their property on the market about how long the legal side of things could take once they find a buyer and most will say about eleven weeks. Oh, would that it were only eleven weeks!

World Cup Footballers Homes!

We are all in the grip of World Cup fever, but some of you may be wondering where these players live when they're not training or playing matches around the world..   

The desire to own your own home is still strong.

In a recent article from Property Reporter it seems that the desire, of young people, is still strong when it comes to striving to own their own home.

Governments new 'How To' guides for landlords and tenants

This week the Government launched some new 'How to' guides for tenants and landlords, to help them understand their rights and responsibilities. 

Top reasons for moving house this summer

According to research it seems that us Brits are seven times more likely to be moving home because of a change of job rather than to make a quick buck from the housing market...

New asking prices, UP...

According to a recent article and figures from Rightmove, asking prices have gone up again and are now averaging £309,439.

What later life home buyers should be thinking about

Buying a property that suits you in your 60s and 70s, that will continue to meet your needs in the years beyond, is a challenge that is being faced by more and more buyers as the baby boomers come of a certain age.

The thorny issue of gardening in rented properties

With summer just around the corner, and the weather finally taking a turn for the better, the attentions of tenants and landlords begin to turn to the garden to make the most of the sunshine. But be aware, gardening can be a thorny issue when it comes to deposit disputes, says Michael Hill, an adjudicator with Tenancy Deposit Scheme (TDS). 

These figures show how important flats are to the rental market

The Nationwide has bucked the trend of many industry organisations by insisting that the private rental market is still in good shape, despite a raft of challenges being thrown up by government.

The Art of Negotiation - with the help of a local Estate Agent

There is a time in the course of a negotiation when the wheels sometimes come close to falling off.

Average pensioner earns £7k a year from their home

New data and analysis from Key Retirement has revealed that on average, Great Britain's pensioners have gained £159k in the 23 years they have owned their home.

Bank of Mum and Dad to lend £5.7bn this year

According to Property Reporter, the latest data and analysis from Legal & General and Cebr, has shown that parental help equating to an eye-watering £5.7bn will be needed for quarter of housing transactions during this year.

UK Finance data on April mortgage lending rise...

Gross mortgage lending rose by 13.3% annually to £20.4bn in April, driven by strong remortgaging figures, according to the latest UK Finance data.

Come and talk to the experts

At GL&CO Estate Agents we’re proud and have worked hard to become market leader in your area, want to know how we did it?  

Popularity of cash back mortgages on the rise...

Popularity of cash back mortgages on the rise... According to an article on Property Reporter, the latest data from Moneyfacts has shown that the popularity of mortgage cashback offers continues to grow, with both the number of deals and average cashback amount both seeing increases.

Landlords can make over £160,000 profit from buy-to-let

Landlords may be feeling the pressure of the Government’s recent buy-to-let tax clampdown, but research suggests there is still plenty of money to be made over the long term.

Year-on-year house prices up 1.2% according to latest data

Year-on-year house prices up 1.2% according to latest data

Think tank proposes giving all 25-year-olds £10k to get on the property ladder

Think tank proposes giving all 25-year-olds £10k to get on the property ladder

House price predictions explained...

Reviewing the differences between house price reports from national companies and why it's good to also seek local advice

12 buyers chasing every property as spring demand outpaces supply

A blog from an article about the amount of buyers after each property

UK Buy to Let very much alive

A year since the government's tax and mortgage relief changes came into effect, what impact have they had on UK landlords who placed leverage on their property investments?

Lets allowing Pets - homes for the future!

Rental accommodation, and the profile of those who live in it, is undergoing a fundamental change in the UK. Once shunned by private landlords, pets are increasingly being welcomed into rental homes, with contemporary developments even making considerations for them as part of their design.

Preparing your Property for the Market

A guide and top tips for preparing your home to make it look the best for prospective buyers.

Bottoms Up! We take a look at what and who is driving the property market this spring.

An article discussing who drives the property market at the moment - first time buyers or wealthy buyers.

Lucky Friday the 13th

An article talking about Friday the 13th not being surpertitious for moving house

Feature your property in our London Showcase

The number of Londoners now buying outside the capital is at an all-time high. Statistics have shown that 42% of sellers leaving prime areas of London for a home elsewhere in the UK, relocation to the Home Counties remains the most popular choice.

How an Estate Agent should market your property

With the property market more competitive than ever and no shortage of stock coming to the market, especially in West Sussex, how your property is taken to the market can have a huge impact in not only a sale being achieved, but the price in which is secured too.

How Important is the School catchment area when buying a house....?

A blog talking about how important the school catchment area is when buying and selling a house.

News from our Managers

Welcome to the GL & Co blog, where we write on a regular basis to keep every reader abreast of what is going on in the property market in West Sussex. We like to include thoughts and comments from our managers and staff, based in the 3 GL & Co offices in Storrington, Horsham and Pulborough.  Craig, the manager of our Storrington office, gave us his thoughts earlier this week....

The Government are damaging the private rented sector, is their policy short sighted?

The Government are damaging the private rented sector, is their policy short sighted? There are more warning signs that the assault on landlords is adversely affecting the private rented sector.

Decisions, Decisions, Decisions

Markets are forever in flux. That is their nature. So our handling of them must be flexible too. In the stock market we can buy, hold or sell depending on conditions. In a fruit and vegetable market we can buy the freshest produce early in the morning at the full price, or at the end of the day we can purchase what no one else has bought at a cheaper rate.

First Time Buyers at record high for over 10 years

If you are starting to consider getting on to the property ladder for the first time, according to recent figures from UK Finance, you are one of many.  It seems that there were 365,000 first time buyers in the UK last year, with an average age of 30 years old and an annual household income of £41,000 (individual or joint).   

The Early Bird

With 2018 in full swing our Horsham office has been incredibly busy listing some fabulous homes across the area.  With applicant register levels also increasing, Tim Cattini, Manager of the Horsham Office, is expecting a busy first quarter with offers already coming in from motivated buyers looking to move before the Easter period. 

Real estate agents sell your home on a No Sale No fee basis.

Radio 5 have been looking at the difference between online and traditional estate agents, Neil Moore explores the issues....

Reading Between The Lines

Neil Moore, MD at GL & Co Estate Agents, looks at press reporting on the current property market and finds that there is more going on than the papers would have us believe. The press always have lots to say about the property market. But let’s take a look at what they aren’t saying.

The Art of Negotiation Phase Three

Neil Moore, MD at GL & Co Estate Agents, explains the all-important third phase in a property negotiation. Most, if not all, property negotiations run on similar lines. The first phase is the easy and fun bit. Both sides get to shout at each other, dig their heels in, complain how unreasonable the other side is being, bang the table and generally try to show who is boss – who is the alpha negotiator.

The December Property Market

A round of what's happening across the Sussex property market with updates from our Managers in Horsham, Storrington and Pulborough and our lettings team.

Stamp Duty Changes in the Budget

Neil Moore, Managing Director at GL & Co Estate Agents, comments on the Chancellor of the Exchequer’s autumn budget and how it affects the property market.

Your local property market update

Looking at the current property market, Craig Bellas, Manager of our Storrington Office has noted the usual mixed messages coming from various media resources in relation to house prices. He has commented on this saying, ‘The truth of the matter, at least in West Sussex, is there is always demand for good houses in desirable areas.’ 

The Route To Success

GL & Co Estate Agents are celebrating winning a prestigious award for their charity fund raising at the recent Mayfair Group annual conference and dinner.

What’s happening in the Sussex property market?

The managers from each of our Sussex offices look at what's happening locally with buying, selling and letting homes across the area with a weekly round up.

The view from the GL & Co Offices

What's the local property market up to at the moment? Our managers from each of our Sussex offices look at what's happening locally with buying, selling and letting homes across the area.

The Art of Negotiation

Neil Moore, MD at GL & Co Estate Agents, sees yet more similarities between the Brexit talks and property negotiation. Every negotiation begins with conflict of some sort - different points of view where both sides have strong and seemingly entrenched initial opinions about what each wants. This is the argument stage. But negotiations can't proceed if both parties don't move from those entrenched positions. Deadlock has to be broken otherwise neither party can proceed to any sort of end, never mind an agreeable one. This means one side has to take the plunge and be the first to make a proposal - to show that they are prepared to soften on their original stated position. This is not weakness. It is strength. It is clever. It is part of the negotiating process, for without a proposal there is stand off.

The Dating Game

Neil Moore, MD of GL & Co, considers some similarities between Love and Property when searching online. Going back into the singles market after a period of life spent in a relationship can be difficult, troublesome and unnerving. Dating in 2017 is a lot different from ten years ago - never mind twenty or, heaven forbid, thirty. Society, expectations and even the rules of the game have moved on. Those entering this arena after some time have to learn these new rules and quickly.

What's good for the goose

Neil Moore, MD at GL & Co Estate Agents, suggests a new way of thinking when it comes to selling property.  Microsoft co-founder, Bill Gates, thinks that we overestimate the amount of change which will happen over two years but underestimate the amount of change over ten. This certainly seems to be the case with housing. 

Deal Me In

Neil Moore, MD at GL & Co Estate Agents, looks at one of the fundamentally important issues in selling or buying a property – the deal.   There is currently an awful lot in the news about negotiating. In Europe the Brexit negotiators are sharpening their pencils while on the other side of the Atlantic President Trump would have us believe that he is the best negotiator who ever walked the earth.   In fact selling houses has more to do with negotiating than just about anything else - the better the negotiator you have on your side, the better the deal you get. The trouble is most people aren’t too comfortable negotiating the purchases and sales of their own homes. That’s why they get someone to act for them - an estate agent.

Try on a house

Neil Moore, MD at GL & Co Estate Agents, gives some timely property buying advice now that the general election is over. Many of us know about the Sorting Hat at J K Rowling's Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. When a new student puts on the hat it tells him or her to which of the four houses - Gryffindor, Hufflepuff, Ravenclaw or Slytherin - they are most suited. Well a property is just like the Sorting Hat. It's as if it instinctively knows whether it's right for you - and you for it. All you have to do is listen carefully to the conversation the property is having with your inner self.  

Vote for Housing

Neil Moore, MD at GL & Co Estate Agents looks ahead at the 2017 general election and an all too often ignored – but vitally important - area of government policy. No doubt Brexit, the economy and the NHS will dominate the 2017 general election. Energy, education and defence should also get a strong look-in while the devolved governments will be trying to get as much air time as possible. But do spare a thought for housing, as, on the evidence of the recent past, it doesn't look as if any of the political parties will.

Springwatch and Migration

Neil Moore, MD at GL & Co Estate Agents takes a fresh look at the property market this spring. Spring has arrived and the migratory instincts of home movers are at their annual peak. Some home migrants will only be moving a short distance from their existing habitat. Others will have a longer passage to different parts of the country or even overseas. But this is certainly home moving season. Can nothing stop this natural urge?

A Word To The Wise

Neil Moore, MD at GL & Co Estate Agents, considers opposing forces that are affecting the property market this spring.  The post-Brexit property market is turning into a paradox. With low interest rates, declining numbers of unemployed and an economy that appears to be on a strong path of sustained improvement things should be booming. Confidence, the lifeblood of the property market, should be surging though its heart, pumping up prices as the numbers of available properties dwindle. It should be the classic sellers’ market. Except it isn’t. Why?

Why buy new?

With the popularity of Horsham, West Sussex, on the increase so the demand for homes also increases. As a result, there is the need for new homes in and around the town and purchasers have a wide choice of high end developments, bespoke houses and also apartments of varying sizes. New homes are very popular with purchasers for a number of reasons. Read more in our blog...


Neil Moore, MD at GL & Co Estate Agents, offers some timely estate agent matchmaking advice as we head towards Valentine’s Day. 

Property Market Preview 2017

Neil Moore, MD at GL & Co Estate Agents gazes into the property market crystal ball for 2017. The national press is fond of repeating what some estate agency firms have to say about the luxury market – especially in central London. This seems to suggest that it is an important part of the property market. Well it isn’t. It is the other end of the market which is important. The lower end drives everything. So if we want to understand about the health of the property market as we move into 2017 we need to look at how first time buyers might fare not at the relatively small market of houses for the super rich.

Ask Hilary!

Neil Moore, MD at GL & Co Estate Agents, looks at some fast changing attitudes in the property market.

Winter Sussex Property Market Update

So what’s happening with the property market at the moment? Well, it seems a day does not go past when someone in the Government is not talking about the ‘dysfunctional housing market’.

The Art of the Deal

Neil Moore, MD at GL & Co Estate Agents, offers some good advice about selling your home in this or any market. In 1987 a book called The Art of the Deal was published. Part-credited to one Donald J Trump it is estimated to have sold over one million copies and it held the number one spot on the New York Times Best Seller List for 13 weeks. What made it so popular? Simply that people were fascinated to learn how to make better business deals. Selling a home is business. So here are seven of my key thoughts on the art of the property deal.

Two brand new homes of exceptional quality

A fantastic opportunity to purchase one of only two bespoke brand new homes located in a quiet premier lane. These superb properties, each measuring almost 3,000 sq ft, have been finished to an exacting standard and benefit from four bedrooms and three bedrooms together with two reception rooms.

Autumn Property Market View

This is a good time of the year to take stock, look back at what has happened so far and at what the remainder of the year may hold. Here at GL&Co we have seen a relatively stable year which, under the circumstances, has been positive.

Eagle Eyed

Eagle-eyed property market watchers may have noticed a change. Certainly those in London will have seen a marked difference from a year ago. The market has done an about turn in favour of buyers. Fewer buyers and more properties available have changed the fortunes of purchasers. What does this mean for the market elsewhere? Well, often where London leads other areas follow.

Lucky You

Neil Moore, MD at GL & Co finds lessons to be learnt from Olympic preparation. The fabulous Rio Olympics remind us that dedication, natural talent, great coaching, relentless training, self-belief and a total focus on winning are what creates a gold medalist. Luck comes last on the list, for Olympians can’t rely on luck. Instead they have to depend on things they have control over. 


Neil Moore from GL & Co takes a look at the post-Brexit property market and offers some sound advice to those selling their homes over the summer months.

What's a Wells Cottage?

We take a look at the history of the very pretty Wells Cottages in Sussex which are popular with buyers in the area.

Brexit Property Special

Well now we know. Britain is leaving the European Union.  All the scaremongering is over and we will learn in the coming years which of the two sides was right after all. But what will this decision mean for the property market in the UK? Read our latest blog to find out more...

Buy to Let Market Update

Many people are asking me if buy to let is now effectively dead following the introduction of the additional 3% Stamp Duty on purchases and the changes to tax legislation impacting landlords. Read more in my latest blog...

Opportunities in new commuter areas

We are now starting to see the start of Summer in the gardens – the leaves have returned to the the trees and the plants are blooming. But what of the property market at the beginning of Summer – are things starting to bloom? Well, activity levels in the market are positive, building on the end of last year.

Spring 2016 Property Market Update

What’s happening in the property market? My favourite question and one I am asked all the time! Well, we finished 2015 on a high according to the Halifax Price Index and they have reported house prices in the three months to March 2016 were 2.9% higher than in the three months to December 2015. So what happens now?

Interested in Interest?

There has been much speculation regarding interest rates – they cannot get any lower than they are so the question is, when will they start to rise? With £314m owed in mortgages for properties in the RH12 & RH13 postcodes alone, even the smallest rise could have a big impact so it is a question many people are asking.

Buy to Let Returns on Investment

In this blog I’d like to share with you the information I have been working on as part of the landlord portfolio reviews I have been carrying out for people. This may help you when reviewing your own property portfolio to establish if it is performing as it should or if it requires an overhaul in terms of rental income in light of the current market conditions.

Home Ownership Trends

Comments from local people about local housing have got me looking into the property figures in more depth to establish what the current market looks like in the local area and I would like to share my findings with you. It is no secret that we are an ageing population – increasing state pension ages is a sign that we are all now living longer. Someone who is currently 20 will be retiring at age 68 now according to the Government. As the age of the population changes we are starting to see a shift in home ownership as more people are now renting their homes. This shift can be seen at a local level.

Stopwatch for Stamp Duty

Even if your property is not directly affected by the latest Stamp Duty increases, perhaps because it is not a suited as a Buy To Let investment, it may be indirectly affected by the changes.

What does 2016 hold

Welcome to 2016 and a new era in property. It promises to be an eventful-packed year. The way has already been prepared for a change in April when higher stamp duty rates are applied to properties bought for buy-to-let or second home purposes. So expect a busy time for the next few months as buyers rush to complete purchases before the axe falls. Already buy-to-let purchases are near their pre-crisis levels and the Chancellor may well tighten up lending criteria to stave off any potential problems down the line - 2015 saw buy-to-let borrowing at £38 billion compared with £45.7 billion in 2007. Mr Osborne will further affect landlords as from April as when they will also lose higher-rate tax relief on mortgage interest payments.

April Showers

The property market can sometimes seem a bit like the weather. Some days it is fine and sometimes it is rainy. But some days it really does not know what it is doing. The market is a bit like that at the moment. Just when it looks as if there is no momentum there is a surge of interest and then as quickly as it comes it stops - just like an April shower.

Renewing a lease

Owning a leasehold property isn’t as secure as owning a freehold property, but you do have certain rights. Most importantly, once you have owned (not necessarily lived in) the property for two years, you have the right to ask for an extension of the lease, or to ask for the option to purchase the freehold. As leasehold properties are virtually worthless without a current leasehold agreement, then it’s vital to keep a keen eye on the remaining length of time on your lease.

The perfect home?

Neil, our MD, looks at one of the challenges of buying property in this buoyant market. The big challenge with this property market is that there is less time to make a decision to buy. The fewer properties on the market the more pressure there is for buyers to make a choice quickly.

Lights, camera, action - ready to sell?

Neil Moore, MD at Guy Leonard and Company blogs about how to prepare your home for sale this Autumn

All I want for Christmas

Neil Moore, MD of Guy Leonard and Company, looks at the property market as Christmas creeps up on us...

How do we see the economy in 2013?

Neil gives his thoughts on the economy in 2013 following a conference he attended last week.

Is confidence coming back into the property market?

Is confidence coming back into the property market?

Scramble! The September Property Market

Neil Moore of Guy Leonard and Co Estate Agents posts his latest West Sussex property market comment

Turning to the Autumn Property Market

Neil, Managing Director of GL&Co shares his thoughts on the Autumn property market.

Property and Prejudice the continued reticence of the banks to offer sensible mortgages

It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single family in possession of a good mortgage must be in want of a house.

Estate agents licensing

I am pleased to advise everyone about the new licensing scheme that has been launched by the NAEA and approved by the government.

On Ice

Realistic estate agents are putting the champagne back on ice for a little longer. For a while many people thought that a buoyant property market had returned...

A Game of Two Halves! Neil Moore comments on the property market after a very busy Spring.

A Game of Two Halves!  Neil Moore comments on the property market after a very busy Spring.

The Chancellor Giveth and the Chancellor Taketh Away

The Chancellor Giveth and the Chancellor Taketh Away The 2010 Budget was, overall, rather neutral for the property market.  But there are some winners and losers.  The increase in the Stamp Duty threshold - doubled to £250,000

What a start to 2010

What a start to 2010..... thank goodness the snow has gone away....

Home owners take advantage of the market.

Neil Moore of Guy Leonard & Company looks into the options presented by the property market this autumn.

House price update

According to property website Rightmove, the average asking price for houses in England and Wales increased sharply in the four weeks to October 10

I know it's bad out there...

But you must remember, this recession WILL end.

Chances are excellent we're more than halfway through. You have to go back to the early 1930s (the Great Depression) to find a recession that lasted longer than 16 months.
Since this recession started in late 2007, it will undoubtedly be the longest since the Great Depression. But, I believe the recession has already hit bottom and will end before the end of this year.

Stock prices typically bottom out in the middle of recessions. This is because stock prices "look ahead." They "see" recovery before recovery actually arrives.

Consumers don't look ahead like this... They are interested in their present situation, which is not good. So while stock prices can bottom in the middle of recessions, consumer confidence typically bottoms at the end of recessions. People don't see things getting less bad... It's a "darkest-before-the-dawn" type thing.

If you look at the history of previous recessions you can see that the stock market follows consumer confidence. I only repeat what I read and there definitely seems a paten forming.

If the November stock-market bottom holds, and the record low in consumer confidence holds, we may be closer to the end of this recession than just about anyone thinks. It's too early to know for sure, but these factors suggest the recession may have bottomed, and things are already getting "less bad."

I believe and hope that's true. If I'm right, you should make a pile of money investing in both stocks and property in 2009.


We have a saying in our company about being above and below the line. Being above the line means that you take responsibility for your actions being below the line means you blame others and deny everything

I am going to be below the line,ready, I have not written on this blog for about a month because the market has been so busy. My team has been out valuing taking on new houses and doing many viewings we have been selling lots of houses and seeing them through to a completion. Its like the old days of early 2007 but with one exception the values are not as high. Those vendors that are taking sensible advise on the value of their homes are getting on with their lives and moving sometimes to the house of their dreams.

Values are not going to move up for at least the next 12 months even though the areas in this part of West Sussex such as Horsham, Storrington and Pulborough are pretty resilient they have all been effected by the economic downturn. Of course there are always those unique homes that have something a little special that do achieve incredible values, this could be a house with land in an exceptional location for example.

I am no economist, far from it, I only came away from Bearwood College, Wokingham with a lowly number of o'levels. However I do read a lot and my feeling is that the banks will not start lending significantly for some time, they have to correct there own balance sheets before they start lending to us.

I do think that Gordon Brown and Tony Blair have made a huge amount of errors in guiding this country through the good times but,on the other hand a Captain of a ship thinks things are fine until he hits the rocks, the key is to learn from this. I do think some of the actions taken to correct and shorten this recession has been very successful. I have no patients with those people that say' what about the debt we have built up for our grandchildren'. No doubt when it is relevant to them we will have been through two more recessions done battle with climate change and been producing revenue from jobs that have not even been thought of yet.

The labour party has an  obsession with wanting to appeal to the rich they have divided Britain between the rich and the poor more than ever. I do hope that which ever party gets in next time and there will undoubtedly be a change in the near future learns from our current experiences and plans for the future.


An article in the paper today about a resurgence in share prices. A bull market could be returning. The benchmark apparently is the FTSE100 index rose by 1.3pc capping its biggest monthly increase since 2003.  It seems that disappointing news is just being ignored and the markets only want to hear good news. Is it that simple, one wonders if things were not so bad in 2008, after all, perhaps it was just the press that was driving the market! now who said that surely that would not be the case!! Sorry if I am a bit cynical but last year there was still a lot of people with money able to buy houses and invest in the stock market but just decided it was to risky, Why? because the press was driving down the market.

All I can say is, do not let the press turn it into a bull market, otherwise we will be back where we started. 


We seem to be having more and more buyers registering saying that they can  not find a house to buy, 'what?' I hear you say, ' we have been trying to sell for ages' 

I know, there are an awful lot of houses that have been on the market, in some cases for over a year and only now are they getting interest, but that is because the prices have come down and the buyers are being very wary of overpaying for property.

The properties that are coming to the market for the first time, as long as they are priced correctly are selling quickly.

The World around us still goes on with more corrupt bankers being exposed and people losing there money.

If I was them I would put all my money into property!



It is a constant debate within the estate agency industry the value of newspaper advertising. Gone are the days that you would put your new instructions in the paper and get immediate phone calls. The Internet has taken over as the most dominant source of inquiries. In reality newspaper circulation has dropped and the amount of revenue papers used to achieve from there advertisers has dropped which means inevitably the quality of there product will drop to. We all agree it is essential as a local source of information, but serious buyers will be searching on the Internet. 

So do not judge your agent by the amount of times he puts your property in the paper, judge him on the advise and willingness to do a good job for you. Internet, office, boards and the experience the estate agent has is some of the most important things to look for but most of all it is service, service, service. If buyers like the service then they will want to buy through that agent. Our customer survey shows this is what buyers and sellers are looking for.


I know, I'm bound to say that! However it is so so true. We are selling really excellent houses at prices that just seem such good value. I can only say that the market activity has picked up since the new year and although we have a long way to go before we get to previous levels of inquiries, if last Saturday's viewing level is anything to go by, we are on our way.

My advise is "If you see something you like, get on and buy it, because it probably won't be there in six months' time"

We have agreed sales on three properties recently to investors, they can only get about 3% interest on capital in the banks and they can achieve 6% on the property they have bought, plus the hope of capital growth in 2 to 3 years time.

I understand from our preferred mortgage brokers (M&M mortgage management) that various deals are around in the mortgage market from 3.99% if you have a reasonable deposit, with rates like these and lower house prices, I suggest people seize the moment. It makes moving house rather attractive.

I understand the difficulty people have with selling there house for less than they thought it was worth and many have spent money on refurbishment etc, but everyone is in the same boat. ' what you lose on the swings, you will gain on the roundabouts'.

If you are reading this and wondering what to do (and it seems quite a lot of people are) contact any of our offices for the best advise, We understand how important it is to know the price that you can achieve in the current market. One agent I heard off has been recommending to clients to put there houses on the market at 25% more than they are worth so they can be knocked down in negotiation,so the buyers think they are getting a bargain, Does he think the buying public were born yesterday?






Latest interest rate news and great opportunities offered in the current property market.

Interest rates have now been cut to 1.5 per cent.  The last time they were as low as this was 1694 when the Bank of England was established to manage mounting debts.  Nothing changes.

In England at that time William III was on the throne - it was the beginning of the William and Mary period.  Peter the Great was the Russian Czar.  Handel and Bach were young music prodigies, and Isaac Newton was greatly influencing scientific thought.  Following the Pilgrim Fathers, British and Dutch settlers were continuing to colonise North America, where two years before 19 women were hung in the Salem Witch Trials in Massachusetts.

If history repeats itself it could be 2324 before interest rates are as low again.  This rather suggests that now is as good a time as any to take advantage of these rates and enter the property market.  With prices back to 2003 levels - when there was huge activity in the market - this makes even more sense.

When prices are high the media delight in charting the plight of key public sector workers in nursing, the police, the fire brigade and other essential services who are unable to climb on the housing ladder close to their work.  Well, now is the chance to end that.  Sadly many people are being placed into negative equity by the price downturn - with all the attendant problems this brings.  But for the many hundreds of thousands of people waiting for the opportunity to move out of rented property or their parents' homes this could be the perfect moment.

Yet a large hurdle remains - securing a mortgage.  Mortgages are available, but deposit demands from the lenders remain high.  Wouldn't it be sensible for the government and the lenders to recognise the opportunity this price correction brings, and to start helping first time buyers now through easing mortgage demands or a Stamp Duty moratorium, or preferably both?  This would create the best opportunity to kick-start the housing market and, through the knock-on effect, a significant portion of the service and retail economy.


It constantly frustrates me that other estate agents insist on tying their clients into long sometimes 12,16 or even 20 week sole agency contracts.

Every industry that offers a service to the public should stand or fall on the service provided. When will they realise that a happy customer is contented to build on their relationship with the service provider, regular contact and sound advise will maintain client loyalty.

I recently had a very bad experience with an electricity supplier (e-on) who had said that I had signed a contract to supply one of our offices and that they gave me 21 days to change supplier 2 months before the end of the 12 month contract, I admittedly overlooked this correspondence but had contacted them 6 weeks before the contract expired. After a letter of complaint they rang me to offer a discount on my electricity supply (very nice but not what I wanted) I just wanted service and not to be bullied into staying with such a company.  (I have diarised for next year to cancel my contract)

Maybe some of the companies that do this will eventually wake up and smell the coffee. The customer will vote with his feet.





We are delighted to announce a number of new appointments to the team in the last 3 weeks.

Adrian Passingham has joined our Pulborough office to work along side Michael Comyn, Adrian's wife runs a local Barbour shop in Lower street and they know the area well, Adrian brings many years of experience in agency in West & East Sussex.

Martin Hyre has joined us as manager of the Horsham office with nearly 20 years experience of agency in Sussex, latterly manager of Howard Cundey in East Grinsted.

Stewart Cunningham has joined him at Horsham office and brings over 5 years experience in agency and other related fields prior to estate agency.

These new colleagues joining us in the current climate has shown that even in difficult times it is possible to expand.We have proved and firmly believe, that if we offer good sound advise to clients you can achieve a sensible level of sales.

We have time and again bucked the trend in the property market. This has been done by being forward thinking and having the self belief that you can achieve anything if you are tenacious, positive and hard working. Continuing excellent customer service at all times will mean striving for excellence and accepting only complete success.

Welcome to our new colleagues, you will all achieve the un- achievable if you take notice of the above.



Lending was up by 7% in October to £18.7bn great news and shows that given the opportunity people will buy and and move home for those astute buyers they will be getting into the market at a low point and this will give them the benefit of medium to long term gains.

I firmly believe that if lenders are prepared to free up lending, at these attractive interest rates buyers will continue to make sensible purchases of good value homes.

HSBC took a full page advert in the Sunday Times yesterday explaining how it was going to lend £15 billion in 2009 in new mortgages. well if all the lenders start committing to this the only way is forward.

I can't wait until 2009 excitement is not the word, it will be challenging but we are so focused on the marketing campaigns planned and continuing to build our already successful brand.

The farms department is growing the lettings department has had huge growth in 2008 and the sales department is growing slowly but a big improvement in the last 2 months. Bring on 2009 I say!!


With interest rates taking another dramatic step down of I am thinking about the state of the local property market and feel that for many this has become a time of great opportunity.

Many of us will be pleased to see the back of 2008. Certainly most of us in the property sector will be.  Of course no one can be sure how much better next year will be but there are signs that at least suggest some optimism is warranted, especially as the Bank of England interest rate has dropped to its lowest for 57 years.
Despite a slow market, I can't think of a better time in years to be buying property.  The choice right now is amazing. In a buoyant market scarcity and time/price pressures lead buyers to compromise.  Here is a market where the need for compromise is much reduced.  There is time to explore the market.

Prices have tumbled. Property that for some was unaffordable two or three years ago is now affordable. Serious sellers are really pleased to discuss offers.  If the mortgage lenders would only begin to lend sensibly - and there are signs that the choke is being released a little - all buying factors would be in perfect alignment.  I can't think of a time when this has happened to such a degree.
There will be those who still want to wait.  But wait for what?  Prices to fall lower? They may.  But wait until the optimum moment and it will be too late.  Only by a fluke will a buyer complete on the day the market eventually bottoms out; and the day after is a day too late.  There is no exact science in property.  So it is better to find that uncompromising house of your dreams now. Yes, the value may drop a bit further and, it should be stressed, if you have employment or money worries, this is no time to buy.  But for those in a good position, who are making middle to long-term plans, there should be plenty of time to recoup any short-term losses.

So for buyers now is the moment to find the property you’ve dreamed of rather than the property that you might have had to settle for in different circumstances.  The market is yours.  Make the most of it.  It won’t last.  In the property market nothing ever does.


As we start the day with a new 15% VAT rate I wonder how this will make a difference to the property market and economy. I feel the short answer is none and that it has been brought in by the Government to help with a feel good factor. For a lot of small companies the administration involved in making the changes is a heavy burden and the benefit very small for the consumer.

The market will start to improve when the Government force the lenders to free up lending at sensible rates.  In the meantime the winners of this market are those people that realize that there is still a market and if they buy or sell now they will have moved at the right time benefiting from low values and less borrowing at better interest rates.

Our Horsham office had a fantastic Saturday with 14 viewings carried out and 3 offers to start the week, long may it continue.