There's a host of famous celebrities associated with the wild and rugged South Wales coast. We asked expert property writer Fred Redwood to go on a house-hunting tour to see what attracts these stars to the area.
The Help to Buy scheme, one of the keystone policies of the 2013 Budget, promises a number of measures relevant to first-time buyers.
Many of us are leading increasingly busy lives as we balance jobs with everyday tasks and leisure time, with kitchen activities often losing out. Here are some innovative kitchen gadgets that you may want on your worktops.
Estate Agents can make a big difference in the housing process and can literally make or save you substantial amounts of money.
Your home should be your castle – and if MTV Cribs is to be believed – also your gym, spa, cinema, club, casino and bar.
Why buy when you can rent right? Who needs to be taking on the responsibility of your own home when you can pay someone else to do it for you? Whilst this might work for the Parisians (no one buys in Paris darling), the signs are that it just doesn’t work for us Brits with 1.5 million people in the UK saying they regretted not buying their home in 2012. Anyone who has ever rented will know that it’s not all it’s cracked up to be and paying a landlord to handle all the broken boilers, maintenance and 1970s décor often simply means that you end up living with it.
Of the 1.5 million Brits full of regrets about not leaping onto the property ladder there were 600,000 25-34 year olds who wanted to get on board but didn’t, either for financial reasons or simply because they were slightly freaked out by the fact that we’re in the middle of a recession. However, with experts suggesting that house prices are likely to continue to rise, and the costs of buying a home actually cheaper than renting in the long run, there are less and less reasons to hold back.
Sounds like madness doesn’t it – buying cheaper than renting? Well a report from the Halifax, published this month, shows that buying a home is actually 16% cheaper than renting – that’s £1,440 less a year. With the drop in the initial expense of purchasing property, such as arrangement fees periodically waved by mortgage lenders, one off events such as the stamp duty holiday announced in 2010 (now ended but likely to be repeated in the near future), and the possibility of a 90% mortgage with schemes such as the New Buy, the up front costs of buying your own place are much lower than they have ever been. Add to that the rises in rent prices, particularly in locations like London, and it suddenly makes a lot more sense to put your money into your own property – rather than someone else’s. Plus, when you have your own place you can have pets, you can live in your own décor and you’ll actually own a tangible asset that’s all yours.
If you’re thinking about making the leap then maybe our latest competition will help give you a push. The winner gets their mortgage or rent paid for a whole year – giving you the time to bank plenty of cash for a deposit if you’re renting, or spend your extra money on sexy black granite worktops and a rooftop Jacuzzi if you already own.