Monday, 12 February 2018

Queen Street - NEW DEVELOPMENT FOR SALE - 24 FLATS #SHEFFIELD #CITYCENTRE


Queens Buildings is located on Queen Street in the City Centre of Sheffield. For those who don’t know it, it’s in a fantastic up and coming part of the city that is a stone’s throw away from Sheffield’s shops, bars and restaurants, the Universities, the Hallamshire hospital, and Kelham Island.
 Formerly used as offices, the building has been completely renovated to an immaculate standard by a national developer, who we have been working with from design stage. Queens Buildings offers a different kind of city centre living to the typical high rise apartment, they have been finished to an extremely high spec, all with new windows, granite worktops, and oak doors. We have noticed since working with this developer,  an incredible attention to detail, the site has been unbelievably well run and the end product looks fantastic.
We have 24 apartments, 10 one beds, and 14 two beds, and almost all of them feature a different and unique layout. The prices range from £90,000 through to £175,000, affordable city centre living that is unrivaled in its standards. There will also be parking spaces available to purchase for an additional cost. We at Spencer’s will be taking over the block management of the building, so any potential issues will be dealt with directly by us keeping management local and affordable too, and we hope you like the show flat, which is also our work.
Calling out to investors looking for a property with a great potential rental yield (in a great rental area), or first time buyers looking for a city centre home (with Help to Buy available), or anyone in between, an apartment in Queens Buildings would be a wise acquisition.
If you would like to view this exciting development please call our office on 01142683682 or email us at info@spencerestateagents.co.uk or if you are a developer that would like to work with us on a project, or want to know about our show home set up services, or our block management, please get in touch - happy to help! 

CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFO - FOR SALE QUEEN'S 

Tuesday, 6 February 2018

FIRE! Smoke Alarms are ESSENTIAL! Please read! #Spencer #Sheffield

Fire! Fire!!

Now, I know everyone bangs on about health & safety and there are more regulations than you can shake a stick at when it comes to rental properties and building work, but let me tell you… now I know why.
Growing up, smoke alarms were seen as a nuisance in our house so we didn’t have any. When we had an extension on our family home, regulations meant that we had to have hard wired smoke alarms fitted throughout the house. I’ll be honest, I wasn’t overly keen on the idea; what if they go off randomly in the middle of the night in a power cut and wake the kids up? Do we really need them in so many rooms? What a nuisance!
Until last weekend when they worked and showed me how important they really are…
Just before midnight we were woken by an almighty shrill throughout the house and after a moment of bewilderment we ran through the house and finally got to the kitchen to find a room full of smoke and a pan on fire. I had gone to bed and not turned the gas hob off. My amazing partner managed to get the pan out of the house so there was minimal damage and the wonderful South Yorkshire Fire & Rescue were there in a matter of minutes too. They checked everything was out, got rid of the smoke, chatted to the kids and looked after my partner having had inhaled rather a lot of smoke. I cannot praise them enough. Despite it being my entire fault they were friendly, helpful and so kind. Not once did they tell me off, thankfully.
So a few hours later once the kids were finally in bed and we’d calmed down, I realised how important the smoke alarms were. What could have happened, especially to the kids, doesn’t really bear thinking about… it might be a pain testing smoke alarms or even getting them fitted in the first place but please do remember why they’re there. They are SO important!! 

Monday, 29 January 2018

Does your agent charge hidden repair commission? WE DO NOT @spencersagents #sheffield

A More Ethical Approach to Property Management

When considering revenue streams and remuneration structures in property management, quality agents will ensure that any put in place support an ethical business culture. An area where this falters in the property management industry is the commission policies on general repairs and maintenance. Some large and well-known agents set company targets for achieving a level of commission income in this area. This creates the conditions for unethical approaches which every agency should seek to rule out.

Take a typical contract which endows the managing agent to undertake any repairs under the value of £300 at their discretion. The managing agent has three different but reliable and well-reviewed contractors on their books who can carry out the works:
·         Contractor A will charge £200.00
·         Contractor B will charge £250.00
·         Contractor C will charge £275.00
It is clear to see that where discretion is permitted the conditions of a commission target would bias the agent towards instructing Contractor C. After all, their contractual obligations are satisfied and another step is taken towards achieving their target income. However this clearly isn’t in the best interests of the client given that they are paying unnecessary costs of works which the agent can have carried out more costs effectively. It is also clear from the above example that although an agents fees may be clear in their contract, this will not shed any light on their internal targets & remuneration structures and the type of decision making they may influence.
Some agents may jump on the archaic view that this approach is perfectly ethical given that it meets all contractual obligations whilst contributing to the company’s bottom line. However ethics begins where the law (or contractual obligations) end. In this scenario it should begin when the agent is considering which instruction is in the best overall interests of the client and, all other things being equal, it is not in the best interests of the client that they incur unnecessary costs. An agent’s claim that it helped them meet their commission target would not break any ice with the paying property owner. It may be argued that such companies can put measures in place to offset the risk such as checks to ensure the most cost effective option was taken. This is not an efficient or effective means of achieving goals for any agency committed to an integrated ethical culture throughout its business.
We at Spencer are committed to encouraging just such a culture and understand that this means meeting maintenance costings with a healthy questioning attitude, free of any general maintenance fees or commissions. This approach works in the client’s best interest by providing practical and cost effective courses of action with an unbiased view of which to take. This is in contrast with the above approach aimed at achieving the highest level of commission in the quickest possible time regardless of whether it really is in the best interests of client.
At a time when agencies income streams are being squeezed it is likely that the types of commission and remuneration mentioned above will be drawn on as a way to bolster revenue. So, when seeking out a quality agent it is worth looking beyond the fees outlined in their contract and asking questions about the practices the company may have in place to achieve their targets. Their answers may shed light on whether their approaches are actually consistent with the interests of their clients and the true costs of their property management.

Speak to Spencer about our ethical stance on zero commission on any repairs on 0114 268 3682
rent@spencersestateagents.co.uk 
www.spencersestateagents.co.uk 

Monday, 8 January 2018

#Landlords - you need us, we need you! Calling #Sheffield #Investors

Calling first time landlords…we are here to help you!

Taking the plunge and letting a property out can be a nerve wracking and daunting experience for a first time landlord, especially if the property was a family home and holds sentimental value, but it doesn’t need to be that way. Of course, there are always going to be horror stories of nightmare tenants who trash houses, and TV programmes such as ‘Can’t pay we’ll take it away’ definitely don’t help this!

But I can assure you that nightmare tenants are a rarity and there are a lot of lovely tenants out there!  At Spencer we have a knack for sussing out these lovely tenants and can guide you through the rental process to make it as easy and pain free as possible from the very beginning. If you are a first time investor we can help and give advice to ensure you purchase a property that will bring you a high yield, and will rent out quickly, or if you are already a home owner we can help you ensure your property is ready to be rented and that you can achieve the maximum rental figure you are wanting.

We will spend time to get to know you and your property, we come out and meet you at a time that suits you, we instruct professional photographers, and carry out floor plans to ensure they look great in all of our marketing material, we offer accompanied viewings, and even offer evening and weekend appointments to suit potential tenants.

Throughout the process we are only a phone call away and will provide you with regular honest feedback from any viewings, once we have (hopefully very quickly) found you a tenant, we arrange for them to be financially verified, credit checked, and their previous landlord references obtained, this is to ensure that the tenant can afford the property and limits the possibility of their being any problems down the line. Before the tenant moves in we take a deposit in case of any issues, and offer an inventory service so that the condition of the property is recorded, this helps should there be any deposit disputes or damage when the tenants do move out. 

Our work however doesn’t always stop there; we do offer a fully managed service in which we deal with all of the communication with your tenants so you don’t have to! This includes us arranging any maintenance work required & completing regular inspections to ensure the property is looked after, we can contact you only in emergencies if that suits you or can update you when issues arise.  


So If you are a landlord looking to rent out your property, please contact us so we can make the process as enjoyable for you as possible! 

Emily Rumsby is our Lettings and Block Management expert here at Spencer. Please call us to come in and have an informal chat about your management requirements and any lettings advice you need. We are at 469 Ecclesall Road, and you can reach us on 0114 268 3682 or by emailing rent@spencersestateagents.co.uk 

Tuesday, 2 January 2018

Let's talk about regs! #buildingregulations #sheffield #estateagent

Let’s talk about regs!

We all know that having building work carried out on your house is exciting, messy, and involves A LOT of paperwork. Now let’s be honest – when you get to the end of an extension, all you want to do is clean up and order the furniture. You couldn’t give a monkeys if you’ve got a certificate for the work or the boiler because there is no way you’re moving after all of that!
Until you do want to move..
Then you’re sure that you paid for the building regs through the council and you can definitely remember something about an inspection but you’re just not quite sure where the paperwork is. Having done it myself, let me tell you, I was convinced that we had a certificate. We didn’t.
We are finding more & more that people are applying for building regulations for work but not getting them signed off and as a result, have no certificates at the end of the works. Or the builders were meant to do it and then didn’t.
Fortunately you can get indemnity insurance for these things and your solicitors will arrange that for you but only if your buyers are happy with it or if you haven’t already notified the council about the works. This year I have noticed that it’s becoming increasingly common that solicitors & buyers are refusing such insurances and asking for either the certificate or a reduction in price to reflect the missing paperwork because they want to be sure that it’s been carried out correctly and think it’s a way to drive down the price.

Having worked in the industry for over 12 years and, more recently, renovated a couple of properties myself, I cannot stress the importance of having certificates for all of the works you have carried out on your property. Despite having no plans to move for quite some time, I have now learnt my lesson and have certificates & planning permissions coming out of my ears. Just in case… 
Lizzie Baker - Senior Negotiator & Office Manager at Spencer on Ecclesall Road, Sheffield 11
For advice on Building Regulations and Planning Permission we can put you in touch with excellent local professionals. If you would like to know more please contact us at Spencer on 0114 268 3682 
www.spencersestateagents.co.uk 

Wednesday, 27 December 2017

Looking for an #HMO in #Sheffield? Speak to #Spencer


What is an HMO?

Even in times of uncertainty, bricks and mortar are thought of as being a safe place to invest your hard earned cash, and that opinion doesn’t show any signs of changing in the current climate.

Over the past twenty four years we have experienced a fantastically high demand for investment properties with a HMO being THE most sought after type. HMO stands for ‘House of Multiple Occupation’ but to help confuse you there are different types of HMO. A standard HMO is a residential property of any type which is let to 3 or more unrelated people who share common facilities like a kitchen or bathroom.  There is then such a thing as a Licenced HMO which covers properties which are let to 5 or more unrelated people who share common facilities and is spread over 3 or more floors. What many people don’t realise is that you often need planning permission to create an HMO especially in densely populated areas. Councils use HMO licensing to improve the quality of housing and they give the steps you need to follow to run a legal HMO property that is safe for your tenants. These normally include details of minimum room sizes, the amenities needed and how to keep your tenants safe from fires. Each local council will use slightly different definitions so it’s important to know what they are and work with them to keep everybody happy.

Here in Sheffield the most popular locations for tenants wanting to live within a HMO property are fairly obvious being the areas closest to the Universities, Hospitals and City Centre. These are all areas that we here at Spencer will cover and generally speaking we will have a steady flow of available HMO properties to buy throughout the year.
If you are looking to invest in a property like this, would like some advice or have a property that you would like to sell, please call 0114 268 3682 and ask for Chris or Nicola to see how we can help. 

http://www.spencersestateagents.co.uk/

Tuesday, 19 December 2017

Property Market Forecast for 2018 - #Sheffield #EstateAgent #Blog

Property Market Forecast for 2018 

No one dare say the words “strong and stable” anymore in the same sentence but, if we were to, it would pretty much describe the current property market conditions in Sheffield. Over the last few years, the market has slowly limped towards Christmas with us hoping for little snow, and praying that the New Year would fast approach, whereas the end of 2017 saw a strong level of interest and a high level of property instructions right to the end of the year. There’s no doubt that the very top end of the market is still the slowest to move but with realistic expectations there are no reasons why it isn’t a good time to sell or buy.

We are yet to work out whether the stamp duty changes will make any real inroads to the first time buyer market but hopefully it helps to counter the interest rate increases, and we have been rather pleased to see that, although the press aren’t making too much noise about it, the Help to Buy scheme is definitely helping to make life easier for many.


In Sheffield, because prices are solid, we aren’t able to say that any one particular area is “up and coming” but there are many areas that are seeing good results in suburban districts particularly Walkley, Woodseats, Hillsborough, Meersbrook, and Abbeydale, where they may have, not so long ago, been quoted as the areas to buy for better value. The city centre is the one to watch in Sheffield though, and our only advice there is to BUY WISELY, there are many developments shooting up all aiming a similar markets so quality and position have to go hand in hand to ensure a decent long term investment. 

Please call us for any advice on 0114 268 3682