Lifetime ISA vs Help to Buy ISA: Which is Right for Me?

Lifetime ISA vs Help to Buy ISA – what’s the difference, and which one is right for you? Both ISAs are attractive prospects for those looking to save for a house, but it’s important to know the pros and cons of each before opening an account. Our guide explains the ins and outs of the two schemes, and what you should consider when deciding which is the best option for you. Lifetime ISA vs Help to Buy ISA: The basics The Help to Buy ISA was introduced in December 2015, and is designed to help first-time buyers save up for More ›

Planning Permission for Extensions: Do You Need It?

Adapting your home to create the perfect space for your family can seem a daunting task, but it doesn’t need to be a difficult process. Lots of building work can be carried out under permitted development (PD) rights, meaning you don’t need to go through the process of obtaining planning permission for extensions. However, although rules have recently been relaxed, there are still a range of criteria your work must meet for this to be the case. Our guide should help you understand whether you need planning permission for extensions. Location, location, location The first thing to check is whether More ›

When, Why and How to Remortgage Your Home

Wondering how to remortgage your home? Lots of homeowners choose to remortgage to get a better deal. By remortgaging you could decrease your monthly repayments, release equity in your home or move from a variable rate to a fixed rate. However, there can be drawbacks, so it’s important to be aware of the advantages and disadvantages. Our guide explains when, why and how to remortgage. What is remortgaging? Remortgaging involves taking out a new mortgage on a property you already own – either with the same lender or a different one – either to replace your existing mortgage or borrow More ›

What to Look for When Buying a House

Wondering what to look for when buying a house? It’s easy to get caught up in the excitement of a house viewing and forget to check all the essential details. But the property you buy could end up being your home for many years – so you need to make sure it’s the right one. Luckily, we’ve put together this handy checklist outlining what to look out for. First of all, here are a few general tips… Take your time Spend a good amount of time looking around the property – at least 30 minutes – so you can make More ›

Where to Live in London: Seven Reasons to Choose Mile End

Choosing where to live in London is no mean feat. If you’re looking to rent or buy somewhere new, spare a thought for Mile End, a vibrant corner of the East End with bundles of character, charm and community spirit. Here are seven reasons Mile End is a great place to live. Lots of green space With Victoria Park and Mile End Park on your doorstep, you’re never more than a short stroll away from a beautiful green space. Victoria Park is the largest park in Tower Hamlets, and one of London’s most important historic parks. With two cafés, two More ›

Investing in Buy-to-Let Property: Advice for Aspiring Landlords

Investing in buy-to-let property is still an attractive prospect for many people, despite recent changes in the way buy-to-let investments are taxed. The changes mean that landlords are no longer able to offset all their mortgage interest against their profits – but investing in buy-to-let can still pay off. However, the changes mean that if you do want to enter the buy-to-let market, you need to do things properly if you want to see a return. Here’s our essential advice for anyone considering investing in buy-to-let property. Research the market and know the pitfalls Before you invest, be sure that More ›

Stamp Duty Changes for First-Time Buyers: What Do They Mean?

Chancellor Phillip Hammond announced the Autumn Budget on 22 November 2017, and one of the most talked-about changes was a cut in stamp duty for first-time buyers. But what do the stamp duty changes mean? Stamp duty changes – the facts As part of a range of measures designed to boost home-building, Hammond abolished stamp duty for first-time buyers on all properties up to £300,000 with immediate effect. For properties costing between £300,000 and £500,000, first-time buyers will pay no stamp duty on the first £300,000, but will pay the standard 5% on the remaining amount. For homes costing more More ›

Survey Advice for Home Buyers: Everything You Need to Know

Whether you’re a first-time buyer or a seasoned mover, the list of things to do when purchasing a new house can seem endless. One of the many jobs to sort out is the survey – but with so many different options out there, it’s difficult to know what’s best for your needs. Here’s our simple survey advice for home buyers. Don’t be led by cost Although getting a survey might seem like another unnecessary cost at a time when you’re already spending a lot of money, getting the right one can save you thousands of pounds in the long run More ›

Moving Out Checklist for Tenants: The Essentials

Moving out of a rental property can be stressful. On top of all the packing, cleaning and heavy lifting, there’s the threat of having money deducted from your deposit if you miss anything. To help make the process as smooth as possible, we’ve come up with this handy moving out checklist to work through. Pay your rent First things first – make sure your rent is paid up to and including the last day of your tenancy. Check your inventory Give your inventory a thorough check and make sure all the items listed are still present and in their original More ›

UK House Prices Since 1995: An Interactive Infographic

Think you’re clued up about house prices across the UK? You might be surprised to find out which cities have experienced the largest percentage increases since 1995. If you’d like to brush up on your knowledge, check out our interactive infographic below – simply click on a city to get started and see how prices have changed since 1995! So London’s house hunters could end up shelling out around £500,000 more than their 1995 counterparts, but things haven’t changed quite so drastically outside the Big Smoke. The past two decades have seen some huge increases in London, Brighton and Hove More ›