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Moving Forward...

June 2020 Blog Estate Agency

As the UK lifts out of lockdown, Harriet Simpson of PFK Estate Agency, Penrith suggests a chat to consider your next move. Estate agents move people from one home to…

Moving Forward...
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Moving Forward...

June 2020 Estate Agency

As the UK lifts out of lockdown, Harriet Simpson of PFK Estate Agency, Penrith suggests a chat to consider your next move.

Estate agents move people from one home to the next. And never has moving people seemed more important than now: because never have homes seemed more important to all of us as we battle to defeat the most deadly threat in our lives and to our ‘normal’ way of life.

But something big is happening. Activity has gone through the roof since the government allowed agents to return to work. The property portals are reporting the highest traffic ever to their sites. In lockdown decisions have changed, some people have decided to move on and are now acting upon those decisions.

It is at a time like this that estate agents become very useful indeed. It is their local expertise and market knowledge, which are so invaluable to sellers, buyers, landlords & tenants. Who’d have thought that houses and flats on dedicated cycle lanes would step up in value? The answer is, an experienced estate agent.

So if you plan to move, why not call us for a chat. Better still, arrange a meeting.

You will find that we live in your area, we share and enjoy the same local facilities and we support the same local businesses. More than that, you will find that we care in a way that goes beyond selling or renting your property. We take the utmost care in moving our clients from one place to another.

Contact your relevant PFK branch by visiting https://estates.pfk.co.uk/contact/

PFK Open The Doors

June 2020 News

PFK are pleased to be re-opening to the public their Estate Agency offices in Carlisle, Penrith and Cockermouth from 10 am Monday 1st June, strictly adhering to current Government…

PFK Open The Doors
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PFK Open The Doors

June 2020

PFK are pleased to be re-opening to the public their Estate Agency offices in Carlisle, Penrith and Cockermouth from 10 am Monday 1st June, strictly adhering to current Government guidelines. The Estate Agencies worked remotely throughout lockdown and more recently have been assisting clients and buyers with safe physical viewings when these recommenced.

Lynne Lancaster, Head of Estate Agency said:

“We feel the time is right to re-open these offices and, of course, we are doing so with safety as our number one concern. We have taken a little time to re-design our offices to deal with Covid-19 operating requirements and, of course, we are using PPE as safely as possible.”

The property market is now very active with Rightmove reporting its busiest ever day on 27th May, with six million visits to its listings.

Lynne adds:

“We are seeing a lot of interest in the market and our staff have been extremely busy both with new listings and dealing with existing properties. As you might expect we have been working extremely hard on our digital offerings and virtual viewing tours have been very popular. It really is now a case of, From Mouse to House!”

During the pandemic a core team of professionals operated the Estate Agencies remotely and staff have been brought back from Furlough as the business restrictions have been eased.

Andrew Green, Director, comments:

“Our Estate Agency staff have done a sterling job during lockdown and, whilst our virtual viewings and tours have been very well received, we are looking forward to seeing a little more of our clients as the “new normal” begins.”

PFK’s other departments have adapted well to the new working regime. PFK’s Land Agency (which advises mainly farmers and landowners) has worked remotely “as normal” throughout the pandemic. PFK Land and Development (which assists clients with property deals and planning) has been operational throughout with staff operating remotely, as has Surveys.

PFK Auction House and Saleroom has been operational throughout carrying out extremely successful and widely acclaimed Virtual Auction Sales to an international net of buyers on-line via the Web.

For more information contact Lynne Lancaster on 07503 636555/lynnelancaster@pfk.co.uk or Andrew Green on 07711 912019/andrewgreen@pfk.co.uk

Mortgage Lending Tips – FAQ’s

May 2020 Blog Estate Agency

PFK refer customers to Pollard Scott for mortgage advice and they have answered some of the frequently asked questions below.  If you would like to speak to them regarding any…

Mortgage Lending Tips – FAQ’s
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Mortgage Lending Tips – FAQ’s

May 2020 Estate Agency

PFK refer customers to Pollard Scott for mortgage advice and they have answered some of the frequently asked questions below.  If you would like to speak to them regarding any mortgage advice you require, then please contact the relevant PFK  branch via estates.pfk.co.uk/contact

Surveys/Valuations
Surveyors are back at work and booking appointments, there may however be a slight delay due to the back-log created over the last couple of months.  Where possible lenders are trying to do what is called a Desk-Top Valuation, however this is not always possible.

Can you BUY a house if you are furloughed? – YES
Lender criteria varies, however all will want to assess affordability based on current income, which if you are furloughed is more than likely to be 20% lower than usual; unless of course if your employer is making it up and then there are some lenders who will accept your full pay as long as written confirmation can be obtained from the applicants employer.  HOWEVER, the maximum mortgage loan to value at this time is 90%, therefore an applicant will have to put at least a 10% deposit down.

Standard evidence would still be required regarding Payslips, Bank Statements, ID, Proof of Address and Existing Lenders Mortgage Statement 

Can you re-mortgage if you are furloughed ?– YES
Lender criteria varies, however all will want to assess affordability as mentioned above.

Standard evidence would still be required regarding Payslips, Bank Statements, ID, Proof of Address and Existing Lenders Mortgage Statement 

Can I re-mortgage or look at buying a new property if I have taken a Payment Holiday? – YES

Taking a payment holiday should not affect a person’s credit record and therefore there should be no problem in sourcing a new deal.

I am a First Time Buyer, will it be difficult for me to get a mortgage? 

Whether you are a First Time Buyer or Mover all lenders will assess affordability and the applicants credit record, so being a First Time Buyer won’t stop you getting a mortgage.

FTB will need at least 10% deposit and be able to meet the lenders criteria and credit scoring.

Looking for your next home?

The PFK Estate Agency team spans across six branches, making it easier than ever to find just what you’re looking for.

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Looking for your next home?

Need help managing your estate?

PFK Land Agency has helped with a broad range of land and estate management requirements. You name it, we’ve got the experience.

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Need help managing your estate?

PFK Land & Development is here

PFK Land and Development offers integrated professional property services by bringing together our specialists.

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PFK Land & Development is here

Free, no obligation consultation

PFK Surveys have an expert team of chartered surveyors who offer free, no obligation consultations.

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Free, no obligation consultation

Fortnightly auctions

PFK Auctioneers hold an auction every fortnight, so if you’re a collector, investor or after a bargain, come along and see what’s for sale.

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Fortnightly auctions

Is the Market Moving?

May 2020 Blog Estate Agency

Within a day of the government announcement that the home buying and renting process could re-start, the telephone calls and emails began - and we have not stopped since. People…

Is the Market Moving?
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Is the Market Moving?

May 2020 Estate Agency

Within a day of the government announcement that the home buying and renting process could re-start, the telephone calls and emails began – and we have not stopped since.

People who, have decided in lockdown to make life changes have now joined those who were already on the house moving path earlier in the year. In the new year we saw a Brexit bounce and now it seems we have a double bounce.

We are speaking to dozens of buyers keen to escape city & town environments or in need of a lovely outside space. Then there are those looking for properties with room for a dedicated workspace. We have heard from people who have re-evaluated their relationship with their home and now want something different.

Our commitment to those who have suffered during this period with ill-health or other issues is steadfast. Our team’s years of experience and in-depth local knowledge are already aiding those who need the support and commitment of sympathetic but practical property professionals. Those who are in difficulty with property matters are not alone in this. We are here to help and we know how to help.

We are taking all the precautions recommended to keep customers and our colleagues safe.  If you need to make a move safely and wisely please contact your nearest PFK office.

Paul Doyle, Carlisle Branch Manager.

 

Current Opening Hours

May 2020

Our current hours of operation are 9am to 5pm, Monday – Friday.  Please contact the relevant office by phone or email.  Carlisle - 01228 558666 - carlisle@pfk.co.uk Cockermouth - 01900 826205 -…

Current Opening Hours
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Current Opening Hours

May 2020

Our current hours of operation are 9am to 5pm, Monday – Friday. 

Please contact the relevant office by phone or email. 

Carlisle – 01228 558666 – carlisle@pfk.co.uk

Cockermouth – 01900 826205 – cockermouth@pfk.co.uk

Penrith – 01768 862135 – penrith@pfk.co.uk

Kirkby Stephen – 017683 71235 – kstephen@pfk.co.uk

Keswick – 017687 74546 – keswick@pfk.co.uk

Whitehaven – 01946 695535 – whitehaven@pfk.co.uk

 

Realism Is Our Vaccine

May 2020 Blog Estate Agency

Now lockdown is being eased, Lynne Lancaster answers the sixty-four thousand dollar question about the property market. As we gradually emerge from lockdown the first question clients are asking…

Realism Is Our Vaccine
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Realism Is Our Vaccine

May 2020 Estate Agency

Now lockdown is being eased, Lynne Lancaster answers the sixty-four thousand dollar question about the property market.

As we gradually emerge from lockdown the first question clients are asking us is how will the coronavirus influence property prices?

This is something that is hard to answer with any absolute accuracy at this early stage. However the question is a crucial one.

Much will depend on the shape of the bounce back. If it is V-shaped and we see a strong recovery after the decline because of lockdown we can be hopeful for only minor turbulence. However if there is a long tail then recovery prices in specific sectors could be affected.

While the lockdown has thwarted many plans to move, some people have found that post-virus working life promises the chance of more freedom and for some people a move is more possible to allow them a different lifestyle.

Many people in future will work from home – the need to commute for some will be over – so a move to a rural or coastal location or to be closer to their families will be possible and even preferable. Many of these buyers will also be looking for properties with a work-from-home space; others will want multi-generation family options.

So we see a great deal of cancelling-out between sectors; which brings us back to price. In this nothing has changed. The first thing an estate agent learns is that whatever the price quoted on a property, it will in the end find its correct level. A property is worth what someone will pay for it.  An invisible hand called the market is not affecting property prices; people are affecting them.

We have sold properties on Christmas Eve. We have sold properties at the very depths of the great recession and we have sold properties during lockdown. And we continued through the Covid19 pandemic to see sales through to completion whilst adhering to government guidelines.

No matter what the trend is across the country, throughout this pandemic our area has proved to be resilient and popular and Coronavirus has not altered that.

So what about prices? In the property sector realism will move us out of this crisis. With a realistic price, a sensible and realistic attitude to negotiation and a sensible buyer, coronavirus will be unable to infect our market. Realism is our vaccine.

We are open for business and have procedures and controls place to carry out our work safely.  For realistic advice about marketing your property call your nearest PFK office today.

Lynne Lancaster, Head of Estate Agency.

 

Coronavirus Update

May 2020 News Estate Agency

Today marks the launch of our new valuation and viewing service protocols. Here at PFK we have used the governments guidance for safer working to form a new set of…

Coronavirus Update
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Coronavirus Update

May 2020 Estate Agency

Today marks the launch of our new valuation and viewing service protocols.

Here at PFK we have used the governments guidance for safer working to form a new set of procedures allowing us to provide valuation and viewing services, which safeguard our staff and customers.

If you would like to know more, or would like to discuss a property viewing, or valuation please get in touch with one of our friendly team.

Getting in Gear

May 2020 Blog Estate Agency

Seven weeks into lockdown, Lynne Lancaster, Head of Estate Agency, looks at how coronavirus has affected life in the property market. Throughout the lockdown, our team have been working remotely.…

Getting in Gear
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Getting in Gear

May 2020 Estate Agency

Seven weeks into lockdown, Lynne Lancaster, Head of Estate Agency, looks at how coronavirus has affected life in the property market.

Throughout the lockdown, our team have been working remotely. At first we thought there would be little to do. How wrong we were.

The past few weeks have been frantic. First there were all the property sales we had to get past the finishing post. Even in lockdown we have been able to do this within strict government guidelines. Then there are the deals that we had only just tied up when the lockdown began. It is astonishing how many buyers and sellers have been keen to keep to their plans – even though they will have to add weeks to transaction times.

But now we are also busy working with those who are already planning new lives beyond the pandemic. We are advising on marketing and pricing through virtual valuations – subject to final inspection. We also have many keen buyers who have pencilled in viewing appointments for when the lockdown is over.

Of course, it isn’t fun. None of this is for anyone. The virus has changed our lives and the lives of everyone with whom we work. But despite working remotely our team is working together. We are working with our clients, our buyers, our central London marketing team and working together is what sets us apart.

Working through the pandemic is like riding a bike up a very steep hill. We have had to change gear. We will probably change gear again before this crisis is over. But one thing is very certain; we will be in the right gear when it’s all over.

Lynne Lancaster – Head of Estate Agency.

Is your house ready for the market once the pandemic has safely passed?

May 2020 Blog Estate Agency

Paul Doyle, manager at our Carlisle office, takes a look at what home sellers can do during the lockdown period to attract the highest sale price for their property once…

Is your house ready for the market once the pandemic has safely passed?
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Is your house ready for the market once the pandemic has safely passed?

May 2020 Estate Agency

Paul Doyle, manager at our Carlisle office, takes a look at what home sellers can do during the lockdown period to attract the highest sale price for their property once restrictions are lifted.

So, you have spruced up the front of your property – having the exterior looking at its best is vital, as it persuades people to look at the interior. But now you don’t want to let viewers down when they choose to look inside.

Most sellers have busy lives and invariably don’t have much time to prepare their homes for the market. In this unique period of lockdown we have been given the perfect opportunity to put this right.

Pre-market prep is so important. It can make thousands of pounds’ worth of difference to the sale price, and can sometimes even be the deciding factor between attracting a buyer or not. So now is the time to get things ship-shape.

This doesn’t always have to mean painting and decorating, but it does mean attention to some important details. Here are some things to remember when prepping a property in readiness for viewers:

Make sure the hall is inviting and clear of clutter – hats, coats, shoes, children’s school bags, etc. That first impression is important. You need your viewer to want to see more of your home – not the back of your home.

Kitchens and bathrooms sell houses. Make sure yours are sparking clean and clear of clutter – in fact getting rid of clutter is a recurring theme in preparing your home for sale.

Is the living room inviting? Will one want to eat at the dining room table? Can one actually see the dining room table?

Have the beds been made? Are the cupboards neat? Overflowing cupboards send the message that a property is short on storage space.

Remember that luxury hotel room that made you feel like a million dollars? Your property should make viewers feel like that. It is not that difficult. But it does take discipline, and it does take time – time that you might well now have.

The TV home “experts” say that you should take the personality out of your home and make it bland to sell it well. You really don’t need to go that far – a good estate agent will help the property sell well. But it is up to you to maximise the value of your asset.

Making your house or apartment fit for the market is an art. Start with the basics – clear, dust and shine. Then take a good look at the stuff you have left and de-clutter as though your sale depends on it – because it does.

If you need advice, then PFK are masters in the art of pre-sale preparation. Call your nearest PFK office or email us at hello@pfk.co.uk and we will be happy to run through some dos and do nots so that you are ready for the market once the pandemic has safely passed.

Looking Ahead

April 2020 Blog Estate Agency

Lesley Waugh, of the Whitehaven branch of PFK, looks ahead to a time when we can all move freely from our homes. In houses and apartments all over the country…

Looking Ahead
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Looking Ahead

April 2020 Estate Agency

Lesley Waugh, of the Whitehaven branch of PFK, looks ahead to a time when we can all move freely from our homes.

In houses and apartments all over the country those in lockdown are thinking about life after release. Even now, at the height of the pandemic, people are dreaming of post-virus life. We know they are because they are telling us so.

If this period of isolation from our families, friends and familiar routines has taught us anything, it has taught us about the value of home. No matter how small – and for those in tiny properties without outside space the lockdown has been much harder than for most – our homes have kept us safe.

But that is what homes do and have always done, it is what they are designed to do. They keep unwanted intruders out. Over the past few decades this side of home ownership seems to have taken a back seat to investment and capital growth. That thinking will change. Security, affordability in crisis, comfort in lockdown and space appropriate to need will jump into the driver’s seat – with location, location, location in the passenger seat.

This time in lockdown has given many of us the opportunity to re-evaluate where and how we live. Our shopping habits will have changed further, and so will our methods of communicating and streaming entertainment. In future lots more of us will work from home, having realised that many can be just as effective without a daily commute. Some will want more substantial homes, and some will have decided to downsize or rightsize. Many will elect a lifestyle change, choosing to move to a more rural location, to the coast or to a bustling and lively city centre close to all amenities.

Our needs for what a home gives us will change, but it will not alter the local property market.  Coronavirus is a health issue: it is not a property issue. This virus has reminded us what a wonderful and helpful community we inhabit and the true value of living here.

When we are over this emergency, PFK will be here to understand your property needs and offer suitable and attractive solutions, because if there is one thing we do know a great deal about, it is the value of home.

Lesley Waugh – Manager of PFK Estate Agency, Whitehaven.

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