It seems that supermarket giant Tesco is once again thinking about getting into the property market. Tesco made an ill-fated foray into the housing industry in 2008 when it attempted to set up an advertising site for properties available to buy or rent in the United Kingdom. That venture fell from grace pretty quickly as estate agents requested that properties on their books be deleted from the Tesco site in a nationwide effort to boycott the supermarket’s involvement.
However, Tesco has decided to give the housing market another go amid recent developments outlined by the Office of Fair Trading. The body has determined that estate agents have too much power in the housing industry and their domination is stifling competition, which in turn is preventing the general public from taking advantage of good value in the market.
The new rules mean that Tesco’s model would be likely to succeed and would not be subject to further estate agent boycotts.
Tesco currently accounts for a huge proportion of the money spent by the general public in their day to day lives. By adding property to its long list of operations, Tesco is likely to expand even further.
A recent survey has shown that confidence in the housing market in the United Kingdom is growing.
The survey took into account a cross-section of British residents and their opinions regarding the property market. Only 13% of people who took part in the survey claimed to be concerned about further falls in house prices in 2010, signalling a major improvement in public attitudes towards housing.
Nearly 70% of those asked also maintained that current low interest rates were having a positive impact on their lives in general. In terms of buying property, nearly 90% of people expressed their belief that the current housing market is ideal for property investment in the UK and a similar figure thought property represented the most attractive investment option overall in comparison with other markets.
Public confidence in the state of the housing market can only mean good things for the industry in general. With more people attracted by property investment, the industry will have more opportunity for growth, and, taking advantage of the support that the government is currently offering for affordable housing, home builders will be able to increase their operations in order to meet growing demand.
Advisers in the industry have expressed their belief that the housing market will continue to improve in the coming months, but concerned parties should expect growth to be slow and steady.
Housing developers have raised concerns that some members of the public are misusing legal processes to deliberately try and block new affordable housing projects from taking place in their areas.
The UK is in desperate need for more affordable housing to meet growing demand. More entry level housing that can help people get onto the housing market is something the government, the public and local councils have all expressed the need for, but it seems that not everyone is singing from the same hymn sheet.
The National Housing Federations has recently outlined major concerns about villagers submitting frivolous village green applications as a way of slowing down or stopping developments. Village greens are areas recognised by the law as portions of land that have been used for recreational purposes by those living in the area for twenty years or more. Applications can be submitted even after projects due to start on the land have been awarded planning permission. Village green status protects the area from development.
However, their has been an increase in applications of late for village green status to be awarded to areas that are nothing short of derelict spaces and housing developers believe it is a cynical move to prevent the land being used. The legal battles developers are facing because of the frivolous applications are costing thousands and affordable housing is being delayed in spite of the country’s need.
The National Housing Federation is seeking a change in the law.
Home building companies have experienced a torrid time over the past couple of years as the United Kingdom has been hit by the drastic effects of the recession. As the country picks itself up and industries begin to function again, the housing market is also tentatively getting to its feet.
Home builders have been making announcements about the recovery of their operations and their optimistic forecasts in the last few months. The government, too, has been focussing its efforts on reviving the housing market in order to spark life into the economy and cause a knock-on effect in other fields.
Bellway is the latest home builder to make an announcement regarding its sales forecast, choosing to take a more cautious approach than some. Bellway has reported that sales have recovered somewhat, but warned that the beginning of 2010 could see a very slow and steady increase, well below the level of trends prior to the financial crisis.
The company has reported that the second half of 2009 saw a 12% increase in sales compared to that last six months of 2008, but that those homes were sold at lower prices than in 2008.
Bellway cited the mortgage crisis as the primary reason for cautious and conservative sales forecasts for 2010.
It’s a huge step when you finally decide to get onto the property market. Buying your own home can be an incredibly difficult process, particularly in terms of the financial outlay you can expect to have to face. Any form of help to get you on your way is likely to be much appreciated and more and more home builders and developers are latching on to the fact that they can help ease first time buyers’ situations.
The latest home builder to announce a scheme to smooth the way for first time buyers is Taylor Wimpey. One of the main difficulties that has faced first time buyers recently is, of course, the recession. Aside from affecting salaries and job security, the global economic downturn has also seen people looking to get onto the property market struggling to secure mortgages.
Taylor Wimpey’s new scheme looks to target people in this particularly predicament. The company is offering potential buyers the chance to buy a new home at three of its recent developments with only a 5% deposit, with mortgages at 70% of the full price of the home. The rest of the cash will come in the shape of interest free loans.
The developments participating in the scheme include Everest Park, Marnel Park and Limes Park – all in the Basingstoke area.
If style is important to you then you are likely to want your home exactly as you like it. When you are undertaking a self building project you are given the opportunity to do just that – have everything about your house exactly as you want – provided you choose the right construction technique to allow it.
This is where timber frame construction comes in. Timber frame construction is a building method that uses the frame of the house (made of timber, naturally) to support its entire weight. Whilst the benefit of this may not be immediately obvious, a little careful thought reveals some crucial advantages.
For the style-conscious among us this means design freedom. With the frame of the house taking its weight, the walls are free to go anywhere you like. None will have to bear weight, so your layout plans have ultimate flexibility.
Just think of the open plan opportunities this could give rise to. Timber frame construction is often used for buildings requiring large open interior spaces.
Beyond the flexibility of the layout of the house, timber frame homes are incredibly attractive by their very nature, featuring natural wooden appeal. Take advantage of the unique stylish opportunities offered by timber frame homes by considering the method in your project.
We are constantly being bombarded with warnings about our carbon footprints and the adverse effects we may be having on the environment because of our day to day lives. The energy that we use on a daily basis just to cook, use appliances and light and heat our homes all contributes to a global energy problem. We simply use too much for the world to cope with.
There are ways that we can reduce the impact we make however and one of them is by ensuring that we live in an energy efficient home.
Timber frame homes are among the most energy efficient homes being built today. For the energy-conscious self builder there is no better construction method. A timber frame design will allow you to build the house of your dreams without any ethical drawbacks. Homes built using this technique are incredibly energy efficient, requiring few resources to heat even in the winter months. They are also constructed very quickly as most of the time consuming work is done at the design and planning stage.
By reducing the energy used on site to build the house, and reducing the energy you use by living in it, timber frame homes become the obvious choice for the ecologically minded.
One of the most exciting things about building your own home is the freedom you have for the design. No doubt if you have reached the stage in life where building your own home is a possibility, you have already lived in a few houses – some of which you will have loved and others you won’t.
Part of what makes a house a pleasure to live in is how close it fits our model of the perfect home and how its layout, decor and character suits our own lives. When you build a house yourself, you are the master of all of these things.
That said, not all construction techniques allow you as much freedom in your design as you might like in pursuit of your ideal home. Luckily, timber frame construction is one of the few that opens up all sorts of doors for your layout.
The reason timber frame construction gives you this freedom is simply that the weight-bearing frame removes the limitations brought about by the need for weight-bearing interior walls. As such, you are able to design your house with as many open plan areas as you wish. No structural concerns will stand in the way of your plans.
There is nothing quite like the natural appeal of wood. Whilst many modern self build projects use very contemporary styles and materials, most fail to radiate the same kind of warmth that a timber frame home offers.
One of the most appealing factors of using timber frame construction in your self build project is the attractiveness of the home it will produce. When drawing up the design for the house you can select areas of the interior where you would like to leave the heavy duty timber frame exposed. This makes a great interior feature and injects real warmth into the look and feel of the rooms. The exposed interiors conjure up images of log fires and mountainside chalets.
You can also take advantage of some of that wooden attractiveness on the exterior walls of the house. Again, you can pick and choose which areas you would like to leave exposed, so that people outside get a feel for your home as well.
Think carefully about the aesthetic appeal of the home you are looking to build. By using timber frame construction you can construct a house that you and your family will always be proud of.
Building your own home can be a massive project. It takes an awful lot of planning and budgeting to make sure that you a ready to take such a drastic step, but if you do it right it is incredibly rewarding.
Many self builders choose to knock down a house and build a new one in its place; others build the house on land they have acquired. Either way, building a home represents a significant expense and chances are you may not be able to afford to own and live in one house for the entire time you are building your next.
Due to this likelihood you want to be able to construct a house a quickly as possible. The construction method allowing for the fastest construction time is timber frame construction. This technique allows you to spend a long time planning and drawing up designs for the house you intend to build so that the construction time is reduced.
All the timbers that make up the frame of the house are cut to size so that the house can be built as quickly as possibly, ensuring that you can move in quickly to ease your worries about interim accommodation. The faster construction time also helps you save money on manpower on site.