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As we enter a different phase in life under lockdown, we're starting to feel more positive about the future.
And here's why. Good news is coming in from different sections of our everyday lives.
Public health officials in England have approved a test to see whether people have been infected with coronavirus in the past. This may well be rolled out UK wide. It spots antibodies in people who could now have some level of immunity.
Football fans will be pleased to know the German Bundesliga is restarting this weekend with games in closed stadiums. We're waiting on news from the UK's football and other sporting authorities.
A group of volunteers have been isolating themselves in Scotland to save more than 100,000 native trees from being lost. They are from a charity, Trees for Life, which had its work planting new trees to restore the Caledonian Forest to its ancient glory, threatened by the outbreak. Thanks to the volunteers, the essential work needed is still being done. Tree – mendous. (sorry, couldn't resist it).
We're proud to be a part of a group of agents across the UK who donate to national and global community causes every month via something called The Karma Club. It is organised by estate agency industry supplier the Estate Agent Content Club.
So far, we've played our part in donations to care homes, food banks and youth groups during the outbreak.
Flying the flag, literally, to bring a smile to people's faces is artist Julian Wood.
Julian has created small fabric flags bearing messages of kindness and hope, and he has left them in public places around Bristol to cheer people up.
The messages include 'You're sweet' 'Thank you NHS' and 'You look great.'
Agents across England have been given the green light to get back to work. We're doing precisely that but following the Government's Covid-19 health and safety guidelines thoroughly.
We want our community in Brackley to know we are there for them during these surreal times.
Please let us know if we can help you in any way.
Thanks for reading. Stay safe, stay sensible and be kind to each other.
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🤩 FEEL GOOD FRIDAY 🤩
And here are four pieces of news which made us smile this week;
1) Salute the Captain. How could we not start with Captain Tom Moore? The 99-year-old war veteran has walked 100 laps of his garden to raise more than £17m for the NHS.
Captain Moore wanted to raise £1,000 for NHS Charities Together by completing 100 laps of his garden before his 100th birthday.
But he surged past his target after hundreds of thousands of people donated to his fundraising page.
As he finished the challenge, which has made him front-page news up and down the country, he said: "I feel fine, I hope you're all feeling fine too."😍
2) Marvellous Miss Maisie. And in another act of support for our NHS superheroes, a ten-year-old girl from Manchester has raised money for the NHS by making rainbow keyrings. Maisie Appleton made the keyrings and started by putting them outside her family's home. Her mum said: "People passing on their daily walk were welcome to take one and if possible, give a little donation to the Salford Royal Hospital’s official Just Giving page. But it ended up growing bigger than we thought and she has now made a total of 360 keyrings and raised over £250 with donations still coming in. A lot of nurses and NHS staff now have these keyrings after seeing them online, and some have gone to NHS staff at hospitals as far away as London." 🌈
3) It's official - We're getting more community-spirited. According to a report from the Office of National Statistics (ONS), more than half of adults surveyed in the UK say they feel an increased sense of community spirit and cohesion with their neighbours.
The report also stated that staying in touch with family and friends remotely was the most common way for people to try to cope (76.9%) with COVID-19 induced anxiety. So, remember to pick up the phone or send a message and let
your loved ones know you are there and that you care.💗
4) Sew kind. Volunteers across the UK are using their sewing skills to make urgently needed hospital uniforms for health workers fighting the Coronavirus outbreak.
Many frontline NHS staff are without the protective clothing they need to do their jobs safely.
And rising to the challenge thousands of amateurs across the UK have taken to their sewing machines and are making hospital overalls – known as scrubs.
More than 50 groups called Scrub Hubs have popped up across the country to provide more uniforms for our health care heroes. 💙
It's incredible to see the generosity, compassion, ingenuity, kindness and care that people are showing across the UK and in Brackley. ✨
From all at Boughtons if there is anything, we can do to support members of our community in Brackley, please get in touch 💙
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How to make your spare time work for you during lockdown—a 2-minute read.
Below are 10 ideas you can try to make the most of the time we have right now. 💪
• Organise your wardrobe once and for all. How many odd socks can one person own? 🧦
• Add some new life to old furniture by giving it a lick of paint. 👨🎨
• Clear out the food cupboard. It’s surprising how much out of date stuff we have lurking at the back of them. 🍯
• Read more. Since lockdown, there’s been a boom of virtual book clubs. Which we think is a double whammy of keeping the brain ticking over and being social at the same time. 📖
• Treat yourself to a ‘night out’ indoors. Make your favourite pizza, watch one of the many online concerts now freely available from top musicians and then relax with a good movie. 🍕
• Relive your youth by listening to classic albums, old TV shows, and using social media to catch up with friends from your younger days. 📺
• Of course, we understand if you have young children or are working from home, these ideas might prove a lot trickier to do. But it’s essential to take some time, even if it’s just 30 minutes a day, just for yourself. You deserve it. 🚲
And from a purely property point of view here are three more ideas you might want to consider to stop you clock watching. 🏠
• If you are thinking of selling after the lockdown ends make a list of those jobs that need doing before putting your home on the market, feel free to get in touch with us if you need advice on what puts buyers off. ✅
• Wondering what mortgage or remortgage options you have available? It’s an excellent time to have a chat with a mortgage broker to see what’s out there now, and in the coming months. 💰
• And finally, we’ve plenty of time on our hands here at Boughtons so if you’re curious about the value of your home and the best way to market it post-coronavirus we’d be happy to have a chat. We can conduct online valuations, meaning social distancing rules are always respected. 😃
So, here’s to staying home, protecting the NHS, saving lives and making the most of our precious time.💙
From the Boughton girls
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PROFESSIONAL PHOTOS 📸
Remember that your future buyer is looking to purchase a lifestyle, not just the bricks and mortar to put a roof over their head. Most buyers aren’t able to imagine living in an empty room for example. Equally, a messy room can easily give a bad impression. It’s a specific lifestyle they’re after, so why not help them to imagine experiencing it in your house?
Your first task is therefore to “dress” the house appropriately. Clear all clutter and personal items away – put it into temporary storage if you have to. This will help buyers to use their imagination and will also give the impression that the house is more spacious.
Once you’re satisfied that the property is clean, tidy and shouts either country or city living, then it’s time to capture that image on camera.
Over 90% of buyers begin their property search online, so photography needs to be exceptional in order to capture their interest and prevent them from moving on. It’s rare that this standard of lifestyle photography can be achieved in-house, so a good estate agent will always call upon a renowned professional photographer to capture the best images of your home. 🌟
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NOT ALL ESTATE AGENTS ARE THE SAME ‼️
Across Brackley, we see people wasting their money by using estate agents who charge a cheap fee to sell a home BUT end up getting their client a lot less for the property due to a lack of skill or will.
This difference can be tens of thousands of pounds in some cases.💰
Cheap Agencies are Not Cheerful ❌
Look at this simplified but relevant example.
An agency says they’ll charge you a 0.9 per cent fee to sell your home, which they put on the market for £100,000.
You’ve chosen them over an agency that charges a 1.5 per cent fee. You wanted to save a few quid. ❌
But the cheaper agency only gets you £90,000 for it – they blame the market and tell you this is the best you’ll get for your biggest tax-free asset. After their fee you have £89,550 left.
In a parallel world, the other more motivated and skilled agent gets you the asking price of £100,000. They put more money into marketing your property, the quality of their staff and are much better negotiators. 💪
They take their well-earned £1,500 fee leaving you with £98,500 — nearly £9000 more.😍
So, the ‘cheaper’ agent, who at first glance looked to be saving you dosh, ended up wasting it.
We hope that’s given you some valuable food for thought.✨