Find your dream home
More people than ever are turning to property finding experts as the new secret weapon to secure their perfect home. Here's 10 REASONS WHY it could be the answer you're looking for...
Thought that using a property finder service was the preserve of the very wealthy or lazy? Well think again. This home search concierge service, where experts act solely for the buyer throughout every aspect of the whole buying and renting process, has now gone mainstream and, as more and more people are discovering, it could be just the answer you are looking for. Here’s 10 reasons why:
1. THE SERVICE SUITS EVERYONE
Until now, this buying service might well have been the preserve of the well-off, with most homes being bought this way in the £1m-plus price bracket. But now local property finders are tackling the mainstream market. ‘It’s a shame more buyers don’t realise they could benefit,’ says Fiona Penny, founder of Fiona Penny Bespoke Home Finders in Kent. ‘For us the over-riding factor is working with those people we feel we can help. And that usually means absolutely everyone looking at properties from around 500K upwards – this is going to include the vast majority of buyers looking for a family home in the Kent and East Sussex area.
2. KENT & EAST SUSSEX IS THE PERFECT MARKET
In Kent and East Sussex there are less houses than buyers, meaning that having a property finding expert working on your behalf, showing you properties before they even hit the market and using all their local contacts is particularly valuable in our corner of England. ‘We help clients moving down from London, moving from abroad or moving within the county,’ says Fiona.3. THEY ARE LOCAL EXPERTS
In so many of life’s important decisions we engage a professional to help. So why wouldn’t you when it comes to finding and buying a property that will be your home? ‘Property finders aren’t just local experts we are counsellors to our clients,’ says Fiona. ‘For us, advising on the property is just the start of it. We look at the best schools, commute, childcare, grammar catchment areas, local infrastructure, GPs, dentists, babysitters etc. You name it!’
4. NO HIDDEN COSTS
As with any service, we all feel more confident if all the fees are transparent. ‘All our costs are on our website,’ says Fiona. ‘There is a registration fee – this is necessary to ascertain a level of commitment from the client – but it is deducted from costs later. The cost of our service starts at £700 (plus VAT) to secure a 16 week search period. We use a sliding scale that takes into account the fact that when it comes to the more specific requirements of bigger properties the search takes longer and requires more work.’
5. MONEY SAVING
With insider knowledge and all the right contacts, the sole aim of a property finder is to secure the property for their client at the lowest possible price – think Kirsty and Phil on Location, Location, Location. ‘A good property finder should always work hard to save their clients the fee,’ says Fiona. ‘Once we’ve been successful in finding the right property we reimburse the original registration fee.’
6. REDUCES STRESS
The stress of buying a new house is up there with the stress of going through bankruptcy or divorce, according to a UK survey. ‘A property finder shoulders a layer of stress for their client,’ says Fiona. ‘We specialise in finding clients their perfect property in Sevenoaks, Tonbridge, Tunbridge Wells, Ticehurst, Wadhurst, Crowborough, Cranbrook, Tenterden, Rye and the surrounding towns and villages. We listen – often overlooked but never to be underestimated – and then we make it our mission to tick those boxes on your wish list.’
7. THE GIFT OF TIME
Whether you’re a busy couple, mum with your hands full or two-parent working family – it feels like we’ve never been more time-starved, right? That’s where the property finding service comes in. ‘Many of our clients don’t have a local connection to the area, so are searching in the dark,’ says Fiona. Putting young children in the car, co-ordinating house viewings with nap times, tandruming toddlers… This can all be very time-consuming not to mention stressful. Property finders preview the houses first, so saving wasted trips and ensuring all viewings are worth-while. ‘We make sure the whole thing is a more efficient process,’ says Fiona.
8. CONCIERGE SERVICE
Use a decent property finder and you’ll get the full butler service. ‘We pick up clients from the train station and taxi them around, if that’s helpful and they’d rather travel by train,’ says Fiona. ‘We find that in the majority of cases it’s the wives doing the initial searches and we’re an all-female team which might help when driving the client around.’
9. GOOD FOR RENTALS
‘We find rental properties too, something that not every property finder does,’ says Fiona. ‘The cost is £350 (plus VAT), if successful a fee is payable which is one month agreed rental minus the £350. There’s not a lot of money in it for us, but we hope the client will see the benefits of using our services and come back when buying a property. This works for people moving from abroad who might want to rent initally while they sort out the finer details, including a mortgage.’
It’s no surprise that having the experts on your side pays off. ‘In the 11 years that I’ve been doing this job, we’ve always got there in the end,’ says Fiona. ‘We’ve always successfully found our clients a property. And in the long run, when all the savings of using our services are taken into account, it normally ends up being cost neutral too.’