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Making life easier for house buyers, report

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1.0 Introduction 1 2.0 Research Question and Objectives 2 3.0 Literature Review 2 4.0 Methodology 4 4.1 Primary and Secondary Research 4 4.2 Qualitative and Quantitative Research 5 4.3 Sampling 5 4.4 Interviews 5 5.0 Limitations of Methodology 6 6.0 Summary 6 1.0 Introduction It's a commonly known fact that moving house is one of the most stressful events that most people experience in their lives. There are so many things to remember to complete, and all the small elements soon become one big headache for many long suffering house buyers. It seems incredible that an industry, which has been firmly established for centuries, is still yet to make the process any easier on its customers. All the pieces are there, but no one has set to link them all together, to make house-buying a smooth and hassle-free process. The aim of this research is to establish the needs and demands of consumers, and to discover the best possible way to reach them. The current system of house buying is long-winded and complicated, and causes large amounts of stress to most people who endeavour to buy or sell a house. Firstly, there's the mortgage agreement to choose, from the financial institution of choice; choosing a house to buy, and then making an offer on it; hiring a solicitor to handle all the paperwork; dealing with the estate agent and paying the deposit; then valuation surveys, homebuyer surveys and building surveys needs to be conducted; a list of fixtures and fittings needs to be obtained; a land registry search, to determine any building restrictions placed upon the property, and finally, the contracts need to be signed, money needs to be transferred, and lastly the keys to the new home can be collected from the estate agent. In order to make the whole process less stressful, it is proposed that a business be set up for the purpose of advising buyers on what to expect, what their options are as far as choosing solicitors, and representatives, and general advice as they go through the process. ...read more.


obtaining 'in principle' mortgage offers before making an offer on a property); action by lenders to provide title deeds quickly and to examine the scope for developing 'chain-breaking' loans (which enable people to buy a new home before they have sold their existing one) which would be suitable to a wider range of people than current bridging loans, and action by insurers to develop further and market more widely insurance to protect buyers and sellers from gazumping and other problems. Although the introduction of the Homes Bill has been delayed, it hasn't stopped other companies using a similar concept to create business. SecureSALE(tm) offers buyers and sellers the opportunity to complete transactions efficiently by requiring both parties to purchase a SecureSALE information pack. The seller pays to have the pack prepared, and the buyer pays to receive it. A buyer who wants to make an offer must purchase the SecureSALE pack and study its contents before their offer will be considered. The SecureSALE pack includes: * Full property description * An independent Pre-sales Survey * A copy of the title deeds * Land Registry and Local Authority searches * Draft contract, including replies to standard enquiries * Copies of guarantees, warranties, planning permissions, etc. * Quotes for the cost of any work recommended in the survey All negotiations in relation to the purchase can occur at the offer stage, as there is nothing that will subsequently come to light about the property that affects the price a buyer is willing to pay. Once an offer has been accepted on a SecureSALE property, there is effectively nothing to delay exchange and completion of contracts. By changing the order of the house buying and selling process SecureSALE provides all the information about a property up front, rather than after an offer has been accepted. This means complete transparency and a greater level of commitment at a far earlier stage of the house buying process than is currently possible. ...read more.


o Contact the insurance broker for life, motor, medical and contents. When contacting the house contents insurers, check with them to see what cover is available regarding moving house, it may be that there is no need to take out extra cover, it may already be part of the existing policy. o Doctor, Dentist & Opticians - De-register if moving out of the local area. Liaise with hospital if regular treatment is required o TV Licence - fill in the change of address part of your existing licence. o Council Tax - Notify the relevant authorities in both the current area and the area consumers are moving to. o Electricity - give at least 48 hours notice for change of address to take effect. o Gas - Contact existing and new gas companies. Advise them of new address and date of removal. Give at least 48 hours notice. o Water. At least 48 hours notice is required by both your existing and your new authority to arrange for disconnection and re-connection of supply. o Mail can be re-directed by the Post Office. This can only be done over the counter; they require seven days notice. Additional services to be offered would be identified using the research as outlined in section 4.0. The element of aftercare needs to be considered, as any action recommended by the seller should be undertaken by the buyer, after the sale has completed, e.g. if plumbing is not up to standard, and the buyer has been informed of this, it is their responsibility to fix the problem when the property transfers hands. The proposed service is supposed to make life easier on its customers, by doing all the hard work for them. This may be an easier task once government legislation has passed stipulating the necessity for information to be provided by both parties before offers are made on the property. Changes in the overall process will eventually change the outcome and impact on consumers, but until then, consumers will simply have to cope. Philipa Skudder Business Research and Analysis April 2003 1 ...read more.

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