Category Archives: Blog

How to modernise and update your home on a budget

We can all feel fed up with our homes every once in a while; so if you fancy a change of décor there are small changes you can make to improve the look and feel of your home without bursting the budget. Equally, a fresh new look may be just what is needed to sell your property.


Front door

Replacing a tatty or damaged front door can instantly improve the curb appeal of your property, offering an instant welcome. A new efficient door also helps to reduce your fuel bills!



Stairs are often the first thing you see when you enter a property, consider changing shabby or stained carpet for a stylish new runner. You could also try stripping the carpet back completely, uncovering low maintenance stylish floor boards.


Fire place

An old fashioned fire place can really impose on a room – rather than incur the cost and mess of knocking it out, consider covering it with a stylish fire surround, which can be relatively inexpensive and provide an instant update.


Interior accessories

A splash of colour can completely change the way a room looks and feels. Consider buying new cushion covers or curtains, to introduce colours and patterns into your room whilst remaining an inexpensive quick fix. If you can’t afford new carpet, a rug can add a new lease of life and even cover that ugly stain.



Use your alcoves and corners wisely – consider shelving or fitted wardrobes to make the most of your space creating a tidy, clutter free room that’s easier to dust.



Tired of your outdated kitchen? Rather than splashing the cash on something new, try changing your splashbacks or tiles or upgrading your cupboard doors and handles. Cupboard paint is easily available in DIY stores if the budget is minimal. Your room will feel fresh and up to date for a reasonably low price.



If you’re looking to sell your home or you are able to spend money on home renovation, updating your kitchen or bathroom could be the smartest move. A beautifully finished kitchen or bathroom can sell a property, so the fresher the better!


If in doubt, a fresh lick of paint and a thorough clean can help perk up your property and make you feel more comfortable, whilst freeing up spare cash to spend on something special!


Preparing your house for the holidays

As you look forward to your annual summer break, whether that’s relaxing on the beach abroad or a UK break closer to home, take some time to think about making your home safe and secure.

It’s all part of making your holiday as relaxing as possible so you can fully unwind this summer.


Check Your House Alarm

Firstly, if you have one, check that your house alarm is in working order. Apart from keeping your home safe from unwanted visitors whilst you are away, your insurance may not be valid if it’s not in functioning.


Timing is key

A house that looks lived in will be less of a target. Put automated timers on lights or radios to fake the impression that there is someone home, even when you are scuba diving in the tropics!


Ask your neighbours for a favour

This is the time when you will be glad that you invited the neighbours round at Christmas. Now you can cash in a favour. Ask them if they wouldn’t mind closing the curtains occasionally, putting out and bringing in the bins and collecting any post as well as keeping a general eye on the house whilst you are away.


Organise your pets

If you have pets you will understand that they are all important members of the family. You need to make arrangements for them as soon as you can – don’t leave it until the last minute! The good catteries and kennels can get booked up months in advance so make sure you secure a place if you need one.

Alternatively, think about asking a friend or relative to house and pet sit which is also great from a security point of view.


Get rid of any spare keys

That spare key that you hide underneath the flower pot… get rid of it! There is no point in risking the security of your house while you are away. Give the key to the neighbour or friend for safe keeping.

£3,000 raised for Breast Cancer Care

We are delighted to announce we have successfully raised £3000 for Breast Cancer Care during our office wide Bake Sale and Wear it Pink Day.

Our Bake Sale was a huge success; the local community was out in full force to buy delicious cakes, biscuits and brownies, showing welcome support for the fundraising. Our team were in high spirits yet again on Wear it Pink Day, decorating the offices and wearing every shade of pink whilst continuing to fundraise throughout the day.

Breast Cancer Care, which is our chosen charity for 2016, is the only UK wide charity providing care, information and support to people affected by breast cancer. They combine the personal experiences of people affected by breast cancer with clinical expertise to provide information, support and campaign for improvement in standards of care.

Our Director of Operations, Peter Higham commented, “We are very proud to be supporting Breast Cancer Care this year, and we are having a fantastic time fundraising. I’d like to thank the local community that generously donated to both events, helping us to reach a great amount of money. We all know people and families who have been affected by breast cancer and this is why the team chose this charity for our 2016 fundraising.”

Let your Garden Flourish

With summer upon us we are all, hopefully, spending more time outdoors as our garden becomes one of the most important features of our home.

If you are looking for inspiration for garden accessories or a stunning new planting scheme, look no further than the RHS Tatton Park Flower Show.

Taking place at National Trust property Tatton Park in Knutsford, Cheshire, the show offers a great opportunity to see all the very latest in garden design.

The popular event, now in its 17th year, runs fromthe 22nd – 24th July.

The show is a great day out for the whole family with fun activities and beautiful displays.

Some of the many activities include; talks theatres, including a new theatre in the Floral Marquee, blooming beds, garden hideaways, a bandstand hosting entertainment,floristry and floral art competitions, practical and inspirational shopping, and much more.

We look forward to another great show and fun day out.

For information visit newer color III MEGA Pixelz Természet Beautiful Flowers,

Top tips for creating the perfect outdoor space

As the weather starts to heat up, it’s a great time to prep your outdoor space. If you’re lucky enough to have a garden or patio area, no matter how big or small, you can always create a space to enjoy, reflecting your personality and making a statement. In the spirit of summer we’re here with some handy hints and tips to help you make the most of your outdoor area.


Define your space

Consider how you want to spend your time outside – Cooking? Eating? Socialising with friends? Or playing with the children? You might just want to create a tranquil haven for wildlife. Deciding how to use your garden is the first step to designing your perfect summer space.



Summer nights stay lighter for longer, but it’s still nice to see what you’re eating when dining alfresco. Outdoor fairy lights, candles and hanging lanterns create a fantastic ambience while providing much needed light if the party continues after dark. There are numerous varieties of electrical or solar lights which can be hung from trees and pergolas, twisted through shrubs or draped around arches. Solar lamps can also be placed in flower beds or plant pots.



Sheltered areas underneath canopies or pergolas can block the gaze of curious neighbours whilst proving a reliable shelter from the unpredictable great British weather.



If leaving your guests to run back and check on the cooking sounds a familiar scenario, create a safe and convenient BBQ area in your garden – continue to enjoy the weather, while being the life and soul of the party and of course, head chef.


Comfortable seating

We all want to relax on comfy sofas and chairs in our homes and the garden is no exception. Trade in the broken deck chairs and treat yourself to some new outdoor furniture that everyone can enjoy.


Bright colours

Nothing signals the start of summer quite like a burst of colour. Adding bright, colourful flowers, cushions and plant pots can keep your outdoor space feeling fresh and vibrant, and offers a reasonably inexpensive quick fix.



A lick of paint can transform an old crumbling shed, fence or bench and bring your garden back to life. Keep it au naturel in cream or white or create a beach hut look with a vibrant pop of colour.



Intoxicating scents such as honeysuckle, rose, lavender, jasmine and sweet pea contribute to the summer sensation of the outdoors. When purchasing plants consider their appeal to the senses, making your garden even more inviting.


The tell-tale signs you might need to move!

We all become attached to our homes, which can make the decision to sell even tougher. Moving house can bring many benefits, from more space for a growing family to better job opportunities in the local area.

Are you on the brink of a move? Here are some tell-tale signs that could suggest you’re ready to make a move.



Is your house becoming a money pit? If the answer is yes, it might be a good idea to downsize and free up some spare cash. A more affordable home can also bring priceless peace of mind.


The commute

There is nothing worse than enduring a long and stressful commute to work, if it’s becoming a real problem, the answer could be simple, cut the commute and move closer to the office.



Are you about to retire? Downsizing and releasing money from your property could free up funds to spend on exotic holidays, adventurous hobbies and of course, the grandchildren.


Empty nest

Living in a large empty house that was once crammed full of family could signal a move. Downsizing to a small property can save you money on your fuel bills and is much easier to clean!


First time buyer

If you’re tired of renting or fed up of living with your parents, it could be the perfect time to take your first steps on to the property ladder.


Bursting at the seams

Have you out grown your home? You bought your house as a starter home, and vowed to spend a couple of years doing it up before you sold it on for a profit– ten years and three children later, your home is starting to feel a bit cramped. If you have the funds to upgrade, there is no time like the present!


5 Mistakes Made When Buying a Home

Although exciting, buying a home can be a daunting task as it is full of many complexities. It may be the biggest investment you will make in your lifetime, yet many home buyers are poorly prepared to ensure they make a good purchase decision. If you’re looking to buy a home, you can avoid common mistakes with a little research and planning. In order to help guide you through this process, we have compiled a list of 5 common mistakes made when buying a home:

1) Sticking to your budget- Shopping for houses gets people very excited! People think for a little bit more, they could get granite countertops, plus an office! You’re dealing with such large numbers when you’re browsing the housing market that it might not seem like such a huge deal to stretch another £10,000 or £15,000 to get the home you really love. Many people look at the top end of their affordable monthly payment, and don’t really take into consideration about what happens if their income goes down or they have to change jobs.

2) Not doing enough research. Many people assume that certain items come with the deal only to discover an appliance-free kitchen on the final walk-through. Not asking enough questions and getting everything in writing can be very costly as replacing something you thought was staying could cost hundreds.

Instead, go through your contract with a fine-toothed comb. If the item that you expected to be there isn’t, ask about it—and get it added in writing.

3) Letting emotions get in the way- Many people will walk into a potential home and think it is the wrong house because of the outdated wallpaper in the living room, or ripped carpet going up the stairs. Many people also fall in love with a house without realising that it is the wrong fit for their family. Buying a home is a very emotional process, but if you allow those emotions to get the best of you, you may end up buying a house that isn’t the right fit.

4) Not fully understanding and assessing your family’s needs. Just because you love a house, does not mean it’s the right house for your family. It’s important to find out about the quality of schools, crime level, transport, distance to shops, etc. If you have a dog, it’s important to make sure there is somewhere local to walk it, and many people overlook this when buying a home.  Not all parts of every suburb are ideal spots to live in so it is very important to get to know the neighbourhood – remember you’re not just buying a house; you’re also buying a location.

5) Being Inflexible- Even when you have a long list of must-haves, there are probably several homes out there that can meet your needs. If there are snags with the home you’ve decided you like – such as major repair issues, an inflexible asking price or a difficult possession date – it might be best to move on. Being open to keep looking will save you from making decisions you might regret later.

Regardless of whether you are a first time or a veteran buyer, unexpected problems can and will pop up, and it is important to be prepared.

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