The Property Market Monthly Fact File – June 2016

The property market fact file is a collection of data compiled each month by our Chartered Surveyors and the propertysurveying.co.uk team; collating survey data, statistics, trends and information from the property market. This aims to provide a single place where anyone with an interest in UK property can find the information they need.
To read the monthly fact file, click here.

Recent studies have shown that almost all young and poor people are likely to be stuck renting their homes by 2025

In 1988, just 22% of house occupiers on an average income and under the age of 35 were renting – that figure has now risen to 53%!
To read the whole article, click here.

£6.3 million of funding set to kick start building work for tens of thousands of homes in dedicated Housing Zones across the country

As of 5th January 2016, Housing Zones across the country will begin to receive funding aimed at kick starting building work for tens of thousands of homes…
To read the whole article, click here.

George Osborne announces plans to hand local councils the power to control business rates

Speaking at the Conservative Party Conference in Manchester earlier this month, the Chancellor George Osborne has announced plans that will enable local councils to take full control of business rates.

At present, local councils keep up to 50% of the rates with the rest being sent to Westminster, who then redistributes them so that areas with fewer businesses do not miss out. Currently around £11.5 billion in business rates goes to Westminster, with around £9.4bn being redistributed in grants.

Described by the Chancellor as “the biggest transfer of power to our local government in living memory”, the plans will allow local councils to keep the rates that they collect from businesses as well as to set the level. It aims to provide local councils with the freedom to cut the tax, therefore encouraging companies to invest locally.

The plans, which will also allow areas with directly elected mayors to increase business rates if they invest the extra money into infrastructure schemes, has come under scrutiny from a number of critics.

Frances O’Grady, the Trade Union Congress General Secretary says:

“By devolving business rates without any national safeguards, regional inequalities will get wider. The communities that most need investment are often those with the weakest business revenue base”

Another critic, Shadow Home Secretary, Andy Burnham took to twitter:

“Big contradiction at heart of Osborne speech. Says wants to close North-South divide. But then announces taxation reform that will widen it.”

However, the Chancellor backs his plan by saying to councils:

“Attract a business, and you attract more money; regenerate a high street, and you’ll reap the benefits; grow your area, and you’ll grow your revenue too”,

He goes on to explain that the changes, which are due to be in place by 2020 would mean cities and communities will no longer have to go to the government with what he described as a “begging bowl”.

– – –

Following on from our article about Britain’s ‘Rising Star’ high streets, business rates are often cited as one of the greatest obstacles to high street vitality – particularly as online competitors have no such burden. It is interesting therefore, to see Mr Osborne finally putting the power to control rates in the hands of local government, though it remains to be seen whether councils will use it to bolster their beleaguered coffers or to incentivise business on their ailing high street.

BT www.propertysurveying.co.uk 10.10.15

Housing Group Becomes the First to Use Drones in the Housing Sector

Walsall Housing Group has become the first housing association in the country to secure permission from the Civil Aviation Authority to fly drones over their housing stock. Though other authorities have ruled out using the equipment for cost reasons, Walsall have stated that they estimate the cost savings to be around £20,000 a year.

drone closeupThe move has led to a debate over the legal ramifications, with particular regard to the Data Protection Act 1998. Whilst the legal obligations on domestic drone users are fairly light and essentially extend to a requirement to use them in a responsible way which protects the privacy of others, the requirements on commercial use are more stringent.

The Information Commissioners Office’s (ICO) CCTV Code of Practice provides that as drones are privacy intrusive, justifications for their use are imperative. As such, a company or housing association will ideally need to undertake a ‘privacy impact assessment’ or similar to determine whether drones are appropriate, or whether another method would minimise the privacy impact. This would operate in much the same way as a risk assessment.

The same Code also offers several additional recommendations to ensure compliance with Data Protection:

  • Any data captured should be securely stored
  • Recording should be limited only to the defined purpose
  • Retained data should only be kept for its stated use
  • Consider ‘privacy by design’ – eg. Methods or technologies which allow restricted views or a specific focus.
  • Data access should be restricted to only those who need it
  • Consider ways to provide fair processing information to those likely to be affected.

drone flying inspectionThe guidance from the ICO indicates that Housing Associations, and all other companies looking to integrate drones into their processes, should be aware of the data implications. Whilst HAs like Walsall Housing Group evidently see a cost advantage, that net benefit may in some cases be eroded by the additional administration costs of satisfying their information obligations.

www.propertysurveying.co.uk

SRJ 19.10.15

Looking for a Property Surveyor in Cheam?

Building and Property Surveyors Cheam

Do you need a local independent Chartered Surveyor in Cheam or the surrounding area? We can assist, including being able to provide a structural survey, major defects report, single fault assessment, rebuilding / reinstatement valuation, building survey, property valuation, homebuyers report, property acquisition advice, or other property assistance.

Chris Hunt MRICS
Chartered Surveyor

0203 390 3203
or Freephone on 0800 880 6024

chris_hunt“My surveying experience extends from a solid core of survey reports, like the HomeBuyers Survey and the House Purchase Survey, to a wide range of residential and commercial expert surveys, valuations and reports. I can highlight any and all issues and defects at your potential property purchase or your current home, making sure you have all the information you need to proceed.

“If you are buying a property, you could save thousands in unexpected remedial works by instructing us to carry out a property survey on your behalf. Please don’t hesitate to give me a call”

Chris will deal with you directly, giving free, impartial advice on choosing the service that’s best for you. Our fees are all inclusive, so time you need to discuss the building, structure and defects after the report is free. There are no hidden costs.

Find out more about our experienced local Chartered Surveyor / Director here.

Looking for a surveyor in Newbury?

Surveyed Buildings
These are actual buildings inspected by McCall & Co, chartered surveyors of the propertysurveying network.

Pre-purchase (or pre-lease) Residential Property Surveys by McCall & Co Chartered Surveyors with experience of Period, Individual and Character houses and cottages, including with thatch and/or timber-framed walls, and/or cob walls. Personal service for discerning buyers covering the Newbury area, Berkshire.

For an informal, friendly, no- obligation discussion, please call Ian McCall TD, FRICS on

01488 686 986


 Connecting you to Independent Chartered Surveyors
www.propertysurveying.co.uk
…for all your building survey and property requirements

Are you searching for a Property Surveyor in Torquay?

www.torquaysurveyors.co.uk

Building and Property Surveyor Torquay

Are you buying a new house or commercial property? Do you need a building survey, structural survey, single fault assessment, rebuilding / reinstatement valuation, homebuyers report, party wall or property advice from a Chartered Building Surveyor in Torquay or the surrounding South Devon area?

“All buildings, properties and houses have defects. Instructing us to undertake a Full Building Survey, House Purchase Survey Report or Homebuyer (Home Buyer) Survey will give you or your vendor peace of mind.” – Lee Gallon MRICS

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Please telephone Lee Gallon MRICS and the team to discuss your building survey or other property requirements. We are a chartered surveyors practice covering Torquay, Babbacombe, Marldon and the surrounding area, helping clients with both residential survey and commercial property issues.

01803 423 803
or Freephone on 0800 880 6024


Connecting you to Independent Chartered Surveyors
www.propertysurveying.co.uk
…for all your building survey and property requirements