House Prices Set For Increase

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     House prices are set to be 16% higher by the end of 2015 following a four year recovery in the market that will start late this year, an economic group has predicted.

Property values are predicted to fall for much of 2011, ending the year around 1.4% lower than they started it, according to the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR)

However the market will begin to stabilise towards the end of the year, when the UK’s property shortage will once again underpin prices. Improvements to the major banks balance sheets should lead to them relaxing their strict lending criteria, enabling more people to buy a home.

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Rental Market Buoyant

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A surge in demand from tenants this spring has pushed rents back up to record high levels during April and May, recent research indicates.

The average cost of renting a home in the UK has increased by 0.8 percent during these months to £692, which matches the record reached in November last year prior to a seasonal downturn.

Rents are continuing to be pushed upwards by strong tenant demand, as would-be buyers were forced to put plans of purchasing on hold, while they raised the substantial deposits that in many cases are still required.

Competition is fierce and tenants are paying a premium to secure properties. The rate of increase is unlikely to tail off as lending to first time buyers remains subdued and demand for rental homes is stronger than ever.

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Countdown Clock unveiled to mark 500 days to go to the London 2012 Olympic Games

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The London 2012 Organising Committee (LOCOG) and OMEGA, official timekeeper for the London 2012 Games, unveiled the Countdown Clock in Trafalgar Square – kicking off the 500-day countdown to the start of the London 2012 Olympic Games.

 Four Team GB Olympic gold medallists – rowers Pete Reed and Andy Hodge and sailors Iain Percy and Andrew Simpson – revealed the Clock, which counts down to the evening of the 27 July 2012 in days, hours, minutes and seconds.

Present at the event were LOCOG Chair Seb Coe, Mayor of London Boris Johnson, OMEGA ambassador and world champion heptathlete Jessica Ennis, and President of OMEGA Stephen Urquhart.

The launch of the Countdown Clock is a key moment in the build-up to the Olympic and Paralympic Games. It is a reminder for people across the UK, as well as international visitors to the capital, that London will soon be hosting the greatest show on earth.

The steel Clock measures 6.5 metres high, five metres long and weighs around four tonnes. Its design reflects the look of the Games, with beams inspired by London and its connection with the Prime Meridian in Greenwich, the home of time.

LOCOG Chair Seb Coe said: ‘The launch of the OMEGA Countdown Clock is an important milestone for any Olympic Games and is something of a tradition within the Olympic Movement. It will be a daily and hourly reminder to everyone who visits Trafalgar Square that the countdown to the start of London 2012 has well and truly begun and that the greatest show on earth is soon coming to our country.

‘Athletes’ careers are based on timing and I hope that this milestone moment excites and inspires them to compete at the highest level in 2012. Athletes hoping to compete in the Olympic Games are in the final stretch of their preparation and the next 500 days will be crucial to them as their dream of competing in a Games comes closer to reality.’

Source: – http://www.london2012.com/news/2011/03/countdown-clock-unveiled-to-mark-500-days-to-go-to-the-l.php

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“Spring” Into Energy Saving this Spring

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                                            With Spring here at last now is the perfect time to start saving energy in your home and reduce your fuel bill. It seems everyday the price of fuel at the pumps continues to sore, home heating oil, gas prices and electricity are all effected by ever increasing fuel prices.

The folks in our Energy Performance Assessment department here at NI Property Group have comprised a simple and effective way in how you could potentially save on your home fuel bills this spring by following a few very simple steps and leave you with extra cash in your pocket at the end of the month.

  • Light bulbs – If you switch every bulb in your home to a low energy bulb you could potentially save approximately £50 per month, they also last considerably longer than the old style bulbs.

 

  • If feasible only turn on radiators in rooms you are using. If you do not have Thermostatic Radiator Valves (TRV) fitted to your radiators then we advise you look into having them fitted. They are fantastic in that you can adjust the temperature up or down to suit your needs and avoid wasting fuel on overheating your rooms

 

  • Cavity Insulation – Insulation is one of the most effective ways to save energy and make your home warmer. Cavity Wall Insulation can give huge savings along with double glazed windows, increasing loft insulation to 300mm and draught proofing. At the minute there may be grants available from the Energy Saving Trust

 

  • Leave all electrical gadgets such as televisions, phone chargers and radios completely turned off when not in use. Leaving gadgets on standby wastes over £900 million worth of energy in the UK every year. Simply turning off household items rather than leaving them on standby could save you approximately £115 every year.

 

  • Turn Thermostats down by 1 degree. It may be hard to believe but if you turn down room thermostats by just 1 degree, you could potentially net yourself a saving of £60 per year.

These are just some of the few simple steps home owners can generally take quite quickly and which are relatively inexpensive to start making savings on your home energy bills. If you would like a detailed energy efficiency survey carried out on your property simply get in touch with us here at NI Property Group and we will be delighted to assist.

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Northern Ireland Economy Set to Gain £Millions From 2011 MTV Music Awards

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Today saw a welcome break from what has been a difficult time for the Northern Ireland economy. Confirmation that Belfast had won the bid to stage the star-studded MTV Awards this November came during a meeting of the City Council last night. Belfast, which was pitched as an “edgy” location for the global event, fought off tough competition from Warsaw, Istanbul and Paris.

This event is fantastic news for Northern Ireland and will highlight to the world that Northern Ireland can stage world class events such as The MTV Awards

The economic impact is also set to be huge. When the event was held in Edinburgh in 2003 the return on investment was £11.9 for every £1, and in Copenhagen in 2006 the return was £8.13 for each pound.

Last year Hollywood sensation and Desperate Housewives star Eva Longoria presented the show in Madrid amongst those in attendance were Rihanna, Katy Perry, Miley Cyrus and many more. All indications are that Belfast will be no different.

The awards are set to attract a worldwide television viewing audience of 600 million people with many more tuning into the live streaming of the ceremony online. All in all a fantastic advertising platform for Belfast and Northern Ireland.

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Are you aware of Carbon Monoxide….?

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Be Aware of Carbon MonoxideCarbon Monoxide, also known as CO is a poisonous gas which is odourless, colourless and tasteless. It is produced by incomplete burning of carbon based fuels. Common materials include, wood, gas, coal and oil. Carbon Monoxide becomes poisonous when it enters the body and prevents blood from bringing oxygen to organs, cells and tissue. CO can kill quickly without warning and according to the Health and Safety Executive Northern Ireland (HSENI) many people die from CO poisoning caused by gas appliances and flues that have not been maintained correctly or at all, or by poor ventilation or even incorrect installation. Prolonged exposure to low levels of CO can cause serious harm to health and in extreme cases can cause paralysis or brain injury. Sensible precautions include installation of an audible carbon monoxide detector. Please note that a detector is a minor preventative and is by no means a substitute for other preventative measures and gas safety inspection with certificate. Other major factors to remember are when installation of gas appliances are installed, the work is undertaken, checked and regularly maintained by a gas safe registered engineer. If you live or work in tenanted accommodation it is your landlord’s responsibility to ensure you are occupying a safe environment. Your landlord has a legal duty to carry out a gas safety check of their property by fully qualified and registered gas safety engineers. They must provide you with a copy of the gas safety certificate and if they do not, you should request it immediately to confirm your safety.
Some of the things you need to think about now: -
• Ensure chimney swept at least once a year from top to bottom.
• Install CO detector but remember that this is not a substitution for a gas safety inspection with accompanying certificate issued.
• All installation and maintenance work must be carried out by a gas safety certified engineer.
• Ensure all rooms are well ventilated with a good fresh air supply.
• Symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning include headache, nausea, breathlessness, collapse, vomiting, erratic behaviour, chest pains, stomach pains, visual problems.
For further information regarding Carbon Monoxide please contact your local Health and Safety Executive.

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Welcome To The New and Improved NI Property Group

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NI Property Group NewsWe at NI Property Group are delighted to have launched our new and improved property listings website…. We have listened carefully to what our customers want and have invested significant time and effort into the new website and are very proud of the result. We hope you agree!

Listing property on NI Property Group is totally 100% FREE to everyone including private sellers, landlords, estate agents and developers throughout Northern Ireland and for the first time throughout the Republic of Ireland. Adding your home or commercial premises couldn’t be easier simply click on any of the “Add Property” tabs either on the home page or throughout the site and you are off!!

Estate Agents if you wish to add your residential or commercial property to the website feel free to get in touch either by phone or email, we will be delighted to assist you in any way we can.

We are the only property advertsing website in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland operated solely by property professionals who know what it takes to make that all important sale in these difficult times, so if you are selling buying or looking for a new home to rent make NI Property Group your number one choice.

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Reminder On Energy Performance Certificates (EPC’s)

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Energy Performance ScaleNI Property Group Reminder on Energy Performance Certificates (EPC) To Home Sellers and Landlords

It is now and has been from December 2008 a Legal requirement under “The Energy Performance of Buildings (Certificates and Inspections) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2008”, that all property transactions, whether they are For Sale or To Let in the UK require an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC). Legally, if anyone viewing your property requests to see the Energy Performance Certificate this must be provided to them. It is the home owner’s responsibility to obtain the Energy Performance Certificate.

An Energy Performance Certificate tells the home owner how energy efficient the property is. The scale ranges from A-G. The most efficient homes will have a rating of A, the further down the scale then the less efficient the property is. The performance of the building is then benchmarked against current building standards and cost effective improvements recommended
The certificate will advise on the likely impact your property may have on the environment and any alterations which may improve the energy efficiency of your property will be detailed.

It is of utmost importance that you have an EPC carried out on your property if you are selling or renting. Failure to do so could result in a financial penalty of £200 for every breach where a certificate is not in place when it has been requested”

From the date you receive your Energy Performance Certificate it will remain valid for 10

10 years. The report produced along with the Energy Certificate provides detailed information on the running costs of a property per annum and details how these bills could be reduced, it also highlights the impact your home currently has on the environment and how the home owner can reduce any negative impact the property may have on the environment. We are finding that homeowners who are not selling or renting property are booking Energy Assessment to see how they can save on fuel bills, which is vital today considering the current price of home heating oil.

We at NI Property Group also provide Commercial EPC’s right across Northern Ireland at very competitive rates, we can be contacted at  info@nipropertygroup.co.uk  for bookings and pricing or alternatively call us on 077 841 924 17 and we will be delighted to discuss your individual requirements with you.

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