Six things your new home needs

Despite the coronavirus pandemic, the UK housing market has been in overdrive in recent months, in large part thanks to the stamp duty holiday that saw some buyers saving thousands of pounds on their home purchases.

Although the full holiday has come to an end, there is still a reduced rate on stamp duty in England that applies until the end of September.

Asit currently stands, buyers in England will not have to pay any stamp duty on the first £250,000 of the purchase price. Between £250,001 and £925,000, a 5% duty will apply. This rate kicks up to 10% for spending above £925,001, and reaches 12% when spending in excess of £1.5m.

From October 1st, rates will return to normal, meaning stamp duty will not be payable under £125,000, and while a rate of 2% will then apply up to £250,000.

Similar reduction schemes in Scotland and Wales have already come to a close.

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If you’ve taken advantage of the stamp duty holiday, or are looking to try and complete in the next couple of months, you’re no doubt already thinking of ways to make your new house feel more like a home.

That’s where the help of a tradesperson can be crucial. There are always little things that need to be sorted, and you don’t want to be handling DIY in the midst of unpacking - who even knows which box your set of screwdrivers is in?

With MyBuilder, there’s no need to hope for flyers on your doorstep or ask the strangers next door for recommendations - we have tradespeople all over the country who are ready to help out, just a few clicks away.

Here are some key jobs in your new home to get sorted now:

Lock installation

Locks

Although all sets of keys should be present and accounted for at the exciting moment they get handed over, it’s a sad fact that you can’t be entirely sure that there aren’t any others out in the wild, whether it was copy given to a friend for safekeeping, or one forgotten in an estate agent’s drawer.

For full peace of mind then, it’s a sensible precaution to update your locks and make sure that you know full well who has a working set. This is especially relevant if any of the locks are old and damaged anyway, as particularly old or damaged locks can be an issue if you ever need to claim on your home insurance. An experienced locksmith can install a modern set in a few hours.

Boiler

It’s all well and good having access to a boiler’s service history, but even if the previous occupants were fairly rigorous when it comes to upkeep, it can’t hurt to have your boiler checked over to make sure it’s all in working order.

Small issues such as low pressure can be signs of a bigger problem, which a gas engineer can quickly figure out and put right. The last thing you need when you’re still trying to unpack your winter clothes is finding out you don’t have working heating.

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Gardening

As you’re no doubt very, very well aware, moving house isn’t exactly the fastest process in the world. Even a relatively quick, chain-free exchange can take a couple of months, and if the place you’re buying isn’t occupied, that can mean that some aspects of maintenance might get overlooked.

Nowhere is that more true than in the garden - stepping out of the backdoor to be greeted with an overgrown wilderness doesn’t make for the peaceful arrival you might have hoped for. But instead of getting busy with a strimmer, you could just hire a gardener to help get your new garden back to respectability - or get started on even bigger plans for the space.

Curtains

Some previous owners can make off with everything that isn’t nailed down - and sometimes even some things that are - and one of those things that often disappear are curtains.

While you can get by in the short term, you usually realise pretty quickly why we invented curtains and blinds, whether you’re being woken up at the crack of dawn or frightening the new neighbours. That’s where a handyman can come in, well, handy, to put up curtain poles or fit blinds and give you back your privacy.

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Decoration

For some people, the biggest appeal of moving house is having a brand new project to tackle, whether it’s a fixer upper in need of sensitive work, or a new build blank canvas you can project your personality onto.

A few coats of paint is easy enough to take on, but if you’d rather spend your time working out where the sofa should go, there’s no shame in turning to expert decorators, who can tackle painting, wallpaper and other other decor choices.

Carpets

Lots of places need a refresh when you move, and carpets are prime candidates to get an upgrade. Who knows what kind of dirt and grime has been ground into their fibres over the years? Even if you hire an industrial cleaner, do you really want to see what comes out of it?

New carpets are a relatively inexpensive way to rejuvenate a room and give you a fresh start, where you can be confident that all the dirt and stains are yours and yours alone. Carpet fitters can whip out an old one and put down new in a few hours, depending on your space.

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