By Legal Futures Associate Thames Water Property Searches
Over the course of the last year the Covid pandemic has prompted an exodus from cities with many people looking to take full advantage of the working from home opportunity and move out to more rural areas.
According to recent research from Hamptons Estate Agents, 2020 saw the biggest London exodus in four years with London leavers purchasing 73,950 homes, worth £27.6bn, outside the capital. Figures for other cities across the country showed a similar trend.
The appeal of moving in search of an idyllic countryside lifestyle, more bang for your buck and a better work/life balance is clear to see, but it is not without its risks and pitfalls. Which is where the property search experts, Thames Water Property Searches, can help.
Planning and neighbourhood searches are invaluable when it comes to giving solicitors and home buyers an idea of anything to watch out for in a brand new, unfamiliar area. They provide home buyers with an insight into the area’s local development framework and planning applications. In addition, useful information about the neighbourhood, such as demographics, education and crime, is also included.
So, whether it’s news of a housing development in the pipeline that could block the perfect view from your kitchen window, worrying levels of crime or a shortage of school places – forewarned is forearmed.
Solicitor Martin McCabe, a partner in the property department at Kidd Rapinet solicitors agrees that the comprehensive and reliable information contained within the planning and neighbourhood searches is essential reading for solicitors whose clients are moving to an unfamiliar area.
‘They are an important part of the search process and enable us to provide significant amounts of information to clients in a clear, concise and accessible format,’ says McCabe. ‘With many property viewings now taking place remotely it is an invaluable tool to enable both solicitors and their clients to understand the location and surrounding infrastructure.’
He adds: ‘for clients moving to a new area they can be extremely useful, highlighting factors that might only be apparent to those that have lived and worked in the area for some time. They give clients the information they need to raise relevant queries and make informed decisions.’
Says McCabe: ‘The planning elements are often most relevant for clients in showing potential development sites and planning history in the surrounding area that just isn’t available on the narrowly focused Local Authority search. These are important factors to highlight to clients so they appreciate they aren’t guaranteed a view and need to be aware of what changes may be happening in the surrounding area.’
While rocketing demand has led to increased workloads for property professionals, rest assured Thames Water Property Searches prioritise customer service. We continue to provide an efficient and professional service for all your search needs to help lighten the load at this busy time.
Says McCabe: ‘I’ve been using Thames Water Property Searches for a number of years and find them easy to deal with and very helpful. Having a dedicated Customer Care Manager is a great support in resolving queries.