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In association with The Big Exchange

Finding happy homes with Hunters

Lately many of us have found that while we have loved our homes, it’s now time to move on to something new. Estate agency Hunters has a well-established reputation for building solid foundations – for homeowners, for families and for communities

In ‘ordinary times’ buying and selling your home is usually a straightforward process, fine-tuned by experienced property agents, managing confident buyers. However, for many of us, the Covid pandemic has tested the limitations in our homes, with a lack of indoor space or gardens being cited by many people who have decided they want to move on. 

Finding your perfect new home can be challenging. Many factors – the cost of your chosen location, desired space, security and just falling in love with it – can conspire to make house-hunting a nightmare rather than an exciting time searching for your dream home. That’s when you need the support of an established, successful and trusted agency.

Hunters estate agency has history. The third-largest estate agency in the country, we were established 30 years ago in York, and now have over 200 branches across England and Wales, most independently owned by franchise partners.

Glynis Frew, Managing Director of Hunters, says: “In business, we face many challenges. I have been in business for over 40 years, but I have never experienced anything like the Covid pandemic. I am immensely proud of our team, of their hard work and resilience.

“Whether staff were furloughed or stayed working doing the jobs of two people to make up for the shortfall in staff, each one rose to the challenge. They illustrated the maxim, ‘all of us are cleverer than one of us!’ The Hunters team is amazing, I am immensely proud of every one of them.”

Recent independent analysis of Rightmove data found that Hunters sold 11,727 properties SSTC in 2020, placing us as the country’s third-largest agency. Alongside the sale of homes, we offer a full set of professional services including sales of land and new homes, auctions, conveyancing, mortgages and residential block management.

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Professionals in property values

If this is the first time that you plan to sell up and buy another home, you need to understand the current value of your property.

The housing market has been extremely busy. The ONS House Price Index for June 2021* found that:

UK average house prices increased by 13.2% over the year to June 2021, up from 9.8% in May 2021; the highest annual growth rate since November 2004;

UK average house prices reached a record high of £266,000 in June 2021, which is £31,000 higher than this time last year;

Average house prices increased over the year in England to £284,000 (13.3%), in Wales to £195,000 (16.7%), in Scotland to £174,000 (12.0%) and in Northern Ireland to £153,000 (9.0%).

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London continues to be the region with the lowest annual growth (6,3%) for the seventh consecutive month.

New information shared by Dataloft, on the English Housing Survey, says:

One in every eight homemovers across the UK expects to stay in their new home for less than five years;

Over half of homebuyers aged under 34 expect to move again within a decade, 18% expect to be in move again in five years or less;

While younger buyers expect to move on quite quickly, 44% of those aged 55-64 and 35% of those aged 65+ expect to be in their new home for over 20 years;

In 2019/20, those with a mortgage spent an average of 10 years in their home. This compares to 23.8 years for owner-occupiers who own their property outright.

But it’s important to keep your expectations real – and you can keep it real, with our National Valuation Month in September. It is a wonderful opportunity to get expert advice from our local, trained agents, all free of charge or obligation.

This is our largest campaign of the year where we set out to value as many homes as possible. In our National Valuation Week in March we visited over 5,000 homes, and we look forward to providing free valuations for your properties with no obligation.

Visit hunters.com/nvm to book and find out more

How we’re giving back

Glynis Frew explains how Hunters puts something back into communities

Hunters has a strong tradition of fundraising, and Giving Back is one of our core values, which resonates throughout the network. Many branches support local and national charities, ranging from community football teams to sleeping out to raise awareness and money for homelessness charities.

One of our charities, the Nikki Waterhouse Trust, receives applications from individuals with extremely sad stories about their children, and to be in a position where we can help them and their families is a privilege.

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I am so proud of the work this charity does. Nikki, who was a staff member at Hunters, died tragically young in 2013. Each time we raise money and give back to someone in need, it makes me proud to have been part of her all-too short life. Nikki had the most amazing smile and laugh and every time we make a donation I see that smile again.

We also support less well-known charities such as The Encephalitis Society, and childrens’ charities like Martin House and Forget Me Not Children’s Hospice.

Fundraising during the pandemic has been difficult, but it didn’t stop us. The Nikki Waterhouse Trust provided 13 Chromebooks and donated them to schools across Birmingham for children desperately in need of equipment, struggling to cope with online home schooling.

At Hunters, we are all incredibly proud of our fundraising culture, and share across the group the things we have done to raise funds. We try to make this fun and part of team-building too, taking part in a range of fundraising activities, from bike rides to sky-diving and golf days.

Glynis Frew is Managing Director of Hunters

Find out more about Hunters’ charitable work at thenikkiwaterhousetrust.com

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