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For the vast majority of us, our homes are surrounded by other homes. Inside each is at least one person and as we all know, people make noise. At some point we’ve all had to deal with a noisy neighbour throwing a party, but what if your neighbour is constantly noisy? What should you do about that?

Well, it’s not easy. Your neighbour is an unavoidable part of your life until one of you moves away, so maintaining a healthy relationship is good for everybody. That rules out retaliatory tactics, so what should you do?

Before anything else, speak to your neighbour

Nobody likes to be pushy when it comes to noise, but if you feel like the noise coming from a neighbour is negatively affecting your life, you’ve got absolutely every right to see if you can get the issue sorted.

Studies have found that one in three people who chose to speak to their neighbour found that the issue was sorted immediately. Most people just don’t understand that they’re being annoying, or don’t know how easily sound travels through their walls. People who simply don’t care what others around them think are few and far between, so approaching with good intentions and a healthy degree of kindness is the first thing you should do.

Do, however, try to approach them away from the noise making hours. If they’re hosting a party, for example, they’re likely to be a little drunk and therefore less welcoming to your criticism. You might not be having much fun listening to the muffled sounds of a blaring PA system, but approaching now will only cause further upset.

Get the council involved

If you’ve spoken to your noisy neighbour but they’re still engaging in the behaviour which caused you to speak to them in the first place, it might be worth getting the local authority involved. Lots of people aren’t comfortable getting the council involved as it either feels like an escalation or an overreaction, but if words aren’t getting through to your neighbour then the council is the logical next step.

After you’ve complained to the council, they’ll contact the neighbour with a letter telling them that people have complained. However, they won’t tell them who has complained. You may be asked to fill out a “noise diary” which has details of what the noise was, where it came from and how long it lasted.

If the noise doesn’t stop, the council can suggest mediation where your neighbour is sat down with a specialist mediator and whichever neighbours are affected to try and solve the problem. If this still doesn’t work, your noisy neighbour can be slapped with a fine of £5,000 for domestic premises and £20,000 for industrial or commercial properties.

Call the police

If the noise is truly excessive and you’ve tried every method listed above, it could be time to call the police. Unless it’s an emergency like you believe somebody’s in danger at the property, use the non-emergency line and alert them to the noise coming from your neighbour’s property.

Do be aware though that calling the police on your neighbour is a very serious move to make, and could really hurt relations with your neighbour.

 

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Amazingly, 2016 is about to draw to a close. It’s a year in which we’ve helped countless people sell their homes and worked alongside some of the biggest names in online home sales like Rightmove and Zoopla.

It’s also a year in where we wrote some of our very favourite articles ever. Covering everything from when the right time to sell your home is all the way to the potential impacts of the Brexit the property market, we’ve been busy writing essential blog posts for you to read, share and enjoy.

In this article, we’re going to refresh your memory as to some of our very best efforts, so let’s dig in.

How Virtual Reality Could Revolutionise Property Viewing

Thanks to big launched from the likes of HTC, Oculus and Sony, 2016 has been the year of Virtual Reality as every industry ponders what this game changing technology means for them. In this article originally published on the 1st of June, we took a look what VR could mean for the housing market.

By looking at the emergence of 360 degree cameras and their use in home photography, we imagined a not too distant future where you could step inside and take a virtual tour of a home without even having to leave your house. Best of all though? This technology is with us right now.

The Average Housing Costs in Top UK Cities

Following the 3% increase in Stamp Duty which forced house prices to raise at their highest rate in 12 years, we published an article looking at the average housing costs in some of the UK’s top cities, as of the 16th of May.

With the average house price in London sitting at almost triple the national average at £530,000 whilst an average home in Manchester commanding just £162,000, it made for fantastic, essential reading – especially if you’re looking to buy in any of the areas we covered.

How You Know When you’re ready to Move House

Originally published on the 5th of September, How to Know When you’re ready to Move House quickly grew to become one of our most popular posts. Put simply, it’s a guide to knowing exactly when the right time to list your property.

So often we see people who list their home without getting their ducks in a row first. The result? A lot of heartache and wasted days – that’s why we love this blog post so much.

An Update on Brexit and the Property Market

Even on the day of the vote many of us didn’t believe that the UK would vote to leave the European Union. It was a huge shock to the system, one which sent estate agents, statisticians and economists scrambling to come to terms with what this might mean for the British hosing market.

In this blog post from the 18th of July, we looked at what the real, tangible effects of the Brexit vote could mean for you, and that’s why it makes out list.

What was your favourite post of ours from 2016? Share it with us on Twitter!

There’s an unusual thing that happens when lots of us are looking for property – we fall into the ‘Bigger = Better’ fallacy. We want the most bang for our buck, the biggest rooms, the highest ceilings and that 3 car garage, if it’s available.

For lots of us, it means that we end up spending more on a property than we really should for our needs; after all, what’s an extra £30k between you and your mortgage lender? Now, years down the line lots of us are looking to downsize our properties, and yet that nagging feelings remains. Isn’t smaller a step down?

The answer, emphatically, is no, and in this guide we’re going to share with your 5 fantastic perks of downsizing your property.

  • Less space, less spending

One of the great advantages of having a large house is, rather obviously, having lots of space to put things. However that space also means that you feel obliged to fill it with whatever you can get your hands on. The search for furniture, knick-knacks and ephemera is never ending, and so is the drain on your bank account. Downsizing means you get the opportunity to really curate your space and make a home filled with the things you love, and no frivolous fluff.

  • Saved money on heating

Another huge bill you can cut down on thanks to downsizing. Smaller properties mean smaller heating requirements. Couple that with good insulation and you’ve got a home that’s vastly cheaper to run than your old property.

  • A significantly reduced (or gone) mortgage

It’s quite incredible just how accustomed we become to the idea that we owe tens of thousands of pounds which we’re expected never to miss a payment on, but that’s the life of those of us with a mortgage. It’s a heavy weight which we slowly become used to, but what if you could lift it off? That’s the promise of downsized living.

By selling your larger property, you can gather the funds to pay off a large portion (or maybe even all) of your mortgage off, as well as buy your new house. Imagine the feeling of liberation that would come from knowing you truly owned your property, and that should the worst come to the worst, you don’t need to worry about meeting payments.

  • Less time cleaning

If we’re being honest with ourselves, nobody enjoys cleaning – especially if it’s rooms you don’t often go in. With a smaller home, you can spend less time cleaning and more time actually enjoying your property and lifestyle. That’s something I’m sure each and every one of us can get behind.

  • The chance to move into a nicer location

By downsizing, you gift yourself the opportunity to purchase in an area your previous requirements simply wouldn’t let you. Inner-cities and small, country towns typically don’t play host to large properties, so by scaling back your ambitions you can find properties in locations you simply weren’t able to before, and that’s a huge advantage.

 

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There’s no doubting that Christmas has a special place in each of our hearts. In our memories, the Christmases of our youth were golden; glowing with a warmth that each year we strike to replicate. Part of that warmth, of course, comes from the way we decorate our home.

Sadly though, Christmas decorations have developed something of a bad reputation. After all, Christmas has given us the gift of singing Santa’s, blow up garden snowmen and ‘hilarious’ novelty furnishings. All of which has contributed to Christmas having that somewhat iffy reputation in decoration circles.

That’s not good if you’re trying to sell your home during the Christmas period, so in this guide we’re going to share with you some of our favourite ways to tastefully decorate your home this Christmas.

  • Embrace warm colours

Coca-Cola might want you to associate their particular brand of bright red with the festive season, but if you’re looking to dress your home tastefully for Christmas, choose a richer, darker red. Used sparingly in your decorations darker reds can increase the ‘warmth’ of your room and draw potential buyers in, helping them to imagine the comfort that comes with potentially living in your home.

The same goes with earthier shades of green which, rather than imagine summer at its brightest, highlight the texture and beauty of real plant life in the UK. It’s one easy step to turn your Christmas decorations from tacky to tasteful.

  • Don’t fear DIY, it’s the spirit of Christmas

At its very best, Christmas is about making the most of what we have around us. The same should go for our decorations, which become all the more lovely when made by our own two hands.

The internet is littered with examples of simple, gorgeous DIY Christmas decorations, so we won’t fill up this article with suggestions. However, just about anyone can make a beautiful wreath for your front door with what’s available in your nearest forest (or garden centre, in a pinch) that dramatically increases the welcoming feeling of your property for you, your guests and anyone who might come to view your property over the festive period. Simple, custom and full of that wonderful Christmas spirit!

  • Decorate sparingly

Sometimes our love for Christmas is so great that we want to spread it over every wall and surface in the house. Well, as sad as it is to say, that’s the wrong way to go about it, as even the most tasteful decorations take on a gaudy air when littering a property.

Instead, use your decorations sparingly. Your home should remind your guests of Christmas, not seem defined by it. Choose decorations which draw attention to the best features of your house, like a beautiful table feature which encourages potential buyers to imagine entertaining your guests.

When used appropriately, Christmas decorations take a good house and make it great. We’ve seen homeowners attempt to hide their Christmas decorations in fear of alienating potential buyers with their taste, but you really shouldn’t fear personality – just don’t go overboard!

Oh, and, of course, merry Christmas from all of us at Agent Online! - Check out how you could sell your property, fixed fee, for only £779

 

2016 is rapidly drawing to a close, and with the New Year comes the promise of change; a new outlook, new behaviour and a better version of ourselves. It’s a time for renew, and that means in all aspects of our life.

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