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The Countdown To Your New Home – Our Top Tips

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Moving house is supposed to be one of the most stressful days of your life. The only way to reduce the level of stress is to meticulously plan the event to run as smoothly as possible.

This doesn’t mean getting up early on the day to allow you extra time to fit it all in – it means pre-organising every detail to make sure nothing can go wrong, and even then, something will, but at least you’ll have the heart to know it’s one less thing gone wrong than there could have been.

Make lists. Lists are your best weapon. Here’s a good overview to make your other more detailed lists from.

2 Months to go…

1. Declutter

Don’t waste money transporting things you’re going to throw out or get rid of. Do it now.

2. Notify your landlord

If you’re moving from a rental property then your landlord needs to know straight away. He’s going to need to make plans to re-let the property and he is also going to need to know when your rent will stop. You must do this in writing – a phone call won’t do. You both need an official record. Send a letter or an email if that’s been acceptable during earlier communications.

3. Pick your removal company

You need to decide whether you’re going DIY and just hiring a van or going professional with a company such asAMC removal services in Edinburgh. If the latter, then it needs nailing down as soon as possible. You don’t want to be left last minute with no way of moving all your belongings from A to B.

Check your household insurance policy to see what it will cover in transit. Run that alongside the removal company’s policy to see if you’re likely to need any additional cover.

4. Research your new area

You can start learning about where you’re going to be living as soon as you like and this will help with last minute needs on the moving day. Where are the local shops, a handyman store, take-aways or restaurants? There’s a good chance you won’t feel like cooking once you’ve got unloaded and you certainly won’t have your pots and pans to hand.

1 Month to go…

1. Start your packing

You should have already made a full inventory of what’s moving so order and buy all the boxes and packing materials you’ll need. Start filling them with the things you don’t really need day-to-day in order to reduce the amount of work nearer the time.

2. Do you need storage?

If you’re downsizing or staying in temporary accommodation until your new house is ready for you to move in then you’ll need to figure out where to store your belongings and your furniture and how much space you’ll need. Finding a storage facility local to your new home rather than your current one will speed up the process on moving in day.

3. Check access at your new property

Make sure you know if there are any local restrictions at either address for the size of vehicle you’re using and that it can gain access to as near the property entrance as possible.

4. Notify the utility companies

Up front notice for your suppliers gives them chance to prepare your accounts for termination or moving to the new property. They will advise you on the correct process to take to make it as straightforward as possible for both of you.

5. Check your car

If you’re moving a long distance the last thing you need is a breakdown. It could be a good time to organise that service you’ve been meaning to.

6. Never work with children or animals

Find someone to look after the kids and your pets. They’ll be bored or ‘too helpful’. They’re bound to get in the way so get them out of it from the start.

7. Tell your Doctor

You don’t need to tell them you’re moving but if you deregister it will make administration and transferring your records much easier for your new GP.

8. Stop any deliveries

Tell the paper-shop, the milkman, the Ringtons tea-boy, the window cleaner and anyone else who makes a doorstep delivery that you need to tie up their account and finalise their services.

9. Start eating the frozen foods

You’ve got a month to eat it or waste it. It’s up to you.

1 Week to go…

1. Confirm arrangements

Call the removal company and the estate agents or letting company. Get all arrival times confirmed, key collections sorted and double check your route and access details.

2. Disconnect your appliances

Arrange for the appropriate tradesmen to come and deal with any cookers, ovens, washing machines, dryers, dishwashers or anything else that is coming with you.

3. Start dismantling your flat pack furniture

4. Book a locksmith

You’re going to want to change the locks at the new property, sooner rather than later – you don’t know who might still have a set of keys for the place. If you can organise it to happen on moving day then that would be ideal but as near to as possible if you can’t.

3 Days to go…

1. Wash all the clothes

You’re probably not going to want to wash anything for a few days when you start to unpack, you might not even have a washing machine straight away, so make sure you’ve got as many clean clothes as possible.

2. Your old keys

You should label all your existing keys for what they unlock and leave them somewhere easy to find for the new occupants.

3. Essentials package

Put together a selection of all the things you might need to hand for the first few days to get you through. Toilet roll, light bulbs, tea-bags and refreshments are just the beginning. Try and think of the basics you use every day that might not make it out of packing for a while; toiletries, torches, a first aid kit, a pen and notepad, and perhaps some basic kitchenware including cutlery and crockery.

2 Days to go…

1. Put your contacts list somewhere safe

You should already have a list of everyone involved in the move; solicitors, estate agents, bank/mortgage company, landlord, letting agency, removal company – put it with your priority items and KEEP IT SAFE. You’re going to need this very close to hand all through moving day.

2. Pack your valuables

Put your valuables, your important items and contacts list with all of your important legal documents, passports, bankbooks etc. These will want to travel with you in person and not be packed away with the rest of your belongings.

3. Defrost your fridge and your freezer

4. Do you have the new key yet?

Double-check with your estate agent or landlord about collecting the keys if you don’t have them already.

The Day Before…

1. Finalise all packing

All the packing should be done apart from the essentials for the kitchen and bathroom.

2. Charge your phone

If you’ve got a bolt-on battery, charge that up too. It’s likely it’s going to get a lot of use.

3. Final walk-through

Do your final walk-through and check all cupboards, storage spaces, garage, garden and shed. You’ll have forgotten something. I guarantee it.

It’s Moving Day!

1. Drop off the kids and the pets

Do this first. Then you can start to think clearly without interruption for the rest of the day.

2. Organise your removal team

Help the removal company by giving them clear direction to where everything is, any troublesome items, and any special instructions that you need them to know. Ask them what they need from you and follow their instructions to the letter.

3. Make a final check on all meter readings

4. Give the house its final clean

5. Do your final, FINAL walk-through

Do a final walk-through with the removal team. Make sure nothing is left. The house should be empty unless there are items you’ve arranged to leave for the new occupants.

…and when you get to your new home

1. Check all utilities are working

If not, get on the phone. You should have the numbers on your contacts list.

2. Make everyone a cuppa before the heavy lifting starts

This will give everyone a chance to see the new house layout and where all the beautifully labelled boxes will be heading.

3. Check the van is empty and order a takeaway

Once you’re sure you have everything off the van the removal team can leave with your gracious thanks. You’re going to need to eat and luckily you have knives and forks packed in your essentials box – all you need is the phone number of that local take-away you garnered 2 months ago…!

How does remortgaging work?

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Remortgaging is what happens when a homeowner switches to a new mortgage deal (with a new or existing lender), and this applies also when remortgaging with bad credit (but the choice of lender may be limited). People most commonly remortgage when the current discounted interest rate is about to end.

When that happens, the borrower will be moved to a long term variable rate agreement. These rates are normally higher than those that are offered on new mortgages – this is the reason why this point is so popular with people looking to remortgage. It should be noted however that those wanting to remortgage with bad credit will end up paying higher rates of interest anyway.

Image result for remortgage

Things to consider when remortgaging

Variable Vs Fixed rates

You will most likely have to pay at a higher rate at first if you choose to fix it, as opposed to using a tracker. This should not be surprising though because you will be afforded security in the knowledge that you will always know exactly what your payments will be from month to month for the next few years. For those that need to manage their budget carefully, paying this little extra is worth knowing just what is leaving your account and when.

That being said, there are those that will happily go for a tracker, the slight added risk to their budgeting and take advantage of the short term lower monthly payments. Both fixed and variable rates are available for those remortgaging with bad credit, too, but the rates will still be higher.

A problem with variable rates is that nobody can say when the base rate will fluctuate or by how much. There is precious little point in trying to guess or ‘work it out’ either as the chances are pretty strong that you won’t get it right. Certain trends in a given area can be watched for though, and if you have reason to believe that your payments may go up, into uncomfortable or unaffordable territory, then go for the security of fixed rates.

Arrangement fees

On first glance the lower rate mortgage may look the better, cheaper deal but that may not actually be the case. It is important that you consider the effect of arrangement fees too. After looking around at your options you may find it is actually more cost effective to make payments at a slightly higher interest rate – if setup costs are cheaper. Taking these kinds of things into account can save you a fair amount of money over time, but if you aren’t sure of what to look for a mortgage broker will be able to help you. This approach could be especially important if you are remortgaging with bad credit.

Other fees

There are going to be valuation and legal fees to consider too, so you need to keep those in mind when you are adding everything up. These fees are not going to be as high as when buying a property, but your new lender will need valuation survey and there will be paperwork to be completed by a lawyer.

It is worth keeping in mind that there are some lenders that provide services free for those that are remortgaging so it is worth considering and it could work out cheaper that way in the long run too. If you are not sure how you go about figuring which deal is the best one for you, a mortgage broker will be able to help you out.

Deposits

How much equity you have can make a big difference in the kinds of mortgages that you will qualify for. If you have the cash to make the deposit, you will find that the best possible rates are more readily accessible if you are able to make a deposit of 25% and sometime even more.

Generally speaking, the more that you can lay down on a deposit the more favourable the repayment options are going to be. This is another instance where ‘shopping around’ and comparing offers is really going to pay off.

Charges for early repayment

One question that you are going to have to ask yourself, or should ask yourself at any rate, is how long do you want to be attached to your current deal for? Like any other type of loan, the sooner you pay it off the more you will save over time… That’s how it is meant to work, anyway.

You will see, when comparing mortgage products, that the majority will charge an Erc (early repayment charge) which will apply during the introductory period. If, for example, you have a two year fixed rate mortgage you will be charged a fee for paying off the mortgage inside the first two years.

Not all remortgaging products have an early repayment charge though. The majority of lifetime trackers are totally fee free which, as options go, makes them very flexible indeed.

Fees for leaving your current mortgage agreement

After taking the decision to remortgage, and the process has come to an end (this can take around a month), you are going to be charged what is known as an exit fee. This is just standard practice and the fee is to cover the costs generated by the administrative process of closing the current mortgage account.

How much the fee will be is going to depend on the lender you are with. The most that you can be charged is around the £295 mark. The fee that you will actually be charged will be printed on your existing documentation for the mortgage you currently have.

This stated fee will not have changed – lenders cannot alter the amount during the mortgage term, the FSA (Financial Services Authority) saw to that a while back.

Of course, all of these fees will weigh slightly heavier on your shoulders if you are remortgaging with bad credit but with proper planning and sound advice you can still walk away with a suitable, if expensive, deal.