12 Eco London Property Developments

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Being green is no longer a life choice. It’s not a choice at all. Whether it is in business or residence, old property or new, being environmentally friendly and sustainable is the only option. Shrewd property developers have turned the restrictions this can pose into opportunities and they have integrated energy efficiency with the design and architecture. It can all work in harmony as a ‘super eco’ property and London has become one of the leaders in this field. Discover the Top 12 super eco London properties : in residential, business and future developments. Residential Many residences are now aspiring to achieve the standard of ‘Passivhaus’. To gain this accreditation the developer must provide a high level of occupant comfort while using very little energy for heating and cooling. The Top 5 super eco residences: BowZed, Bow, East London BowZed was designed by pioneering eco-architect Bill Dunster, who was also behind the BedZed development in south London. The building is so well insulated there are no central heating systems in the flats and it is believed to be one of the first zero carbon buildings of the area. 40% of the electricity is from photovoltaic panels and 50% from a micro wind turbine on the stair tower. Hot water is provided by a boiler powered by wood pellets and three tons is enough to fuel the four flats for a year. 100 Princedale Road, Holland Park Unlike most super eco property developments, 100 Princedale Road wasn’t started from scratch. It was part of an innovative experiment to reduce the carbon emissions of existing social homes by 80%. This three-storey property was the UK’s first certified Passivhaus refurbishment. Energy consumption has been cut by 94%, saving the tenant in excess of £900 a year on fuel bills. Octavia Housing, Notting Hill Octavia Housing is a not-for-profit [...]

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Top three investments for your kitchen refurbishment

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A kitchen refurbishment can seem like a daunting task when setting your budget and trying to decide where is best to invest your money. However, it is however important to remember that whilst a kitchen remodel can be expensive, it is one of the best investments you can make in your home,  as on average a new kitchen adds 4.6% onto the value of your house. There are two essential questions to ask yourself when planning a kitchen refurbishment: what will improve my family life? And what will improve the value of my house? Drawer slides and hinges When looking to save money, it is easy to opt for the cheapest option for the comparatively smaller purchases which don’t seem as important. This is where you have to assess practicality above price. There is nothing more frustrating than low hanging cupboard doors and drawers that stick. Make sure when looking for fixtures that you invest, kitchen hinges must be strong and durable in order to withstand daily and repeated use. If you have young children, consider a soft close hinge on your lower cupboards to ensure that little fingers are saved from slamming doors. When looking at overhead kitchen cabinet hinges consider gas lift door mechanisms. These operate smoothly and allow for a variety of door weights and sizes; they also prevent accidents as they lift upwards, meaning no more catching shoulders and heads on the corners of kitchen cabinets. Kitchen appliances Kitchen appliances should be chosen on the basis of lifestyle. They are one of the most used parts of a kitchen and must be functional and reliable. Quality kitchen appliances from well known brands can also add value to your house. When picking appliances it is important to consider your lifestyle and your needs, so you can correctly [...]

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Stamp Duty Mitigation

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Stamp duty mitigation can be a misunderstood process, with so many differing stories it can sometimes be hard to tell fact from fiction. In early October it was announced that house prices have risen by 9.4% in 2014. It has therefore become less financially viable for some people to choose to move house. Based on the current increase in house prices it is predicted that by 2018 75% of house buyers will have to pay at least 1% stamp duty on property purchases. Stamp duty mitigation is completely legal, yet would-be buyers often voice concern regarding the process due to misconceptions of the law. CDP Corporate have created the below infographic to tackle the most prominent myths surrounding stamp duty mitigation and provide the facts.

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Are Garden Cities the answer to the housing crisis?

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Garden cities have often been floated as the solution to the current housing crisis. In the March Budget, Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne  announced the creation of Britain’s first garden city for almost 100 years, by the Thames Estuary at Ebbsfleet.  The site currently has 150 homes built on it – and Osborne has said he’ll accelerate the process and set up an urban development corporation to get the project launched. The idea is to build 15,000 homes for 23,000 to 34,000 residents. This would be the first garden city since Welwyn Garden City in 1920. The concept originally initiated in 1898 by Sir Ebenezer Howard, in order to grow self-contained ‘communities’ with industry, agriculture and homes. Initially, the idealised garden city was promoted as housing 32,000 people on a site of 6,000 acres. The vision was to have a cluster of several garden cities as satellites of a centre city of 50,000 people. Letchworth in Hertfordshire was the first garden city, followed by Welwyn and Hampstead Garden Suburb. Plans Town planner and Wolfson Economics Prize winner David Rudlin, has also recently announced his support for the idea of garden cities, with British cities being “twice the size” in 30 years’ time – with parkland and tram lines linking them all up and hundreds of thousands of people living there. The aim is to build 86,000 new homes and house 150,000 people per town. Rudlin has proposed that the answer to Britain’s housing supply crisis would mean building into the green belt in cities as York, Norwich, Stafford, Cheltenham and Northampton. This would protect villages and local communities. The idea is to regenerate town centres and promote local growth. Towns would be able to bid for garden city status under a Garden Cities Act and ministers will provide successful applications with [...]

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Make Profits Out of House Flipping

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A house flip is one of the more popular ways of making money from real estate in the United Kingdom and elsewhere nowadays. If you have even only a small capital for investment, the ability to turn an old house around and make it liveable again, and the skill to work around the real estate market, this is an exciting field to get into.   House Flipping Requires Money Don’t believe everything you see on TV. House flipping takes more than just your ability to revitalize a badly beaten property. You need money. You need a capital investment for the property and some extra stash to pay for the improvements you will need to prepare the house for staging. The amount of money you will need for your house flipping would depend on your skills in finding promise on a run-down house. The best buy, according to online estate agents UK, are those houses that may look old in the outside but is not rotten from the inside. The foundation and other structural components must be intact.   House Flipping Requires Attention and a Lot of Work The most successful house flippers are those who can double up as a handyman aside from being simply a real estate agent. Online estate agents UK believe that house flipping will require a ton of commitment to DIY projects and one’s persistence to do back-breaking work until your house lives up to a profitable market value. It must be understood that hard work does not only start with a home acquisition. If you want your house flipping efforts to be successful, you must be hands-on right from the time you start looking for foreclosed homes for sale. There are certain considerations to constitute a good buy. First, you must check the location. Nobody [...]

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Tips for Finding the Best East London Office Space

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East London is a great place to do business. It’s vibrant, thriving, well connected and home to a host of talented people. There is also plenty of excellent accommodation, although you need to move quickly to secure the best units. Demand is particularly high in this part of town. The Postcodes EC1, EC2 and EC3 are the main postcode areas you’ll be looking at, and EC3 is the main district. It incorporates Aldgate, St Mary Axe, Fenchurch Street, Tower Hill, Lloyd’s of London, Monument, Tower Hamlets, Lombard Street and Royal Exchange. For office space EC3  has a good selection, including purpose-built spaces alongside conversions and more traditional business locations. You’ll also find ‘easy in, easy out’ flexible workspaces, which are ideal for start-ups and smaller enterprises. Find the Right Letting Agent Use this postcode to begin your search online and find the kind of budget you’ll need to bear in mind for the space you want. It is then well worth contacting a professional letting agent for their advice and services. A good letting agent will have a portfolio of suitable properties available, and may also use their network to enquire about possible space from existing landlords. The clearer you can be with your specification, the easier it will be for them to help you find the right office space in East London. Know What You Want Think about your specification very carefully and know which items on your list are critical and which are ‘nice to haves’. For example, if you have suppliers regularly dropping off deliveries to your premises, you will need an accommodation with a loading bay and the road permissions for deliveries to be carried out. Equally, if you have a team of staff travelling in, you’ll want to make sure the office is well connected for public transport. [...]

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London vs New York – Where Would You Choose?

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They’re both renowned as among the world’s best cities. But when it came to the crunch, would New York or London get your vote? Similar in size, and with not too dissimilar a climate, this infographic highlights some of the other things our capital has in common with the Big Apple. When it comes to food and dining, culture and work, London is a clear winner. It has more restaurants (and more Michelin starred restaurants) and we Londoners get more annual leave than New Yorkers. We have more libraries, public open space, museums and art galleries, and the cost of living is cheaper. But when it comes to transport, customer service and culture & nightlife, NYC tops the tables. Whatever the results, we love London and we’re proud to live and work in this great city.

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Choosing A Suitable Pergola Builder For Your Project

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If you’re planning on constructing a pergola in your backyard and are looking for a suitable builder in your area, we have a few tips that can help you to make the best possible decision. A simple internet search will reveal that most homeowners struggle to make the most suitable choice in pergola builder, as their complaints abound. Often, this is a result of simply not knowing what to look for, which is why we wanted to help. Personality Issues We strongly feel that one of the most important things to look for in a potential pergola builder are personality issues. If they come across as pushy or arrogant, you might find that the finished product is nothing like how you wanted it. If they are rude or opinionated, you might find yourself avoiding discussions; a breakdown in communication can also lead to problems with the finished product. Experience When we talk about experience, we are not only referring to how long the company has been in business or how many pergola designs they have built during this time. We are also talking about how much experience the builder themselves has. Many people like to branch out and start their own companies after gaining enough years experience. You will never know unless you ask. Skill Level Your builder can tell you all about their skills until they’re blue in the face, but it won’t actually prove anything. The best way to determine the skill level of your chosen contractor is to ask for some referrals by past clients. If possible, visit these clients to see the pergola in the flesh. If not possible, make sure that you request high quality photographs (preferably those taken by the client) to do a visual inspection. Schedule Whilst you might have your heart set [...]

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New Developments in Canary Wharf Set To Start

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London: The most ambitious phase of the next stage of London’s Docklands is taking shape. The owner of Canary Wharf Project has won the permission to increase the size of the estate by a third. It entails Canary Wharf Group to increase Wood Wharf extension to the east of its main estate with 30 new buildings and 3,100 homes.  The project is one of the new developments in Canary Wharf . Master-planned by architect Allies and Morrison, the project is expected to fast track the first phase of the development in time for the arrival of the Crossrail link in 2018. The Wood Wharf site was taken over by Canary Wharf in 2012. Subsequently, it It bought out the stakes of partners like British Waterways and developer Ballymore for £90 million. They hired the previous partners, architects Lord Richard Rogers and Sir Terry Farrell, to draw up earlier master plans. New Offerings The new offerings will boost the region and add many townhouses and high-rise buildings. It will include social housing interspersed with parks and public squares. In the upcoming office space media, technology and telecoms firms alongside financial tenants can take occupancy. The project is being envisaged to rival The City. It is expected that the development will also create some 17,000 jobs, of which 3500 will be go to the local residents. Sir George Lacobescu, chairman, Canary Wharf noted that the major eastern development of Canary Wharf will “reinforce the district as one of London’s most dynamic, mixed-use commercial and residential districts”. Max Property Products The projects from Property developer Nick Leslau and his team are pricier by £20 million. Having received an offer of £448 million offer for his Max Property company, it owns a host of assets including London’s St Katharine Docks. It was launched to snap up bargains after the [...]

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Know Your Window Terminology Before You Buy

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If you are in the process of building, remodeling or replacing windows in your home or commercial space, you may feel a little over your head with all of the window terms and jargon that may be thrown your way during your window buying and installation process. There are a few key things to understand as you begin your window selection process, so you feel educated and confident as you select your window company and work through the installation process. Common window related terms: Below is a brief list of common window terms that you may or may not be familiar with, but you are likely to encounter during your window installation process. Just like any time you are making a purchase, if you are unclear of what something means or how it could impact your life, simply ask about it. A good window company will take the time to make sure you are comfortable with your window decisions. Argon-Gas – An inert gas that is sealed between two window panes to reduce the transfer of temperatures. This gas is odorless, colorless and non-toxic and will improve the efficiency of your windows. Casing – Molding utilized on the framework of your window. Caulking – In order to reduce the leakage of air or moisture, a special compound is utilized to seal joints and cracks. Condensation Resistance Factor – The measurement of how effective a window is at reducing or eliminating condensation. The higher the rating, the more effective the window is at reducing condensation issues. Fogging – Leaking seals or extreme weather conditions may result in a film or deposit being left on a window, resulting in a fog like appearance. Frame – The area in which window sashes are mounted onto a building. Insulating Gas (IG) – The result of two [...]

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