Win ‘Tricks and Mortar: The Little Book of Property Wisdom’ with our top 5 savvy buyer tips

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Tricks & Mortar

Written by Laura Henderson


Think you could spot the next ‘happening’ district?

Rightmove has five copies of Laura Henderson’s bite-sized book to give away.

Using the comments box below…

Simply name one soon-to-be-hip area/town/region in the UK and explain in no more than 100 words why it’s worth a second look.

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  • The deadline for the competition is Friday 15th April 2011.
  • The winner will be announced on Monday 18th April 2011 and Rightmove’s decision is final.
  • Any entries deemed rude or offensive will be excluded from the competition.
  • This competition is not open to employees of or agencies connected to Rightmove.
  • You must be 18years old or over to enter.
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Separate the Soon-To-Be-Hip Locales from the Wannabes


“Profitability doesn’t happen when you’re walking on bullshit”

– Jerry Martin


New cars, skips outside private homes and ‘under offer’ signs on retail premises are all telltale signs of a neighbourhood that’s destined for better things. But real regeneration takes between five and ten years, maybe more – so it’s important to look beyond surface changes. The property industry uses the term ‘up and coming’ as a cure for all ills, when it’s often just salesperson speak for turning a down-at-heel area into some imaginary future goldmine. To pass the soon-to-be-hip test, any aspiring area worth its salt needs to deliver on a number of levels:

1. Property price growth
Be wary of investing somewhere with a stellar track record – it could mean the neighbourhood has already reached the peak of its price potential. You’ll make a bigger profit investing in an area experiencing average, rather than explosive growth. Not only will your property be more affordable, (making your up-front investment lower), there’s also the prospect of decent capital appreciation if you choose wisely.

2. Transport trends
More than ever in a developing district, the ease of getting in and out is crucial, so make sure that funding has been ring fenced for transport improvements as opposed to ‘in the planning stages’.

3. Homely highlights
Put on some comfy walking shoes and check out what the neighbourhood has going for it in terms of commercial and recreational assets – coffee shops, a posh deli or bakery, a sprinkling of estate agents, all suggest a neighbourhood that’s going places. But how is it managing its heavily trafficked streets during rush hour, is there ample space for parking and what’s on offer for the area’s “yoof” of an evening?

4. Forward features
Don’t fancy moving in to discover a chippy is about to open at the bottom of your road? Enquiries at the local council will reveal if there are plans to redevelop a town or district. To be doubly sure, check planning applications with the help of Plansearch Plus via the Landmark Information Group ( or pay a small fee to your solicitor.

5. Bottom Line

Don’t be someone else’s guinea pig – make sure your chosen district has something going for it already before you take the plunge.


A bit more about the book…

Essential reading for property buyers of all persuasions — Right Move – the UK’s number one property website


This is the wake-up call every homeowners needs — Sunday Express


A bite sized bible packed with sound common sense. Don’t set up home without it — Money Observer

Come boom or bust, buying and selling property can be a tricky business. When to buy? When to sell? What’s hot? What’s not? New build, refurb, country pile or town pad? And that’s just the fun stuff… What about fixed rate mortgages and capital gains, off-plan and part exchange, not to mention building regs and planning approval?

If the property game is all Greek to you, fear no more. In this practical and entertaining guide, seasoned property journalist Laura Henderson demystifies the market, debunking its myths and laying bare its secrets. From the psychology of selling to ‘buyer types’; from DIY taboos to downshifting, no door is left unopened and no room unexplored as your personal property guide leads you through the heart and head topics one painless step at a time.

Available from and all major bookstore and online retailers.

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