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The Joy of Jargon

-By Chiara Lawrance, Account Manager at Property House Marketing

As a relative newbie to the property world, the abundance of industry jargon can seem like a minefield. In my first month here at Property House Marketing, I have come across a number of buzzwords in the media and in conversations with others in the industry. In most cases, these words are just an easy way of explaining very common situations for buyers, sellers and estate agents. Here is a list of my top five favourites so far:

  1. Flipper – Surprisingly, not the dolphin from the 1960s/1990s children’s film. It is a term referring to an investor who will buy a property and then sell it on quickly for a profit. There are two ways of doing this, either the investor will spend time renovating the property, or will leave it as it is and hope the market value increases.
  2. Tyre Kicker – Much to the annoyance of many an estate agent, this is someone who views properties without any intention to buy.
  3. Gazumping – In the current property climate there are often a number of eager potential buyers for one house. Gazumping occurs when a buyer accepts a higher price offer when they have an offer accepted on their property.
  4. Gazanging – A term used when a buyer takes their home off the market and decides to stay put, even though an offer has already been accepted.
  5. Gazundering – This occurs when a buyer reduces their offer just before contracts are exchanged. This leaves the seller in a difficult position and is intended to make them accept the lower offer in order to not prolong the process.

I’m not sure how many more words can follow on the ‘gaz’ theme, but it’ll be interesting to see what new phrases are coined over the next few months/ years. Of course, property isn’t the only industry to use its own jargon, but it certainly has the most intriguing names.

Get in touch with Property House Marketing for PR without the jargon. Call 01483 561119 or email info@housegroup.co.uk

Typing

Three ways to talk to a journalist (without using a press release)

-Lisa Flounders, Account Director at Property House Marketing

There is more than one way to skin a cat, as the saying goes. While we certainly don’t condone that in a literal sense, the meaning is one we take seriously at PHM.

Even as the world moves on, and PR becomes increasingly digital (along with most everything else) we firmly believe that the traditional press release still has its place. However, one size does not fit all, which is true of both clients and journalists – a varied approach to media relations is, and will continue to be, the most effective way to share your message. So beyond the humble news release, how can you ensure your content reaches its target?

  1. The feature pitch

The humble press release should exist to share news, not story angles, and will land in a journalist’s inbox with plenty of other press releases vying for attention. If you have a good idea for a story that provides context to your content, send a simple email instead. A couple of paragraphs and a clear, direct explanation makes for easy and quick reading for a busy journalist.

  1. Twitter

If Facebook talks to community and LinkedIn talks to business, then Twitter talks to everyone. Twitter provides an instant link between journalists and those of us looking to feed in content, against a backdrop of breaking news – ideal for finding those all-important hooks – and urgent media requests issued 20 minutes before a deadline.

  1. Phone

Email is a great tool for ensuring accuracy and creating a paper trail, and evidence suggests that any communication that avoids spoken dialogue seems to be the method of choice for millennials. Breaking with this trend, we’re big fans of the humble telephone – a verbal, instantaneous conversation means that you’re not only able to convey information effectively, but have a better insight into what journalists are looking for. No square pegs/round holes.

 

If you’d like to talk to PHM about a bespoke approach to your PR requirements, call us on 01483 561119 or email info@housegroup.co.uk.

Signal failure: the importance of being connected

-Nikki Ackerley, Managing Director at Property House Marketing

I’ve seen a lot said about the positive impact of Crossrail on the prices of homes. I’ve seen even more said about the ongoing failure of train companies to provide a service that isn’t hampered by signal failure. Transport connections have always had an enormous influence on house prices, but it seems that another kind of connection jostling for position of top priority is high speed internet.

The Berkeley Group has recently announced its plans to ensure all of its sizeable new housing developments – which is most of them – are connected with ‘full-fibre’ technology. Customers now expect high-speed broadband to be available from the day they move in, and Berkeley believes buyers are put off purchasing if this isn’t a part of the offer.

The issue goes further, especially in leafy Surrey. I’ve been witness to my daughter-in-law moving into her new home to find that, unless she stands at the end of the road waving her mobile aloft, she can’t send an old-fashioned text message, let alone make a phone call. What’s more, the height of the surrounding tees makes neither Virgin or Sky viable either. However, a decent broadband connection and the use of the right apps for communication and TV streaming now negates the need for a new pylon to remedy this.

It seems that the usual checklist for moving into a new home could do with a refresh. While we’re used to choosing carpets and kitchens, and checking the EPC rating on our new home, perhaps more developers need to follow Berkeley’s lead and consider what’s important to buyers in the digital age.

I had the pleasure of meeting Philip Hammond recently, who reinforced his belief that productivity lies at the root of many of the solutions to better fiscal security; our infrastructure, including broadband connection has a big part to play in this.

While high speed railways are a vital component in the house-buying decision, high speed broadband is becoming the top priority for buyers now.

 

Woodberry-Down-by-Berkeley-Homes

A successful night for PHM’s client at The Planning Awards

It was a successful night at this year’s Planning Awards for our client, Berkeley Homes. The ceremony on 21st of June saw the developer win two awards as well as a ‘highly commended’ accolade for its project Woodberry Down, one of the capital’s largest estate regeneration schemes in Finsbury Park, comprising 5,500 mixed-tenure homes, community facilities, shops and a nature reserve. The 25-year-long project is being created by Berkeley in partnership with Hackney Council, Genesis Housing, Woodberry Down Community Organisation and the Greater London Authority.

Judged by a panel of industry experts, The Planning Awards is a yearly event to celebrate professional planning work as well as recognise innovation in related activities such as placemaking, housing design and economic development.

The award submissions, written and designed by PHM earlier this year, scooped Berkeley Homes the following prizes at the ceremony:

  • Award for Planning for Housing Growth – Winner
  • Award for Best Housing Scheme (500 homes or more) – Winner
  • Award for Regeneration – Highly Commended

Awards are a fantastic tool for marketing and promotion, offering a respectful third-party endorsement as well as the prestige of industry recognition. If you’re unsure about the effectiveness of a tailor-made award entry, take a look at our recent blog to see just how valuable they can be for your business’ marketing strategy.

If you’ve worked on a project or development of which you are particularly proud and would like to find out more about our awards service, call the PHM team now on 01483 561119.

It’s Garden Square Open Weekend

As of tomorrow it is Garden Square Open Weekend (17th -18th June), a special event that sees over 230 private and little-known gardens opened up across 27 London boroughs. With glorious weather expected, we’ve pulled together a couple of homes currently for sale with their own beautiful ‘secret’ garden that can be enjoyed in the summer sun:

Prime Place Sevenoaks, a development by ‘be’, is a stunning collection of high specification one and two-bedroom apartments less than two minutes’ walk from Sevenoaks station. From the upper floors, some of the homes benefit from far-reaching views across the North Downs, but at the heart of the development are beautifully-landscaped gardens arranged over two levels, designed by a multi Gold Medal award winner at RHS Chelsea Flower Show.

From Sevenoaks to Surrey; Hartwood is a beautifully presented Georgian wing of Bradstone Brook in Shalford on the market with high end Surrey estate agents Grantley. Bradstone Brook is a magnificent Grade II Listed Georgian mansion, believed to have been built in 1791 by Thomas Gibson, a London Merchant, set in 13.5 acre gardens and grounds. This five-bedroom home boasts stunning communal gardens, complete with a waterfall, as well as a communal tennis court, swimming pool and spectacular views of St Martha’s.

 

We’ve been inspired by Google’s new London headquarters

This week PHM has been inspired by Google’s unveiling of its impressive one million square-foot London headquarters, which will feature a gym, swimming pool and roof garden for employees to enjoy.

We’ve provided a roundup of homes below by our client, Berkeley Central London, offering similar amenities to their residents in the centre of the capital.

Vista, Chelsea Bridge Wharf   

Vista is a collection of luxurious one, two and three-bedroom apartments with an enviable location just moments from Chelsea Bridge, providing unparalleled views of Battersea Park.

Offering generous glass-fronted balconies and wraparound terraces to its stylish homes, Vista encapsulates the best of summer in London, providing a city oasis to its busy residents.

Prices start from £895,000 for a one-bedroom apartment. Please call Berkeley Homes on 0203 811 2012 for more information.

Abell and Cleland, Westminster

This beautiful development is situated in the heart of historic Westminster, London, and comprises a collection of apartments, duplexes and penthouses set over two floors and ranging from 2,034 to 3,278 sq ft.

The manicured gardens at Abell & Cleland provide a tranquil escape in an otherwise metropolitan setting, while the private residents’ leisure complex comprises a pool, sauna and a state-of-the-art fitness centre. A business suite and full car valet service complete the offer.

Just a few penthouses remain for sale with prices starting from £4.57 million. For further information or to book an appointment to visit, call 0203 813 5884.

Evening Standard Awards

PHM’s clients scoop five awards at the London Evening Standard New Homes Awards

The London Evening Standard New Homes Awards is always a highlight in the calendar for property industry professionals, and last Friday’s awards ceremony did not disappoint. Property House Marketing celebrated two award wins as well as three highly commended accolades, for the entries we wrote and designed on behalf of our clients back in February.

The New Homes Awards are now in their 26th year and recognise a range of new homes across the property spectrum – from first-time buyer apartments to one-off luxury mansions, and high-rise developments in city centres to countryside conversions. What makes this competition different is that the entries are decided by a panel of property experts with the help of Evening Standard readers with recent buying experience.

The ceremony was introduced by the paper’s new editor George Osborne and hosted by comedian Romesh Ranganathan. There were 13 prizes announced, with PHM’s clients receiving recognition for the following projects:

  • St Joseph’s Gate (The Chapel) by Berkeley Oxford & Chiltern won ‘Best Conversion’ as well as highly commended in the ‘Best Luxury Home’ category
  • Abell & Cleland by Berkeley Central London won ‘Best Luxury Home’
  • Woodberry Down by Berkeley North East London was highly commended for ‘Best Regeneration Project’
  • Fitzroy Gate by St James was highly commended for ‘Best London Home’

If you’ve recently completed a development or project of which you are particularly proud, now is the opportune moment to speak to us about a submission into the What House? Awards as the deadline is just weeks away.

If you’re still undecided as to whether you should be entering your developments or projects for awards this year, read our blog explaining the three reasons why awards are a valuable addition to your marketing strategy.

Property House Marketing is sponsoring the First Time Buyer Readers’ Awards

We’re pleased to be supporting the First Time Buyer Awards on 21st April, as sponsors of the ‘Most Innovative Redevelopment of an Existing Property’ category. Having prepared many entries on behalf of our clients over the years, and attending the awards ceremony to celebrate the winners, we’re excited to formally support and recognise those who work so hard for first-time buyers in the UK.

If you have a ticket to attend this year’s celebrations, look out for the team who will be happy to toast your success or to simply have a good natter – or both!

We’ll also be keeping our fingers crossed for our client, Thames Valley Housing, shortlisted for Affordable Housing Provider of the Year. There is still time to cast your vote and ensure that your choice of forward-thinking and innovative housing association scoops the winning title.

Our sponsorship also gives us the opportunity to talk about our award-writing history. In the last 21 years, we’ve prepared over 1,316 award entries, where one in three goes on to win a top prize.

If you’ve worked on a project or development of which you are particularly proud, and you are thinking about entering the world of glittering award ceremonies, please give us a call on 01483 561119.