About jonkeen

This author has not yet filled in any details.
So far jonkeen has created 10 blog entries.

Stamp Duty Holiday!

Today Chancellor Rishi Sunak has confirmed that the Stamp Duty threshold will be increased to £500,000 until March 31st 2021.

In the South East, the proportion of First Time Buyers paying no stamp duty at all on their purchase will increase from 65.2% to 96.6%.

Our family agency’s honest assessment is that most property types have not seen any decrease since lockdown, despite our close economic relationship with Gatwick airport.  Whether this continues towards the end of 2020 and into next year is unknown.

However, today’s announcement is likely to have a very positive impact for all those looking to sell and buy immediately …

Please contact us for a free valuation, and a member of our family will be happy to help.


Additional Advice for Landlords

The Chancellor included buy-to-let landlords – as well as second-home buyers – in the increased threshold, although they still have to pay the 3% additional homes levy.

That means that for purchases up to £500,000 the bill is 3%. The portion from £500,001 to £925,000 is charged at 8% and from £925,001 to £1.5m at 13%. Anything above £1.5m will be payable at 15%.

Those who purchase through limited companies will also be exempt up to £500,000.  The cuts not only make property expansion more attractive, but also provide an excellent opportunity for individual BTL landlords to sell their properties into a limited company structure – to take advantage of tax relief on mortgage interest since selling to a limited company would not incur a stamp duty charge.  That cost is lower now.


FREE Tickets – Ideal Home Show

We have several complimentary tickets for the Ideal Home Show.  Simply let our family agency know if you would like to go, and as usual, we will be happy to provide them for free.  Max 4 tickets per request (each ticket worth up to £22).


Copthorne Neighbourhood Plan (covering the Copthorne & Worth Ward)

Of particular interest to residents and developers, we invite you to comment on the draft Neighbourhood Plan which will affect all future building issues in the area.

Copies of the plan and representation forms can be found here: www.copthorneplan.org.uk

Comments need to be submitted by 28th April 2017 to:

The Clerk,
1st Floor The Parish Hub,
Borers Arms Road,
RH10 3ZQ.

Article by Paul Blakemore, Chairman, Copthorne Neighbourhood Plan sub-committee

West Park Road, Copthorne, RH10 3HG

Blakemore & Sons are pleased to offer for sale this 3 bedroom detached house on the outskirts of Copthorne Village in a semi-rural location, surrounded by grounds of 1.3 acres. Accommodation is spread across 2 floors and comprises:

* Entrance Lobby Entering the house via the storm porch you find yourself in the impressive panelled entrance hall, with carpeted ornate timber stairs to first floor. Door to:
* Double Aspect Drawing Room: 5.26m x 4.27m (17′ 3″ x 14′) With a wealth of exposed beams, stone fireplace and open grate, overlooking the gardens.
* Country-Style Kitchen: 6.93m x 5.08m (22′ 9″ x 16′ 8″) Well proportioned kitchen with breakfast area, opening onto a conservatory.
* Living Room: 4.57m x 3.68m (15′ x 12′ 1″) With exposed beams, an open fireplace and views to the front aspect.
* Two Conservatories: 4.22m x 3.05m (13′ 10″ x 10′) Second Conservatory 15’2 x 10’4 Both overlooking the gardens.
* Downstairs Cloakroom
* Utility

* Galleried Landing With doors to all bedrooms and family bathroom.
* Double Aspect Master Bedroom: 5.21m x 4.29m (17′ 1″ x 14′ 1″) With built-in wardrobes.
* Bedroom 2: 4.57m x 4.29m (15′ x 14′ 1″) Double aspect and built-in wardrobes.
* Bedroom 3
* Family Bathroom: 3.4m x 2.79m (11′ 2″ x 9′ 2″) White suite including a separate bath and power shower cubicle.
* Large Attic Accessible via a trap door and offers the possibility of future conversion into a recreation area or large double bedroom suite (STPP).

* Surrounded by 1.3 acres Stunning gardens and grounds containing a plethora of carefully selected plants, shrubs and and mature trees including a Prunus tree, Judas tree, Beech tree, Hibiscus, Lime tree, Magnolia, Grandiflora, Magnolia Stilatas, Camelia and Rhododendron.
* Gated access from West Park Road The approach to the property is via a five-bar gate onto a gravelled driveway.
* Garage: 4.7m x 2.57m (15′ 5″ x 8′ 5″) With barn style open doors.
* Carport: 6.83m x 4.93m (22′ 5″ x 16′ 2″)
* Greenhouse & Two Timber Sheds

Parish Hub Breakfast with Jeremy Quin MP

gatwick_2845146b-large_trans++pJliwavx4coWFCaEkEsb3kvxIt-lGGWCWqwLa_RXJU8As a Parish Councillor, and member of the Neighbourhood Planning Committee, I was asked to give a vote of thanks to our MP at the Parish Hub Breakfast meeting.

I wanted to highlight a few statements as they may concern all of us:

While Jeremy Quin MP is “absolutely fine” with Gatwick so long as it acts as a good neighbour, he believes the impact of a second runway will require up to 40,000-50,000 people locally employed to be considered a success.

As the area has a low 1% unemployment rate, Crawley would need to be twice the current size with 40,000 new homes.

He believes Heathrow is the right answer (and mentions transport links of the Picadilly line, CrossRail shortly, the main train lines and the M4).  The Davis Commission states this is the view of most government departments.  He feels if Britain had voted to Remain in Europe, Heathrow would already have been announced.  Theresa May preferred the expansion of Gatwick, but this could look bad on the new Prime Minister if she appeared to be favouring just her own Berkshire constituency.  As we voted for Brexit, no decision is likely to be made before October.

Finally, Jeremy Quin feels we should not rush to trigger Article 50, as several countries (including Italy) may also vote to leave the EU within the next 12 months, and this may put us in a stronger negotiating position.

Article by Paul Blakemore, Director, Blakemore & Sons


Brexit – Safe as Houses?

brexitBe it the outbreak of war, Black Monday, 9/11, or 7/7, historically momentous events always send shock waves that appear to threaten the very backbone of our nation and especially its economy.

Brexit is no different, and there has been much talk about the potentially disastrous effects of the UK leaving Europe, as if our islands could literally sink into the North Sea without somehow being attached to the continental mainland. However, one thing is certain – shock waves are short lived and we will recover.

But recover from what exactly? The only thing on the table at the moment is the fear of the unknown. However, Britain is not only an incredibly resilient and resourceful nation, but world leaders and our trading partners around the world are already going to great lengths to find ways of developing new forms of relationships with the UK that could even be an improvement on what we had before. And let’s not forget that over half of voters believe we are better out than in!

Of course, it’s impossible to predict all likely outcomes, but from a property perspective, could this, weirdly, be exactly what the market actually needs? Was it in danger of overheating? We know that there has for some years been a massive imbalance of demand over supply. That’s not going to go away. However, it could be moderated as more people, worried about the future of the housing market, will come to market. Let’s say 20% more. And let’s assume that 20% fewer people buy for the same reason. This 40% rebalance might just give the market the lubrication it needs for more transactions to take place. In the process prices could of course lose their shine which would inevitably help first time buyers get on the ladder.

If fewer people are buying, they have to rent, and now the pound is cheap for foreign investors, could this herald a rush of overseas landlords taking advantage of rising rents?

There are so many variables at play here, yet the most influential ones have more to do with people’s short- and medium-term response to the uncertainties surrounding Brexit than any separation from Europe itself, which may well turn out, in maybe two or three years’ time, to be less of an issue than 48.1% of disappointed voters expect.

Keep calm and carry on? Absolutely.

Copthorne Carnival 2016

Carnival Logo sm

IMG_4333-600-400After last year’s success, we will be back on the 25th June 2016 to make it happen all over again. As per usual you can expect the streets to be lined with floats, dancers and colourful characters as well as a selection of stalls and games throughout the day. Come the evening the field will be alive with music from a range of some of the best talent we could find. To top all of this off we will be lighting up the sky with fireworks.  This year’s theme is “Tales of the Seven Seas”.

We’ve worked hard to try and find the best local entertainment…

Live Music from:

• The Saviours Of Soul
• Jodie Munday
• Copthorne’s “Bowman”
• Strobe
• Arry’ and the ‘Atstands

Live Performances from:
• Henfold Birds of Prey Live Show
• Ariel Company Theatre
• Gatwick Caledonian Pipe Band
• Burgess Hill Marching Youth
• Burgess Hill Fire Brigade

The procession begins parading around the village at 1:30pm to arrive on The Green at 2pm.

We have a fully licensed Bar and BBQ on site to keep you going throughout the day and evening.

The Carnival is a free event for people of all ages to come and enjoy.  Paul Blakemore is a long-standing member of the Carnival Committee (a great team of local volunteers!).  If you want to volunteer or help out in any way please contact us.




The Overseas Property Show

1-300The property show is back at Gatwick May 21st & 22nd.

Brand new and resale FREEHOLD properties from just £20,000.

At the show …

  • Diverse range of properties for every budget
  • Expert advice – financial, legal and currency
  • Subsidised buyer viewing trips

2-300Register & information: info@blakemoreandsons.co.uk

Independent research from World First reveals the ranking of European countries with the highest average rental yields. Popular tourist and expat destinations like France, Italy and Spain rank relatively low. Please contact us anytime and a member of our family will be happy to help.



1Netherlands (EUR)
2Belgium (EUR)
3Portugal (EUR)
4Hungary (HUF)
5Turkey (TRY)
6Slovakia (EUR)
7Bulgaria (BGN)
8Malta (EUR)
9Cyprus (EUR)
10Ireland (EUR)
11Denmark (DKK)
12Latvia (EUR)
13Romania (RON)
14Poland (PLN)
15Spain (EUR)
16Czech Republic (CZK)
17Greece (EUR)
18Luxembourg (EUR)
19Lithuania (EUR)
20Finland (EUR)
21UK (GBP)
22Germany (EUR)
23Estonia (EUR)
24Slovenia (EUR)
25Austria (EUR)
26Croatia (HRK)
27Italy (EUR)
28France (EUR)
29Sweden (SEK)

Why you might want to be on the market… fast!

To escape a surprise increase in stamp duty from 1st April 2016, understandably many buyers are keen to purchase property before this deadline. This has inevitably led to rapid growth in house prices for specific property. As these properties must complete before April, this means they must go on the market immediately to benefit from this increase in value.

We are finding that properties are under offer within days, with buyers on our unique database queuing to buy the right property before this deadline.

The changes in rates means that with a £275,000 property, for example, an investor or those looking to purchase a second home, will currently pay £3750 stamp duty, but from April that will rise to £12,000 – so vendors and buyers could benefit massively from acting swiftly.

From April onwards, the market may benefit First Time Buyers, due to a more complicated two-tier system with the more experienced investors reducing their offers, as they factor in not just stamp duty, but also the previously announced tax changes and ever-increasing legislation involved in managing property.

The best time for you to sell will depend on your type of property, and your own personal situation. We are a local family agency, who genuinely believes in helping our neighbours!

Please call us on 01293 270042 or 01342 715775 for further information, and honest, independent advice. A member of our family will be happy to help.

Additional Stamp Duty Land Tax surcharge

Described by Mr Osborne as “a tax on buy-to-lets and second homes” from 1st April landlords will face an additional 3% surcharge on top of the standard rate of Stamp Duty Land Tax.
In practice this means Landlords will face the following rates of SDLT:

Current rates

New rates with surcharge

Up to £125,000



The next £125,000 (the portion from £125,001 to £250,000)



The next £675,000 (the portion from £250,001 to £925,000)



The next £575,000 (the portion from £925,001 to £1.5 million)



The remaining amount (the portion above £1.5 million)




If you buy a house for £275,000, the SDLT you owe is calculated as follows:



0% on the first £125,000


£ 3750 @ 3%

2% on the next £125,000


£ 6250 @ 5%

5% on the final £25,000


£ 2000 @ 8%

Total SDLT


£ 12 000

Richard Lambert, CEO at the National Landlords Association, said, “The Chancellor’s political intention is crystal clear; he wants to choke off future investment in private properties to rent.  The exemption for corporate investment makes this effectively an attack on the small private landlords who responded to the housing crisis by putting their own money into providing homes by the party that they put their faith in at the election.”
We will be happy to forward any comments you would like us to pass onto Henry Smith, MP for Crawley, in confidence.
We are a local, family agency.  Please contact us anytime and a member of our family will be happy to help.

Drinks, nibbles and regulatory changes

A hugely enjoyable evening was held at Olivers Coffee & Wine Bar. Throughout the complimentary drinks & nibbles, Henry Smith, MP for Crawley, was available to discuss the imminent changes affecting local vendors and landlords.

Whilst sellers are currently enjoying the increase in property prices (partly due to stamp duty changes), landlords were keen to share their serious concerns about increased regulatory and tax changes. Henry Smith followed up on a number of points in the House of Commons.

The fire service provided free smoke alarms (certain conditions need to be met; please contact us if this could be helpful to you, or a neighbour). Specialist tax experts and mortgage brokers provided individual advice. If you would like to attend future events please let us know.

Blakemore & Sons is your local family agency – for more information please call 01293 270042 or 01342 715775 – and a member of our family will be happy to help.



Photos © Kym Crotty