Q&A: Selling before the correction,

Your questions answered
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YOUR QUESTIONS ANSWERED

Q: I'd like to move to a bigger house in a nicer street. I live in Lewisham and it's one of the London boroughs that has been reported in the press where house prices are set to drop this year. Should I move now before my house is worth less? C Bellini, by e-mail

A: You must be referring to the Nationwide's report at the beginning of the year on the capital's "vulnerable" boroughs. It was based on a number of factors, such as above-average employment in finance and banking (the sector expected to slow down the most this year) and areas that have had rapid prices rises but are below-average in terms of neighbourhood characteristics and are unlikely to sustain high house-price valuations. Forecasts still refer to a five per cent increase in London this year. As far as Lewisham is concerned, your property may not see as rapid a price increase in the first quarter of this year as last, but any stabilisation of prices should also be reflected in your next property, especially if it is at the top end of the market. Bear in mind that sensibly priced properties in good locations and condition are more likely to sell and keep their value. Lewisham has excellent transport links and a mix of developing and well-established residential areas appealing to different people. Unless your property has a specific problem, you are unlikely to see a major decrease in its value. Visit www.hometrack.co.uk to view an up-to-date analysis of house prices in your postcode.

Q: The only room I haven't finished in my house is the kitchen, but I'd like to move on. Should I do a quick fix and install a cheap kitchen to sell the house, and will it achieve less money if I don't? Mike Dawson, Bucks

A: Kitchens and bathrooms are said to sell houses but before you do anything, see how much your house is valued for and ask how much it would be if the kitchen were to be replaced. It might be less time-consuming and cheaper for the asking price to reflect the fact that a new kitchen is needed, or be prepared to consider an offer. Good quality kitchens, even if a little dated, may be worth more than a very cheap new one. If you do decide to replace it, consider who you will be selling to and avoid highly stylised designs, which may have limited appeal.

If you would like a query answered on buying or selling a property, e-mail: propertyq&a@independent.co.uk. Only those questions featured will be answered. Any advice given will not be legally binding

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