It’s that time of year again. As soon as halloween is out of the way Christmas rears it’s glittery head and suddenly everywhere is inundated with festive decorations. This time of year brings up extra considerations that we don’t have to contend with through the rest of the year, such as more pedestrians and traffic on the streets slowing down our progress. That doesn’t stop us from doing removals, especially in the city and on the high street; we just find a way to work around it.
Here at Amber Moves we’ve managed to continue despite the riots in London. Based in North West London, we’ve managed to remain unscathed by the chaos in North, West and Central London. However, we are concerned that we might not remain so lucky. Thanks to the BBC, we can show on a map where we’ve been working and how close to the action we really are. Our work sites are indicated in orange with black border.
Of course, many businesses and home owners will be looking toward their insurance policies to see them through this difficult time. I would like to suggest the services of Bond Insurance who are experts in business premises and public liability insurance.
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The Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors has reported a decrease in house prices in the summer quarter of 2010. House prices have been on the increase since the spring of 2009 partly due to the easing of the recession and the flurry of buyers who came out of hiding as a result.
Now, however, there seem to be more properties for sale than people interested in buying them. It seems that banks are being more cautious these days and more selective regarding first time buyers. Potential first time buyers themselves are being more cautious as the fear of unemployment still looms.
Although nationally the average house price has dropped, the area worst hit is Northern Ireland with a decrease of 8%. London, on the other had, has seen an increase of 15%.
The Amber Moves Difference
What makes one removal company differ from another? Essentially we all have removal men and vans and charge for our service to move your home.
The difference is in the level of service and the staff we employ. We pride ourselves on not using casual labour – all our staff have been with the company for an average of 5 years. They are highly skilled, personable gentlemen who understand family life and the stresses and strains of moving. Nothing is ever a problem, and they have a totally different work ethic to the average removal man.
A client recently found an article on a removal company and sent it to us, saying
We are currently working on a project with Save the Children to set up a stock collection system as part of the removal service. We are hoping to extend this to all reputable removal companies across the country via a new web service.
The Charity relies on stock for their shops. They estimate that one sack is worth
The moving market is surprisingly bouyant as home movers try to complete and be settled in time for Christmas. We have had a big upsurge in bookings for December and expect to be working right up to Xmas Eve. It is predominantly large family homes in the London area although we have seen a trend of people trading up by moving out of the London area.
The run up to the year end and xmas is always stressful and of course do you put up the decorations or pack them? Family life has to carry on and with the time between exchange and completion so short, it’s hard to know how to plan for your move.
Our advice is always to start clearing and sorting. Have an advance delivery of packing cartons, as you may as well box up those things that aren’t essential thus making the packing up of your house much easier once you get that phone call that says it’s all on.
How do you clear and sort and where should it all go? Good old Ebay is always the first place to start as the extra cash will come in handy. The alternative is to try the website Freecyle – post up your unwanted items, and give them away in return for having them collected.
The charities are always looking for stock as this is the lifeblood of their shops. Remember that they don’t want items they can’t sell – good quality clothing that you never wear, books, kids toys and bric a brac are always appreciated.
As a reputable removal company with strong ethics, we are happy to drop your donations off the local charity shop.
I’ve just found some great videos on how to pack for your move on You Tube.
A removal company in Vancouver has produced videos on:
How to pack books
How to pack lampshades
How to pack clothing
How to pack glass
How to pack pictures and mirrors
Follow this link,
Post your feedback, we’d love to hear what you think of them. Even better, if you’d like to star in our videos, we’re always on the look out for budding stars!
I always tell our clients, “no matter how awful it seems, you will be settled in the new house in a few weeks, and all the stress will be a distant memory”.
The truth is that it is the run-up to the move that is stressful, not the actual removal day. The key, like everything else in life, is to surround yourself with good people. Make sure you have the best solicitors doing the conveyancing so there are no snags on the day with money going through and collecting the keys to your new property.
Ask and delegate. Your removal company can organise the parking suspensions for you so let them. You can have a packing service the day before your move – so treat yourself. You can book a cleaning company to clean both the old and new house – you will have more than enough to do without trying to do a full spring clean.
There are a number of websites now that offer a change of address service, such as Iammoving.com – use it, it’s free!
Have a good clear out and ask your removal company to drop these items off at the charity shop.
Book an online grocery delivery service to your new home for the first evening in your house.
Above all choose a reputable, preferably recommended, removal company and make sure you have a contract and fully agreed what is required on your move. Choose a company that offers a flexible service as moving is never straight forward and your requirements may change many times between the initial booking and the actual removal day.
We work with a number of partners to offer additional services and benefits to both our home moving and office move clients. One of the most frequent requests is for a cleaning service.
We recommend Evaclean, a company who has the same values and high level of service we have. They have kindly provided their details to assist you in your choice of cleaning company.
Evaclean Ltd is a commercial company which provide excellent commercial industrial and domestic cleaning services for:
- Private properties;
- Office buildings;
- Factories; and
We also clean carpets and upholstery professionally either on a regular contract basis or as a one-off cleaning service.
We understand our clients’ needs, and can ensure you receive a high quality and reliable service. Our high standards are helping us to grow rapidly.
Evaclean believes that the services we provide for you ought to be of a high standard in cleaning and ironing with a friendly professional service by highly trained and motivated staff.
What Makes Evaclean Outstanding?
We have a strict vetting process when we employ new cleaners so that our clients can be confident in using Evaclean. We don’t take everyone who is looking for a job to work for us.
What Are the Benefits of Using Our Service?
- Your cleaner will be fully vetted;
- You receive full support from a professional cleaning agency;
- Your cleaner and you premises will be monitored by our inspector to ensure your satisfaction; and
- You will have the comfort of knowing that your home is being cleaned using your chosen cleaning materials;
- You get temporary cover if your cleaner is unavailable for any reason;
- You will have the continuity of the same regular cleaner;
To find more about our services please visit
www.evaclean.co.uk or call 02088290811.
Our exciting project, a storybook about moving home to colour in, is really coming together. We have produced a beautiful, heart-warming story about moving home, for children to colour in. We’re hoping to publish the book and sell it through Amazon and the Save the Children shops amongst others.
All the profits will be donated to Save the Children, and it certainly is a first for a removal company. This is just one of our many exciting projects we have coming up. This is all part of our bid to change the face of the removals industry and raise the perceptions and profile.
Tradtionally the month of August, and especially the Bank Holiday weekend have alwasy been the busiest time of the year for people moving house. Moving in and around London can often prove difficult especially if the job is in the vicinity of the Nottinghill Carnival. Families and couples will take advantage of the long weekend to get moved and sorted before going back to work and school.
This weekend is proving to be particularly busy with Saturday, Sunday, Monday and Tuesday all fully booked and the last minute enquiries keep coming in.
Another side of our business that we don’t often boast about. On my most removals, there is always items to get rid of as the family moving home, takes the opportunity to have a good clear out.
Andrew collects everything up and once a month does a charity boot fair. Mainly because it’s his hobby and he actually enjoys car boot sales but also because it’s a crying shame to take these items to the tip. These days its all about recyling and not land fill.
Our boot fairs are a great success and the Amber Moves van is eagerly awaited for by the regulars! On average we manage to raise between
There is nothing nicer than unsolicited positive feedback and the card below sums it up. No matter the size of the removal we always offer a high level of service, great flexibility and absolute peace of mind.
The build up to moving home can be so fraught that most people are actually surprised when the removal day goes so smoothly. It is our aim in life to raise client’s expectations of a move and they should be absolutely sure, that having chosen the right removal company, of course the day should run like clockwork.
Every time we conduct a removal, we ask our clients to fill in a feedback questionnaire. These are then sent directly to the National Guild of Removers and Storers. If at least 98% have rated our service excellent, we then receive an Excellence Award.
We’ve done it again and are proud to show off our award for the period January to June 2009. This award recognised the hard work put in by our removal crews and hopefully is raising expectations of how a good removal should be conducted.
We aim to make our site appealable to a wider audience and more fun and with this in mind, we’re asking for guest bloggers. If you or your company offer a service that may be relevant to anyone moving house or organising a London office move, we’d be delighted to hear from you.
Drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org
When last did you come across a removal company running a regular competition with a fab prize? As part of our strategy to give back to our clients, we hope every newsletter reader will enter our simple competition, with a chance of winning of course!
Don’t forget to enter our on-line competition. The prize is
The headlines in The Times, 31 July say “Unthinkable, but true, house prices rise yet again”.
How quickly the tide turns only 4-5 months ago, they were saying the market would take at least a year to recover. This was the worst recession in history, negative equity would exceed the peeks reached in the early 90′s and so on.
Let’s focus on the positive though, and enjoy the upsurge. This is mainly because there will alwasy be a shortage of properties which will drive prices up. We will soon be approaching Autumn which is a quieter time for home sales but equally there is such a backlog of people who put their moves on hold over the last 18 months, hopefully one will counteract the other.
The bonus of course, is that we are a London-based removal company, so are best place to enjoy any economic upsurge. Further North demand is less robust.
As part of our plan to revolutionise the moving industry we are putting together a survey, asking anyone who has moved, or is planning a move, their thoughts and experiences on the moving process.
Use this area of the blog to post your suggestions for our survey.
With ever increasing frequency we are getting requests from clients for “the works”. It may that it is time and work constraints, being out of the country and unable to orchestrate the move or just weariness from having had to move home too often.
These clients want us to collect keys, pack up everything (right from screwing back the cap on the toothpaste!), move, unpack and a spot of interior decoration thrown in. Fortunately the men we employ all have the common sense, resourcefulness and experience to carry these requests out. Having moved so many homes and seen the inside of all types of properties, they have the knack of just know ing where to place the furniture and how to make it all fit in.
The initial request is always made quite tentatively but when we say yes, we will do whatever is required, the relief and appreciation is always quite incredulous. So spread the word, we wiill do whatever is required to take away the hassle of moving home.
PFM, the Premises and Facilites magazine, has published the results of the 2009 Moving Trends Survey. The results of the survey were first presented in Brussels at the BAR conference. Despite tough economic conditions, the survey shows that right now there is a window of opportunity for the commercial relocation contractor. Many of the respondents said they were looking to relocate employees in fewer buildings as they consolidate their property portfolio. Over 50% are actively planning a move – and of these 73% will be relocating employees in the next 6 months.
We were very excited to launch the inaugural issue of Amber News, our quarterly newsletter. Filled with stories on moves we have done, projects we have coming up and a fantastic competition.
The newsletter has been mailed out to 1500 clients and will continue to go out to all our new contacts. The competition is an on-line one, to incentivise people to visit our website but we felt that a lovely, shiny piece of paper filled with news is far better read leisurely over a coffee than as an email. We will watch and monitor and welcome your feedback to see whether you prefer on-line or paper.
We are already working on the autumn issue so please get in touch with us if you would like to be featured in our newsletter.
This is just the beginning of our marketing campaigns and the re-branding of Amber Moves, so watch this space!
Yesterday we offered our service to help transport donations from the Grazia office to Westfields shopping centre. Amber Moves supports the campaign which is in aid of Save the Children and aims to tranform the face of charity shopping. The idea is don’t dump – donate! No more dropping off bin liners full of clothes that can’t be sold, but donate something of value that can be sold on. The concept incorporates neutral shopping – everytime you buy something new, clear out your wardrobe and donate something you no longer need.
A recent article in FM World reports:
Prime rents in London will fall by a quarter this year, faster than anywhere else in Western Europe, if the latest forecasts prove correct.
The Investment Property Forum’s European Consensus Forecast anticipates a fall of 26.6 per cent in West End rents and 22.7 per cent in the City of London. The IPF Consensus Forecast collates predictions from a number of different property analysts to provide aggregate forecasts for the current year and the next four years.
All 29 European centres covered are expected to decline in 2009, but only Moscow (-30.8 per cent) is expected to see a steeper decline than London. A number of other centres have forecast falls in single figures including Vienna (-7.0 per cent), Berlin (-7.9 per cent) and Amsterdam (-8.8 per cent).
The long-term picture is also bleak. All 29 centres are expected to decline again in 2010, with London continuing to show some of the sharpest falls. Prime City of London rents are expected to drop by 12.1 per cent and West End rents by 10.4 per cent. The report states:
Lets hope so, that way the housing market can get moving again. All the signs are there to show that there are definately green shoots in the market. Removal enquiries are on the up which I believe is a sign that everyone believes house prices have bottomed out and now the only way is up.
Clients who had planned to move last year have resurrected their sales and are now moving in the next month. Particularly in London there has always been a shortage of good size family homes, and supply and demand will always drive prices up.
Another factor brought about by the recession is the falling number of children attending private schools. Parents who are cutting back on school fees will now look to move to areas with good state schooling as an alternative.
Amber Moves, London’s premier removal company, are well placed and ready for the upturn. We’ve survived the recession and are in fact bigger and stronger as a result.
We look forward to moving homes across London throughout the summer and beyond.
We are working on a new page for our website to celebrate everyone who has recommended us. On trawling through the diary, it almost became like the game “6 degrees of seperation”. It turns out there are groups of friends who have recommended us to all their freinds and so on and so on. The number of jobs that came through recommendations was close to 70%.
This proves the power of “word of mouth”. The only time people will talk about a service they received is if the work was exceptional or exceceptionally bad. In our case, it’s all good!
Moving home can be an awful experience, and the majority of customers came to us having experienced the cowboy style of removals and were happy to pay the extra for the enhanced service. Once they realised what an easy stress-free experience it could be, they couldn’t stop raving.
We value and reward our recommendations and will always send a card and a thank you.
Hi, I am working on a BBC pilot TV show called
There’s nothing like good news and here it is …. the housing market is picking up. May has brought record numbers of home move enquiries. We had 19 enquiries on one particular day.
The general trend seems to be that people have got “bored” with the recession and decided to move. One of our clients told me yesterday that he and his wife decided to buy a house to “cheer themselves up!” Good for them, I say.
The housing market was the first to be hit before the phrase credit crunch had even been invented and we felt the effects a good year before the rest of the economy, so hopefully the trend will be that as we move out of this economic gloom, the rest of the country is not too far behind.
Our thinking is that there is now a huge backlog of people who need to move. We have clients ringing in to book their moves, that were planned for, and ready to go ahead a year ago. I think we’re in for a busy summer….
Now with 2 million unemployed, can we find some new staff? If you know of any good removal men please send them our way.
As the quiet patch that is easter and half term draws to a close we have noticed a decided upturn in removal enquiries – especially for those moving house. We already have a number of large house moves booked in for May and the enquiries are coming in at the same rate they used to before the words “credit crunch” became commonplace.
This is very positive news for removals and may it be the start of the upturn. The general consensus seems to be that the housing market has reached rock bottom and the only way things can then move is up. Traditionally the summer has always been the busiest period for removals and with the backlog of people wanting to move, could it be we’re in for a bumper summer?
It is fair to say, we are London based, and London will always be best placed to recover first and there is certainly more money flowirng through the system. Housing in London will always be at a premium and it follows good removal companies will always have moving customers.
As always, even before the credit crunch, price is important and our rates reflect the state of the economy but we haven’t reduced our rates to a level where the job is done at a loss or breakeven, unlike some competitors, and we haven’t reduced the high level of service we offer including all the standards one would expect from a professional removal company. We still have all our insurances, an up to date fleet of removal vehicles, a crew of full time salaried employees and state of the art equipment.
Here’s hoping that these really are “green shoots” we are seeing in the removals industry and that the good companies that survived the recession are well placed to reap the rewards and get moving again.
At Amber Moves, we have noticed a trend in office moves and it seems more offices are moving into prime areas such as Canary Wharf, The City and the West End. A report by NB Real Estate and Oncor International have confirmed why this is such – the City of London is no longer in the top three of a league table showing the most expensive office locations in London.
The West End of London has seen the steepest fall in rents, with almost half wiped of its rental values. This is good news in all for London. London office rents had been viewed as pretty pricey but they are now much more competitive and the collapse in Sterling versus the Euro has helped the process along. As confidence comes back offices will need to make decisions on where to locate new operations and account for corporate team building facilities, meaning London’s cheaper real estate costs should now work in London businesses favour.
What does all this mean for Amber Moves? The time and investment we have put in to increasing our share of the corporate relocation market should pay off. Our membership of the British Institute of Facilities Managers also raises our standing within the industry and it is safe to assume, that there may be a bumper crop of London office moves to look forward to in the coming months.