John Blake

Make a date for pop-up property show

Anyone seeking information or advice on any aspect of the property world should make a beeline for a brand new event this spring.

The inaugural Property Information Show is being held at historic Portsmouth Guildhall on Saturday, March 5.

The event – running from 10am to 4pm – is open to the public and entry is absolutely free.

It is being organised by Portsmouth Property Association (PPA), the ‘voice of property’ in the city and member firms and others will be on hand to offer comprehensive help and expert advice on all property matters.

The PPA is an umbrella organisation with membership numbering around 150 industry professionals in a single recognised body.

Organiser John Blake, of legal firm Warner Goodman LLP, said: “This really is a one-stop shop covering all aspects of the property world.

“If you are going to have anything to do with property in 2016 you ought to get along. It is an ideal place for research and advice.

“It is unlikely that you would be able to make contact with so many industry professionals in such a short space of time anywhere else.”

John added: “The industry is ever-changing and laws and regulations are often updated – so this show is also hugely relevant to people who consider themselves experienced in property matters, such as private landlords and people intending to buy and let a property.”

The show, sponsored by The Portsmouth News and supported by Radian Housing, Portsmouth City Council and local developers, will include latest news on housing associations, help-to-buy schemes, HMOs, rent licences and the property market in general.

Professions represented at the Guildhall venue will include estate agents, ‘help to buy’, letting agents, surveyors, housing associations, solicitors, auctioneers, accountants, mortgage and insurance brokers, property managers and search agents.

The show will be arranged as a series of stalls with the industry professionals on hand for one-to-one chats with attendees.

There will also be a charity aspect with Portsmouth charity Central Point – a day centre in Kingston Road providing advice and support for homeless people – set to benefit from donations and offers of practical help.

Members: Claire Battye, John Blake

Stop Building Boxes

The Secretary of State for Department for Communities and Local Government Eric Pickles has called upon house builders to stop building boxes and start building homes that reflect regional differences.  He said “I don’t want little boxes looking the same in Aberdeen as, say, Portsmouth”. This got me thinking.  A lot of people I know would expect to be able to pick out from a set of stereotypical photos of people, a French man and from a series of stereotypical photos of houses, his French house and similarly perhaps the Eskimo and his house, a Chinese person and their dwelling etc etc and given a series of stereotypical photos a matching game could be played with some success.  One could construe each person has a house that has evolved to suit their needs, given their location.

That then are the fundamental needs that vary between Aberdeen and Portsmouth that would lead to significant differences in design of the respective areas housing that Mr Pickles alludes to.  Sitting in a traffic jam in Kingston Upon Thames I noted my 1930’s Portsmouth property was replicated in a few roads, as it is in Havant and I dare say many other Towns and Cities across Britain in much the same way as a given builders ‘Royal Oaks Type’ property is likely to be built in Aberdeen and Portsmouth and every City in between. Given a field in which to build and a blank piece of paper on which to design a property, to a budget, would that house look the same in both locations? I dare say it might.  In the past the ‘Granite City’ housing would make use of locally available materials thereby reducing costs but with better infrastructure enabling materials to be move freely around the UK those regional differences perhaps no longer exist.  Is there or should there be such a thing as a Portsmouth property and if so what is it and how does it vary from that in other Towns and Cities. I am sure we could all design our own houses, dream houses and more practical houses which I suspect would incorporate all the usual facilities but would we draw something different to the Aberdonian undertaking the same exercise. Sadly I think not

John Blake : Warner Goodman
Members: Claire Battye, John Blake