Will a garage add value to your home?

If you are considering building a garage on to your home then you may wonder if it will add value. A lot of this depends on how the garage is built and whether it adds space or removes it from your home. If for example you only have a very small garden then adding a garage which uses up a lot of this space may reduce the amount your house is worth. In most cases, though adding a garage to your home will add value. If you have the garage built with deep enough foundations then you may even be able to build on top of it and add another room if needed. This again will add value on to your home and make it easier to sell.

Garages used to be built to store vehicles in but often now, people do not always use the garage for that purpose and instead use it to store items such as lawnmowers, camping equipment or set it up as an indoor gym. You want your garage to be waterproof and if you are going to want electrical sockets in there, you will need to ensure that it is all wired correctly. You may even deice to use your garage as a laundry room, in which case ventilation is important.

How often do homeowners use their garages to house their cars?

The majority of new build houses are designed and built with a garage or a parking space on the property if this is an option, but how often do we actually use our garages to house our cars and if not then why is that?

Garages are a particularly useful addition to any home in terms of general storage space. They are often used to store garden furniture during the winter months and gardening equipment such as lawnmowers and gardening tools throughout the year. Whilst some people build a garden shed to house this equipment it is more common for it to be kept in the garage.

Some homeowners use the garage as an additional room either as a laundry room with a washing machine and tumble dryer or possibly a games room for the family to use. With the increased interest in health and fitness some garages are utilised as a gym with treadmills, rowing machines and weightlifting equipment.

The difficulty for some when thinking of using the garage to accommodate their car is that often the garage is not wide enough to be able to park the car and get out without damaging the doors on the garage wall. Older properties often have larger garages, so this is not usually an issue for these homeowners.

Buying a used car for your grown-up child

When your child first passes their driving test, they will no doubt be eager to own their own car. It may be that, as parents, you are in a financial position that enables you to buy the first car for them but usually this will have to be a used car. The physical size of the car, engine size and fuel type will all need to be taken into consideration.

It is important firstly to think about what the car will be used for. If it is only used on short local journeys a smaller car will probably be sufficient but if the car is going to be used for longer motorway journeys a more reliable, fuel efficient model will be more suitable.

The cost of insuring a young persons’ car is a significant outlay and so a car with a smaller engine may mean that savings can be made. A tracker can be fitted to the car by a representative from the insurance company which measures the mileage covered, speed the car is driven at and the time of day journeys are undertaken. This feature can result in a reduced insurance premium for the driver and peace of mind for the parent too.

Where is the best place to pick up a used car?

If you are in the market of looking for a new car then you may have to be on the lookout for a second hand one. Although owning a new car is a luxury that many of us would like to do, the hefty price tag attached to new vehicles often puts them out of budget for many people. Buying a second-hand car is always a bit of a risk as you do not know its full history and often you have little or no warranty with it (if it is an older vehicle and not bought from a main dealership).
When looking at any second hand car you should always carry out a HPI check on the vehicle which will check to see if it has outstanding finance on it, has been written off or had plate changed, amongst other things. If buying from a reputable garage, then they should have done this when they bought the vehicle or took it in part exchange, so you can always request to see it. If you are buying from a private buyer then you will probably need to do this yourself. You can do a HPI on any vehicle and it usually costs around £15.
Buying from a garage does often give you a little bit more security than buying a second hand car privately as you should get a three month warranty as minimum from most reputable dealers.

Safety features on your next car

With safety a massive priority for car manufactures and also drivers, it is easy to see why more and more advanced technology is being added to cars to improve the safety of them. The first major safety feature that was added to modern vehicles, was the seat belt system. This drastically cut down on the number of major injuries or deaths on our roads. Since then airbags have become the standard in pretty much all vehicles along with other safety features such as ABS and traction control.

Manufacturers are always looking for new ways they can improve their vehicles and recently autonomous features are being used more and more to help aid the driver in a vehicle. Over time car experts predict that cars will be fully autonomous, which essentially means driver less, but this may be a good few years ahead yet. In the meantime features such as park assist, lane assist and even speed recognition devices are now being offered in many different makes and models of vehicles. Some vehicle have these features included as standard when built at the factory and others are an optional extra. The Fiat 500X range now comes with Lane Assist, Traffic Sign Recognition and Speed Advisor functions as standard across the entire range.

Hormann Garage Doors – What Are the Prime Features of Sectional Garage Doors?

Hormann sectional garage doors
Sectional garage door consists of separate sections, rather than one panel, which allows smooth and smooth operation, especially when using the electric garage door opener. Since the parts are all pivotally connected, the door can slide through a solid curve before finally settling in a horizontal position parallel to the floor of the garage. Thanks to its design and mechanism, it can solve a lot of common problems that arise in the garage door. Keep Reading →

Give your car a better chance of passing first time

If your car is more than three years old, an annual MOT check is a legal requirement to ensure it’s roadworthy. On average many garages charge between £35 and £45 for an MOT test but legally garages and MOT test centres are allowed to charge a maximum of £54.85 for the test.

Although many of us dread an MOT it can be a lifesaving test by picking up on faults with the vehicle that may be or may become unsafe in the very near future. It is illegal to drive a car with no MOT unless driving it to / from an MOT test station. Driving with no MOT will also invalidate your insurance.

There are ways in which you can try and give your car the best chance of passing.

Check your tyres are not only correctly inflated but also free from damage and have plenty of tread left on them. Check that all tyres have a tread depth of at least 1.6mm right the way around and across the central three-quarters of the pattern. A quick way to check is to insert a 20p piece into one of the tread grooves. If the outer edge of the coin is completely obscured then the tread depth is sufficient.

Choosing the right garage to take your car for an MOT

MOT time can be stressful, often you are not aware of all the work that may be required on your vehicle until it comes to the MOT and make be left with a huge bill in order to get the car road worthy and to pass the MOT.

Although MOT guidelines are very strict and all garages are told to adhere to the same standards, some garages are more lenient and others are stricter. If you worry that a garage is failing items on the MOT that should not of failed then you can take it to another garage to get them to check it for you, or make a complaint through the .gov website stating what the car has failed on and why you believe it is incorrect.

You do need to have a certain amount of trust in a garage to be able to take your car to them for an MOT. If you are worried that the garage may add extra faults so they get more work out of the job then you could take it to a place that does just MOT’s and no repair work as there is no advantage to them failing the car. The only issue with this is you will not have time to be able to shop around for quotes if you need the car back on the road so be sure to do your MOT early.

Car finance – always read the small print

If you are looking to get a new or second hand car then you may well be tempted with taking finance out to cover the cost or part of the cost of the vehicle. Finance can be a great way of spreading the cost of a car over a number of years but you need to be sure that you know what you are taking on, the terms an conditions of the finance and how much you will end up paying for the car overall.

Many finance companies will simply take to you about the monthly amount and term of the finance but may not talk about the amount of interest and the APR. The APR is the annual percentage rate and is a percentage that relates to the interest you will be charged annually over the term of the loan. APR’s can range drastically from as little as a few percentage upwards of a thousand percentage. The higher the APR the more you will be paying back overall.

Always check how much you will have paid back in total including interest by the end of the finance agreement and this will allow you to work out how much in interest and charges you will incur. Often once people have this information, they reconsider the finance or will start to shop around to get a lower APR. Bank loans are often lower than taking out car finance but not sometimes the lending restrictions are stricter.

 

 

Buying used cars

When it comes to buying a used car, you may have many concerns about how genuine the seller has been.  No one wants to be stung with buying a car that is riddled with faults or to have it break down on you a few weeks later. When buying any used car there is always an element of risk involved but you can only hope that the seller has been honest.

Make sure you do your own research before viewing or bidding on a car. You may be surprised as to how much information you can find out online about a vehicle just from having the registration number and manufacturer details. All current and previous MOT’s are now listed online showing if the car passed or failed the MOT test, and also if there were any advisories. This can help you work out what has been done on the car or what may need to be done in the near future.