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How To Increase Property Value If Your Home Is By A Noisy Motorway

Location, location, location – it’s the three-headed mantra which is key to determining the value of your property.

But while homes in, say, a popular tourist town or a ‘happening’ city centre neighbourhood will have an obvious bounce, is there any merit in buying a home when outside your window what you hear most are cars and lorries firing by?

The answer, surprisingly, is yes, according to experts – albeit with some caveats. Motorway – yes, motorway – locations can prove to be a savvy purchase.

Look no further than residents living underneath Birmingham’s notorious Spaghetti Junction. And who this week declared how they love living a stone’s throw from this five-level tangle of motorway lanes.

How To Increase Property Value If Your Home Is By A Noisy Motorway

How To Increase Property Value If Your Home Is By A Noisy Motorway.

Even though it’s one of the largest road interchanges in Europe – with more than 200,000 vehicles travelling on it daily. Some said they found the noise ‘soothing’.

Clearly, they have no problems with their location, location, location. So what are the advantages of buying a home near a motorway, and how can you head off any potential pitfalls?

Increasing Property Value of Your Home by a Noisy Motorway

Obviously the closer you are to a motorway, the noisier it will be – so be aware that even a short distance can make a difference.

It’s important to visit the property at different times of the day to get a handle on how the ebb, flow and noise varies. The plus is you’ll get more bang for your buck.

Buying a property near a motorway can be one way to secure a bargain, as its location will be reflected in the price‘ says Chris Breckenridge, partner at Corum Property.

According to Jonathan Rolande, a director at buying agency, a like-for-like property compared with one another a mile away would be about 15% to 20% less if close to the road.

Rob Houghton, CEO of Really Moving, the comparison site for home-move services, agrees: ‘Properties very near motorways are usually worth less than direct comparables in quieter locations, so buyers who need more space might be pleasantly surprised at what they can get – and if they already live in a town centre, they’re probably well-adjusted to a certain level of background noise.’

Cool for Commuters

Living near a motorway means you’ll have easy access to the road network, making the journey to work easier – especially when our railways are plagued by strikes or if you don’t live near a bus stop or railway station.

The location is also a boon if you buy to rent out.

“If near a motorway exit, Airbnb letting rates could be higher for long-distance travellers.” Jonathan Rolande.

Neutralise the Noise

Blaring sirens, boy racers and thundering lorries may put you off buying a home near a motorway. But noise can be mitigated, says Chris Breckenridge. It just needs some thought.

‘Triple glazing reduces noise while supporting energy efficiency, which in the current climate is an important consideration.

‘You could also plant trees in the garden to block noise or install a water feature to distract from it.’

Keep the noise down: Installing a water feature or trees can help keep things quiet

Installing A Water Feature Or Trees Can Help Keep Things Quiet.

However, Jonathan Rolande advises picking the right time of year to view motorway properties.

‘Planting fast-growing conifers reduces noise and visual impact, as does high fencing. But you should be aware of viewing a property near a motorway in summer when deciduous trees are in leaf, creating a sound barrier. The noise will be worse in winter when the trees are bare.’

It’s worth considering one study which found that adults fall asleep 38% faster when listening to white noise, with some people even enjoying being lulled to sleep by the sound of motorway traffic.

Design Away Problems

Michelle Niziol, estate agent and owner of IMS Property Group, suggests opting for an indoor layout that places the living spaces away from the side of the property facing the motorway.

‘This can help reduce the direct impact of noise,’ she says.

It’s also worth engaging with a heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) or mechanical and electrical specialist to advise on an effective ventilation system, adds Danny Campbell, an architect from Edinburgh and Glasgow-based HOKO Design.

‘There are products out there that continuously filter fresh air, and also carry noise cancelling features.’

It’s also worth remembering that 7% of all cars are now electric, which are much quieter and less polluting.

And this figure is set to rise, thanks to the Government’s pledge to ban the sale of new petrol and diesel cars and switch to electric vehicles as soon as 2030.

‘In the meantime, using sound-absorbing materials inside, such as rugs and heavy curtains, can help reduce noise,’ says Rob Houghton,

It’s always important to get a survey of any potential property and even more so if it’s located near a major road which could increase the risk of subsidence, due to the vibrations caused by vehicles travelling at high speeds.

Where the Wind Blows

The wind can carry noise, so when considering whether to buy a home near a motorway, find out the direction of the prevailing wind over a specific area.

You can do this by visiting the property on a number of days and standing facing the wind to see where it regularly comes from.

Then use a compass app to check where the motorway is in relation to the house. (Note that wind direction is about where it comes from, not where it is going to).

Figure is set to rise, thanks to the Government’s pledge to ban the sale of new petrol and diesel cars and switch to electric vehicles as soon as 2030.


Assessing Property Size: What Square Footage Can You Get With The Average UK House Price In Your Area?

Assessing Property Size In The UK

In the United Kingdom, there is a prevailing tendency to gauge the size of residences based on the number of bedrooms rather than square footage. In fact, research indicates that three out of five individuals are unaware of the square footage of their property.

However, a comprehensive analysis conducted by Savills reveals significant variations in property sizes throughout the country. For instance, with the average property price standing at £340,837, this amount would typically afford a studio flat spanning 551 square feet in London, according to the prominent estate agency.

Conversely, in the North East region, the same sum would secure a spacious five-bedroom house measuring 1,955 square feet, nearly four times the size of a comparable property in London.

Best value: Heading to the North East of England is where buyers will get the most from their money

In Scotland, the median house price equates to a sizable investment capable of procuring a generous four-bedroom residence spanning 1,743 square feet. Conversely, in Wales, Yorkshire & The Humber, and the North West, this sum affords a slightly smaller four-bedroom dwelling of approximately 1,500 square feet, while in the East and West Midlands, it accommodates a 1,300 square foot home. In stark contrast, within the South West, £340,837 secures a modest 1,000 square foot property, and in the East, an even more confined 928 square feet.

London presents the most challenging market, where this budget offers the least purchasing power. Following closely, the South East allows for 825 square feet of space or a medium-sized two-bedroom dwelling. Lucian Cook, head of residential research at Savills, emphasizes the profound disparity in purchasing potential across Britain, ranging from compact studio flats in London to spacious four or five-bedroom residences in parts of North East England.

While square footage serves as a critical metric, with a significant portion of Britons unfamiliar with their property’s dimensions, the number of bedrooms remains a traditional indicator of size. Personal preferences, such as a preference for larger kitchens, may influence property selection. For those prioritizing ample space, Easington, County Durham, offers a substantial 2,858 square foot, five-bedroom home, while Rhondda, Wales, and Na h-Eileanan an Iar, Scotland, provide 2,625 and 2,551 square feet, respectively. Conversely, in St Albans, Hertfordshire, £340,837 secures a mere 547 square feet, equivalent to a one-bedroom flat.

The disparity continues in central London, where purchasing power diminishes considerably. In Kensington, the budget accommodates a mere 220 square feet, contrasting with the slightly more spacious 236 square feet in Westminster. Conversely, in Dagenham, the same investment translates to 770 square feet. Three properties currently listed on Rightmove exemplify the diversity within this price range across the UK market.

South of the river: This semi-detached house is located near to three different train stations

South of the river: This semi-detached house is located near to three different train stations

2. Lewisham: One-bed house, £345,000

This one-bedroom property in Lewisham, South London, is on the market for £345,000.

The semi-detached house is set over two floors, and has a private patio.

The property is located near to bus links and amenities, as well as Catford train station.

Edinburgh fringe: This three-bed property is located on the edge of the city, near to the town of Musselburgh

Edinburgh fringe: This three-bed property is located on the edge of the city, near to the town of Musselburgh

3. Edinburgh: Three-bed house, £350,000

This three-bedroom detached house in Edinburgh could be yours for £350,000.

The house, which has a two-car driveway, boasts a large kitchen diner, and is within easy reach of Newcriaghall train station.

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Top 10 Florida Cities Dominate The Business Startup Landscape In The U.S.

Top 10 Florida Cities And Business Startup Landscape In The U.S.

The Voice Of EU | Florida emerges as a hub for entrepreneurial endeavors, with its vibrant business landscape and conducive environment for startups. Renowned for its low corporate tax rates and a high concentration of investors, the Sunshine State beckons aspiring entrepreneurs seeking fertile grounds to launch and grow their businesses.

In a recent report by WalletHub, Florida cities dominate the list of the top 10 best destinations for business startups, showcasing their resilience and economic vitality amidst challenging times.

From Orlando’s thriving market to Miami’s dynamic ecosystem, each city offers unique advantages and opportunities for entrepreneurial success. Let’s delve into the chronologically listed cities that exemplify Florida’s prominence in the business startup arena.

1. Orlando Leads the Way: Orlando emerges as the most attractive market in the U.S. for business startups, with a remarkable surge in small business establishments. WalletHub’s latest report highlights Orlando’s robust ecosystem, fostering the survival and growth of startups, buoyed by a high concentration of investors per capita.

2. Tampa Takes Second Place: Securing the second spot among large cities for business startups, Tampa boasts a favorable business environment attributed to its low corporate tax rates. The city’s ample investor presence further fortifies startups, providing essential resources for navigating the initial years of business operations.

3. Charlotte’s Diverse Industries: Claiming the third position, Charlotte stands out for its diverse industrial landscape and exceptionally low corporate taxes, enticing companies to reinvest capital. This conducive environment propels entrepreneurial endeavors, contributing to sustained economic growth.

4. Jacksonville’s Rising Profile: Jacksonville emerges as a promising destination for startups, bolstered by its favorable business climate. The city’s strategic positioning fosters entrepreneurial ventures, attracting aspiring business owners seeking growth opportunities.

5. Miami’s Entrepreneurial Hub: Miami solidifies its position as a thriving entrepreneurial hub, attracting businesses with its dynamic ecosystem and strategic location. The city’s vibrant startup culture and supportive infrastructure make it an appealing destination for ventures of all sizes.

6. Atlanta’s Economic Momentum: Atlanta’s ascent in the business startup landscape underscores its economic momentum and favorable business conditions. The city’s strategic advantages and conducive policies provide a fertile ground for entrepreneurial ventures to flourish.

7. Fort Worth’s Business-Friendly Environment: Fort Worth emerges as a prime destination for startups, offering a business-friendly environment characterized by low corporate taxes. The city’s supportive ecosystem and strategic initiatives facilitate the growth and success of new ventures.

8. Austin’s Innovation Hub: Austin cements its status as an innovation hub, attracting startups with its vibrant entrepreneurial community and progressive policies. The city’s robust infrastructure and access to capital foster a conducive environment for business growth and innovation.

9. Durham’s Emerging Entrepreneurship Scene: Durham’s burgeoning entrepreneurship scene positions it as a promising destination for startups, fueled by its supportive ecosystem and strategic initiatives. The city’s collaborative culture and access to resources contribute to the success of new ventures.

10. St. Petersburg’s Thriving Business Community: St. Petersburg rounds off the top 10 with its thriving business community and supportive ecosystem for startups. The city’s strategic advantages and favorable business climate make it an attractive destination for entrepreneurial endeavors.

Despite unprecedented challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Great Resignation, and high inflation, these top Florida cities remain resilient and well-equipped to overcome obstacles, offering promising opportunities for business owners and entrepreneurs alike.

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European Startup Ecosystems Awash With Gulf Investment – Here Are Some Of The Top Investors

European Startup Ecosystem Getting Flooded With Gulf Investments

The Voice Of EU | In recent years, European entrepreneurs seeking capital infusion have widened their horizons beyond the traditional American investors, increasingly turning their gaze towards the lucrative investment landscape of the Gulf region. With substantial capital reservoirs nestled within sovereign wealth funds and corporate venture capital entities, Gulf nations have emerged as compelling investors for European startups and scaleups.

According to comprehensive data from Dealroom, the influx of investment from Gulf countries into European startups soared to a staggering $3 billion in 2023, marking a remarkable 5x surge from the $627 million recorded in 2018.

This substantial injection of capital, accounting for approximately 5% of the total funding raised in the region, underscores the growing prominence of Gulf investors in European markets.

Particularly noteworthy is the significant support extended to growth-stage companies, with over two-thirds of Gulf investments in 2023 being directed towards funding rounds exceeding $100 million. This influx of capital provides a welcome boost to European companies grappling with the challenge of securing well-capitalized investors locally.

Delving deeper into the landscape, Sifted has identified the most active Gulf investors in European startups over the past two years.

Leading the pack is Aramco Ventures, headquartered in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia. Bolstered by a substantial commitment, Aramco Ventures boasts a $1.5 billion sustainability fund, alongside an additional $4 billion allocated to its venture capital arm, positioning it as a formidable player with a total investment capacity of $7 billion by 2027. With a notable presence in 17 funding rounds, Aramco Ventures has strategically invested in ventures such as Carbon Clean Solutions and ANYbotics, aligning with its focus on businesses that offer strategic value.

Following closely is Mubadala Capital, headquartered in Abu Dhabi, UAE, with an impressive tally of 13 investments in European startups over the past two years. Backed by the sovereign wealth fund Mubadala Investment Company, Mubadala Capital’s diverse investment portfolio spans private equity, venture capital, and alternative solutions. Notable investments include Klarna, TIER, and Juni, reflecting its global investment strategy across various sectors.

Ventura Capital, based in Dubai, UAE, secured its position as a key player with nine investments in European startups. With a presence in Dubai, London, and Tokyo, Ventura Capital boasts an international network of limited partners and a sector-agnostic investment approach, contributing to its noteworthy investments in companies such as Coursera and Spotify.

Qatar Investment Authority, headquartered in Doha, Qatar, has made significant inroads into the European startup ecosystem with six notable investments. As the sovereign wealth fund of Qatar, QIA’s diversified portfolio spans private and public equity, infrastructure, and real estate, with strategic investments in tech startups across healthcare, consumer, and industrial sectors.

MetaVision Dubai, a newcomer to the scene, has swiftly garnered attention with six investments in European startups. Focusing on seed to Series A startups in the metaverse and Web3 space, MetaVision raised an undisclosed fund in 2022, affirming its commitment to emerging technologies and innovative ventures.

Investcorp, headquartered in Manama, Bahrain, has solidified its presence with six investments in European startups. With a focus on mid-sized B2B businesses, Investcorp’s diverse investment strategies encompass private equity, real estate, infrastructure, and credit management, contributing to its notable investments in companies such as Terra Quantum and TruKKer.

Chimera Capital, based in Abu Dhabi, UAE, rounds off the list with four strategic investments in European startups. As part of a prominent business conglomerate, Chimera Capital leverages its global reach and sector-agnostic approach to drive investments in ventures such as CMR Surgical and Neat Burger.

In conclusion, the burgeoning influx of capital from Gulf investors into European startups underscores the region’s growing appeal as a vibrant hub for innovation and entrepreneurship. With key players such as Aramco Ventures, Mubadala Capital, and Ventura Capital leading the charge, European startups are poised to benefit from the strategic investments and partnerships forged with Gulf investors, propelling them towards sustained growth and success in the global market landscape.

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