Benefits to Owning a Boat As A Hobby

Usually people who own a boat are those who have wealth so it’s no secret that owning a boat must be a fun past time! Like horse riding, cars or golf, boating can be a hobby and some people spend their entire lives fascinated by and interested in boats. It’s long been known that boating is a sport of the wealthy but more and more people of all financial backgrounds are getting involved. Since the birth of fibreglass boats in the late Fifties more people of a modest wallet are buying into the hobby. The freedom that a boat can offer you is instant and buying a boat can dramatically expand your family’s horizons during holidays and even on the odd spontaneous weekend. There are so many activities that can be undertaken when the owners of a boat head out onto the water and making sure you employ the help of great companies for boat transport can make a difference as to where you put your boat.

The activities that a boat purchase can open up can include:

  • Water skiing, whether on a lake or the ocean is a fantastic activity for all the family. Well, except the baby, don’t go water skiing while holding onto a baby.
  • Fishing, whether close to the shore or a longer day trip off the coast you can really enjoy a quiet day of reflection while fishing after your hauling boats.
  • Scuba diving enthusiasts will be able to fully enjoy the properties of a boat and they will be well-equipped on the water. Partaking in dives for coral reefs, underwater shipwreck viewings and other areas of the ocean that we don’t get to see
  • Parties! If your boat is big enough you can hold parties, family get togethers and other social activities on the boat whether at sea or at the marina parties are possible.
  • Pure travel. The flexibility of a boat can allow for sightseeing beyond the edges of the country

Many people don’t know this but there are a lot of actual health benefits to owning a boat. As if you needed any more reason to go ahead and buy one! Taking the time out of a busy lifestyle to sail in open water can really take you away from the stress of work. There have been numerous studies that prove stress causes a long list of health issues and reducing stress by boating once in a while can help you live longer and who doesn’t want that?! That time you take destressing doesn’t even have to be alone; your friends I’m sure would love to spend time on your boat with you. If you have a great group of friends you know you would be happier and are far less likely to suffer with depression. Spending time with friends in nature and being away from the fake air in the office and the smog of the city can help you really feel the pressures of the day coming away.

Buying a boat isn’t just a status symbol anymore. It’s a way to relax, unwind and see the world all at the same time.

How To Buy Overseas Property

Are you considering buying Dubai apartments for sale cheap, but unsure how to go about it or what you need to consider? Check out our expert tips. 1. Search far and wide for your overseas property

There are plenty of ways to find details on overseas property for sale.

Property portals

Many well-known property portals have overseas sections, including Rightmove, Zoopla and Primelocation. UK estate agents Knight Frank and Savills also sell overseas property.


Developers often market new-build properties to UK buyers through the press or their own websites.

Buying off-plan properties through developers (where the property has yet to be built) was once seen as a way to make a quick profit. However, there is increasing uncertainty about the likely value of the finished property or, in some countries, whether the property will even be completed.

Look into the company’s reputation and, if possible, visit a development it has recently completed and talk to the residents before signing on the dotted line.

Estate agents

You can visit local estate agents while you’re abroad, or find them through trade bodies, such as the Association of International Property Professionals (AIPP).

Spend time talking to them about how the market has changed over the past couple of years and try and get some tips from them on the local areas. They may offer insider knowledge on the areas on the up – and those to avoid.

However, you should always take what estate agents say with a pinch of salt as, ultimately, their clients are the people trying to sell properties, no matter what neighbourhood they’re in. Talking to local expats could be far more eye-opening.

Property shows

You can learn a lot about buying overseas property from shows such as ‘A Place in the Sun Live’ and ‘The International Property Show’. These shows often give advice on where to find bargain overseas properties.

  1. Consider whether you’re going to live in your overseas property

Letting out overseas property

You can make impressive profits by letting out your property when you’re not using it, but there are risks involved, too.

If the property already gets rented out for some or all of the year, ask the current owner about yields and how many weeks a year it’s typically occupied to give you an idea of the return you can expect.

Don’t forget to factor in the costs of maintaining and cleaning the property between guests.

Depending on how involved you are and whether you use an agency, renting out an overseas property can be time-consuming. See our guide on overseas property as an investment for a full list of things to consider.



With timeshares, you buy the right to spend a certain period, usually a week, each year at a particular resort or group of resorts for a number of years.

This is more affordable than buying a property outright, although aggressive and misleading selling practices have given this industry a bad name.

  1. Seek legal protection

It’s essential to employ an independent lawyer, with no connection to the developer or agent, who is fluent in both English and the local language.

They should understand not only property law in that country, but how it relates to non-residents. They will usually need to be based in the country concerned, as much of the work will be done there.

In European countries, and some others, you have to use a notary – an impartial government representative who oversees property transactions.

Buying off-plan property abroad

Legal protection is essential if you’re buying off plan apartments for sale Dubai abroad.

A well-negotiated contract should set out a clear payment schedule and clarify what finishes the developer is promising. It should also provide a bank-backed guarantee that if the builders go bust the job will be completed to the same standard at no extra cost to you.

Your lawyer should clarify how any guaranteed rental income or leaseback schemes the developer is offering will operate. These can look good on paper but may not reflect the long-term rental potential of the property.

Buying Property Overseas

The purchasing process for property for sale Dubai Marina is fairly simple compared to many other countries in the world; this can be both an advantage as well as a hindrance to purchasers. While the purchasing process is fairly straight forward in some cases (when you buy on the secondary market from a seller who has no loan on the property), the relative immaturity of the legal system in Dubai makes it even more imperative that buyers exercise caution when undertaking such a major monetary transaction. It always pays to understand the purchasing process and to minimize any risks associated with what is usually the largest money-related transaction that most people will ever undertake

If you are looking to purchase Palm Jumeirah property from a private seller on the secondary market, it would be prudent to hire the services of a registered, professional surveying company. Up-keep of a property is the responsibility of the owner; surveyors can assess the property in question by doing a thorough check of the premises and can alert potential buyers to the risk of any future high-maintenance costs particularly for properties such as villas which may sometimes remain unoccupied for several months. Once you take possession of the property, its maintenance then becomes your responsibility so, as a buyer, you want to make sure you don’t inherit any major problems down the line.

5) Seek specialist advice

It is highly recommended that potential buyers seek professional legal advice to help them with the purchasing process, although it is not mandatory by law to do so. However, it is sound advice as doing so can underline any potential future risks. Enlist the services of a Dubai Land Department registered Conveying company, many of which have their in-house property lawyers and Escrow facilities to ensure that the entire process is transparent and safe for both the buyer and the seller.

6) ‘Opt-out’ clause

If you intend to purchase a property with a mortgage, it is essential to request that an opt-out clause be included in the sale agreement or Memorandum of Understanding (MoU). This clause essentially indemnifies the purchaser against the loss of the deposit money put down to secure a property, in the event that the bank evaluation for the property comes out to be lower than expected, resulting in the buyer having to put a larger down payment on the property. Without the opt-out clause, a buyer in this situation, who cannot come up with the larger down payment and opts not to go forward with the deal, would lose the deposit money. This is often 10% of the cost of the property and can result in the buyer being out-of-pocket on a large amount of money through no fault of his. Opt-out clauses should be specifically worded with the anticipated valuation amount so that there is no dispute later on.

7) Check liability on a property

When purchasing a property, ensure that you will be receiving a title that is free from any liabilities or debt. It is the seller’s responsibility to obtain an N.O.C. (no objection certificate) from the developer’s office. Developers will usually do several checks on the property to ensure that it is free from any liability and will then issue the N.O.C. confirming that the said property is ready to be transferred at the Dubai Land Department.

Asphalt VS Concrete: Which Is Best For Your Drive?

It’s a difficult decision to choose the material you want for your driveway. While you want to have something that looks nice you also want practical and when the time comes to install a new driveway, you can choose to hire a company like or you can do it yourself and the biggest decision you’ll make is whether to use concrete or asphalt.

There are of course, other driveway material choices. Gravel at the low end of the driveway and brick pavers at the high end are popular but concrete and asphalt are the most common and each comes with its advantages or disadvantages. Concrete lasts longer than asphalt, but asphalt driveways are less expensive to install. Asphalt needs more maintenance over time but they are generally easier to repair. In winter, concrete driveways can suffer extensive damage if you don’t use the correct de-icing products.

Both types of driveway material need solid foundations prepared by companies like as a driveway is only as good as what’s underneath. Asphalt can handle extreme temperature fluctuations in some parts of the country as it flexes, which concrete does not do. A lot of people favour concrete driveways as the material is durable and maintenance free. It also lasts longer than asphalt. Others favour asphalt, as if you lay it correctly it holds up just as well as concrete and it’s cheaper. Asphalt driveways are better suited to colder climates overall as constant exposure to higher temperatures. High summers can make asphalt soft and in such circumstances, cracks and grooves may appear on the driveway, which means it will need repairs. Thing is, the catch 22 is that asphalt is far easier to fix than concrete. Concrete driveways are more resistant to high temperatures but in very cold climates, care must be taken to make sure that the base of the drive is filled with compact gravel. If the foundation is laid incorrectly, concrete driveways are adversely affected by a heave of frost. Salt used on the roads to combat ice and snow will also damage concrete if not careful.

Concrete driveways are slightly pricier to lay than asphalt but for a few extra pounds you can stamp patterns through the asphalt when you lay it. Typically, concrete lasts up to thirty years while asphalt lasts around twenty years. Installers always will advise that driveways may need to be replaced sooner or last longer depending on the upkeep needed. Your driveway is going to have a lot of wear over the years especially if you have more than one car in your family. You cannot hope to keep things going normally on your drive if you don’t install it correctly and it’s better to use a company like who can make the correct adjustments and sort the right materials as well as lay the materials down. Your driveway needs to be low maintenance as possible to ensure the best results.

The Truth About Carpet And Allergies


Did you know that your carpets can harbour a certain level of allergens? Most people don’t know that and the reactions you may be having in the home can all be down to your carpet. Whether you have a thick and soft rug or the shorter fibred carpets, carpets act as a home for a variety of airborne allergens, including dust mites and even mould and all types of pollen. In the summer when the windows are thrown open to let in some non-existent breeze, pollens from grass, trees and flowers flow through. If you don’t have any net curtains to catch some of the pollen, it automatically sinks into the carpet below the window. You can have regular deep cleans of carpets by contacting who specialise with deep carpet cleaning.

Mould is a very real concern in carpets as the damaged area can really smell in the home. Any time there is a liquid spilled on your carpet, you’ve got to quickly and thoroughly blot the stain and clean the liquid out, before mould can begin to grow. Any correlation between your carpet and allergies might also depend on the age and thickness of the carpet, because thicker carpets are more difficult to get thoroughly clean, and older carpets have more time to attract more dust and other allergens.

When it comes to your carpet and allergies, the best way to fight the problem is with regular and thorough cleaning. A quick search on the Internet can provide massive resources for carpet cleaning such as Shampooing your carpet is definitely a very important job you need to do at least three times a year so you can get right into the fibres and therefore clean out the dust. If you suffer from dust mite allergies or pollen allergies, the carpets in the room with heaviest traffic are the ones most important to clean. Hoovering alone is not sufficient, but you can find numerous products online that can help with your carpet and allergies. Sometimes swapping out your carpet for wooden flooring can be the final stage in combating your allergies.

You probably wouldn’t think that new carpet could trigger any allergic reactions, because it hasn’t had time to collect any of the common allergens that older carpet often has. But many people notice allergy-like symptoms, like headache, coughing, and skin rash, when exposed to newly installed carpet. These symptoms can usually be attributed to a chemical in new carpets that is responsible for that gorgeous “new carpet smell”. To avoid any adverse reactions to this chemical, it is advisable to unroll the carpet and let it air out a few days before installation, and to keep the areas where the new carpet is installed well ventilated. The smell should leave in a few days.

Those of us who suffer from allergies know that we have to make certain considerations in order to live happy and healthy lives.

Plumbing Emergencies You Can Avoid

There’s something to be said about having a working piping system in the home with running water. It is something that we for the most part, take advantage of as a given rather than the luxury that it is. There are places across the world that would marvel at waking up to running, heated water and then there’s us, who don’t give a shower a second thought. But imagine you’ve woken for your alarm for work and you step into the shower. It’s still dark and it’s a very cold winter day outside. You’re getting ready for work and all of a sudden the hot water turns into brown, smelly sludge, meaning you are no longer clean or even getting ready for work; you’re calling a professional in to sort your shower out! A home can become miserable and even uninhabitable if it is freezing cold and the water supply has failed, and the problem can just get worse and worse, with frozen pipes thawing and leaking and drains becoming backed-up with dirty water. Making sure you have a decent plumbing company on speed dial like is an essential to your home!

There’s a lot that can go wrong in the home when it comes to your plumbing and being vigilant about these issues is important. For example, you might not notice a broken radiator for months especially throughout the summer when the radiators are turned off, but once you turn your central heating on, a cold radiator will become incredibly obvious! You have to ensure that you bleed the radiator. To avoid any radiator related issues, test your radiators when the weather is still relatively pleasant, so you can bleed or clean them before you need your central heating and that way you can ensure you won’t run into any issues. Did you know that frozen pipes are among the most common winter home emergencies? These are also disastrous if they happen. Considering water has the unique talent of expanding when frozen, pipes can pop in the walls and under the sinks if the pipes freeze! When the water thaws out, the pipes then leak which in some cases can cause utter devastation to a home. Doing this removes any air that is trapped within the radiator and allows the hot water within the radiator to circulate properly. Getting the radiators cleaned properly at least once a year will help with any blockages.

Well insulated pipes are a must when it comes to your home and making sure that you have cavity wall insulation can make such a difference to your wallet should the worst happen. Be extremely careful when defrosting pipes as you can cause unnecessary damage – best to call in a professional to help! By making sure you don’t pour grease and oil down the drains, you can make sure that you don’t cause a blockage. Fat and grease dropped down a drain can cause a substantial blockage and can completely block the drains and pipes in the cold weather if it freezes. Using drain unblocker every few months will keep your drains free of debris and using drain covers over baths and sink plugholes will mean less hair and soap debris goes down the pipes and can be binned instead.

Why Now Is Time To Buy Abroad

It’s the end of the high season for holiday home owners across the UK, and it’s also a great time to start thinking about becoming an owner with if you aren’t already. The popularity of letting out holiday homes has only grown in recent years, and more and more people are starting to realise how rewarding buying a holiday let can be.

Buying a holiday let with is a big decision to make, we understand that, so to help you along the way we’ve written a list of 5 great reasons you should get into letting a holiday home. There’s currently a huge boost in UK tourism. UK residents are increasingly choosing to stay on these shores for their holidays. With the recent economic turbulence, Brits are visiting areas around the UK (and spending their money) rather than hopping on a plane and heading abroad.  A recent survey by Great Britain Tourism found that visitor numbers increased by 12% in the first half of 2015, and the indication is that that number hasn’t been shrinking since. As well as Brits, tourists from further afield have also been heading to the UK in their droves. The recent EU referendum led to a large drop in the pound, which meant that visiting Britain became a lot cheaper for international visitors, who in return spent more.

Let’s be realistic, everyone loves the idea of being their own boss. With a holiday home you could make that a reality! You can decide your working hours, control your calendar, and decide how you want to run things. Buying a holiday let can also be great if you’re retired but aren’t quite ready to give up working completely as those summer months are bound to keep you on your toes. On large properties, you can earn up to £30,000 a year. That’s a fantastic earner, particularly if the holiday let is a side project. As well as rental income, you can offset expenses including full mortgage interest against the rental income if you operate under the ‘furnished holiday letting’ rules. You can also get entrepreneurs’ relief, which cuts any potential capital gains tax take to 10%.

Your holiday let won’t just benefit you, it’ll benefit your local area. Guests staying in your property won’t be sat inside all week, they’ll be out and about spending their money in local restaurants, shops, and attractions. In March this year, the industry saw a 23% increase in spending on last year – a fantastic boost for your local area and the great businesses that are based within it. If you live in a different area to your holiday let, there’s no reason you can’t take advantage of it! Treat yourself to a long weekend in your home-from-home and give yourself the chance to enjoy what you’ve created for your guests. Just be wary of friends and family who want to ‘borrow’ it for a week in July!

Making An Investment Abroad

Discover the potential advantages of overseas property investment and learn about the main differences between investing in property abroad and in the UK. You can find property with but why should you?

Why invest in overseas property?

If you’re considering how to invest your money, you may be attracted to overseas property by claims of better capital growth and higher rental yields than buy-to-let property in the UK. There’s also the added advantage of having your own holiday home which you can visit when it’s not being let out.

However, there are many responsibilities that come with letting a home and it may be harder to fulfil those responsibilities for overseas properties. It could also be tougher to get to grips with the different laws and taxes surrounding property ownership in a foreign country. You can get support when you buy with

Where to invest in overseas property

If you want your overseas property to be a good investment, it’s important to think long-term. 

Property experts will constantly highlight new markets they deem to be investment hotspots and you may be able to find bargains in countries where prices have fallen dramatically, but it’s often wiser to buy in more established markets. This will be a safer long-term investment and it’s likely to be easier to find a good mortgage deal if you need one. Our guide on mortgages for overseas property explains more. Make sure your property is in an easily accessible location with good local amenities and in an area popular with tourists. Don’t forget to take into account the holiday season in the area – many tourist destinations virtually shut down when it comes to the end of the season.

Find out what the going rate is to rent similar properties in the area to get a realistic idea of how much you could make. Or, even better, if the property you’re considering buying is already being rented out, find out how much the current owner charges and how many weeks per year the property is occupied for.

Finding tenants for your overseas property

Attracting business and managing the property yourself could be difficult, especially if you’re in the UK most of the time. It can be a good idea to market your property through a local estate agent but you will need to take its fees into account, especially if you want the agent to manage the property. Cheaper marketing options include dedicated holiday lettings websites. Word of mouth through family and friends is another good way to find potential paying guests.

Rental income

You must pay income tax on rent you receive. You can deduct some expenses from your rental income to reduce taxable profits, but only those that relate to your lettings business (not to personal use). You will also need to make sure the property is up to a certain standard.  Factor in cleaning costs, maintenance costs and the possibility of void periods when deciding whether overseas property investment is for you.

Bed and Breakfasts in St John

There are plenty of places to stay on the island of St John and among all the fun and games on the island itself, as well as the beautiful beaches, there are some fantastic bed and breakfasts to stay in. In this guide, we cover some of the best bed and breakfasts available.

  • Hillcrest Guest House. Nestled in St John’s residential area 2 stories above Cruz Bay on the crest of the hill, minutes from the beach and the US National Park. There are vacation rental suites and all six of these suites have air conditioning, screened lounges, kitchenette, free wi-fi and complimentary breakfast items to wake up and enjoy. Beautiful beach views and close by to restaurants and shops, this is one not to miss out on.
  • Tree Tops. Economical accommodations that can be booked by visiting and whether you enjoy hiking any of the many ruin-studded trails on St John or raising a glass at one of the many world famous beach bars, you can stay here. Two and a half miles from the Cruz Bay ferry dock, it’s close to the Reef Bay and North Shore Beaches. There are lush valley views and it’s an alternative to most other expensive suites.
  • Lavender Hill Suites. For the vacation of a lifetime, visiting the beautiful St John vacation rental where memories are made. Affordable one and two bed condos where you will find the comfortable amenities, private decks and convenient full kitchens that make suites popular with savvy travelers. Cruz Bay villas are also fitted with portable coolers, beach chairs and towels!
  • Coconut Coast Villas. Originally built as condos for local residents, the nine suites are designed for convenience and comfort. Located in a quiet family neighbourhood, the property is ocean facing and is a ten minute stroll from the nearby shops. Great rates and great beaches nearby with fantastic, authentic foods available to you. The national park and daily activities available to you are second to none and you would be able to plan your hikes.
  • Garden by the Sea B&B. the quintessential Caribbean home, bright, colourful walls, local art and paintings, lush gardens with coconut and banana trees you really couldn’t ask for more. The sun sets over a salt pond bird sanctuary every evening and the sun rises to the crowing of the neighbouring roosters. The B&B is ten minutes walk from the beach and you will be served a delicious breakfast each morning on the tropically shaded veranda, where you will be delighted by the bananaquit birds and geckos that roam freely. You can plan your day around where you’re staying and you would just love the area here.

There are plenty of affordable places to stay on St John islands and you can really get a great mix of scenery, shopping and nearby festivals. If you’re a beach lover especially, choosing a bed and breakfast is actually surprisingly easy!

Selling Your Holiday Home

Looking at selling your holiday home after years of welcoming paying guests? Whether you’re selling your treasured property to move on to pastures new or ready to retire from holiday letting, there are a few things to remember when it comes to putting your holiday home on the market as a going concern. You may have had some fantastic world property deals at your fingertips so selling your home would be an excellent idea if you are looking at branching out to other holiday homes for sale abroad.

Consider timing when selling your holiday home

Having provided self-catering accommodation to the tourism trade you’ll know how important the peak season is to your holiday letting business, so it’s essential you take this into account when it comes to selling your holiday home to any potential buyer.

Putting your property on the market in the middle of the summer can be problematic; how will people be able to view the property when it’s occupied?  It can also mean that by the time the deal is done they’re into the winter months, and a further six months until the peak season (and revenue) rolls into town again. Ensure you give yourself and potential buyers plenty of time to exchange contracts and get prepared for the peak letting season. Talk to your holiday letting agency and discuss how you can work together to sell your home as a going concern. Speak to local estate agents in order to find out when the most popular and appropriate times are to sell holiday homes in the area.

Property information

Marketing your holiday home correctly could be the key to maximising the interest you’re able to gain. Alongside property specifics, we recommend creating an information pack with a break down of the business’ ins and outs, especially if you’re selling as a going concern.


As obvious as it may seem, presentation is key when it comes to selling your holiday home. Potential buyers will not only be looking at the property for themselves, but more importantly on behalf of their visitors. Welcoming viewings after a long summer season when your holiday home is feeling and looking weary mightn’t do your property justice, so if it does require maintenance or a lick of paint, ensure these tasks are completed before putting it on the market.

Specialist holiday home insurance

If selling as a going concern, potential buyers will want to know about the property’s insurance history. Never made any claims? By highlighting this, it provides reassurance about the holiday home and your visitors. If you have had claims for flooding then you’ll be required to declare those to the new owners. Once the property is about to change hands we’re able to make all of the adjustments to your holiday home insurance to ensure you and your buyers have one less item to worry about.