Tuesday, 3 October 2017

5 Dementia-Friendly Design Principles

David Phillips’ resident expert in inclusive design, Victoria Bellerby, shares some of her guiding principles on creating dementia-friendly spaces…

Following the ‘Doing Dementia Design 2017’ conference in Liverpool, it seems like the perfect time for me to share some guiding principles on how to design for people living with dementia. Research into best practice in designing for independent living is a trending issue and the ‘Doing Dementia’ conference focused heavily on encouraging inclusive design in all elements of life.

The department of health estimated in 2016 that there were approximately 800,000 people in the UK with dementia, and this number is expected to double within the next 20 years. The conference reiterated our stance that there is a need for society to do more to understand the role of design in helping people with dementia to lead independent lives. Dementia is a hidden disability and people who experience the everyday challenges of living with the disease can often feel isolated and confused.

As a sector specialist, part of our dedicated furnishing offering at David Phillips is to provide design services focussed on dementia, social housing, retirement living and student accommodation providers. We’ve been working in the sector since 1967, and over the last five years have responded to increased market demand for well designed, inclusive living schemes. We have worked with many organisations who house residents with varying degrees of dementia, to design living spaces that support independent living.

The design principles

Early onset dementia symptoms can be untroubling at first, but can have significant repercussions on day-to-day physical and mental health, and wellbeing. There are, however, things that can be kept in mind when designing spaces that can help make everyday life a little more manageable.

  1.  Be spatially aware: The first step should be to define the space and its purpose. It is important to consider the flexibility and adaptability of the area, and to create a space that will encourage activities.
  2. Declutter (and, specifically, don’t add clutter): Remove unnecessary books, ornaments and furniture. Often these things can be confusing and distressful for a person living with dementia. By removing these objects and replacing them with useful tools, we declutter the space and help improve mental wellbeing.
  3. Keep it light: There has long been scientifically proven value in natural light (check out some stats here) and this is especially important when considering lighting for people living with dementia. Maximising natural light in the home and communal areas will encourage activity and confidence.
  4. Wayfinding and signs: Make everyday objects noticeable and easy to access. For example, swapping wooden cupboard doors for transparent panels reduces confusion by making cupboard contents visible. Effectively positioned signs can also be helpful reminders of an objects purpose, along with being a directional aide.
  5. The great outdoors: Encourage access to outdoor spaces with lots of plants, trees and exposure to the natural environment. However, it is important to keep transitions in flooring streamlined and to avoid trip hazards. It also important to limit changes in surface heights and distinct colour contrast as this may inhibit movement due to fear of falling or perception difficulties.
So, the key takeaways when planning your dementia-friendly areas are to remember to design the space well to encourage activity, keep the rooms clutter free and flood those spaces with natural light. Make sure that both everyday objects and spaces are easy to find using transparent panels and clear signage, and finally, create those wonderful, inclusive outdoor spaces. 

Concerned that your scheme isn’t meeting its potential? Speak to one of our specialists today and we can help you to identify areas for design improvement:

Wednesday, 5 July 2017

LGA Annual Conference and Exhibition

We're pleased to be exhibiting at the LGA Annual Conference & Exhibition this week!

LGA 2017 is the biggest event in the local government calendar, attracting over 1,300 delegates, 130 speakers and 120 exhibitors.

The conference is a must-attend event for council leaders, councillors, chief executives, and senior officials as local government joins representatives from central government, business, the media and the voluntary sector to discuss policy issues of the day. This year is also the 20th anniversary of the LGA, which will be marked by celebrating the work of local government and debating the opportunities ahead.

Find us and speak to the team at stand B25!

Monday, 19 June 2017

Housing 2017 & PFH Live 2017

We can't wait to exhibit at Housing 2017 and the PFH live event from 27-29th June!

CIH (Chartered Institute of Housing), the independent voice for housing and the home of professional standards, hosts Europe's largest housing event across 3 days, welcome 200 speakers, 300 exhibitors and 1,500 delegates.

The PFH (Procurement for Housing) Live event takes place alongside Housing 2017 at Manchester Central.

PfH Live is putting on 3 days of procurement focused content, seminars and masterclasses right in the heart of the show floor to create a complete and unbeatable event for senior level procurement professionals to debate, discuss and network and learn, all in one place.

Make sure you stop and say hello - we will be exhibiting on stands F20 and P80!

CUBO Summer Conference

We are excited to be sponsoring and exhibiting at this year's CUBO Summer Conference!

CUBO is the professional association for senior managers in higher education whose responsibilities include the strategic development, management and administration of an institution's commercial business. 

This year’s CUBO conference will be held at the University of Kent, in the historic city of Canterbury, and the theme is “Punch above your weight."

Visit stand 33 to meet the David Phillips team and view our exciting, new student products!

Wednesday, 1 February 2017

New Rental brochure available now

We are pleased to announce the launch of our 2017 Rental brochure! 

Whether you need to fully furnish a house or require just one or two items, this brochure showcases the type of furniture that we can provide on a short, medium or long-term basis for the majority of properties - we make the process of providing temporary furniture swift and easy. 

This service is particularly popular with relocation agents and corporate clients – with whom we work closely – to provide them with a seamless and effortless way of furnishing a property prior to the moving date. We also supply rental furniture to those looking for a convenient short-term furnishing solution – perhaps while waiting for other furniture to arrive or reconfiguring part of their property to accommodate visitors or relatives.

Whatever your furniture needs, we can provide - take a look at our Rental brochure online http://ow.ly/lfoJ308xvJR

Monday, 30 January 2017

David Phillips Interior Trends

Our talented designers bring you this month's David Phillips Interior Trends:

Revival of Terrazzo 

- Is Terrazzo the new marble? Terrazzo originated from 15th century Venetian marble workers, who set marble remnants in clay as an affordable and stylish material. It’s beauty and durability is making it a popular revival in interiors, from elegant staircases to contemporary light pendants.

Thursday, 26 January 2017

NAEA National Conference

David Phillips is pleased to be attending the National Association of Estate Agents National Conference this year. 

The NAEA National Conference takes place on 9th February in London, and is a must attend event within estate agent industry in the UK. This event provides invaluable insight into key industry issues and the latest trends and developments in the property sector.

Business owners, senior management and specialists from across a wide variety of customer facing roles attend the conference to listen to expert keynote speakers, learn about the latest business trends, and receive updates on the current political landscape and legislative issues.
Visit http://ow.ly/qGOL3084NfU for the full list of exhibitors and speakers.

Thursday, 12 January 2017

David Phillips Student Catalogue 2017

David Phillips Student is pleased to announce the launch of their 2017 Student Catalogue. We have the broadest range of assembled and installed furniture available in the UK - selected to enable you to present your property in the best possible way. 

Our new catalogue comprises over 4,000 items of furniture, appliances and furnishing accessories across a wide rage of prices and design styles, and is suited for communal spaces through to large-scale developments. Our brand new Series 67 modular furniture range is also available.

Our collection of furniture, accessories, appliances and window treatments, along with our turnkey furnishing services, represents the most comprehensive available.

Take a look online http://ow.ly/mSsV307VAtS or order your hard copy here: http://ow.ly/SXRq307U4Xk

Monday, 19 December 2016

Series 67

To celebrate fifty years of supplying furnishings to student accommodation providers (originally under the PeelMount banner), we commissioned international furniture designer Nathalie de Leval to design a range of contemporary modular furniture suitable for both refurbishment and new-build schemes in all types of residential and contract settings – especially student accommodation. 

For the designer, thinking about the student experience of the students was fundamental to the design. Even given the tight constraints of the materials - predominantly melamine faced chipboard and cost, she was determined to give the same level of care and consideration to the design to create furniture that feels warm and inviting, helping to create a home away from home for the students. This has led to a design that sits as comfortably in a residential setting as it does in a student bedroom.

The modular furniture is based on a system of low plinths or plinths with legs onto which are fitted the different units; wardrobes, chests of drawers and shelving, in different arrangements to suit the size and shape of any room. All the units are designed on a grid to ensure that however they are put together there is a consistency in terms of heights and depths, creating calm, clean lines in even the smallest rooms. Long, solid oak handles bring a moment of warm natural material just where you feel it. The result is a range of furniture whose design is both contemporary and timeless.

Series 67 will be available in our 2017 Student catalogue, coming soon. If you can't wait, you can pre-order your copy now by visiting http://davidphillips-student.com/request-a-2017-catalogue

Monday, 5 December 2016

Student Accommodation Awards 2016

David Phillips Student are pleased to be sponsoring Property Week's first annual Student Accommodation Awards, taking place on Wednesday 7th December. We are also exhibiting at the event - find us at stand A7 & A8.

Following on from the Student Accommodation Conference, the Awards is comprised of 8 specialist categories aiming to award those who are excelling within their sector:

University halls of residence
Private halls of residence
Personality of the year
Student experience of the year
Developer of the year
Professional team of the year
Operator of the year
Investor of the year

David Phillips Student is the proud sponsor for the "University halls of residence" category.

 For more information, or to book your place, please visit: http://ow.ly/R782306OlKJ

Wednesday, 30 November 2016

We won!

Congratulations to our interior design team at Milc for winning 'Supplier of the Year - Furnishing' at the annual Landlord & Letting awards! 

We are immensely proud of this award as it is a fitting testament to Milc's continuous hard work and commitment. 

Award-winning design-led furnishing company Milc joined the David Phillips family in 2015 - bringing with them over 10 years of property experience.

Milc carries out bespoke show homes, home staging and high end interior design, and supplies premium furniture packages and interiors to an impressive range of clients. Focused on achieving quality and excellence, we lead a team of stylists and installation specialists to bring innovative luxury interiors to the UK property market.

This award is an outstanding achievement and a great success for the David Phillips Group.

Monday, 7 November 2016

2016 finalists for the Northern Design Awards!

We're pleased to announce that we have been selected as finalists for the second year running at the Northern Design Awards. Our category is Residential Interior Design Project under £200k for our interior design work on Drapers Bridge Penthouse Apartment. We’re also incredibly proud of our in-house designer, Lauren Maylor, who is a finalist for Residential Interior Designer.

The interior scheme was produced by lead designer, Lauren, and was inspired by a contemporary take on ‘old meets new’ whilst complimenting the history of the building.

The initial brief was to provide an interior design proposal for the Penthouse Show Apartment to represent the ‘Drapers Bridge’ Project and the new direction of Crosslane Residential, by developing a scheme that reflects the heritage of the building, whilst fusing ‘old with new’. The main purpose of the project was to create an aspirational, iconic scheme that appealed not only to young city centre professionals, but also to downsizers and investors.

For more information on our interior design team, the work they do and our capabilitieshead to our website 

Wednesday, 20 April 2016

We're proud to announce that we have been featured in CityAM's Leap 100, a list of the most exciting, fast-growing companies to look out for in 2016. 

For more information and to view the whole list, head to CityAM's website: http://www.cityam.com/leap-100

Thursday, 10 March 2016

The Furnished Index Calculator

The David Phillips Furnished Index Calculator is here – a new, industry first tool to help investors, agents and property managers make more informed decisions about how and when to furnish their properties in order to maximise the returns on their investment.

"In fact, I haven’t seen anything as comprehensive as this before. The almost street-by-street detail is quite fascinating." - Liz Hamson, Property Week

We have worked closely with a number of agents to collect primary and secondary data that covers the entire UK, with information on the best furnishing practices across every postcode in the country. Using this information, the choice of whether or not to furnish and at what level is no longer a case of educated guesswork, but a case of simply using our easy to navigate calculator.

Our data shows that 50% of UK flats were let furnished in 2015, along with 32% of rental houses. Furnished flats achieved an average rent premium of 27% over unfurnished flats during the same period, while houses achieved a 15% premium. This shows that there are stark benefits to furnishing rental properties – however, there are regional considerations to be made. Only 2 of the 10 largest furnished postcodes were outside of London; RG1 and LS6 – two large student areas.

"I absolutely love the research. As an agent, this is really good for landlord education." – Roxanna Zea, Rentify

Furnishing inside London is almost a requirement – 82% of properties in travel zone 1 were offered furnished, with yield increase in the City as a whole of almost 60% for furnished properties. Inside the entire M25 there was an average yield increase of 16%, while outside of London 24% of properties see no rental premium from furnishing.

While it may seem that a furniture company recommending furnishing has a motive to encourage the purchase of furniture, we are as transparent as possible with our data – for 31% of postcodes in the UK there is little evidence of any benefit from furnishing, and if this is the case for your properties we will make this clear.

To start using the calculator now, head to our website.

To discuss the research in more detail or be sent the full report, please feel free to contact:

Ed Grant, Director, Agency & Developers

ed.grant@davidphillips.com, or 07584 528 925

For media enquiries, please contact: Richard Eagleton, Marketing Director

richard.eagleton@davidphillips.com, or 07713 507 143

Friday, 19 February 2016

Top tips for maintaining your appliances

Top tips for maintaining your appliances

Appliances can last a surprisingly long time provided they are regularly maintained and proper care is taken to prevent damage, the following recommendations will help you to ensure that they continue to be as useful as possible during their lifetimes, and may prolong their life:

  1. Clean refrigerator/freezer coils: Clearing dust and debris from the coils and fans located on the back of fridges and freezers will reduce stress on the motor, reducing the likelihood of it burning out and rendering your appliance unusable.
  2. Keep your washing machine door open: When not in use, leave the washing machine door open. This helps to discourage mould and mildew, which can render your machine unhygienic and unusable.
  3. Deodorise your dishwasher: To kill off unwanted bacteria and the unpleasant smells they cause, run a hot empty cycle with a bowl of white vinegar or dishwasher cleaner on the top shelf.
  4. Run a hot wash at least once a month: Run a wash between 60-90 degrees either empty or to sanitise dirty dish towels and cloths to keep your machine odour free. If you choose to run your washing machine empty, we recommend adding a cup of white vinegar to help break down limescale and detergent build-up.
  5. Convince your tenants: It can be hard to encourage tenants to follow best-care practices – but they are more likely to take care of one of our high-end appliances than a low-end model (and these tend to outlast their cheaper counterparts, too).
Unfortunately, even with the best maintenance and care, appliances can break unexpectedly and leave your tenants stuck – but don'y worry – our complete appliance delivery service can help. We stock a wide selection of value appliances perfect for tenanted properties, and with our FREE key collection service, your appliances can be ready to use without needing you to take time out of your schedule.

For more information, head to our website or call our team now on 08451 088 088

Friday, 29 January 2016

How can furnishing improve the likelihood of selling your property more quickly and at a higher value?

While the concept of home staging has been around for some time, it has become increasingly popular and more widely used and as reported last week in The Sunday Times, finishing touches are especially important factors in the decision making process. Styling alone does have a large impact on viewers' reactions, but the biggest impact is always made by the complete interior scheme and choice of furniture.

David Phillips – the UK's largest furnishing services provider to the property industry – has become the leading 'dress to sell' provider, offering home staging for residential property sales and show homes for large-scale, residential developments.  
"David Phillips has a range of furnishing solutions to cover all sectors and levels of the market in order to provide a fast and efficient staging service to meet the varying needs and budgets of our clients. All of our installations are project managed by one of our dedicated rental stylists who ensures that each property is given individual care and attention, and that the finished solution enhances the property to its maximum." – Nicky Bloom, Director of Rental at David Phillips
Having recently joined forces with Milc Property Stylists, the David Phillips group provides home staging and show home services to agents, developers and homeowners across the UK – and increasingly in mainland Europe – with their service proving increasingly beneficial for properties with asking prices from under £250,000 to over £15 million. The David Phillips group, including Milc, has been instrumental in the sale of more than £350 million of property in the last 12 months alone.

"At Milc we provide innovative, tailored design solutions for dress for sale projects – from expansive 8 bedroom homes, to studio apartments. We are exceptionally client focussed and strive to achieve great results while maintaining a hassle free, personal service. A forward thinking design approach keeps our look fresh, and while we think big, no detail is too small." - Heidi Clark, Founder & Director of Milc Property Stylists 
It is shown that furnished homes perform better on the market, generally selling more quickly and closer to the asking price when compared to similar properties being sold without the benefit of staging – the before and after pictures from a recent David Phillips installation completed in North West London, below, highlight the effect this can have.

Home staging as a concept has taken a while to become popular in the UK – its benefits have been increasingly reported by a number of prominent outlets including the BBC and the Sunday Times. However, it is now an established part of the home selling scene in the US, where it is used extensively by both agents and independent sellers looking to maximise the potential of their property.

With David Phillips' help, home staging is as cost effective as it is convenient - a typical investment of between 0.5 and 1% of the property's value is required with the aim of boosting the final sale price, with homes we stage typically achieving around 98% of the asking price.

Whether you are selling your own property or represent an estate agency working with a large number of unfurnished properties, home staging could give you a much needed edge over the competition and help you to attract buyers.

For more information on Home Staging and for a no-obligation quote, visit either the David Phillips website or call them on 08451 088 088. 

More details about the services provided by Milc can be found here.