Thinking about selling your home?
Selling your house is likely to be something you have thought about for a while. You would have thought about all the obvious tasks, such as finding an estate agent, to looking for a removal company. Still, there are many things to consider to make life easier and less stressful during the house-selling process, as moving house is ranked as one of life’s top stressful things to do.
1, General Maintainance
One of the first things to do would be to get your property in excellent order, as first impressions are crucial. Start by considering what your property looks like from the outside; this is the first thing your prospective buyer will see. The driveway should be clean and clear to maximise curb appeal, and flowerbeds should be tidy. The entrance hall can be used to create that enticing first impression, especially with a new lick of paint. Decluttering is also an excellent way to unburden yourself from the things you don’t use anymore, and it also creates space, giving the appearance of a larger property. Consider getting all repairs out of the way before viewings commence. A door that doesn’t hang correctly, a dripping tap, or a broken light fixture, have these things repaired, as this will make your property even more desirable.
2, Estate Agent and Solicitors
Find the right Estate Agent. Your home will most likely be one of your most significant assets, so a good agent, whether on the high street or online, will be critical to a smooth and successful sale. They will handle the whole process by advertising your property in the best light, presenting it at its finest.
Finding a good agent is essential; asking around is the best way. Find out who sells houses in your area and get some all-important reviews. Compare different agencies' success rates, how quickly they sell their properties, and if the sale aligned with the asking price. You can sell your house via a multi-agency agreement where multiple agencies list your home. However, this will likely incur higher fees. Alternatively, you can sell your house yourself, but this is not for the faint-hearted or inexperienced; it requires hard work and dedication. One of the most critical and agonising decisions when selling your home will be what price to sell it for. It’s essential to do your research and understand what the local market is doing at that time. Buyers will likely offer 5-10% less than the asking price, so remember this when deciding on the initial figure. Once a decision has been made and you have chosen your agent, you must carefully and thoroughly review your paperwork and contracts before you sign.
Next, you’ll need a conveyancing solicitor to handle all the legal work of selling your home. It is wise to conduct some research to compare options and get the best quote. Estate agents can recommend solicitors, but they will often add on some hefty fees and take their commission for this.
3, Get an Energy Performance Certificate
An energy performance certificate (EPC) is a document that will rank your property in terms of energy sufficiency. When you want to sell your house, you must produce an EPC to show to potential buyers who may wish to purchase your property. An EPC must be commissioned before the house is put on the market. However, EPCs are not required for listed buildings.
4, Accepting your offer
You’ve received an offer- fantastic! You can decide whether you want to accept that offer or reject it. If the asking price is not met, you can ask your estate agent to negotiate on your behalf. Should you wish to accept the offer, you are entitled to change your mind, although this is called ‘gazumping,’ so bear in mind that this can be pretty distressing to the buyer. An offer is not legally binding until contracts have been exchanged. Once you have accepted an offer, your house will be marked as SOLD (SSTC) and taken down from the advertising platforms, a date and time to exchange will then be mutually agreed upon. Once contracts have been exchanged, the buyer is legally responsible for buying the house from you, and you are legally obligated to sell your home to that buyer.
5, Draft contract negotiation
You and the new buyer must decide on the time between the exchange and completion. Completion is usually between 7-28 days after the exchange of contracts. You will both need to decide on fixtures and fittings to be taken or left behind and whether the new buyers need to pay extra. Furthermore, the survey could flag potential problems with the property, so possibly some discounts will be offered. It is wise to take out contents and buildings insurance as you are responsible for the house throughout the selling process until completion.
Completion day is here! This is the most exciting day, but it can also be the most stressful day. You will need to have your house packed and your removal booked. Between exchange and completion, your conveyancing solicitor will work hard to prepare for this big day. Completion usually takes place late morning, early afternoon. That’s when money is transferred, the property you are selling becomes your buyers, and the property you buy becomes yours.
7, Moving out and Removal Services
You will be thinking about when to move out of your home and when to start packing the house up. You can move out on the day of completion. You will be packed up by now, and your house will be full of boxes. You can do this packing yourself or book the removal company to take on this task before move day, but that service will cost extra. Your removal company will have been booked and will usually arrive early morning to start loading the vehicle. Choose an experienced company that will take the stress out of moving day and quickly complete the process.
Some recommendations of who to inform when moving house. Click on the links to find out more.