Step By Step
Selling property – the process
You know how great your home is, but when you sell your property, you have to convince someone else.
We’ve got buyers looking for flats and houses for sale in the area right now. We’ll show them your property online, in the press and in our office. The selling process can seem complex, but we’ll use all our experience to make sure it runs smoothly. Here’s our quick guide to the main steps.
Spruce up your home
We get so used to the places we live in that it’s sometimes hard to see them through others’ eyes. But if you want a successful, quick sale, that’s exactly what you have to do and first impressions count for a lot. A few hours spent making your property look its best or even spending a bit of money to clear up some niggling problems could add to the price you get from a buyer. Here’s a few tips to get you started
Making your home more saleable
- Think like a buyer – don’t overlook flaws just because you don’t mind them or you’re used to them
- Reduce clutter – get rid of everything but the bare essentials
- Decorate neutrally – buyers need to be able to see it as their own home
- Keep it light – clean the windows and use light colours
- Outside and in – buyers will often walk or drive past first, and fresh paintwork and well cared for outside spaces make a great first impression
You’re ready for your estate agent to start showing buyers round.
Get your Home Information Pack
A Home Information Pack (or HIP) collects together many of the documents a buyer needs. We can take care of your HIP for you. The main elements of the pack are
- Energy Performance Certificate – assesses the energy efficiency of the property from A (best) to G (worst), and gives information on how to improve it
- Sale statement – gives the name of the of the seller or sellers, the address of the property being sold and whether it’s freehold or leasehold
- Registered title documents – details from the Land Registry of the owners, any specific covenants and a map showing the property and its exact boundaries
- Unregistered title documents – some properties that haven’t been sold for many years aren’t registered with the Land Registry, though this is quite rare these days. If a property has an unregistered title, the pack must include similar information to registered properties, but it may come from a number of different sources
- Search results – standard searches reveal issues that might affect the property now or in the near future, such as drainage routes, potential flooding, or any planned development
- Property Information Questionnaire (PIQ) – this is issued by the HIP provider and must be completed by the seller. It provides information relating to the ownership of the property and details about services such as council tax and the utilities
- Leasehold information – a copy of the lease
Agree the sale
As your estate agent we will start to generate offers from interested buyers. We will present each offer to you and negotiate on your behalf to get the best result.
Here’s what information we will discuss with you:
- Price – how much are the buyers offering to pay?
- Are they in a chain? If a buyer is still trying to find someone to purchase their home, you will be dependent on their successful sale. It can be quicker to sell to first time buyers, investors, or people who have already sold their previous place.
- Your position – are the buyers able to move in time to suit your plans and timescale?
- Should you accept? Ultimately the decision is yours, but we’ll provide all the help and advice we can to help you make the right decision.
Once you’ve accepted an offer we’ll pass on the good news to your buyer and start drawing up the paperwork.
Up to exchange of contracts
Your buyer will provide us with their solicitor’s details, which we will pass on to your solicitor, so they can get on with drawing up the contracts. The next stage is where the buyer and their mortgage lender carry out any valuations and surveys on the building and check that everything is as it should be with the paperwork. It’s quite normal for a few queries to be raised, so this stage can take a little while.
When this stage is complete, you’re ready to exchange contracts and set a completion date, when the money gets transferred, and the property legally changes hands, the conveyancing process will be complete. Completion is normally two weeks later, but can be earlier. It might even be possible to exchange and complete on the same day if you need to. Leaving a gap gives you time to make arrangements for moving out and tie up any loose ends. After you’ve formally exchanged contracts, you’re legally obliged to sell the property to your chosen buyer and they’re obliged to buy it from you. You should plan to move out before your completion date. As soon as you have completed the sale the property belongs to your buyer and they can move in immediately.
Complete the sale
Completing the sale is usually as simple as getting a phone call from your solicitor telling you that everything has gone smoothly. This means both parties’ mortgages have been paid off and new arrangements put in place, the conveyancers have successfully arranged the legal transfer, and the property officially belongs to your buyer. Selling your property is now complete – congratulations!