Checklist For Selling Your Property
Hire an Estate Agent
Hiring an Estate Agent will help maximise your exposure to the market.
Invite a few estate agents to come and evaluate your property. Find out who sells the most in your area, and how many similar properties they’ve sold. Compare and find out who has the best selling record and marketing strategy.
At James Pendleton we promote your property to our existing customers and also put your property onto the main internet platforms, ensuring that your property is seen by as many buyers as possible. We’re experts in our neck of the woods and can proudly boast one of the best records when it comes to selling properties in and around SW London from Wandsworth and Clapham to Brixton, Balham and Battersea (and everywhere in between).
Work with your estate agent and communicate
Communication is key and honest feedback is a great source of truth that can lead to fast and profitable sales. Wherever possible ensure your agent hosts potential buyers for viewings, rather than doing the viewings yourself as the feedback you’ll receive will typically be more honest when the viewers are talking to a third party.
Always ask for the buyer’s feedback on your property. Remember to keep an open mind and take action from the feedback. Don’t feel offended by what someone else thinks of your property, see their thoughts as feedback rather than criticism.
Price your property effectively
Research your competitors in the area, have an idea of how much other properties in your area are asking for, so that you are not over- or underpricing your property. Then, compare your house to other properties. See what they have and what you don’t, and vice versa. Also, find out from your agent which properties in your area people are viewing.
Employ a conveyancing solicitor
Employing a conveyancing solicitor in the early stages of selling your home helps you get ahead of the legal process so you can move promptly once you have an offer. Normally people employ a solicitor once they accept an offer, but we like to stay on top of things. It’s better to be proactive, rather than scrambling for a solicitor after accepting the offer, as this will slow down the process. Our partners, Elite Conveyancing will be able to help find you a good solicitor.
Conveyancing is the process of legally transferring home ownership from the seller to the buyer. It starts with making an offer and finishes when you hand over the keys to the buyer.
Things to keep in mind:
- Hire a conveyancing specialist, instead of hiring any lawyer. A lot of people hire family members, we don’t blame them – but you may not know how much relevant experience they have. With a specialist, you can be assured that they are experienced in this field.
- Ask your friends for recommendations and research different solicitors. The more you have on your list the better.
- You need a solicitor who doesn’t only have good communication with the agent, but most importantly, with you. Your solicitor should be updating you every step of the way, making sure you are on the same page.
- Make sure your solicitor is working with your estate agent, rather than working against them. A good working relationship between your solicitor and your estate agent can help to ensure a speedy and satisfactory conclusion to your sale.
Remember to inform your Estate Agent and your solicitor what type of ownership you have of the property you are selling – do you have freehold, leasehold or share of freehold?
- Freehold: complete ownership of a piece of land, you hold full responsibility, permanently
- Leasehold: you own the property and land for a fixed period of time/length of the lease
- Share of freehold: allows freehold ownership of individual flats, houses and non-residential units within a building, a share of the freehold
Make sure your financial options are in place
Speak to a mortgage adviser such as SPF Private Clients or a financial adviser in order to make sure you have enough money for your next home, and that you have maximised the profit of your investment. You’ll need to find out how much you need to sell your property for in order to secure the property you want to buy.
Once your buyer puts an offer in, check their financial situation
It is very important to ask your estate agent to check the buyers’ financial situation. On 6 out of 10 occasions it turns out that the buyers can’t actually afford your property. According to who? Is this factually accurate? Is this even something we want to draw attention to?
Your estate agent should do a thorough background check on all potential buyers. Here at James Pendleton, we ensure that all buyers are vetted via our financial partners SPF Private Clients. This is to ensure that the buyer can afford the honour the offer they have made for your property.
Set out a timetable for exchange and completion
Once you have accepted an offer, it’s time to move to conveyancing. The process from offer to exchange and completion can take 3 to 4 months, or could be cut down to just a few days. Setting out a timetable in advance will not only keep everything on track – it will keep all information transparent between all parties.
Speak to your estate agent, find out what to expect next. The next steps will be mainly filling out documentation with the lawyer, exchanging contracts, survey period, mortgage valuation and finally handing over your keys. Work with your agent and plan out the process.
Make sure all parties understand what is happening, and what is going to happen. All contracts and signatures should ideally be digital, so there is no posting back and forth.
The final steps are the exchange of contracts and completion
Exchange of contracts means that all parties have agreed on the terms and conditions of the contracts including the moving date. The deposit is paid when the property exchanges.
Completion is often also the moving date, and the buyer has to pay the remainder of the amount left on the new property at this point. The buyer usually collects the keys on this date too.
Some Final tips for you:
- Share unique selling points of your property with your agents
- Make sure your house looks the best before all the viewings
- Communicate, communicate, communicate
- Keep an open mind
- Be flexible
We hope our guide helps you visualise the whole process and that you have some useful tips and tricks for selling your house.
If you are interested in the help to buy scheme or is a first-time buyer, look at our help to buy guide. And as always, you are welcome to give us a call and have a chat.