There are 87 shopping days to go until Christmas, and for many potential buyers out there, that includes shopping for a new home. According to Propertymark, the leading industry body for estate agents, the average time taken from offer to exchange has increased from the usual 6-8 weeks to between 13 and 16 weeks. Conveyancers, mortgage brokers and moving companies are still hectic, so ‘getting in by Christmas’ is only possible if action is taken now.
House prices rocketed to an all-time high of £262,956 in August and with interest rates low it’s now cheaper to move than it has been for years. If you would like to sell your home by Christmas, here’s how to give yourself the best chance of success:
Choose the right estate agent
That means someone with a track record of selling homes in the area just like yours. Whoever you choose, make sure that they have an extensive database of active buyers, that you’re happy with their local knowledge, and that they can tell you about the marketing strategy they have in mind for your home.
Set a realistic asking price
In our current property market where there are far more buyers than sellers, if a house sits on the market for long, the asking price is probably too high. Contact several local estate agents to get a range of prices and resist the urge to go with the highest one.
Ensure the property is sale ready
Once we’ve lived in a house for a while we stop noticing the flaws. Try to look at it objectively. Declutter and freshen up paintwork and ask for advice from friends and your estate agent. If they point out something that may put off potential buyers, do something about it before any viewings.
Contact a solicitor and ask them to prepare a draft contract so that when you accept a buyer’s offer you can immediately send one out. Dig out your property title deeds and the certificates for any work you’ve had done. Solicitors will also need to see ID so make sure all your documents are up to date.
Plan ahead for removals and storage
The housing market is still in a frenzy. Calling van hire, removals, or storage companies now will save stress later down the line when you discover that they’re all booked up. You can always change the date if you need to nearer the time.
Choose the right buyer
When you get an offer, make sure the buyer is qualified. In other words, that they can make good on their offer. Your estate agent should immediately ask to see a letter from a mortgage lender confirming that the necessary finance is agreed.
Local authority searches
Local authority searches are a renowned cause of delays and glitches in the selling process. Insist that your buyer contacts the local council as soon as you accept their offer.
Keep in touch
Have a daily call and/or email with everyone involved in the sale, from the estate agents to the solicitor, to keep up momentum and get the deal over the line.
If you are thinking of selling, you can easily book an online valuation of your home now, or contact our Milton Keynes or Towcester office and chat to one of our helpful team for some no obligation professional advice. Trust Mustard to sell your home and you could be pulling crackers in a new home this Christmas.