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Carol Bryson MNAEA, Managing Director of JP Harll

All excellent question and ones we are frequently asked.

it really depend on your situation. If you decide to put your house on the market first, you may get an offer quickly, which is great! On the other hand, if you don’t find something that you like enough to put an offer on, then you’re stuck trying to decide whether to accept the offer and consider moving in with family or into rented accommodation. You certainly don’t want to be rushed into making a decision to purchase something that really wasn’t what you were looking for.

Another option is to look for a place that you like first, then put your house on the market. This way you have a new place to move to when your home sells. The downside to this is that it may take longer for your house to sell than you expect. We all believe that our homes will sell quickly because, after all we fell in love with it and bought it. We also develop an emotional attachment because of memories experienced whilst living there.

If the house you like proves to be popular and is in a desirable location, you will find that you are up against other buyers who may be in a better position than you. They may have already agreed the sale of their home, could be living with family or in rented accommodation or be first time buyers.

We all think our homes will sell quickly but it is dependent on current market conditions and the price level at which you are selling.

Imagine a pyramid and all the people who are looking to buy a property are in that pyramid. Divide that pyramid into 3 parts horizontally. Everyone who is looking to buy can afford all the properties priced in the lower third. The middle third has the buyers that can afford mid-range priced properties and the top third has the buyers that can afford more expensive properties. As you increase the price of properties, the fewer people can afford them. Which also means you have greater competition with other properties of a similar price because fewer people can afford them.

Therefore, the downside to waiting until you have found something is that it may take longer to sell your home than you thought, depending upon the price level you are selling at and you may ultimately lose your dream home.

Ultimately, it is up to you which option is best for your own particular situation.

Next week, we introduce our new free home finder service.