12 top tips to ensure you sell your home easier, quicker and save you money
Before putting your home on the market, see an Independent Mortgage Adviser, who offers ‘whole of market’ advice and not just from a restricted panel of lenders. See one who does not charge you for their advice and one who does not charge arrangement fees. Why pay up to £750 in unnecessary fees? Most, but not all estate agent’s mortgage advisers are tied to a panel, and most charge arrangement fees and they should be fully disclosed up front and not hidden within the paperwork. Ask what charges you will be liable for.
Whole of market’ means all the mortgages available on the market today from all of the mortgage lenders. If you go direct to a bank on the high street, you are only getting their own lending rates. You won’t know whether other lenders are cheaper unless you visit every single bank in the country. Hence, an independent mortgage adviser is a ‘one stop shop’ for the mortgage lenders.
Why see a mortgage adviser first? Because you want to know whether ‘now’ is the right time for you to sell. Are you in a financial position to repay your mortgage, your legal costs, your estate agents fees and your moving costs?
Are you tied in to your current mortgage deal? And, will you pay a penalty if you want to redeem it now? You also want to know how much you can borrow and whether you can afford the repayments if there is going to be an onward purchase.
You also want to know the best rates available – you might be paying it for the next 25 years.
The Conveyancing Process (the sale going through the legal system) approximately takes 10-12 weeks.
It is a good idea to contact a couple of solicitors or conveyancers for quotes (unless you have someone you already know and trust). See how they treat you. The cheapest is not always the best. Like all things in life – you get what you pay for.
You want to have a good relationship with all members of staff you deal with and speak to. So, if the receptionist is brusque or dismissive, they might not be the people for you. Remember, you are going to be dealing with them regularly for a couple of months.
When you have chosen your preferred solicitor, instruct them to act on your behalf. They will need to send out a client care pack and you will need to call into the office with your proofs of identity, address and possibly pay a small amount of money on account. They will then have to gather together the Deeds and associate paperwork and start working on a draft contact.
Acting early can save you several weeks during the purchasing process. Being prepared offers you and your solicitor time and reduce stress!
It is also possible to take out an insurance policy to protect yourself against the cost of abortive legal fees if a matter falls through. There are insurance companies online who do this and some solicitor practices offer this too.
Before going on the market, have a good clear out and get rid of things you don’t intend taking to your new home – don’t wait until you are on the market, or worse still, under offer to do something about it. This way, you are showing your home at its best and viewers are not having to look beyond your belongings to visualise the full space on offer.
If Tip 3 seems too clinical, can you pack items such as collectibles or family air looms and putting them into storage?
Again, depersonalisation and decluttering always give prospective buyers the chance to visualise their own possessions in your home and you have helped yourself by doing some packing up front.
If you are going to put things into storage, investigate now how much and where your items will be stored. Enquire as to whether it will be insured or if you will have to arrange your own. Be sure you will have access to your belongings if you wish to.
Investigate home removal companies and quotes now. They will need to visit your home to ascertain how many and the size of the vehicles they will need to move your possessions.
You can also discuss with them the level of service you require and the relevant costs. You can even get them to do all the packing if you want to.
Have you had any works carried out on your property since you bought it? Have you extended or altered it structurally in any way? If you have, did you obtain Planning Permission or building regulation approval? If you did you will need to pass the certificates on to your solicitor. If you have extended or altered your home without permission, contact your solicitor first. Contacting the council may jeopardise your ability to obtain indemnity insurance.
Very Friendly and helpful service
When we first met Carol and Charlotte, we immediately felt comfortable with their caring and professional approach. From day one, they and Jennifer provided an efficient, comprehensive service. They were assiduous, not to say dogged, on our behalf, chasing other agents and solicitors. They provided weekly updates on progress and always in a cheerful and good humoured manner. By the end, we felt part of the ‘family’.
Have you had any electrical work carried out since you bought your home?
If you have had a new fuse box or electrical circuit installed or altered any installations within bathrooms or swimming pools (anywhere near water), then you will have to provide an Electrical Safety Certificate to comply with Building Regulations: www.niceic.com.
Have you had a new gas central heating boiler or fire installed since you bought your home?
If you have, you will need to provide a Gas Safety Certificate to comply with Building Regulations. www.gassaferegister.co.uk
Have you had a solid fuel stove/burner etc installed since you bought your home?
If you have, you will need to prove a Solid Fuel Safety Certificate to comply with Building Regulations: www.hetas.co.uk.
You may also be asked if you have had your chimney swept recently – a receipt is all you need.
Have you had an oil central heating boiler installed since you bought your home?
If you have, you will need to provide a Safety Certificate for Oil Installation to comply with Building Regulations www.oftec.org.uk
Have you installed LPG fixed appliances into your home since you bought it?
If you have, you will need to provide a Gas Safety Certificate: www.gassaferegister.co.uk.
If you have a Septic tank, new regulations came into force in January 2015 and they are changing again from 1st January, 2020.
If you are selling a property with a septic tank, read up on the implications: at www.gov.uk.
We would like to thank you for reading our 12 top tips to ensure you sell your home easier, quicker and save you money. We hope that you have found it useful. If you have any queries regarding anything discussed, please get in touch.
In the meantime, we wish you a happy and easy home move.
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