4 Tips To Increase The Chances Of Selling Your London Home
When you decide to sell your home, there are a number of factors that should be considered in order to do this in the most efficient way possible. Failing to consider the following tips could be a key factor as to why your property has not generated any genuine interest. So, let’s take a quick look at what you can do to make sure you are getting the most out of the process.
- Estate Agents - Who will represent you?
One thing is for sure- selling a property takes time, knowledge and negotiating skills. You should choose an estate agent that most resonates with you & that feels right. Although, you will also need to make a decision based on the terms they are offering as each estate agent will be different. Some things to ask or points to consider are-
- What fees do they charge and what is their commission rate? Some agencies will charge you a fee and also take a commission percentage. Some will only charge you a commission fee on a ‘no sale, no fee’ basis.
- What type of contract do they offer? It is worth while establishing whether you are wanting to advertise with multiple agents or not. If you feel like you want to instruct multiple agents, you will need to understand the small print about the ‘sole agency’ term. This means that some agents will tie you in for a minimum 6 week period being the only agent to market your property.
- Do they have experience in selling homes similar to yours? This is always handy to know for peace of mind, however, doesn’t always necessarily tell you if an agent will be better at selling your property.
- Which platforms do they use to market your property? Many agents will list on sites such as Zoopla, or, will have alternative tech solutions for generating interest. It is worth understanding where they will be listing your property and how these portals benefit you.
- Will they carry out viewings of your property, and if they will, is there an extra charge for this? Some agents will offer a very low fee, but they will add on hidden charges for things such as collecting keys, conducting viewings, processing paperwork etc. So, what may initially sound like a good deal, could end up costing you more.
- Are they affiliated with reputable trade bodies such as the National Association of Estate Agents? This is incredibly important in order to ensure that if any issues arise, you will have the mediation of a reputable trade body.
- Time Of Year - Does this matter?
Believe it or not, there are actually good and bad times of the year to sell your home. Any good estate agent will be able to guide you through this and advise you of the best possible timing. One thing to remember is that the first 7 days of marketing are the most important. This is when your sales listing will have the most impact and appear more often on the portals. So, let’s take a look at the best times of year to sell your property-
So Spring is traditionally a good time to sell as the market tends to be busier with potential buyers. Properties will also tend to shower better thanks to the nicer weather & natural light.
If you have a garden this will likely be in bloom, which makes it seem more attractive (even if it may be a little overgrown). Families are more likely to input an offer on a home in order to coincide with the end of the academic year.
A great time of year in terms of maximising how well the property shows i.e. sunshine, lots of light. However, the school holidays could pay a factor stalling transactions with family buyers.
In lieu of this, it is best to try to get your home on the market as early as you can.
This is traditionally considered a good time to sell. There are no major holidays approaching.
You still have some glimmers of the better weather also, so you are still able to maximise your properties showing potential to an extent. However, it’s a good idea to get your property on the market as early in Autumn as possible- buyers & sellers don’t necessarily desire to exchange over Christmas!
With darker nights, colder temperatures & rain, winter is considered to be a tougher time to sell. Not only is winter a more expensive time of year in the UK because of Christmas, a lot of us also jet off abroad for some winter sunshine. It would be a good idea to try and put your home on the market in the New Year instead. Again, your first week of marketing is the most impactful- so be sure to choose a time where people will be actively looking.
Whilst the above are generic recommendations for time of year, it is also worth speaking to your estate agent to see what the market is doing, as this tends to naturally eb and flow.
- Appearance - is beauty in the eye of the buyer?
A common misconception is that smartening up your home is not worthwhile, if you are going to sell it. This is not always the case, especially if you are looking to sell the property as quickly as possible. Try to disassociate yourself from the property- try and view it from a fresh perspective. If you were going to buy this property, what would you change to make it show better? Whilst you don’t necessarily have to undergo major works, you can take the following steps-
- Deep Clean
It is worthwhile investing some time into deep cleaning the house. This can either be by yourself with some help with family & friends, or, you can hire a professional company. The areas you should pay attention to most are the grimiest areas such as the kitchen & bathroom. These often collect the most dirt i.e. between tiles (grouting), mastic may require a good bleaching to appear cleaner, lime scale removal especially in London. Do any walls in high traffic areas require a little rub down with some sugar soap? Could cleaning the windows let in more light, allowing rooms to appear more spacious? The small things are what can really make a difference.
Get rid of any unnecessary clutter. If you have a second bedroom that is a ‘storage room’, sort through it and clear it out. Clutter can make even the most spacious rooms appear a lot smaller. This will also benefit you when you need to move out, ensuring you spend less time packing useless junk. A more refined room will also help potential buyers to really visualise the space and what they would do with it.
- Small Maintenance
Every home has that wobbly door handle, leaky tap or those lightbulbs you don’t care to replace. It might be an idea to stop putting these odd jobs off and finally get started. These could be the small details that put buyers off, especially those who are ideally looking for a property they can live in right away. Whilst these tasks may appear as small and unimportant, they could be the finishing touch that really brings a room together and without fault. Remember- you must try to see your property from a fresh set of eyes and notice the unnoticable.
- Pricing- Be Realistic.
As you may well already know, some agents will happily tell you that your property is the best thing since sliced bread and significantly over value it. This is a tactic used by some agents simply to win an instruction (remember, we spoke about sole agency entitlement above). Now, if you have time to kill and don’t wish to sell up so quickly, you may well be inclined to try your luck.
However, if you are wanting to sell fast, your best bet is to be realistic about the pricing & listen to advice from agents about the local market value, and how the market is performing. Something to remember is that over valuing a property when it first goes to market only wastes time and your listing becomes less effective with each passing day. Any good estate agent will be able to tell you realistically what you are likely to achieve and give you comparables to the local area (usually within 1 mile radius of your property).