Patience is a virtue, but with something as potentially time-consuming as selling a property remaining patient can pose a challenge. While the exact figures change depending on the region, condition of the house, asking price and state of the market, it’s generally accepted that the entire process of selling a property in the UK will take between 8 – 12 weeks, if not more. With that said, the speed of sale isn’t entirely out of your control. It’s never advisable to rush the real estate process, but there are many ways you minimise delays and get your house sold as soon as possible.
Before You’ve Located a Buyer
Even before you’ve located a potential buyer there are ways to help speed up your property sale. Choosing an accredited, reputable and appropriate estate agent for your property type can be key to swiftly moving through the early stages of selling a house. An online estate agent may struggle to locate interested buyers if your property has a unique or niche appeal (proximity to local points-of-interest, a woodland location or beachfront view etc.), whereas an estate agent who specialises in your local area will be able to use their localised expertise in both locating buyers and achieving a higher final sale price. Additionally, your property’s asking price will determine how much interest it attracts from prospective buyers. Obviously, a lower asking price will lead to a quicker sale, but be careful: buyers may be suspicious of unusually low figures.
Particularly when selling via online real estate websites, high-resolution, professional images will make or break a potential buyer’s first impression of your property. An estate agent can help take photos of your property with professional cameras, at optimal angles and with ideal lighting, but even without professional assistance, there’s plenty of guidance to be found online for taking attractive property photos. Don’t overlook the importance of these photos: they’ll drastically reduce the time your property spends on the market.
House viewings are a necessary (and sometimes stressful) part of enticing potential buyers. During these stages of your property market journey, attending your house viewings will make a stronger impression on potential buyers and will make your property’s personality stand out far more than with solely estate agent-led viewings. This unique sense of personality will help make your house memorable and will therefore help it draw in more buyers at a faster rate.
Once You’ve Located a Buyer
With a buyer located, it can feel like the speed of the sale begins to move out of your hands. Thankfully, there are a number of things you can do at this stage to ensure the sale keeps moving at a steady pace.
The first of these, and one of the most important, is to keep on top of the various documents, pieces of paperwork and certificates needed as part of the conveyancing process. You’ll need to speak with your estate agent and conveyancer to settle on the exact documents required, but there are a number of forms that will almost certainly be needed of you, these include property title deeds, which prove ownership of a property; fittings and contents forms (TA10 forms), which detail exactly what’s included in the property; property information forms (TA6 forms), which inform the buyer of any issues, disputes, energy efficiency details, planning consents, alterations and more; Energy Performance Certificates (EPC), which assess your property’s energy efficiency and carbon dioxide footprint; and finally, any documents mentioned in the TA6 form will also need to be supplied. You can check if you property already has an EPC on the government EPC Register website (note that a new EPC is required every 10 years). Completing, collating and promptly supplying these documents will dramatically speed up conveyancing and the property sale as a whole. Contact your estate agent and conveyancer for assistance with matters involving paperwork; it can be confusing and overwhelming, but there’s a lot of support out there.
Unfortunately, selling a house is almost always a long, drawn-out ordeal involving staggered, irregular communication between seller, buyer and their respective representatives. (estate agents, solicitors, conveyancers etc.) You can help minimise this sluggish pace of communication by reaching out to all involved parties and keeping everyone in the loop and active throughout the entire selling process. Your estate agent should be able to support you with this, and a good estate agent might even be proactive in encouraging communication and not letting the sale grow stagnant. As part of remaining in regular contact with your buyer, it can also help to set a deadline for you both to work towards. While it doesn’t need to be strictly adhered to, having a general date in mind can keep both parties motivated in staying active and maintaining the sale’s momentum.
Sometimes, no matter how proactive and communicative all parties are, the process of selling a house can be slowed down or even halted by unavoidable circumstances. Examples of these include trouble locating paperwork, changes in your buyer’s personal circumstances or any number of unforeseen buyer-seller disputes. If selling your house quickly, reliably and hassle-free is of the utmost importance to you, you can consider selling your house with one of the reputable residential property buyers operating in the housing market. LDN Properties are a great example of one of these companies. In addition to offering free purchase valuations, LDN Properties will also complete as much necessary paperwork as possible and can buy your property at the exact timescale that suits you.
While residential property buyers are undoubtedly the fastest way to sell your property, it should be clear that even the traditional estate agency route can be sped up with the right combination of choices, actions and an overall proactive attitude. By choosing an estate agent that can best represent your property; presenting your property in the best possible light with good photos and memorable house viewings; staying on top of paperwork and official documentation; and keeping in contact with all involved parties, you can ensure that your property sale is as easy and quick as possible.