Selling your property - the process
Hudsons guide to selling your home
For a brief explanation of each step in the selling process simply click on each sub-heading.
If you require further information or advice please contact our office where our experienced staff will be pleased to help you.
The first step to selling your property is to appoint a local estate agent to value your home and make recommendations on pricing and timescales. It is important to obtain two or three opinions and to appoint an agent who is professional, realistic and who has successfully sold similar properties recently, as well as someone who really knows the local area.
Simon Bray, an experienced agent who has worked in the West End market since 2007, conducts the Hudsons market appraisals. To request a valuation of your property please call our office at 24 Charlotte Street on 020 7323 2277 or for lettings please call Robert Burwood on 020 7631 8700. Robert has worked in the Covent Garden area since 1996.
Alternatively you may prefer to complete the online appraisal section on our website which will give you a guide, however nothing is as accurate as a visit to your property as there are so many factors to take into account.
Remember, getting the price right is vital as an over inflated price can immediately hinder your propert's saleability and its launch to the market, which can leave you left on the market for months. At Hudsons we always back up our valuation based on comparable evidence, so if your agent cannot then they may not be the right one for you.
Generally the most popular ways in which estate agents can be appointed are:
1. Sole agency – giving instructions solely to one agent for a fixed period of time. The rate for sole agency is lower than a multiple agency rate since the agent has exclusive rights on securing a buyer for your home. N.B if you accept an offer from another agent during the exclusive period you may be liable to pay two fees.
2. Multiple agency – normally costlier than sole agency and is unlimited in regards to the number of agents you appoint. However, be careful not to list your property with too many, as some buyers may perceive this as a sign you are desperate to sell, which could affect the offers you receive.
Once you have signed terms with your agent your property will then be ready to be professionally photographed, and a floorplan taken. An EPC (energy performance certificate) will be required by law, however you may already have one if you have rented the property in the last 10 years. If not you can order one online or Hudsons can arrange that for you.
Once a draft brochure has been agreed you are ready to go ahead. Hudsons’ sales team will tailor our service to meet your property's needs. This will include a property-specific marketing campaign, maximising exposure of your property and ensuring we achieve the best possible price on a timescale that suits you.
Your property will also be uploaded to our website along with chosen property portals to showcase your home to a large audience of buyers as well as existing buyers who are on our extensive database.
Preparing your home for sale
Optimising your property's assets will ensure the best result, so it is beneficial to complete any odd jobs that have been outstanding prior to marketing (and photos being taken). Always try to visualise your property through the eyes of a buyer, inside and out. Buyers will often walk past your home before an arranged viewing so window boxes and fresh paintwork always create a good first impression. Reduce clutter, decorate neutrally and maximise light.
Hudsons will take professional photographs and create floor plans for your property. From these we can prepare property particulars and, subject to your approval, order an EPC (energy performance certificate) which is required by law. Hudsons can organise one of these for you, however if your property has been rented during the last 10 years your EPC may still be valid.
Appointing a Solicitor
When selling your home you are required to appoint a solicitor to handle the legal formalities involved in transferring ownership of your property. We advise that you do so as soon as you place your property on the market. This ensures that title deeds and any other necessary documentation can be obtained early on, saving considerable time and potential delay once a sale has been agreed.
If you do not have your own solicitor Hudsons will happily recommended one from our panel of trusted law firms.
We will accompany all prospective buyers to your property, and report feedback and interest back to you.
When we receive an offer we will discuss with you the value of the offer and what position the buyers are in (i.e. do they have a property to sell and is their finance arranged?) We will also discuss timescales for both parties and advise you of our opinion on the offer. All offers will also be confirmed in writing either by letter or email.
Any offers will be subject to contract and are not legally binding for you or the prospective purchaser.
Sale Terms Agreed
Once an agreeable offer has been received and accepted by you, we will write to all parties, including respective solicitors, in the form of a 'memorandum of sale'. This letter will include any other relevant conditions of sale.
This is the time when exchange and completion dates should be planned. It is important to ensure that details of extras you intend to include or exclude in the sale are specified in the memorandum along with target timescales for exchange of contracts.
Remember that nothing is legally binding (England and Wales) until contracts have been signed and exchanged.
The next step towards exchange of contracts
Once a sale has been agreed your solicitor will prepare and send to your buyer's solicitor a draft Contract of Sale together with a copy of the title deeds and other relevant documentation. Pre-contract queries are normally raised by the buyer's solicitor once they receive a draft contract and supporting documentation. A buyer meanwhile will be finalising their mortgage and or survey (if applicable).
Exchange of Contracts
Once the buyer has secured their mortgage offer (if applicable) and formalities have been completed, the vendor and purchaser will sign the contract. The deposit, normally 10% of the purchase price, is forwarded to your solicitor and contracts are then formally exchanged. At this stage the transaction becomes binding for both seller and purchaser and you are legally obliged to sell.
A completion date will be agreed on by both parties before contracts are exchanged and will usually be between two and four weeks from the date of exchange.
Shortly before, or on the actual day of completion, the balance of the purchase price will be transferred to your solicitor's account. Once the property has been vacated and funds received, your solicitor will confirm that completion has taken place.
Congratulations your property is now SOLD.