I’ve moved a fair few times over my lifetime and I’m sure I can speak for most people when I say each and every transaction had at least one or more hitches along the way that caused stress and anxiety.
This can be down to finding the right estate agents in central London to sell your home (not just the one you have the most synergy with), how to know you’re getting the best price and not under-selling it, what to do with your property to prepare it for sale and maximise the return, problems with a survey and what that actually means, a moving chain breaking, getting the timings right for you and your family as well as your buyer, problematic paperwork (like escalating ground rents and compliance with fire cladding on taller buildings), or the buyer renegotiating terms at the last minute.
All of the above can lead to stress and worry which, unless it is foreseen, can put any seller under pressure. This is why it’s imperative you have not only the agent that can get you the best price, but one who knows how to handle a property transaction and manage the process to make sure things don’t go wrong.
Let’s look at each point and how a properly run transaction looks like.
This is often done by choosing a company or person who you like and who instils the most confidence, but often the proof is in the pudding. To get a better idea of their capabilities, you should be looking at the £per sq ft they achieve, Google reviews (which generally can’t be tampered with) as well as their knowledge of the area and your street/building. The best way, which I mentioned in a previous blog, is to employ two agents on a joint sole agency agreement. This will enable you to have two agents fighting it out for the deal, ensuring you get the best price and not just the best deal that one agent could find. Often a joint sole agency doesn’t cost much more than a normal sole agency, so do your homework and find two who will give you good coverage and lots of property experience to help you through the transaction process. Joint sole agencies can also work where agents split the fee, with a larger proportion going to the agent that agrees on the deal.
Without a doubt making a few minor amendments can really make a big difference in any property sale. This can be whitewashing the walls, removing personal photographs to make it feel more like the property of a new buyer, removing some furniture to make it less cluttered and feel larger, adding some fresh flowers in the garden or terrace, or in some cases making a deal with the tenant (if you have one) where they keep the property clean for all the marketing photos and viewings, for an incentive like amazon vouchers.
Checking in with a surveyor straight after the survey is a good idea to make sure they haven’t spotted anything they may mention in the report that might need investigating. If they do, then you should be proactive and get this work completed in readiness for the surveyor's report. That way time isn’t lost and the seller and the agent already have a plan on how to tackle any issue the report highlights. If the buyer has their own report completed, you can often compare the advice given.
Again, this can be foreseen as long as the agent is in regular touch with the solicitor, rather than just checking things are ok actually asking the right questions to spot a bump in the road ahead of time. Most things have a solution, so the selling team (the agent, the seller and the seller’s solicitor) should work together to resolve any surprise the buyer may receive. There are insurances to cover some issues otherwise careful negotiation might be required to keep the buyer motivated and onside in some instances.
When there is little to substantiate a reduction in price, these need to be handled well. Some buyers are opportunistic and as we have seen post-COVID-19, some are using the pandemic as an excuse to try for a last-minute reduction. Managing this can be difficult and will depend on each seller’s personal circumstance. Moving can be very emotional and some buyers know this, which is why they will request a reduction at the last minute.
Hudsons central London estate agents provide trusted property advice and look to exceed your expectations at every door, so if you have any questions regarding any of my blogs or would like a one-on-one chat with me, please click on this link to arrange a call https://calendly.com/jonhudson--trusted-property-advice/15min or email me on Jonathan@hudsonsproperty.com
I am available to talk through any part of the home selling experience and share with you my experience, having worked in the industry for more than 30 years.