Q. I want to sell a property. What do I do first?
A. First of all you need to receive a valuation to find out how much your home is worth. We recommend asking at least three different estate agents to value your home. Ask them about the services they offer, the current state of the local market, and the purchase price you can hope you achieve. Make and plan and how this sits with your priorities and timescales.
Q. How much will it cost to sell my property
A. There are three main costs involved in selling a property:
Estate Agent Fees
Estate Agent Fees will either be a percentage of the purchase price, or a fixed fee. When estate agents visit to value your home, make sure they outline their fees so you can take these into account.
Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)
You are legally required to provide an EPC when you market your property for sale. This outlines the energy efficiency rating of your property. Your Move can organise this for you. Contact your local branch for a quote for how much this will cost. In Scotland you will need a Home Report which includes an EPC.
‘Conveyancing’ means the legal transfer of your property to the buyer, and you will need to employ a solicitor to make this happen. Prices will vary depending on your circumstances. Your Move can introduce you to a solicitor and offer a no sale no fee conveyancing service with a guaranteed fixed price to keep everything easy. Contact your local branch to receive an accurate quote for how much this will cost.
You may also decide to pay for extras such as professional photography or advanced web positioning. And don’t forget about removals. Ask your agent to outline all these costs at the start of your sale so that you can budget your move.
Q. Do I need to conduct viewings?
A. Your estate agent should accompany all viewings, but you may decide that you’d like to be present. It’s really up to you.
Q. Will there be more viewings once I’ve accepted an offer?
A. This partly depends on the conditions of the offer. Remember, neither the buyer or the seller is bound to the purchase or sale until the contracts are signed and exchanged (in Scotland at conclusion of missives), so it’s worth keeping your options open.
Q. How long will it take to complete my sale?
A. Every sale is different. Both your position and the buyer’s position needs to be taken into account before this question can be answered accurately. If your home has been realistically valued, you should expect to receive offers within the first four weeks. Then, assuming your buyer has to apply for their mortgage, the exchange of contracts normally takes between 4 and 6 weeks and then completion is between 2 and 4 weeks later. So in total you should expect 12-14 weeks to complete the sale. Please note that in Scotland conclusion of missives normally takes between 6 and 8 weeks.
Q. Do I need an EPC?
A. In England, all sellers are required to purchase an EPC for a property before they sell it. Estate agents must display the EPC rating whenever they market the property.
In Scotland, the seller is required to purchase a Home Report, which is a more complete report detailing the condition of the property. An EPC is included in this report.
Q. What is conveyancing?
A. ‘Conveyancing’ is everything that needs to happen to legally transfer your home to the buyer. You will need a solicitor to make it happen. eFour Homes can introduce you to a solicitor. It’s a no sale no fee conveyancing service offered at a fixed price so you know where you stand.
Q. Do I have to pay Stamp Duty?
A. No. The buyer is responsible for paying Stamp Duty.
Q. Will my property be surveyed?
A. In England you do not need to arrange a survey, but it is likely that the buyer will, and so a surveyor will arrange an appointment to visit you home. The five key things a surveyor will be looking for are problems with utilities, damp, cracking, problems with roofs, and timber defects. In addition, your buyer’s mortgage lender will organise a mortgage valuation to confirm that the property is worth the money being lent.
In Scotland you must organise a Home Report for your property. A Home Report is a pack of three documents that give buyers a clear picture of the condition of the property for sale: the Single Survey which details the condition of the property; the Energy Report which gives the property an energy efficiency rating; and the Property Questionnaire which outlines other key information such as the property’s council tax band.
Q. What are searches?
A. As part of the conveyancing process, your buyer’s solicitor will perform searches of Land Registry and Local Authority information in relation to your home. They will be checking for planning history, and any potential developments around roads, drainage and mining near the property.