Do be aware that sometimes, for speed, you may have to sacrifice getting the price you want, or make a few compromises to get your property sold promptly.
How long does it normally take?
Selling a property can take anywhere from 8 weeks to multiple months, depending on the situation. Selling conditions will depend on the market, the condition of your property and how you price it.
It will also depend on the conveyancing solicitor you choose, the time of year (if there are any big holidays coming up) and whether your new buyer is in a chain.
However, most of these are factors you can control, and there are definitely ways to speed up the process as much as possible.
If you are overly ambitious when you price your property, you may find you have fewer viewings. The months may then drag on as you wait for someone to make an offer, and you may find the estate agent suggests dropping the price then anyway.
The number one way to get a quick sale is to price your property competitively
– make sure people know they’re getting a good deal because you want a quick sale. Don’t drop it too much, as viewers might think there is something wrong with the property, but work out in advance what you need from your sale, and how low you’re willing to go.
Your estate agent will be able to help you with pricing if you make it clear you will take less for a prompt sale.
You may be able to get more money for your property by waiting, but if speed is the priority, be prepared to cut your price in return for speed.
Types of buyers
Putting a property up for sale when the market is struggling can mean it will take more time. However, there are always buyers out there looking for a good deal, whether that’s first time buyers or investors.
The type of buyer you accept an offer from will have an affect on the process. If you agree to a cash buyers, a buy to let or a first time buyer, they are not likely to be in a chain, and there’ll be nothing hold up the purchase. A first time buyer who has a mortgage in principle ready when they make the offer can save you time too.
Similarly, by selling outright without needing to move into a new place, you simplify the situation. If you are intending to buy another home, you need to be aware of your own chain and whether that will have an impact.
Improving the property
You may be able to sell your house more promptly by taking the time to make it look appealing. From basic fixes like neutral paint, fixing issues or decluttering, you are encouraging the viewer to see it more as a potential home. This is often called ‘staging’ your home.
Making these changes ahead of putting the property on the market will allow buyers to see the ways it benefits them. Needing them to look past the clutter, mess and loud wallpaper can mean fewer viewers who immediately fall in love.
If there are issues with your home, you may find you get a quicker and more profitable sale by fixing them in advance. Getting a deal only to find the survey came back with issues can be irritating. If you really want to speed up the process and are concerned, you could get your own survey on your property, to ensure there are no issues before a buyer even arrives.
Taking the time to pre-empt any concerns and be sure that your home is a great option to a potential buyer will speed up the process further down the line.
The easiest way to speed up your sale is to do what you can to make the buyer feel at ease. Whether that’s discussing upfront what is included in the sale, or letting them know in advance you’re happy to leave the white goods and the shed for them when they move.
If they want to visit a few times, encourage and welcome them, answer questions and be available. Whilst your estate agent will usually handle the visits, you may be able to help them find the answers they need.
How can you move the process along once you have a sale?
Once the sale has been agreed, it’s not the time to slow down – a drawn out sale can up the likelihood of it falling through. Ensure your conveyancing solicitor and your buyer’s solicitor are on the same page, and that everyone wants to move as soon as possible.
You may find that you need to continue to be active and follow up on paperwork and who is responsible for the next stage of the process. Some conveyancing firms even offer an online element that allows you to check the progress of your sale.
There is very little control the clients have over the conveyancing process – searches can take time to come back, there can be complications with paperwork. The best thing you can do is work on clearing out and packing up your property to make the move as official.
Selling your home quickly – a summary
Our top tips for selling your home as quickly as possible are:
- Fix up any issues with your property to make it more appealing - remove clutter
- Price it reasonably so that you immediately get interest from viewers in a short period of time. The competition element here should push buyers to commit more quickly too
- Get your conveyancing solicitor organised as soon as possible. Ask whether they have any holidays coming up and make sure they’re on board with a speedy sale
Whilst issues can arise that slow down a sale, and you can’t be completely in control, by doing these few things at the beginning of the process, you should be able to increase your chances of a quick sale.
Have a look at our full Guide to Selling Your Home
for more information.