Selling your home can be a daunting prospect, but it's even more alarming if you haven't factored in the costs associated with the sale. Making a decision to sell without checking your costs first could end up costing you thousands of pounds if you're not careful.
Before you finalise your decision to sell your home, take some time to ponder the reasons behind why you want to sell. Moving house costs more than most people expect. When you add the costs of selling your house to your moving costs, it's easy to spend far more than you intended.
Here is a quick guide to some considerations and costs to take into account if you're thinking about selling your home:
Should You Sell or Stay?
If you're thinking about selling because you want more space for an expanding family, any changes in house prices could mean you might not be able to afford something any bigger than the home you're already in. You could save some money by building an extension, renovating existing spaces, converting the attic space into another room, or digging out a basement.
Likewise, if your motivation to sell is to reduce the size of your current mortgage, consider how the cost of selling your current home and then buying another property could eat into whatever equity you may have built up. The result could mean a slightly larger mortgage than you currently have.
Before you commit to selling your property, take the time to ponder some important financial considerations first. By the time you pay for estate agent's fees, conveyancing fees, removal costs, and EPCs (energy performance certificates), it's likely you'll eat into a large chunk of the proceeds of the sale. If you decide to auction the property instead of opting for a private sale, you could also have additional auction fees to take into account.
There may also be costs associated with preparing your home for sale, especially if you intend to do some quick renovations before listing it. You may decide to have your home professionally staged for sale, increasing the odds of selling quickly, but increasing your total selling costs too. If you still have a mortgage remaining on the property, you'll need to repay that too.
To help you estimate how much it could cost you to sell your current home, here's a quick guide:
Then there are the costs associated with buying a new home to live in. You'll have more conveyancing fees to pay for, along with stamp duty if the home you buy costs more than £125,000, increasing your total costs to complete the transaction.
Choosing the Right Agent
Once you've gone through all the financial considerations and understand the potential costs of selling, it's time to choose the right estate agent to sell your property. Discuss the fees your agent will charge and ask plenty of questions about any potential things you could do to maximise your sale price.
Choose a professional estate agent with a long history of selling homes in your local area, such as Taylors Estate Agents. You can check the services offered by Taylors detailed here.
Decide on a Selling Price
Take some time to research what similar properties are selling for in your local area. Check local real estate listings in newspapers and online sites to see what's available and what's selling.
Discuss your selling price with an estate agent who is familiar with your local area and ask for a valuation. If you've done your research, your agent should arrive at a similar selling price to the one you've determined anyway.
Keep in mind that buyers expect to negotiate some kind of discount into their offer, so add another 5% to the selling price you're prepared to accept.
Prepare Your Home for Sale
If your agent has suggested some simple things you can do to maximise your sale price, get those items completed. Deep clean the carpets and touch up any peeling paint. Get rid of any clutter and start packing some of your items to help make rooms appear larger.
In some cases, paying a professional home staging company to give your property a makeover can help increase the chances of selling your home more quickly. According to one property styling professional, it can cost up to 2% of the selling price to prepare your home.
Hire a Solicitor
Choose a solicitor or conveyancer to handle the legal work to transfer ownership of the property once it's sold. Your solicitor will handle the financial transaction of the sale, along with ensuring the sale is registered with the Land Registry.
Sell the Property
After prospective buyers have visited the property and you've received offers, it's time to accept one of them and finalise the sale. Your estate agent will work with you as you exchange contracts with the buyer, while your conveyancer will begin working on finalising the transaction.
You're able to move out at any time up until the day of sale completion. Be sure all of you belongings are removed from the property and everything is thoroughly cleaned.
Complete the Sale
Completion date is the day when the property changes ownership from you to the buyer. You accept their payment and they get the keys to the property in return.
While selling a home may seem like a daunting process, it becomes much easier to manage when you have each step broken down into smaller sections. Work through each section to ensure you don't overlook anything and you should find that it helps to reduce any of the stress associated with the whole process.
About the author: Naomi Barry is an estate agent with a bubbly personality. Always happy to help and give her opinion when others are unsure, she has recently taking to writing articles, sharing her knowledge with an online audience.