Selling your property is the largest transaction most people will make in a lifetime and it can be a stressful time. Choosing the right agent is key in making it as painless and as easy a transition as possible.
Firstly, get your property ready to put on the market. See our section on Staging your home for sale for tips.
You now need to get a market appraisal and valuation carried out but your local agent. Your valuation is the time to find out the market value of your property, what commission you will be charged, what marketing your agent will be able to offer in addition to finding out if they are accredited and by which governing bodies. Will they tie you in to lengthy agency agreement? Will viewings be accompanied? And will you get feedback and be kept up to date? Once you have found out the answers to these questions you need to decide if you are going to instruct an agent on a sole or multiple agency basis.
Once you have picked an estate agent you wish to instruct the next step is for them to advertise your property. Agents have a range of advertising techniques at their disposal such as internet portals, their own website, social media sites, window displays, newspapers and other local publications. Your agent will begin drafting up the details of your property which will involve them coming to visit your home and taking measurements, photos and floor plans. At this point you will need to instruct a energy assessor to carry out and Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) which is a legal requirement which has to be provided for any residential property coming to the market. Speak to your agent who should be able to organise this for you.
Once your property is advertised, hopefully viewings will commence. Make sure your estate agent is accompanying the viewings and giving you prompt and detailed feedback.
Once an offer has been made, your agent is legally bound to notify you. The Undesirable Practices Order 1991 requires the estate agent to notify you of the offer promptly and in writing within 24 hours. They will also need to qualify the offer and the position of the buyer. Your estate agent should find out if the potential purchaser is in a position to move forward and if they have a property to sell? Have they got a mortgage arranged? Do they have a property to sell? How long is the chain? Your estate agent will need to get answers to all these questions and more by liasing with any relevant financial advisers, any other estate agents and any relevant solicitors? Negotiations can then commence and once an offer is agreed you will need to instruct a find and instruct a solicitor. Your estate agent will then need to prepare a memorandum of sale to notify all parties of the agreement.
Your solicitor, once you have returned all the relevant information, will send a draft contract to the purchaser’s solicitor who will then raise any relevant enquiries. When all enquiries have been answered, contracts are signed and your purchaser is in a position to exchange once all parties have agreed a completion date.
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