If you’re within your current mortgage term, it’s necessary to check which fees you ‘re going to be liable for when you move. If you’re on the Standard Variable Rate (SVR) with your lender – what your mortgage is going to do when a fixed-rate deal ends – then you’re fine, you can think about moving.
If your mortgage is ‘portable,’ you are still good (as long as your lender is satisfied with the new property and the price and you pass the affordability tests). Your old mortgage moves with you at no additional expense, and when that contract comes to an end, you will repay your new property – see our Porting Your Mortgage Guide.
But if it isn’t portable, you may face early repayment charges. These are mostly between 1 and 5 percent of the remainder of your mortgage debt, making it very expensive to move.
Style up your home to boost its value
Even the best-maintained properties have signs of wear and tear. Before you make any more moves, it’s a good idea to sort out a few of the most obvious things to give yourself the best chance of selling your property as soon as possible at the highest price possible.
Ensure The Front of Your Home is Presentable
First impressions count, and I imagine if you’re looking for a new family home, the last thing you’d want to turn up to is a run down, tired-looking property. Sprucing up your property on the outside doesn’t have to cost the earth, and there are simple steps you can take to ensure it’s looking its best as not to put off potential buyers, here are a few things to consider checking off, they may not add a ton of value, but they will help to make your property saleable.
- Clear away rubbish and waste from the front of your home
- Cut the grass
- Get your window frames resprayed
- Cut the grass
- Jet Wash the driveway
- Gravel or pave the driveway
- Remove weeds
- Repaint the exterior or clean off the brickwork
- Add some hanging baskets and plants
Spruce Up The Inside of Your Home
Get rid of all of your clutter, hide it away in smart storage solutions, in a self-storage facility or make yourself a little extra cash by selling it on sites like eBay, Shpock and Gumtree. Clearing away your unsightly collectables could ensure you sell your home a lot quicker and more often than not – for its full value. Ensure that any features that first attracted you to the property are apparent, make it less personal for you to allow visitors to see themselves there, make sure each room clearly shows its intent, and hang up mirrors, particularly in small areas such as hallways, to add light and the illusion of space.
Get Your Home Valued
When you’ve got your property looking the best, you need to get it priced by an expert. It’s essential to study carefully at this point as getting it wrong could mean your house will remain on the market indefinitely. You could also wound up selling it for way less than the market price.
How To Calculate The Best Salable Value For Your House?
Before you bring a property agent through the door, check sold house prices over the past 12 months with online brokers such as Nethouseprices, Rightmove and Zoopla to get a rough idea – see our free house price appraisal guide for more.
Compare the property to identical sizes and specifications. You can do this quite accurately with Rightmove, which shows the original property advertisements (including photos) at the point of sale. Be realistic and don’t let stubborn pride in the state of your property cloud your judgement and lead to overpricing.
Getting a good picture of sales in the recent past lets you make the most of your house. Looking at the ones currently on offer makes you value your home competitively. Remember: Everyone hopes their homes will sell for above market value, but this rarely happens. Don’t be disappointed if your home sells for less than you expected.
Once you have done your research, book at least three agents to come and value your home (Do not let them know that other estate agents are giving you values.) You’re not obligated to sell your home with any of them. It’s best to go with the estate agent that is on par with your research, or you could choose to market your own property through companies like Purple Bricks.
To get the most accurate view, it’s worth asking for valuations of various types of agents: a large high street chain, a small local one, and an online one. And get them to bring the paperwork on the prices sold in the surrounding area.
How To Advertise Your Property For Sale
There’s no right or wrong way of selling your property; the best way to do so depends on your personal and financial circumstances. If you’re time-poor or don’t feel confident showing strangers around your home by yourself, it may be better to use an estate agent – even if it comes at a higher price.
However, if you are perfectly happy to do much of the work yourself, you can skip the estate agent, maret your property yourself and save yourself some serious cash!
How Much Do High Street Estate Agents Charge To Sell Your Home?
Despite the fact that online estate agents have become more popular in recent years, the majority of the time is still used by high street estate agents. In general, their offerings are more complete, with Energy Efficiency Certificates (EPCs) and hosted viewing included as usual.
Typical high street agents are much more costly than online agents. However, you pay only a percentage of the agreed sale price – typically 0.75 per cent to 3% – once the property has been sold, so you don’t lose money if it doesn’t sell.
Find out which agents are the busiest and most experienced in the vicinity, check your local papers, and check online to see which agents have the most listings. Ask them how many properties they have sold in your area over the last three months and what they charge for in terms of marketing and services like viewings etc.
Personal advice is always valuable, and having a high street presence also means that local buyers will also see your property advertised in their shop window.
How Much Do Online Estate Agents Charge?
If you are happy to do some of the legwork, then using an online agent is a cheaper option that you should definitely consider. Online agents like purple bricks charge a one-off fee in advance, but a lot of online estate agents like 99home offer a ‘no sale, no fee’ model which is great for those on a limited budget or the more money savvy amongst us. They charge anywhere between £99 and £1,695 – which means that you will save more than £6,000 on typical high street agents by selling property priced at a UK average of £26k. How much you save yourself will depend on the size of your property, etc.
Who Are The Best Online Estate Agents?
Here is a quick rundown of some of the top online players currently in alphabetical order:
99Home – No Sale No fee Estate Agent
99home is an online estate agent based in the UK who offer free home valuations. Their prices start at £750, and this includes some great marketing features like listings on big property sites like Zoopla and Rightmove.
Doorsteps – One Of The Cheapest Online Agents
Not the most well-known, but one of the cheapest online estate agents, Doorstep says it covers 95 percent of the United Kingdom. They have a 24-hour customer service line, free valuations and offers a 24-hour hotline, free property valuation, property site listings, account manager and even weekly reports as part of its low cost £99 ‘basic’ package.
A local agent will carry out your initial valuation and, if you choose the ‘complete’ package, you will also take the photos, draw up the floor plan and send a draught of the ad by the next working day. It’s not got an app.
Housesimple – No Fees But Doesn’t Cover All Areas
Does not charge fees, but currently only in limited postcodes
Previously, Housesimple offered a basic no selling bundle, no charge for £995. Now the fee has been absolutely scrapped, setting itself up as the first entity in the United Kingdom to ‘sell homes for free.’
It is currently only available in Yorkshire and the North West, but Housesimple plans to roll out its free service throughout the rest of the United Kingdom over the coming months.
Housesimple’s package includes a property specialist, professional images, floor plans and assistance from valuation to completion by a dedicated team.
They receive referral fees from service providers such as brokers, lawyers and insurers, although you are not obliged to accept the fees from third parties that they recommend.
Most well known, but most expensive.
Perhaps the most famous of the lot, Purplebricks is also the most expensive. This covers the whole of the UK and is the only online agent we’ve discovered that has its own app on both iOS and Android. The bundle includes a property consultant to cover sales from start to finish, professional images, floor plan, full summary, ads on all major property sites and a ‘for sale’ sign.
DIY – Private Selling
Although this is probably the most labour-intensive choice, private sale will give you the greatest savings. A downside of selling privately is that you can’t advertise on sites like PrimeLocation, Rightmove or Zoopla. This is ok if you already have a private buyer lined up. If possible, using the local press and billboards and/or online markets such as HouseWeb * (£349-£549) or TheHouseShop * (free), where you can build your own ads and communicate directly with the purchaser.
You might also try your luck on Facebook – particularly if you’re a member of a local network – or post your ad to Mumsnet through your ‘local’ account. If you have any concerns, you can give Mumsnet an email for help.
Find a conveyancer
Conveyance is a legal process that involves the transfer of property from one person to another and requires a lawyer or a licenced conveyancer.
Solicitors and conveyors are fully qualified and insured to handle the sale of the property. They carry out all legal paperwork, land registry and council searches, draught contracts and exchange money. The primary distinction is that conveyors are qualified property experts.
You don’t have to go for the estate agent ‘s lawyer or conveyor – they ‘re more likely to have some kind of business deal in place that might end up costing you more.
Ask your lawyer or conveyor for a full cost breakdown to check what is included in your quote and then compare prices. You can speed up the long process of selling your house this way, but it’s worth lining up a lawyer before you put your house on the market.
Other Costs You Should Expect
There is more to selling your home than valuations and estate agents. Irrespective of whether you are selling with an agent or personally, you must have a lawyer or a licenced conveyor and an EPC. You may also need removal services once the time has come to empty the property.
All of this will add up – see below some cost estimates:
Estate agency fees for private sellers can cost up to £395, online estate agents between £99 and around £1.5k and high street estate agents usually charge anywhere up to £8.5k, sometimes higher depending on the value of your property.
Conveyancing fees typically cost between £500 and £1.5k across the board. EPC prices cost between £35 – £120 and removal services can cost between a few hundred pounds up to a few thousand depending on where you’re moving to and how much stuff you have!
Of course, if you sell your house to buy another home, there will be extra costs.
Energy performance certificates
The Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) grades the building on its energy performance, from A (highly efficient) to G (inefficient). Each EPC certificate is valid for ten years.
Prospective buyers are looking for efficient energy ratings ranging from A to D, as poor ratings mean costly heating bills.
When you’re ready to take a look at the removals, the wheels of selling your home will be in full swing and then, so will your belongings. Since the average cost can be anything from £ 500 upwards, you can save yourself a hefty amount DIY-ing if you can.
Factors influencing the quality of the removal shall include:
The size of the van volume of the items
The gap between pick up and destination
Time of day, time of year
Who does the packing or removal for you?
Pack of materials
Special and/or fragile objects
Restricted access / difficult access
Get a few companies to give you quotes, and then ask your chosen company to break down the costs so that you can check if there are ways you can save, such as packing everything yourself.
Final Moving Bills
Your final energy and water bills can often bring some unwanted surprises, particularly if you’ve been on estimated bills. If your energy supplier underestimated your use, you could be hit by a heavy bill. Stay track of your final readings of gas and power, and do have a contingency fund for situations like this.
Then don’t ignore the niggly extras, such as redirecting your mail, which will cost £ 34.
Advice For Selling To Buy
Whether you’re selling your property to live overseas or rent, you’re all done and dusty. But for those of you who sell to buy another home, if you want to be taken seriously, you’ll need to get your current home on the market, ASAP!
The most attractive buyers for most properties are first-time buyers, those who have already sold, followed by those who have their property on the market.
In terms of selling one property and purchasing another, the process normally takes place as follows:
- Look at the areas/properties that you want
- Go and see some of them
- Find the one that you want
You will not be taken seriously until your home is on the market.
Let’s hope you have an offer accepted on yours so that you can place an offer on the one that you like.