We hope the FAQ’s below will help convey how simple it is to buy or sell a property whilst remaining “hands on” The only reason buying and selling is historically stressful is because all parties are traditionally kept in the dark.
Local Crime Data
If you life in a low crime area talk about it in your property description.
National Police data is collated here https://www.police.uk/pu/your-area/ and is freely available to you.
Local School Data
You have seen popular online listings that explain about the local schools. You have access to the same data free of charge here https://www.gov.uk/school-performance-tables When writing your description you could consider including references to your local facilities.
Assisted or Virtual Viewings
In view of Covid restrictions it’s possible that you could offer both Assisted and / or Virtual viewings.
Whilst estate agents may offer a more comprehensive service it’s also true that you could obtain those services at a significantly lower cost. Your local estate agent needs to charge much larger fees to cover the cost of properties that are not selling. You need only ask yourself if you want to pay for all of those other properties
Virtual tours and great photography are available here (Opens in a new tab) and there be suppliers local to you who would be pleased to work with you.
Tips for Selling
First impressions count
Kerb appeal create a great first impression – most buyers make up their minds in the first few minutes of arriving at a property. They will probably go past before deciding to come in.
The most important features for kerb appeal are well maintained windows and a roof that appears to be in good condition. A well maintained tidy front garden, maintained pathways and good fences as well as a well-painted frontage are equally important.
Fresh Paint and choose the colours with care
Giving your windows walls and doors a touchup of neutral paint will make your home seem lighter and bigger
It will enables those viewing to easily imagine how they would adapt the home to their needs. Your choice of lime green skirting and Royal Blue painted walls may not be the first choice of your potential buyer so consider neutral colours such as Beige, cream, magnolia etc.
Declutter – but don’t depersonalise
Get rid of all the excess items, paperwork, old magazines, either put it in storage, take it to a friend, sell it or give it away. Try to give line of sight from the doorways to the furthest point in the room at floor level, if you can see lots of floor the perception is the home is larger.
People need to be able to envisage how the property could look if they were living there so make it easy for them to see all the great living space and potential for comfort you are offering them.
Some people are buying into a lifestyle as much as a property, showing them the attractive side of your home and how it supports a relaxed lifestyle, perhaps you have smart home technology in use that makes life easier.
Consider removing any oversize furniture that makes a room feel small and replace it with smaller items of furniture
Do any minor repairs that are required – holes in walls, cracked tiles, torn or threadbare carpets. Many buyers want to move in without making changes.
Clean everything until it sparkles, remove any signs of limescale, bleach clean and repair the tile grout, hang up fresh towels or remove the ones you used that day. This will make the place more appealing and allow viewers to imagine living there.
Tidy up the garden
Mow the lawn, trim bushes back, clean the patio and furniture of lichen and dirt. While this doesn’t add much value to your home it makes it more likely to sell as people visualise themselves using the garden.
Even a chain smoking chef who owns a cattery and kennels is going to be put off your home by smells of food, your Pets or the smell of smoke. It’s possible that we all become “Nose blind” so if there is any doubt ask someone you know to be totally honest with you – just in case.
During the Viewings
Let the kids go and see their friends, remove the pets, turn off the TV and Radio and if you have any other distractions see how you can mitigate the impact it could have.
Allow the buyer to ask questions, give precise short answers and try to let them do 80% of the talking with you being there to service their interest, there is no point explaining about how that wardrobe came from your aunt who swam the channel in 1922 – their are not interested.
Selling your home could mean you may end up showing around someone you do not know. We suggest that you ask for the full details for anyone who wants to view your home, if they are not prepared to tell you their full names address and contact details including email and phone numbers then are they really serious?
We suggest that before any viewings are arranged a two way dialogue has been achieved and you should feel comfortable about the viewing. If you are a single person why not invite a neighbour or friend around whilst the viewing takes place. For more on this subject please take a look at this page on the Suzie Lamplugh Trust website
Can I display a For Sale Board
Yes you can, because you are not an estate agent you are not constrained by the same rules that would apply to Estate Agents.
You can order a board from us that can have the number of your choice on it
Do I need a Solicitor
If you have the skills, and do not have a mortgage then you could do it yourself but we would not recommend doing so.
You wouldn’t be permitted to do this if the property is mortgaged – lenders will always require a solicitor or licensed conveyancer to be appointed to deal with the repayment process (also known as mortgage redemption).
What options do you have if you want to sell your house without a solicitor?
Retain a licensed conveyancer instead of a solicitor
In England and Wales you can choose to have a licensed conveyancer deal with the sale of your property.
Solicitors and licensed conveyancers are both regulated legal professionals who are well equipped to deal with the legal work required in the selling and buying of a home, there are a few differences between the two. It’s important for you to familiarise yourself with these when deciding which legal professional to choose.
- The two professions are governed by different regulatory bodies. The Law Society for solicitors and the Council for Licensed Conveyancers (CLC) for conveyancers.
- Solicitors are required by law to disclose any referral fees they receive from estate agents or other bodies, conveyancers have no such legal obligation.
- Licensed conveyancers are not limited in their ability to act on both sides of the transaction as solicitors are.
- There can also be a price difference between solicitors and licensed conveyancers.
- As with anything, it’s important you do your research and find the best deal. For those who are particularly tight on cash or your property is of standard type, condition, location then a conveyancer could be a good option.
- We have a modern Conveyancing service that we are very proud of for reasons that will become clear in the link below.
Paying for a Valuation
Unsure about the price to ask? Your local estate agent is a property professional, they have hands on local experience and could be an invaluable partner when it comes to setting a price.
There is no reason why you could not offer to pay your local agents for their time whilst they come and see your property and give their opinion on its value.
Estate Agents are often called upon to value a property and subsequently do not get the listing, being fair with the agent and offering to pay for their time and skills is never a bad thing.
In some cases it could be to your advantage to pay someone else to show around prospective buyers, after all how would you handle a comment that was negative about your kitchen, the wall paper or the state of that garden. A stranger would be impartial and could easily overcome the objections.
David is said to have slain Goliath with the jawbone of an ass, many sales have been lost with the use of the same implement, if you are confident you could remain impartial you may want to show some people around before paying someone else to do it for you.
You created the listing, you arranged the images and perhaps the EPC, if you then decide to “Go Dutch” with an agent you should anticipate lower fees and flexible arrangements.
Local for sale groups, property groups, community groups are all great places to share your listing. With every post be sure to include an obvious “Call to action” such as please like and share or Call me after 6pm
Prime your Warm market – Your friends want to be seen to be helpful
You create two posts, The first post explains you are listing your property for sale and then be clear about what you want everyone to do, you do not just want “likes” you need actual “shares and Retweets” you need them to share it into the any for sale groups they belong to, to mention the link you will provide in the next post to any related groups they belong to.
THE SECOND POST is the one they should take action on.
Of course you have created a listing on our site that has great images, perhaps a video and a virtual tour, your EPC and floor plans are in there or you can add them later.
The Second Post is the one your friends have been waiting for – It starts with a link to your property which you paste into Facebook, Twitter, linkedin etc then move your cursor to the start of the URL make some space and start with your key features such as Chain free 4 bedroom detached……..
Use obvious hashtags such as #listedbyowners or #croydonproperty #spanishproperty to drive traffic, it’s about being seen.
Your local youths may be better at social media than you, why not engage with them by contacting the local college to explain you have an opportunity the students could assist with. Even if you pay them it’s going to be less than paying an estate agent.
Be sure to thank them a week later regardless of the outcome as most friends will re-share the post.
If you have nice images this is the place to be seen, if you don’t have nice images then get them, we have a list of locals who can help you here https://listedbyowners.co.uk/great-images/
Be sure to include a link back to your property and to have your phone or email on at least a few images.
Can be very powerful, this article could be of interest https://twitter.com/hashtag/houseprices?lang=en
Can I get help with Marketing
Yes, if you don’t have the time or don’t want to get involved we have a team able to share your property and drive traffic toward your listing.
The chances are your friends and family would be pleased to assist you getting the word out and increased local awareness is probably better than national promotions anyway.
- Be Social
- If you are not familiar social media and need a hand then either engage the help of a family member or friend or we can offer you some assistance.
- Once your listing is created be sure to share the heck out of it regularly on Social Media, Facebook, Linkedin, Twitter and Instagram, Pinterest etc. Ask your family and friends to get behind you and perhaps offer an incentive to the person who finds the buyer or achieves the most shares.
- Facebook selling sites in your area want content, whenever you share your property ASK FOR SHARES
- Once your listing is live why not recount happy events at your home with images of parties that you share on social media with a link back to your listing.
- Your local radio station are gagging to hear about interesting, innovative or creative things that are happening locally, give them a call and sound upbeat, clearly spoken and who knows what could happen.
- Great Images
- It’s worth having the best images you can afford, we let you include up to 48 images which is far more than most Estate Agent allow, we also include space for a link to youtube and of course virtual tours can be included
- What’s it like living in your area
- Describe things to see and do, great schools, local amenities such as shops, Cinema, Churches and medical facilities
- Who would buy your place and what are their requirements? Disabled friendly, Elderly and looking for flat level walks and somewhere to store their mobility vehicle?
- Are there local parks for the children to play
- Working age commuters – where is the nearest station and how long to reach that City.
- Virtual Tours work
- Partner with local influencers, that person who runs the local online newsgroup, the Parish councils, School newsletters and even the local estate agents who should know you are on the market as they could do a deal with you if they find a buyer.
Do we pay a commission when we sell
No, Nothing to pay at all to us, you already paid the £100 listing fee at the time of creating the listing.
If you listed with an estate agent as well then you may be liable to a fee to them unless you had already negotiated a different agreement. The agents fee is usually paid as a disbursement at the time of completion.
Estate Agency terms vary
It’s your property take control
Typically there are three main types of Estate Agency contracts, stay in control and make the decisions that best support your needs.
Sole selling rights
Never agree to sole selling rights unless you’re 100% sure that you won’t find purchasers from your own efforts – this is a terrible agreement and will probably cause you problems if you find a purchaser from your own efforts, or you need to instruct another agent.
An example could be that a family member decides to buy your home, they have had nothing to do with the estate agent, and you will have to pay the agent their commission!
This leaves you free to sell privately by your own efforts without paying any commission, but not through another estate agent.
It means that you can instruct other agents, but if they sell the property, you will still have to pay commission to the original sole agent as well as paying the agent who sold the property. This is a dual fee situation you want to avoid.
If you do agree a sole agency basis with an estate agent then make sure it is for a limited period.
At the end of the period you can use one or more additional estate agents without the above risk.
If you want to use more than one agent, it’s perhaps best to enter into a joint agency agreement, whereby you instruct two agents. Both agents have to agree to this, and should agree to who gets the commission on the sale, which may be shared on differing percentages.
Multiple agency – Winner takes all !
A multi agency agreement means you can instruct as many agents as you like. Only the agent who comes up with a buyer earns the commission.
The fee for this type of arrangement will probably be the highest of all the options available since all agents will be investing in your sale at the risk of not being paid.
Instructing or dismissing an estate agent
Instructing an Estate Agent
- Never forget you are the instructing party. You do not have to sign the contract you are offered so read it through and watch for terms such as.
A. In the 1980’s it was common place for contracts to state you have to pay their fee in the event of ‘our introducing a purchaser who is ready, willing and able to complete the transaction’.
You only want to pay a fee on Exchange, the fact that someone purports to have been able to proceed to completion is probably not good enough. You could be exposed to needless cost.
- Dual Fee exposure
A. Some agents still expect to be paid even if they did not introduce the buyer, this can be done by claiming they have influenced a purchase or just stating they expect to be paid even if they do not introduce the buyer! This letter from Which may help you refute a claim.
B. When you take on an estate agent make it clear you will not accept any risk of dual fees and have them include in the agreement a “Winner takes all” clause, i.e. they only get paid if they find the buyer. If two agents then argue over this it’s for them to reach an agreement with each other.
- Do not accept unreasonable terms
A. Unreasonable is probably anything you consider to be unreasonable. If in doubt do not sign any agreement. A reasonable estate agent will want you to be happy.
- Read the contract and cross out everything you don’t like. It’s your property.
- It is reasonable for an agent to have a clause that covers them in the event that a person they did introduce subsequently buys your property within a reasonable period – have that period clearly defined in the agreement.
How will I know what’s happening about Conveyancing
When using our Conveyancing team you can see where your sale and purchase is at 24 x 7 and you have a dedicated account manager available to assist you by chasing the buyer’s solicitor, accountants, estate agents when you do not have the time to do it.
Can I get help with the professional images
Absolutely, we would be able to put you in touch with a local professional photographer to assist. You would be responsible for their fees.
Can we use an Estate Agent as well?
Yes of course. It may be that you agree an hourly rate for professional services rather than a commission based on a percentage.
Most Estate agents in Rye will help you once you find a buyer for a modest fee.
They will help you obtain the EPC if you don’t already have one. Your Solicitor or conveyancing partner will certainly require an EPC Certificate unless the property involved is exempt for example if it is a listed building.
Do we need and Energy Performance Certificates
Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs) are required by law whenever a property is advertised for sale or rent (subject to exceptions e.g. listed buildings).
We can arrange for the EPC for you giving you one less thing to worry about. Once ordered our local Domestic Energy Assessor will contact you within a couple of days to arrange a suitable time to assess your property.
You can arrange your own EPC with ease here https://www.epcregister.com/
All “reasonable efforts” must be made to ensure that an EPC is obtained within 7 days of marketing the property. (Where it has not been secured during that period, there is an absolute duty to obtain it within 21 days of the end of that period.)
What is an EPC?
An EPC gives Home Owners, Tenants and prospective buyers an assessment of a property performance rating in terms of its energy efficiency and environmental impact, to help reduce CO2 output.
EPCs assess buildings by giving them a standard energy and carbon emission efficiency grade from ‘A’ to ‘G’, where ‘A’ is the best and with the average to date being D/E.
EPC’s were originally part of the Home information pack (HIP), however the requirement for a HIP was suspended on 21 May 2010. The energy performance certificate was retained.
What can impact an EPC
A Domestic Energy Assessor will inspect a home before preparing the Energy Performance Certificate. The EPC contains information about:
a) The property’s energy use and typical energy costs
b) Recommendations about how to reduce energy use and save money
The EPC gives a property an energy efficiency rating from A (most efficient) to G (least efficient) and is valid for 10 years. The average score (sept 2014) is a low D/ high E.
How can I improve our Energy Efficiency Rating?
Prior to the assessment being carried out at your property, there are a number of simple and significant alterations that you may choose to implement in order to ensure that you receive the best rating possible.
Though you are less likely to benefit from or receive a return on your investment against the more significant alterations, remember these can be implemented in your new home and you may get a better price for this one so either way it’s a win win situation.
Replace existing halogen or non-Low Energy Lighting (LEL) with LEL’s, Compact Fluorescent Light’s (CFL) or Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs) – simple and inexpensive to introduce.
Ensure that your loft insulation is at least 8 to 10 inches in depth – simple and inexpensive to introduce.
If your property has a cavity wall construction, ensure that this is filled – simple and inexpensive to introduce. Funding may also be available as an efficiency measure it has a significant bearing on the EPC rating.
Even if you have an old boiler, the introduction of modern controls such as a room thermostat, individual Thermostatic Radiator Valves (TRVs) and Boiler Programmer will have a positive bearing on the EPC results – simple but slightly more expensive to introduce. On older buildings consider movement detectors to operate valves to close off area’s that are not in constant use.
CENTRAL HEATING SYSTEM
Replacing an old, inefficient boiler will have a significant impact on any property’s EPC rating – significant alteration with high expense and longer payback period. Use as much pipe lagging as you can in the basement and other utility areas where you do not want the heat.
These cover a wide range of systems and technologies ranging from Solar / Photovoltaic panels, which generate hot water and electricity through to Bio-Mass boilers and ground source heat pumps that replace conventional central heating systems but can be up to 20X more efficient – significant alterations with a much higher expenditure, however virtually ALL Renewable Technologies are currently incentivised via government backed and guaranteed Feed-in-Tariffs (FITs) and will go on to provide domestic hot water and central heating at significantly reduced rates in comparison to many other systems.
What will it cost us if we do not sell
Your initial listing fee was only £100
Did you pay for any assistance with marketing or images ?
Our Revolutionary conveyancing will not charge you any legal fees if your sale does not complete as long as you are not the one who caused the sale not to proceed by altering your instruction.