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First of all you need to receive a valuation to find out how much your home is worth. We recommend asking at least three different estate agents to value your home. Ask them about the services they offer, the current state of the local market, and the purchase price you can hope you achieve. Make and plan and how this sits with your priorities and timescales.
How much will it cost to sell my property?
There are three main costs involved in selling a property:
·Estate Agent Fees
Estate Agent Fees will either be a percentage of the purchase price, or a fixed fee. When estate agents visit to value your home, make sure they outline their fees so you can take these into account.
You are legally required to provide an EPC when you market your property for sale. This outlines the energy efficiency rating of your property. Hawes & Co can organise this for you.
‘Conveyancing’ means the legal transfer of your property to the buyer, and you will need to employ a solicitor to make this happen. Prices will vary depending on your circumstances. Intercounty can introduce you to a solicitor and offer a no sale no fee conveyancing service with a guaranteed fixed price to keep everything easy.
You may also decide to pay for extras such as advanced web positioning. And don’t forget about removals. Ask your agent to outline all these costs at the start of your sale so that you can budget your move.
Do I need to conduct viewings?
Your estate agent should accompany all viewings, but you may decide that you’d like to be present. It’s really up to you.
Will there be more viewings once I've accepted an offer?
This partly depends on the conditions of the offer. Remember, neither the buyer or the seller is bound to the purchase or sale until the contracts are signed, so it’s worth keeping your options open.
How long will it take to complete my sale?
Every sale is different. Both your position and the buyer’s position needs to be taken into account before this question can be answered accurately. If your home has been realistically valued, you should expect to receive offers within the first four weeks. Then assuming your buyer has to apply for their mortgage the exchange of contracts normally takes between 4 and 6 weeks, the completion takes between 2 and 4 weeks. So in total you should expect 12-14 weeks to complete the sale.
Do I need an EPC?
In England, all sellers are required to purchase an EPC for a property before they sell it. Estate agents must display the EPC rating whenever they market the property. If a property does not have an EPC when marketed the buyer and the agent risks a fine.
What is conveyancing?
‘Conveyancing’ is everything that needs to happen to legally transfer your home to the buyer. You will need a solicitor to make it happen. Hawes & Co can introduce you to a solicitor. It’s a no sale no fee conveyancing service offered at a fixed price so you know where you stand.
Do I have to pay Stamp Duty?
No. The buyer is responsible for paying Stamp Duty.
Will my property be surveyed?
In England you do not need to arrange a property survey, but it is likely that the buyer will, and so a surveyor will arrange an appointment to visit you home. The five key things a surveyor will be looking for are problems with utilities, damp, cracking, problems with roofs, and timber defects. In addition, your buyer’s mortgage lender will organise a mortgage valuation to confirm that the property is worth the money being leant.
What are searches?
As part of the conveyancing process, your buyer’s solicitor will perform searches of Land Registry and Local Authority information in relation to your home. They will be checking for planning history and any potential developments around roads, drainage and mining near the property.
When do I sign the contract?
Once the sale has been agreed, your solicitor will draft a contract. The seller’s solicitor will confirm the details of the property and perform searches. At the same time, the buyer’s mortgage lender will conduct a mortgage valuation and send a mortgage offer to the buyer. When all of this is complete, you will be ready to sign the contract and agree the completion date.
When is the buyer or seller bound to the sale or purchase?
The seller or the buyer can pull out of the sale at any time and for any reason until the point that both solicitors have receive signed contracts from both parties.
How is a completion date chosen?
When both contracts have been signed, the buyer’s solicitor will request the mortgage from the buyer’s lender. Once these funds are released, then your solicitor and the buyer’s solicitor will consult both parties and agree a completion date.
Where are my title deeds?
Your title deeds give proof of ownership of the property and will need to be transferred to the buyer as part of the conveyancing process. These are usually held by your mortgage lender, and it will be your solicitor’s responsibility to obtain these.
What do I have to leave in the property?
You are not required to leave any furniture or furnishings in the property, but you may agree to include some as part of the negotiations of the sale.
When do I have to move out?
The contract will specify the completion day, and usually the buyer will be asked to collect the keys to their new home from the estate agent. In most cases the seller is asked to vacate the property by 12pm.
Do I have to pay Capital Gains Tax?
In most cases your are only required to pay Capital Gains Tax if the property is not your main home.