So it’s February and another year awaits (hopefully a better one for everyone than 2020), and for some of us it might be time to make a big change, to move house. Traditionally the busiest period (when the most properties are listed on Rightmove) is spring, with March being one of the biggest months for sales and Feb-June being the peak period. So if you are thinking of moving this year now is a good time to start getting things into place, if this seems daunting, it really isn’t, this is where a really good estate agent can make things as painless as possible and did we mention we are a gold award-winning agency?
Here is our advice on choosing an agency;
1. Ask around for recommendations from friends and colleagues, ask on your local Facebook group, google “award-winning estate agents Bristol”
2. Look for For Sale and Sold signs in your local area – who has good visibility?
3. Check industry credentials – look for logos and accreditation on the agents’ websites
4. Go undercover – pose as a buyer and see how you are received and what you are offered
5. Invite at least three agents to value your property and don’t be lured into a quick decision
6. Ask questions – the most important are;
- What is the sole agent charge and tie-in period? (sole agency is where one agent has exclusive right to sell your house for x period)
- What is the multi-agent charge?
- How long has estate agent been in business and are they familiar with your area?
- How will your property be promoted? Online, print, more?
- Will the agent be there for all viewings including evenings and weekends?
7. Read the terms and conditions of the agreement – ask questions
8. Review your agent's performance after a few weeks and ask for feedback
Here are our top tips of things NOT to do / common errors that can reduce your chances of a successful sale;
1. Selling your home on your own – this can be incredibly time consuming and end up costing you more if you don’t know where to start / what to do.
2. Choosing the wrong estate agent – Not doing research when choosing a good agent can lead to issues down the line, don’t always go for lowest rates, again it may cost you more.
3. Being realistic re sales price – A good agent will advise on price if you want a quick sale or are prepared to wait for right buyer.
4. Making your house “ready” for a sale – try to look at your house impartially, a bit of decluttering and tidying or even a bit of painting can make the world of difference in some cases.
5. Don’t put off fixing “red flags” – If your house has any obvious maintenance issues, the cost of repairing them before the sale in most cases is well worth it to counteract the negative impact it may have on most buyers.
6. If you have pets consider a carpet clean - It’s a relatively cheap thing to do but whilst you don’t maybe notice “eau de dog” any longer other buyers will, plus your carpets will look almost brand new afterwards
7. Not using modern methods to assist sale – You can help your agent get the word out by using local social media groups to tell people about your property being for sale, also mentioning to friends and colleagues, be proactive yourself.
8. Reading everything thoroughly – Read the fine print, ask questions, as many as you want, it’s one of the biggest transactions you will do in your life, be sure what you are signing and clear on what it covers.
All being well, with a bit of thought and preparation your property sale will go smoothly and in a few months’ time you will happily ensconced in your fabulous new home. We would be delighted to help get you there!
Official Government advice on moving home during Covid-19 (Feb 2021)
One of the simplest steps you can take when moving home is to wash your hands frequently and keep as much distance as possible from other people who are not members of your household. Ensure you follow the latest guidance on practical steps to reduce transmission. and maintain a 2-metre distance apart where possible. It may also be a good idea to take extra precautions when in close contact with others, such as wearing a face covering. There are also certain situations in which you must wear a face covering, as described below.
The process of searching for and moving into a new home is different at the moment because property agents, conveyancers and other professionals have modified how they work to reduce the risk from COVID-19. These changes could include doing more online, such as offering virtual viewings; vacating your current property during viewings, and ensuring your property is thoroughly cleaned before someone else moves in.
We encourage all parties involved to be as flexible as possible and to be prepared to delay moves, for example, if one of those involved becomes ill with COVID-19 during the moving process or has to self-isolate. It may become necessary to pause all home moves locally or nationally for a short period of time to manage the spread of coronavirus. We will let you know if this needs to happen.
If you are about to enter into a legally binding contract, you should discuss the possible implications of COVID-19 with your legal professional and consider making contractual provisions to manage these risks. You should not expect to immediately be able to move into any home where people have COVID-19 or are self-isolating.