Checklist: What do you need to do before selling your home?
Selling your home can be a momentous task, and it's easy to forget bits along the way. Cue our moving home checklist!
Your finances are a big part of buying and selling a home, so we recommend that you get them in order before starting on the selling journey. Try to build up your credit rating if you need to get another mortgage, and make sure you have sufficient equity in your home.
• Consider your financial situation. For example, can you really afford to move and are there are other options available to you such as extending your existing property?
• Check your mortgage to see when you can transfer it and whether there are any penalties for doing so.
• Budget for other fees and costs, including removals, EPCs and conveyancing.
Analyse and improve your home
You need to check whether your home is in a fit state to sell. In general, the more up to date it looks, the easier it is to sell.
• Ensure that paintwork is fresh and that the house has had a good tidy and spruce up.
• Make sure any major repairs have been completed.
• Check whether all outstanding building control work has been inspected.
• Identify opportunities for improvement if possible, such as replacing windows, landscaping the garden, adding a driveway or rendering the outside.
Select your professionals
Selling a home without an estate agent, conveyancer or solicitor is certainly possible, but we wouldn’t recommend it! Instead, our advice is to spend time doing your research and finding the best people for the job. Often this can be through personal recommendations, but if that’s not possible then try these tips:
• For finding the best estate agents, check out allAgents. It’s effectively a review site for – you guessed it – estate agents!
• A solicitor or conveyancer to complete the legal paperwork and exchange contracts. The two links we’ve provided are great resources for finding licensed professionals.
• A surveyor if you're thinking of buying a new home. Quite often your estate agent or solicitor will be able to advise you on good options here.
Prepare your home for viewings
It goes without saying that your home needs to look as inviting as possible for prospective buyers.
• Clear up any clutter and mess.
• Remove broken furniture and signs of pets.
• Ensure that the garden is tidy, particularly the front garden.
• Do a little baking a couple of hours before the viewing is set to take place.
Negotiation is a key part of the buying process. Once you have an offer, you can choose to accept it, reject it or modify it. If you modify it, be aware that the modification may not be accepted.
Your agent is also required to inform you of all offers received, even if they are significantly lower than your asking price. You do not have to take the highest price, either. The acceptance of an offer is not legally binding until the paperwork has been completed.
Paperwork and contracts
Once you have a potential buyer and have established a price, you need to complete the associated paperwork. In general, your conveyancer will solicitor will help you through this, but if you are buying a freehold property, you need to complete:
• Form TA6 (general questionnaire).
• Form TA10 (fixtures and fittings).
• Form TA13 (completion).
For leaseholds, you need to complete Form TA7 and for commonholds, you need to complete TA9.
Exchange and move in!
The final part is to exchange contracts, book your removal vehicle (make sure you get at least three quotes) and book time off work to get it done. You'll also want to:
• Inform your bank, mobile phone provider, utility companies and credit cards providers.
•Redirect your post
• Give your house a final clean.
• Move into the new house.