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I Cant Sell My Flat: Need to Sell Fast UK

cant sell flat

I Cant Sell My Flat: Need to Sell Fast UK

In this blog post, we will be looking at why flats are hard to sell, how you can sell your flat quicker, and how we can help you sell fast and for free.

Alexandra Ventress

Alexandra Ventress ★ Digital Content Writer

Table of Contents

Selling your flat can be difficult and as a seller in the dynamic world of property, you may find that you require a faster sale that you originally anticipated. Whether it’s due to financial constraints, a change in personal circumstances, or the need to relocate urgently, selling your flat swiftly can be a daunting task.

 

In this blog post, we will be looking at why selling a flat takes so long, how you can make your flat sell quicker, and how to sell your flat in as little as 28 days.

 

Looking for a quick answer? Check out our interactive menu to the left! 

Sell your flat quickly and without the hassle

Why does selling a flat take so long?

There is no one size fits all answer to this question. Exactly why your flat is languishing on the open market could be down to a variety of factors such as issues with supply and demand, your flat location, property price, proximity of amenities, and the personal circumstances of your potential buyer. If you are worried about your flat languishing on the open market, there are steps you can take to help it sell quickly. Just check out our blog post here

Why are flats so hard to sell?

Exactly why your flat may be taking so long to sell can depend upon a variety of different factors that have moulded the open market over the last few years. Below we take a closer look at what these are and how they can affect your ability to sell. 

Market Conditions

The conditions of the market can have a huge effect on property sales. If there is a slow or downturn market then you may find it difficult when it comes to selling your flat. 

Location

Another crucial factor in flat sales is the location. Undesirable or less popular areas make attracting buyers difficult and the proximity to amenities, transportation, schools, and safety influences marketability.

Maintenance and Condition

It is no secret that buyers prefer well-maintained properties. Flats needing extensive repairs are less appealing and potential buyers may hesitate due to additional costs.

Limited Outdoor Space

The downside to flats is they often lack outdoor space. So as a result, buyers prioritising yards or gardens may find flats less appealing.

Association Fees

Some flats are part of homeowners’ associations (HOA). Whilst this can be a good thing, high association fees can deter potential buyers and may impact the overall marketability of the property.

Perception and Lifestyle Preferences

There are some buyers who hold preferences for traditional houses over flats. They can be influenced by perceptions of space, privacy, and ownership and these lifestyle preferences play a significant role in flat demand. 

 

Why are flats not selling at the moment?

Exactly why your flat may be taking so long to sell can depend upon a variety of different factors that have moulded the open market over the last few years. Below we take a closer look at what these are and how they can affect your ability to sell. 

Interest rates in the UK have been increasing, resulting in elevated mortgage costs for potential buyers. As a result of the changes brought about by these rising costs, there has been a decline in demand, especially for flats, as individuals perceive borrowing money to be a more expensive endeavour than it was previously.

 

The Bank of England’s choice to raise interest rates has been influenced by diverse economic factors, such as managing inflation and stabilising the currency. This means heightened monthly mortgage payments for prospective homeowners, which has the potential to potentially dissuade them from pursuing homeownership. The impact is particularly pronounced for first-time buyers, with increased costs rendering homeownership unattainable for a significant number.

The economic uncertainty experienced in 2023 is extending into 2024 and continues to influence consumer confidence. Individuals are exhibiting hesitancy in property investments due to the perceived unpredictability of the future, which in turn has a knock-on effect and impacts the property market.

 

Persistent concerns regarding the global economy, political instability, and potential alterations to tax laws and regulations contribute to this prevailing uncertainty. Prospective buyers are inclined to postpone significant financial commitments, such as purchasing a flat, in light of this uncertainty. This reluctance to invest has led to a sluggish market characterised by a reduced number of buyers and sellers, ultimately contributing to a decline in property values.

Challenges related to supply and demand often arise when new housing developments saturate the market with similar properties, causing a decline in the value of neighbouring flats. This surplus of options results in heightened competition among buyers, making it more difficult to sell flats at favourable prices. Sellers may find themselves engaged in bidding wars, having to reduce prices in order to attract interest. 

 

Furthermore, the property demand landscape is significantly influenced by location. Flats situated in sought-after areas, where housing availability is limited, tend to draw increased interest. The scarcity of available properties in these prime locations can lead to higher prices and a shorter time on the market. While selling a flat in these areas may grant you a smoother selling process, these high-demand locations are relatively scarce. In practical terms, flats are more commonly favoured in city settings and proximity to amenities, yet even in these scenarios, selling can be challenging if the market is subdued. 

The desire for personal outdoor space, initially fueled by COVID restrictions, continues to be a prevalent trend post-pandemic. Many flats lack significant outdoor areas, limiting their appeal. Additionally, the surge in the popularity of flexible working has prompted individuals to relocate from cities in search of more space for their budget. The cost of a city flat could be invested in a small house outside the city, providing garden space and a home office. Although some businesses advocate for a full-time return to the office, the enduring appeal of flexible/hybrid working motivates buyers to consider living outside the city, as commuting to the office once or twice a week is often feasible for many.

Mortgage interest rates experienced a significant surge throughout 2022 and 2023, propelled by the rising BOE base rate. You can observe the upward trajectory in this graph. The base rate, which remained at 0.1% for much of 2020 and 2021, has now surpassed 5%. It’s important to note that the base rate reflects the rate at which your local bank borrows money from the Bank of England. Your local bank then applies its mark-up to this rate before selling the mortgage to you. Consequently, depending on the loan-to-value ratio, you could be paying substantially more than the base rate.

What is a shared ownership flat? 

If you are unable to afford a deposit and mortgage payments for a property, you may be able to purchase a house or flat through shared ownership. This involves purchasing a share of between 10% to 75% of the home’s full market value and paying rent to a landlord for the share they own of the property. 

 

Over time, you can purchase more of the shares from your landlord, eventually paying less rent and more towards your mortgage, until you own a 100% share of the property. You are able to sell a shared ownership property at any time, however your method of selling can be dependent on your shares. 

 

If you own 100% of the property, then you can sell your property however you wish. However, if you do not own 100% of your property, then you must alert your landlord when you wish to sell, allowing them time to find a buyer for your share. 

 

If your property has a ‘designated protected area-mandatory buyback’ lease, then you will not be able to sell your home on the open market. In this situation, either your landlord will purchase your share or they will arrange for someone else to do so. 

Sell your flat in as little as 28 days

I cant sell shared ownership flat, what do i do?

Once you have alerted your landlord of your intention to sell, they will have a nomination period to find a buyer. This period will usually be either 4, 8, or 12 weeks, depending on the lease. If your landlord is unsuccessful in finding a buyer during this period, then you will be able to find a buyer for your property yourself. 

 

If you cant sell shared ownership flat, then don’t worry, there are steps that you can take to help: 

If you are struggling to sell your shared ownership property, then you should reach out to your housing association. They may be able to offer you advice, guidance and support. Some even have a process in place if you are unable to find a buyer. 

Obtain a professional valuation for your property. This will help you determine an accurate and competitive asking price, which can be crucial for attracting potential buyers.

Evaluate whether there are any improvements or repairs that could enhance the appeal of your shared ownership flat. Small upgrades or improvements may make the property more attractive to potential buyers.

Ensure that your property is effectively marketed. Utilise online platforms, social media, and other channels to reach a wide audience. Highlight the benefits of shared ownership and any unique features of your flat.

If you encounter legal or contractual challenges, consider seeking legal advice. A solicitor experienced in property law can help navigate any complexities and ensure that you meet all legal requirements.

Or, you can bypass the hassle and get in touch with us. We can help you sell your home in as little as 28 days and without fees! Interested? Click the box below for more!

Can I pull out of selling my flat?

As is the case when selling any property, you are able to pull out of a sale at any point before the exchange of contracts without legal consequence. However, if you wish to pull out once the contracts have been exchanged, then you will be breaking a legal contract, and you can expect to face legal consequences as a result. 

 

If you are considering pulling out of a house sale or purchase, you should consider the potential implications that can be incurred as a result:

 

  • The buyer losing their deposit
  • Being taken to court to cover losses as a result of the terminated sale/purchase
  • Losing out on non-refundable costs, such as conveyancing costs

How can I make my flat more sellable 

 I cant sell my flat, is there anything I can do? 

 

If you are looking to speed up your property sale and secure a fast flat sale, then one of the best ways that you can do this is by bringing the interior of your flat up to scratch. You don’t need to go all out with renovation, despite what you may have been told. Whilst renovations are great, if you are selling on a timescale, the chances of the changes you make being ready in time are slim to none. Furthermore, the money you spend on these renovations is unlikely to be made back in the sale. Only consider renovations if there is drastic work that needs to be done, or you are likely to stay living in the flat for quite some time so will be able to enjoy the new amenities.  

 

So, what can you do?  

 

Thankfully, there are smaller changes that you can make that are likely to have a big impact on your sales. For example, some quick wins that you can achieve quickly before your estate agent arrives include:  

 

This means hoovering, wiping down any and all surfaces, cleaning the kitchen and bathroom, emptying the bins, and giving the flat a general once over. A tidy home is a loved home, and potential buyers will be able to pick up on this.

Before you host any viewings or allow the estate agent round, you should clean up any communal areas within your building to ensure they are looking their best. You should speak to the property managers or even your neighbours about this as first impressions matter, and you want to WOW any potential buyers before they even see the flat. 

Around an hour before any visits or viewings you should open the curtains and windows in your flat to let in fresh air and natural daylight. This will help to rid the flat of any odours as well as help the flat to seem airy and bright. 

Before any viewings or visits, you should give your flat a once over to ensure there is no clutter left lying about. This means no clothes horses left out, no washing up on the side, beds made and nothing left out on the side. 

It is always a wise idea to try and arrange viewings for quieter times during the day. This will help to paint both your building and your flat in the best light as it lowers the chance of any loud noises or neighbours being an issue.  

How can I speed up my flat sale?

If you are looking to speed up the sale of your flat, there are a couple of steps you can take to help ensure that you are selling quickly and to a timescale that suits you. Below, we take a look at some of our top tips for a quick flat sale: 

Stay organised and proactive 

In order to ensure that your sale is running as smoothly and efficiently as possible, it’s important to stay proactive throughout. This means staying well informed about not only the tasks at hand but also their respective deadlines. Understanding what needs attention and when helps you stay ahead of any potential delays.

Communicate 

Communication is key in life, and a property sale is no different. If you want to speed up the sale of your flat, you will need to ensure that you keep in touch with both your estate agent and solicitor consistently throughout the process. This will minimise the risk of miscommunication but also will mean that as soon as a document or an issue crops up, you will be able to deal with it swiftly and keep your sale on track. You may wish to consider establishing a weekly update routine among all involved parties in order to keep the line of communication open. 

Establish a realistic completion date 

You should set a practical target date for the exchange of contracts. This will create a shared deadline for all of the involved parties and will allow you a goal to work towards. If there’s no urgency for your sale, allow some extra time between the exchange and completion rather than being overly flexible with the exchange date.

Sell through The Property Selling Company

One of the best ways you can sell your flat quickly is through us.  We can help you sell your flat in as little as 28 days and without the fees. Want to find out more? Click here

What to do if you can't sell flat?

If i cant sell my flat, what am I meant to do?

 

If you are struggling to find a buyer for your flat don’t worry. We are The Property Selling Company, an estate agency with a difference. We pride ourselves on our personal philosophy that selling a flat should be three things, fast, effortless, and free

 

Our dedicated team of property professionals are by your side throughout the selling journey, guiding you every step of the way. From valuation to listing and through to completion, we handle all aspects of the selling process, tailored to your unique selling situation. We offer a full estate agency service, but without the expensive estate agent and legal fees you have come to expect. 

 

Say goodbye to the days of struggling for a buyer for your flat. All you need to do to get the ball rolling is fill in one of our no-obligation forms below and start your house-selling journey today. 

Sell your flat without hassle

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How To Sell A Shared Ownership Property UK

How to sell a shared ownership property UK

Selling a shared ownership property explained

Tom Condon
Tom Condon ★ Digital Content Writer

Table of Contents

If you’re a shared owner looking to sell shared ownership home and wondering ‘how to sell shared ownership’ then you’re in the right place! Selling a shared ownership home involves several steps, from deciding to sell your home to completing the sale with your buyer.

 

As a shared owner, when you want to sell your home, it’s important to effectively market your home to attract the right potential buyers. The beauty of shared ownership is that it provides an affordable home option, helping many people get onto the property ladder. 

 

If you’re considering selling shared ownership property, it’s important to understand the layers of the process. This guide will walk you through each step, from how to sell your shared ownership property, the costs associated with the process and the most common questions.

What is a shared ownership property?

Shared ownership is a government-backed scheme aimed at assisting first-time buyers in climbing the property ladder. It enables you to purchase a portion of a home, usually between 10% and 75% of its full market value, while paying rent on the remaining share to a housing association or local authority.

 

One of the important features of shared ownership is the ability to increase your ownership stake over time through a process known as staircasing. Most shared ownership agreements allow you to staircase up to 100%, thereby achieving full ownership. However, some leases have a cap at 80%, maintaining the affordability and availability of these homes for other potential buyers in need.

Sell shared ownership house without all the hassle

Can you sell a shared ownership property?

You are entitled to sell shared ownership property at any point but the process differs slightly depending on how much of the property you own.

 

If you’ve staircased to 100%, the sale process is similar to that of any other property. However, it’s always wise to review your contract for any specific terms or conditions. 

 

If you own less than 100%, the housing association or local authority that owns the remaining share has a right known as first refusal. This means they have the initial opportunity to buy back your share or find an eligible buyer.

 

The duration of their right to find a buyer is set during the agreed nomination period, which will usually last four, eight or twelve weeks, depending on your property’s specific agreement. If they are unable to find a buyer within this period, you are then free to market and sell your share on the open market.

How do you buy out of a shared ownership property?

Staircasing while owning shares in a shared ownership property refers to the process by which a homeowner can gradually increase their share of the property over time. Here is how staircasing works:

When you first buy a shared ownership property, you purchase a specific share of it. This is often a more affordable option for many people as it requires a smaller mortgage and deposit compared to buying a home outright.

Over time, you have the option to buy more shares in your property. This process is called staircasing. The cost of the additional shares is based on the market value of the property at the time of the purchase, not the value when you first bought it.

As you buy more shares, the proportion of rent you pay on the remaining share decreases. For instance, if you initially owned 50% of your home and then staircase to own 75%, you would only pay rent on the remaining 25%.

In many cases, you can staircase up to owning 100% of your home, at which point you become the outright owner and no longer have to pay rent on the property. However, some shared ownership properties have restrictions that cap staircasing at a certain percentage, such as 80%.

Each time you staircase, you will likely incur costs such as valuation fees (to determine the current market value of the property), legal fees, and potentially additional mortgage arrangement fees.

Increasing your share of the property can also affect your rights and responsibilities, such as being able to make certain decisions about the property without the housing association’s consent.

How to sell shared ownership property UK

If you are wanting to sell shared ownership property in the UK, the process is fairly similar to selling a normal house, except you may have the assistance of the Housing Association or Local Authority. 

 

Here is our step by step guide to selling shared ownership property:

 

Understanding your lease

 

  • Begin by thoroughly reviewing your lease. Each housing association or local authority has specific rules for selling shared ownership properties. Ensure you understand all the processes, financial responsibilities and any potential restrictions.

 

Notify your Housing Association or Local Authority

 

  • You will need to inform your local authority or housing association of your decision to sell. This is also the perfect time to clarify the nomination period – which is the duration you must wait before you can independently market your property if they haven’t found a buyer.

 

Valuation and Energy Performance Assessment

 

  • Arrange for a RICS qualified surveyor to value your property. You can choose a surveyor from the housing association’s recommendations or find one independently.
  • Remember, the valuation report is valid for three months, and a revaluation is necessary if the property doesn’t sell within this timeframe. Also, check if you need a new Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) for your property.

 

Completing the necessary paperwork

 

  • Once satisfied with the valuation, complete and return the ‘intention to sell’ form to your housing association or local authority. Prepare to provide details of your conveyancer or solicitor, experienced in Shared Ownership sales, along with your lease, FENSA Certificates and other documents. Be prepared for a marketing fee to cover the cost of advertising your property.

 

Marketing your property

 

  • The housing association will exclusively market your property during the agreed nomination period, using their platforms and reaching out to potential buyers. If they are unable to find a suitable buyer within this period, you can then market the property independently or through an estate agent, keeping in mind the specific criteria for Shared Ownership buyers.

 

Formally instructing a solicitor

 

  • Once a buyer is found, either through the housing association, local authority or the open market, instruct your conveyancer or solicitor to manage the sale. Maintain regular communication to ensure a smooth process.

 

The exchange and completion process

 

  • The buyer will undergo a similar approval process as you did when purchasing the property. Once approved, their solicitor will coordinate with yours to exchange contracts. A completion date will be set, marking when you will hand over the keys and settle any outstanding legal fees. 

Is it difficult to sell shared ownership property?

Selling a shared ownership property is often more streamlined compared to traditional homeownership sales. The ease largely comes from the support provided by Housing Associations. These organisations play a role in simplifying the process, offering assistance in finding potential buyers. 

 

Additionally, they often take on the responsibility of marketing your property, which can help speed up the process. This collaborative approach between the homeowner and the Housing Association can lead to a quicker and more efficient sale, making the experience less daunting. 

 

However, if the housing association cannot find a buyer for the share ownership property within the specified nomination period, the owner is granted the freedom to market the property independently. This is unfortunately where some of the difficulty of selling can arise. 

 

Saying this, the owner will usually have more control over the sale process, including setting the price, marketing strategies and arranging viewings. The issues that arise are due to the fact that the potential buyers must meet certain income thresholds and other criteria set by the housing association or local authority. 

 

These thresholds or criteria could include:

 

  • Income thresholds: Buyers usually need to have a household income below a certain level, for example, in the North East of England, the income threshold might be £80,000 or less. 
  • First time buyers: Priority is often given to first-time buyers or individuals who currently don’t own a property. Additionally, those in housing need, such as living in overcrowded or unsuitable housing conditions.
  • Local connections: Some schemes require buyers to have a connection to the local area, such as living, working or having family there. This criteria helps support local communities and ensures that those who contribute to the area have housing opportunities. 
  • Mortgage eligibility: Buyers must demonstrate that they are eligible for a mortgage for the share of the property they intend to buy. This assessment ensures that buyers can sustainably afford the property. 
  • No outstanding credit issues: Potential buyers should not have significant outstanding debts or credit issues that could impact their ability to maintain mortgage payments.
  • Sufficient deposit: While the deposit required for shared ownership can be lower than for buying a property outright, buyers still need to have enough savings for a deposit on their share of the home.
  • Ability to sustain ownership: Prospective buyers are assessed for their ability to sustain homeownership, including meeting ongoing costs like mortgage payments, rent on the remaining share, maintenance and service charges. 

What steps can you take if dissatisfied with a Housing Association’s handling of your property sale?

If you find yourself dissatisfied with the way your housing association is managing the sale of your shared ownership property, there are a number of steps you can take. 

 

Firstly, begin by raising your concerns with the housing association directly. It’s often helpful to do this in writing, providing a clear and detailed account of your issues, which can lead to a direct resolution or clarification of the processes involved.

 

If the initial communication doesn’t resolve the issue, follow the housing association’s formal complaint procedure. This process is outlined in your lease agreement or is available upon request. Following the procedures means that your concerns ensure your complaint is logged and handled systematically.

 

Should the response from the housing association be unsatisfactory, or the issue remains unresolved, you can escalate the matter to the Housing Ombudsman. The Ombudsman offers a free, impartial service to resolve disputes between tenants and housing associations. They can investigate the issue and provide a resolution, which may include compensation or specific actions from the housing association.

Association not found a buyer? We will!

How much does it cost to sell Shared Ownership property?

The cost of selling a shared ownership property will most likely need you to budget to ensure a smooth transaction. While some costs will be fixed according to your lease agreement, there will be other costs that vary depending on competitive pricing.

 

Your property must be valued by a RICS surveyor, the cost for this service will vary but it’s a necessary expense to ensure an accurate market value. The average RICS valuation will cost you £320, but this can increase up to £800 if you require a Level 3 survey. 

 

You will be responsible for your own solicitor’s fees, which on average will cost around 1% to 3% of your total selling price. It may also be important to note that the conveyancing process for shared ownership properties can be slightly longer than standard house selling. 

 

Furthermore, if in your lease agreement it states that you need to cover your housing associations’ legal fees, then you will also be liable to pay for these.

 

You will also need to obtain your Leasehold Information Form, which will incur a £100 to £300 cost from your housing association. If your housing association assists in marketing your property, they will charge you for this as well – but this cost will depend on the terms of your lease. 

 

If your current EPC is older than 10 years, you’ll need to obtain a new one, and these can cost between £60 and £120. 

 

Should you choose to market your property via an estate agent, you will then also face estate agent fees from then which could be 1% to 3%+VAT of your house selling price. However, if you sell your property with us, you won’t incur any fees at all, ever. 

 

We will cover all the fees associated with selling shared ownership house, including solicitor fees, estate agent fees and we will handle everything for you. Not only that, but we can also help you sell within 28 days, although most people decide to take slightly longer.

Can you transfer ownership of a shared ownership house?

It is possible to transfer ownership of a shared ownership property. This most commonly occurs during the sale of the property, as outlined in the steps above. However, there are some other circumstances where you might wish to transfer your lease or your share of the lease.

 

In such situations, you will need to seek permission from your housing association or local authority. Each organisation will have its own set of rules and procedures for transferring ownership and you will need to have a firm understanding of these before starting the transfer of ownership.

 

Once permission has been granted, you will need to appoint a solicitor to handle the legal aspects of the transfer. This could include drafting and signing new lease agreements, ensuring compliance with housing association regulations and possibly dealing with financial adjustments related to the ownership share.

Can you sell one Shared Ownership property and buy another?

You can sell your current shared ownership property and purchase another, provided you still meet the criteria for a government’s shared ownership scheme.

 

The scheme is designed to assist individuals who may not be able to afford a property on the open market, so your continued eligibility will depend on factors like income level and housing needs. 

 

If you’ve increased your equity in your current property through a process known as staircasing (where you gradually buy a larger share of your home), you might find that you have built up enough financial leverage to transition out of shared ownership altogether. 

 

This could open the door to buying a non-shared ownership home, giving you more options in the housing market.

We’ll sell shared ownership home for free

What is the bad side of selling shared ownership property?

Before you decide to sell shared ownership property, it is also important to understand the downside to selling. 

 

If you own a smaller share of the property, your financial gain from any increase in its value is proportionally smaller. This means that the benefits of capital appreciation, a key advantage of property ownership, are significantly reduced. The smaller your share, the less you benefit from the property’s growth in market value over time. 

 

Selling a shared ownership property can be far more complicated than selling a standard property. If you don’t own the property outright, you must first offer it back to the housing association, known as the right of first refusal. 

 

This can increase the selling process timeline, as you have to wait for a fixed period to see if the housing association can find a buyer before you can market it yourself.

Even if you own 100% of the property, selling on the open market might come with its own challenges, especially if you don’t own the freehold as it will limit your pool of potential buyers. 

 

And then when you do find a potential buyer, they will need to meet the specific criteria set by the housing association, which will limit your pool of buyers even further. 

 

Finally, if you have increased your share through staircasing, the cost of these additional shares is based on the property’s value at the time of each purchase. As property values increase, so does the cost of acquiring additional shares which will impact the eventual selling price of the property.

What’s the catch with shared ownership?

Shared ownership schemes offer an accessible path to homeownership but as always, there’s a catch! 

 

Shared ownership properties are leasehold, meaning you’re responsible for ground rent and service charges irrespective of the size of your share. These costs are ongoing and can add to your annual expenses. 

 

The Leasehold Reform (Ground Rent) Act 2022 has brought changes for newly builds, abolishing ground rent. However, for existing leasehold properties, the ground rent factor may deter some buyers, and potentially affect the resale value. 

 

Finding lenders that offer mortgages for shared ownership properties can be challenging, though more mortgage lenders are embracing this market. This limitation might affect your mortgage options, possibly influencing the terms and interest rates available to you.

 

Shared ownership properties often have restrictions on alterations or improvements. This limitation can impact your ability to personalise or enhance your home, possibly affecting its future value and your enjoyment of the property.

 

Staircasing, or increasing your share in the property, incurs additional costs each time it’s done. These include survey, legal, and mortgage fees, unlike a traditional property purchase where such costs are usually one time expenses.

Can you make a profit on shared ownership?

When selling a shared ownership property, there is potential for making profit. But the potential will hinge on the appreciation of the property’s value over time. If the market value of the home increases from the time you purchased your share to when you sell it, you stand to make a profit. 

 

The extent of your profit is directly proportional to the size of the share you own in the property. For instance, if you own 50% of the property and its value has increased, you will profit from that 50% share of the increased value. Conversely, if you own a smaller share, such as 25%, your share of the profit will be correspondingly smaller.

Do shared ownerships go up in value?

The value of shared ownership properties is subject to the same market conditions as other properties. If the housing market in the area is strong and property values are rising, it’s likely that the value of shared ownership homes will also increase. 

 

The location of the property plays a massive role in the increase of value it may be subject to. Properties in desirable locations like Liverpool, Newcastle, Leeds, Sheffield or Bristol with good transport links, schools and amenities are far more likely to see an appreciation in value. 

 

Furthermore, shared ownership properties are leasehold and the length of the lease will impact the property’s value. Properties with longer leases are more valuable. If the lease is nearing its end, the property value might decrease unless steps are taken to extend the lease.

Looking to sell shared ownership property? We can help!

If you’re considering selling shared ownership property, The property Selling Company is here to guide you every step of the way. As a leading UK online estate agency, we specialise in streamlining the selling process for traditional and share ownership homes, because we believe selling a house should be fast, effortless and free.

 

Our team of experienced property professionals understand the unique aspects of selling shared ownership properties. We offer expert advice tailored to your situation and help ensure that you navigate through the process with ease. 

 

From valuation to listing, and through to completion, we handle all aspects of the selling process. Our service is designed to take the stress out of selling, allowing you to focus on your next move.

 

We are able to leverage our vast network and our large online presence to ensure that your property reaches a wide audience of potential buyers that fit your housing associations criteria. Our targeted marketing campaigns are tailored to highlight the features of your property and attract the right buyers.

 

Arguably the most important benefit of using our service is our commitment to covering all fees associated with selling your shared ownership property. This includes valuation fees, legal fees, and estate agency fees to ensure a completely hassle-free selling experience not seen anywhere else on the market.

Sell shared ownership property without all the hassle

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Sell My Flat Fast UK

sell my flat

Sell My Flat Fast UK

Looking at how to sell my flat fast, the costs involved with selling a flat, and how we can help you sell in as little as 28 days.

Alexandra Ventress

Alexandra Ventress ★ Digital Content Writer

Table of Contents

When it comes to selling a flat, there are plenty of aspects you will need to consider, especially if you are seeking a speedy sale.  From the management packs to the viewings, choosing an estate agent, and negotiations, it can be easy to feel overwhelmed. Especially if you are concerned about the desirability of your flat. 

 

If you are currently saying to yourself, ‘I want to sell my flat, but I’m unsure how to go about it’, then you have come to the right place. In this blog post we will be looking at how to sell your flat fast, the costs you can incur, and how we can help you sell my flat online. 

 

Looking for a quick answer? Check out our interactive menu to the right!

Are flats falling in value?

Every flat is different and some may continue to rise in value whilst others may fall. However, as a general rule of thumb, flats do appear to be declining in value. This can be put down to a variety of factors, such as rising interest rates, economic uncertainty, and changes in buyer preferences influenced by external factors like the COVID-19 pandemic. The surge in interest rates has made mortgages more expensive, particularly affecting first-time buyers who are a significant market for flats. Additionally, problems with supply and demand, recent market trends, and the end of the stamp duty holiday have further contributed to the challenges in the flat market..

Are 1 bed flats easy to sell?

Exactly how easy it is to sell a one-bedroom will depend upon a variety of factors, such as location, market demand, and the condition of the property. As with any selling opportunity, there are advantages and disadvantages to selling your one bedroom flat.  

 

One of the main advantages of selling a one bedroom flat is that they are attractive to specific buyers like property investors or first-time buyers, and can contribute to the marketability of one-bedroom flats. In desirable locations, they may be particularly appealing.

 

However, there are also disadvantages such as limited space and potential challenges in selling, which should also be considered. Limited space may make it less suitable for individuals or couples looking for a long-term residence, especially if they plan to start a family.

 

Additionally, the fact that one-bedroom flats can be harder to sell than two-bedroom flats due to their limited space is highlighted as a disadvantage. The limited ownership associated with leasehold properties could also impact the attractiveness to buyers.

 

All in all, while one-bedroom flats have advantages that make them appealing to specific buyer profiles, the potential challenges, such as limited space and potential difficulty in selling, suggest that it may not be universally easy to sell one-bedroom flats. The ease of selling will vary depending on the local property market, property conditions, and buyer preferences.

What paperwork will be required to sell my flat? 

When it comes to putting your flat on the market, you will need to complete and compile a variety of documents. These include: 

 

  • The Leasehold Information Form (TA7)
  • The Property Information Form (TA6) 
  • Name and address of the freeholder or landlord
  • A copy of the lease
  • Details of payments you may have made during your ownership e.g ground rent and service charges 
  • Details of any attempts that may have taken place to purchase the freehold of the property 
  • Any correspondence that may have taken place between yourself and the managing agent or freeholder

What is a flat with a short lease? 

A flat is classed as having a short lease if it has anything less than 80 years left on the lease. If you have a flat with a short lease, there is no need to panic. It is not necessarily an issue and many short lease flats are both bought and sold on the open market. 

Sell flat with a short lease

If you find that you own a flat with a short lease, then you will need to consider your next steps carefully. A short lease does have the ability to affect a buyer’s manageability and can potentially jeopardise the sale. 

 

You may wish to extend the lease to avoid selling to a cash buyer. Exactly how much this will cost you will depend on how many years are left on the lease. 

 

Other factors which may affect how much it will cost to extend the lease on your flat before a sale include:  

 

  • Any improvements you may have made to the flat interior
  • How much ground rent is payable 
  • The market value of your flat

 

Whilst you may not wish to extend the lease on your flat if you are planning to sell, doing so may be within your best interests. Flats with a lease under 99 years are not always viewed as desirable as those with longer leases. If you extend the lease before moving, then you will make your flat a lot more desirable and may be able to increase the property value further. Talk to your estate agent first, as they will be able to give you a valuation of the property as it currently is, and how much it could be with a lease extension. 

Typical costs when selling flat in the UK

You may find that you will encounter many of the same costs when you are selling your flat that you would if you were selling your house. However, depending on your property, there may be a few extra charges that crop up when selling a flat. Below, we take a closer look at what you may have to expect: 

If you are selling a leasehold flat, then you should expect to receive additional charges from your conveyancing solicitor. This is due to the complex nature of leasehold properties which can often result in extra work for your solicitor. 

Another two charges you will need to get familiar with are ground and service charges. These will both be payable until the day of completion. Even if you have sold your flat and exchanged the contract, you will still be required to pay until completion day.  

When the time comes to sell your flat, you will be required to provide a management pack. This pack is a collection of documents that you can obtain from the freeholder or managing agent. It costs between £100-£500 and includes:

 

  • Major works plans
  • Ground rent statement 
  • Service charge statement 
  • Asbestos survey 
  • Buildings insurance 
  • Notice fees, Deed of covenant fees, and other freeholder fees
  • Disputes and Enfranchisement 
  • Annual accounts for Management Company for the last 3 years
  • Form EWS1 External Wall Fire Review

When you sell flat, the buyer will be required to sign a deed of Covenant to agree to comply with the terms of the lease. 

Finally, another fee you may be liable to pay is a retention fee. As the exact sum of service charges may not be currently known when you are selling, you may find that your conveyancer will ask for a certain amount that they will “retain” until the outstanding charges are made known. 

Or, if you don’t fancy forking out for solicitors fees, you can sell through The Property Selling Company, which will cover all legal fees for you! Want to find out more? Click the button below! 

I want to sell my flat, what do I need to consider? 

If you need to sell a flat, then there are plenty of factors you will need to consider. From the local property market to the age and condition of your flat, there are plenty of factors at play when you trying to achieve a quick flat sale. Below we take a closer look at some of the factors you will need to consider when selling a property on the open market: 

One of the most important factors you will need to consider when putting your flat on the market is to look at its age and condition. This is because it has a direct correlation with the price you will be able to achieve. Chances are, a newer, well looked after flat will sell for a lot more than an older flat in a state of disrepair. 

Another vital factor when selling your home on the open market is the asking price. This will determine how many offers you will get and will dictate the success of your sale. Price it too high, and you risk not receiving any offers and being stuck on the market for months before eventually reducing the price. Or on the other hand, you can price it too low and end up either scaring buyers away as they wonder what may be wrong with your flat or selling it for far less than it’s worth and cheating yourself out of profit. 

Knowing what is happening within both the local and wider property market can give you an idea of how long you may be on the market for. It can also give you an idea of how much you can price your own property for. Look at similar flats that have sold recently in your area and check out historic sale data on Rightmove. 

 

You should also look at the wider market, looking to see whether it is currently a buyer or a seller’s market. This will give you an idea about whether you will need to price your flat competitively or not. 

The location of your flat is another key aspect you shouldn’t ignore when it comes to selling your flat quickly. Should you own a city centre flat, then you will more likely achieve a higher asking price than those in more suburban areas. You should look carefully at the amenities that are local to you. Are you within walking distance from public transport links? Are you a short walk away from a shopping centre or leisure centre? Think about what your flat has to offer potential buyers and factor this into your asking price. 

Different ways to sell flat

If you are looking to sell your flat fast, then you will have multiple options to explore. The most common way that sellers look to sell a house or flat is to sell through either a property auction, cash buyer, or an estate agent. Each of these selling avenues comes with its own pros and cons, which we will look at in closer detail below: 

Auction 

If you are looking to sell your flat quickly, then a route you may have looked into is selling through a property auction. A property auction works by selling to a group of bidders rather than on the open market. You will set a minimum reserve price that will need to be met in order to sell your flat, and from there, potential buyers will bid on the property until they meet the minimum reserve price. From there, the highest bid will win, raising your total profit. 

 

Property auctions are a popular option for those with a flat they are looking to sell as property auctions tend to attract serious buyers. This is because once the gavel falls on a lot, the winning bid becomes legally binding and the buyer cannot pull out without facing serious financial consequences. 

 

Another reason why flat sellers may choose a property auction is that property auctions often attract investors who are looking for their next opportunity. 

 

However, if you are looking for a fast sale, then a property auction may not be for you. This is because selling via auction involves a lot of waiting which is less than ideal if you are seeking a quick sale. You will be required to wait for the next property auction before you can sell your property, which can sometimes be months away depending on the popularity of the auction. Then once you have found a buyer, you will need to wait for the paperwork to be signed and completed, which can also take time. 

 

Furthermore, selling your flat through auction is not without cost. In exchange for the marketing and selling of your flat, the auction house will require a commission which will come out of your final profit. 

 

Cash Buyer 

One route you may wish to explore when it comes to selling your property is to sell through a cash house buyer. A cash house buyer will be able to give you a cash offer and purchase your property in as little as 7 days, without the need for a loan or a mortgage. Because they have the cash funds ready and available, a genuine cash buyer will be able to purchase your flat as soon as you are ready to sell. 

 

 One of the downsides to selling with a cash buyer however is that you will not receive 100% market value for your property. In return for the quick sale and security they offer, cash house buyers will buy your house for less than it is worth. Most cash buyers will offer between 90%-80% below market value, however others will go further. 

 

Furthermore, it is important to ensure you are selling with a reliable and reputable company. The cash buying business is unregulated, which means there are no rules and no regulations that they are required to follow. Because of this, some cash-buying companies are able to get away with dodgy practices. Whilst the business is unregulated, there are boards that cash buying companies can join to help reassure customers that they do partake in unethical business practices. Boards such as The National Association of Property Buyers and The Property Ombudsman are both there to provide customers with peace of mind about who they are selling their flats to. 

 

If you do decide to sell with a cash buyer, ensure they are members of The Property Ombudsman or The National Association of Property Buyers, make sure to check a variety of reviews across several different platforms, and stay clear of companies who claim to offer “100%” market value. 

Estate agent 

Another way to sell your flat fast is through an estate agent. An estate agent is one of the most popular avenues for selling, as they will undertake all of the heavy lifting and legwork in your sale, from marketing to viewings, creating floorplans, and negotiations in return for a percentage of the final sale price. 

 

One of the reasons why selling a flat through an estate agent is so popular is because it is an estate agent’s job to sell property. They know the local and wider market, what potential buyers are looking for, and how to paint a property in the best possible light. They are professionals who live breathe, and eat property. 

 

Furthermore, an estate agent is there to take the stress out of your property sale. They are there to take the weight off of you to ensure that the sale goes as smoothly as possible. 

Popular areas we can sell flats quickly

As an online estate agency with a difference, we can sell your flat in as little as 28 days. We are interested in areas all over the UK, however, these are some of the areas where we get a lot of inquiries from: 

 

  • Liverpool
  • Leeds
  • Sheffield
  • Manchester 
  • London
  • Bristol
  • Newcastle 
  • York
  • Brighton
  • Cambridge 
  • Bath 
  • Brighton 
  • Durham
  • Portsmouth

 

However, if you do not see your area above, don’t worry. We can help you sell wherever you are across England and Wales. 

Are flats harder to sell?

It’s no secret that selling a flat or home is not always the easiest task. But it doesn’t need to be that way. Here at The Property Selling Company, we believe that selling a flat should be three things: fast, effortless, and free

 

We have made it our mission to change the way that you feel about selling your property. Thanks to our personal philosophy, we offer a full online estate agency service but without the fees and the hassle, you can typically get from putting your flat on the market. Say goodbye to the days of expensive legal and estate agent fees, as we cover them for you. It’s just one of the ways that we take the stress out of selling. 

 

Our tailored service means that our dedicated team of property professionals is by your side throughout the flat selling process, offering you support even after you have sold. We will advertise your property on Rightmove and Zoopla, organise viewings, cover legal fees, and negotiate better deals for free. 

 

We are making the challenges of selling your flat a thing of the past. Over the years, we have built a seamless process to provide you with an excellent service and sell for free.

Benefits of our sell my flat quickly service

I want to sell my flat quickly.

 

Fantastic, but how should you go about it? 

 

Although we may be a little bit biased, we believe we are the best choice for selling your flat quickly. We are an estate agency with a difference. Besides being able to sell your flat in as little as 28 days, we think that there are many other benefits of using our service, such as: 

 

  • Customer service – Our wonderful team of property professionals who are by your side throughout the selling process.
  • Our fee-free service – Say goodbye to legal bills and estate agent fees, we cover them all for you!
  • Advertisement – We will advertise your property on Rightmove and Zoopla, sites used by 98% of buyers.
  • Stress-free process – We take the stress out of selling, with our streamlined and direct service.

How can I sell my flat fast?

If you are looking to sell my flat fast, the good news is it has never been easier. All you need to do is to fill in your details in the box below to start your inquiry. One of our property experts will be in touch to find out more about your property and from there we can agree on a price and we will take the rest from there! It’s that easy! 

 

So if you are ready to get your flat on the market and sell in as little as 28 days, fill out one of our free no-obligation forms today!

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How Do You Negotiate a House Price as a Seller in 2024

how to negotiate house price

How Do You Negotiate a House Price as a Seller in 2024

Looking at how you can negotiate a house price as a seller, the best methods of house price negotiation, and what to do when a buyer makes an offer.

Alexandra Ventress

Alexandra Ventress ★ Digital Content Writer

Table of Contents

Whilst you may be on the search for your next dream home, you may still have a property that needs to be sold.  House price negotiation can be an aspect of selling your home that sends terror straight down a seller’s spine. But it doesn’t need to be this way. Negotiations can be a chance to take a low offer on a house and turn it into a final offer to be proud of. 

 

In this blog post, we will be answering the all-important question, how do you negotiate a house price? We will also look into a property forecast for 2024 and how we can help you sell in as little as 28 days.

 

Looking for a quick answer? Check out our interactive menu to the left.

2024 property market forecast 

Before we get into negotiating house price as a seller 2024, we should first look at the conditions of the property market as a whole. This will give us better insight into where you will stand as a seller and how much negotiation power you will have. 

 

The UK property market can be an unpredictable creature, fluctuating over the past decade with sky highs in the early 2000s and lows during the 2008 financial crisis. Once the market managed to make its recovery, it slowed once more due to the wider uncertainty that Brexit brought with it. And whilst COVID-19 brought with it more uncertainty, it also saw the rise in house prices, seeing market activity pick up. Pent-up demand, lower interest rates and changing buyer preferences all added fuel to the house-buying fire. 

 

Whilst it is impossible to predict exactly what will happen with the UK property market in 2024, our property experts can take a guess at what we can expect over the coming year. The housing shortage is going to become a much more pressing issue with a growing population and a lack of housing helping to strengthen 2024 as the year of the seller’s market. 

 

Property experts are also predicting: 

 

  • Speed is key: 2024 is set to be the year of fast house sales, with predictions setting appropriately priced houses to sell three times faster than they did in 2021. Bidding wars will become far more commonplace for properties which are desirable and priced correctly.
  • Low availability: In 2021, the number of properties available for sale dropped drastically and has not been predicted to recover by 2024. This means that the listings will struggle in order to keep up with the demand from buyers. 
  • The sky is the limit: 5-7% annual UK house price growth has been forecast for 2023 and 2024 by experts as demand for housing outpaces the supply. If you live in Greater London, you could see a rise of 7-10% each year. 

What to know before negotiating house sale

Before you jump straight into the world of negotiating, there are a few aspects of the selling process that you will need to understand first. Below we take a closer look at some of the steps of a house sale that will lay the ground work for negotiate house sale: 

Pricing 

Before you negotiate your house sale, you need to first ensure that your pricing is correct. This will set you off on the best foot when the offers start rolling in and you need to negotiate. Whilst 2024 may be a seller’s market, this does not mean you can set any price you wish for your property. You still need to ensure that you are pricing correctly you ensure that you do not price out any willing buyers and end up wasting on the open market. 

 

If you are entering negotiations, then at this stage you should have had a property valuation in order to set the asking price. However, if you are having doubts, or simply want to double down, then now is the time to get a second valuation. You will be able to use this when it comes to deciding whether you wish to accept, reject, or negotiate your offer. 

 

You should rely on your estate agent for this valuation as they will have a good knowledge of your property, local area, similar properties available, recent sold prices, and the wider market. 

 

You will also be able to use the Land Registry in order to get a very basic valuation of both your property and the properties in your local area.

 

Another route you may wish to explore is hiring a surveyor but be warned this can be a costly decision. The valuation you get will be more accurate however and will be a good basis for any counteroffers you may wish to make. 

Gage where your buyer is 

The next thing you will need to understand is where your buyer is at in the buying process. Are they a first-time buyer? Are they chain-free? Is there a current property under offer? Do they have a conveyancer? Have they started the mortgage application process?

 

It is important to understand as much as you can about your buyer if you want to make the most of the negotiations. 

 

You should also look inward and consider your own circumstances. Are you looking at buying a home currently or are you waiting to sell first? Have you got your mortgage application underway? 

Consult with your estate agent 

If you are unsure about whether you should accept a bid on your property, you should consult with your estate agent. They are the experts and have the experience and knowledge to help you navigate the negotiations. They will also be able to inform you if the buyer is offering you the best price that they can. They will also inform you on whether or not they believe you will receive a better offer. 

Sealed bid

Another option you may wish to explore is a sealed bid. This occurs when your estate agent invites any prospective buyers to put forward a single bid. From here you can either accept one of them or reject them all if none are high enough. 

 

As a buyer will only be allowed to put forward one bid, they will often put forward their highest offer in an attempt to win. It is worth bearing in mind that between 2013-2015 only 2% of buyers and 3% of sellers reported using sealed bids. These bids will typically work at their best with at least 2-3 serious buyers. 

Extras 

You may also want to consider throwing in extra features in order to raise the price of your property. If your would-be home buyers are interested in a specific piece of furniture that you may have, then they may be willing to pay a little extra for the property in order to have it included. This can be a tactic that works particularly well if you are dealing with first-time buyers who may not have a lot of furniture themselves. 

Repair work 

Offering to do repair work can be a way to help boost your sale price and can be a handy tool when it comes to negotiating a sale price. If you are not willing to have the repair work done, then you may wish to accept the lower offer. 

Is negotiating house price as seller hard?

As 2024 is a seller’s market, it means that the ball is in your court, and can be used to give you a potential upper hand. You should remember to be flexible, and willing to listen to your buyer. But you should also be careful not to dip too low below the general asking price. 

 

Below, we take a look at some of our top tips for negotiating offers as a seller: 

If you are receiving multiple offers, you should set a date to receive all of your offers by. This adds a competitive edge to the sale and helps to create a sense of urgency for the buyers.

You should always ask to receive proof of funds when negotiating. It helps to prove the legitimacy of the bid and can avoid issues with funding later down the line. 

As this is a seller’s market, buyers will more than likely offer above the asking price as there is competition over limited housing stock. 

You should be sure to compare all of the offers against each other. Don’t just look at the price, consider requested repairs, the timeline for moving, the deposit amount, and other factors. 

You should keep any interested parties in the loop during the early days of the sale. This will help to encourage offers from people who may have viewed the house early doors but are yet to offer. 

If you do not receive any bids that meet your expectations, you should go in with a price that is a halfway point between the highest bid you receive and your original asking price. This will help give you some wiggle room for negotiation. 

How do you negotiate a house price When Selling Your House

Now you know what to expect, we will now take a closer look at how to negotiate a home purchase. When you put your home on the market, you should go into it expecting to negotiate on price. A tactic that some sellers employ in anticipation of these talks is to add 5-10% to the asking price. However, you should always consult your estate agent before deciding to do this. 

 

In 2019, Zoopla conducted a survey that discovered that the gap between the average asking price and selling price has increased by approximately 3.9%. 

 

When it comes to negotiating, you need to be flexible. You should carefully consider an offer before deciding whether to accept, reject, or negotiate. When you offer a counteroffer, it will typically be a little below the desired asking price to not lose the sale and to keep the buyer interested. Whilst it is worth to be flexible, you should never dip too far below asking. 

 

Before you provide a counter offer, remember to: 

 

  • Take your time to think the offer through
  • Consult your estate agent and compare the offer to the property’s value 
  • Review the local housing market to get an idea of an appropriate figure 
  • Take into consideration any potential repair costs against the offer you were given

What is reasonable to offer below asking price 2024 UK?

As a seller, you can expect to receive an offer that is anywhere between 5%-10% below your set asking price. However, you may receive offers that or less than this sum or more, it will depend upon a variety of factors, such as the condition of your property, the location, your buyer’s personal circumstances, and the local property market. 

 

If you receive a lower offer than expected, then you should not panic. You are under no legal operation to accept it, and you do not have to come to a decision about it straight away. A lower offer is often offered first by buyers as a means to start a negotiation. From here, you can negotiate the price and terms of the property and return with a counter offer for your potential buyer. 

What should I not say to a house buyer

When it comes to selling your home, it is always wise to play your cards close to your chest. You should be friendly with any potential buyers, but when it comes to small talk, you should be careful about what you do and do not say, as one false move could end up giving away any negotiation power you may have held.

 

Below we take a closer look at what not to say to a buyer when selling your home in 2024:

You want to sell fast 

If you tell a prospective buyer that you are in a hurry to sell and are looking for a quick sale, it can damage your chances of negotiation beyond repair. It is never a good idea to show your hand too early, and by revealing that you are in a rush to sell will mean that the buyer can offer less than they were originally going to and still potentially get the house. 

 

It can also be a good idea to try and avoid revealing any information that may indicate that you want a fast sale, such as you are selling due to illness, money struggles, or divorce. 

No rush

If you are not in a particular rush to sell, you should also play this close to your chest. If an agent does not think of your sale as a priority you may find yourself wasting away on the open market. 

You are looking for a specific buyer 

As a seller, you may be looking for a first-time buyer to sell your property to, or you may be looking to sell to someone who loves your property as much as you do. However, you should be careful not to voice any of these feelings out loud. You do not want to turn away any potential buyers who could have been about to make an offer and are willing to pay. 

How can we help?

If you are looking to negotiate house sale, or are thinking about putting your home on the market, then we are here to help. We are The Property Selling Company, an online estate agency with a difference. We were founded to shake up the traditional world of estate agencies and offer you a selling route away from the norm. 

 

We have one simple goal, to change the way you sell your home. The days of expensive solicitor bills and estate agent fees are over, we cover the costs so that you don’t have to.

 

We pride ourselves on our personal philosophy that selling a house should be three things; fast, effortless, and free. That’s why we offer a tailored service, where our team of property professionals are by your side throughout every step of the process. We will advertise your property on Rightmove and Zoopla, organise viewings, cover your legal fees, and negotiate better deals for free. 

 

We are making the challenges of selling your home a thing of the past. Over the years, we have built a seamless process to provide you with an excellent service and sell for free. 

 

So if you are ready to sell your home fast and for free, get in touch today and fill out one of our free, no-obligation forms today!

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What is a house guide price & should it be trusted 2024 UK

What is a house guide price & should it be trusted 2024 UK

A house guide price is used as a marketing tool for sellers and estate agents.

Tom Condon
Tom Condon ★ Digital Content Writer

Table of Contents

As we start in 2024, the UK housing market remains a labyrinth filled with evolving terms and trends, among which the ‘house guide price’ emerges as an important instrument for both buyers and sellers.

 

This article aims to delve deep into the concept of house guide prices, examining their role and impact from the perspective of both sellers and buyers. We will explore how these property guide prices are determined, the factors influencing them and the strategic considerations behind their use.

 

Additionally, the article will offer valuable insights into the current trends of the housing market, providing readers with a well-rounded understanding of how guide prices fit into the broader landscape of property buying and selling in 2024.

 

Whether you’re a first-time homebuyer, a seasoned investor or a seller looking to maximise your property’s value, this discussion will equip you with the knowledge and tools to navigate the UK housing market with confidence.

What does house guide price mean?

A house guide price, fundamentally, represents an estimated value set by the seller, vendor or their estate agent. This estimation indicates the minimum price that the seller is willing to accept for their property.

 

The property guide price serves as a starting point for potential buyers to make offers. The guide price can be presented either as a specific amount or a price range, offering an initial idea of what the seller expects.

What is guide price?

A guide price, often encountered in house markets, serves as an estimated selling price for a property. While it offers a useful starting point, it’s important to recognise that properties seldom sell for their exact guide price. 

 

The final sale price is influenced by various factors, primarily the offers received by the seller. These offers can vary, falling either above or below the guided price, also known as the asking price. 

 

The guide price acts as a benchmark for initiating negotiations with the seller. Buyers usually have the liberty to propose offers lower than the guide price. However, it’s important to balance this approach; excessively low offers may be outright rejected by the seller. 

 

Market conditions and competition from other potential buyers significantly impact the success of any offer. While there is no one-size-fits-all rile, many property experts recommend starting with an offer that is 5% to 10% lower than the guide price. 

 

In some cases, sellers might entertain offers up to 15% lower, but such proposals can be perceived as overly bold or even disrespectful, risking a negative impression.

 

A key factor to consider before making a lower offer is the duration for which the property has been on the market. Properties listed for sale beyond 90 days may indicate a higher openness from agents and sellers to consider lower offers. This can be due to various reasons, such as a pressing need to sell or fewer inquiries than expected.

What is a house guide price at auction?

When it comes to properties being sold at auction, the price guide for houses takes on a slightly different role. It is closely linked to the reserve price, which is the minimum price agreed upon between the auctioneer and the vendor.

 

The house guide price at an auction is either the amount at which the seller’s reserve price is set or the starting point for bidding. Importantly, the reserve price is usually undisclosed, but the guide price can provide a reasonable indication of where the reserve is likely set.

How accurate are guide prices at property auctions?

The accuracy of a guide price can be influenced by the current state of the property market. In a strong market, properties might sell for significantly higher than the guide price, whereas in a slower market, the final sale price might be closer to or even below the guide price.

 

The precision of a property price guide also hinges on the expertise of the valuer. A well-experienced valuer or auctioneer with a deep understanding of the local market can set a more accurate price guide. 

 

Guide prices are often set with the intention of attracting interest and encouraging bidding. Therefore, they might be set at a lower range to create competitive bidding, which can lead to a final sale price that is much higher. 

 

Unique or unusual properties might have less predictable guide prices due to the difficulty in comparing them with other sales in the area. If the seller is looking for a quick sale, the guide price might be set lower to attract more interest. Conversely, if there is no urgency to sell the guide price might be closer to the seller’s ideal sale price.

How is a price guide for houses set?

The method of setting a price guide for houses varies depending on the selling method. For sales through a high street estate agent, it is determined based on the minimum price the seller hopes to achieve, combined with the agent’s knowledge and research of current property values in the area. 

 

The price guide for houses is a tool used by sellers and estate agents to initiate negotiations and attract potential buyers. It reflects a combination of the seller’s expectations and market realities, though it is not a definitive predictor of the final selling price. 

 

In contrast, auctioned properties have their guide price determined post the setting of a reserve price by the seller, influenced by factors like the seller’s urgency to sell and their financial needs.

How is an estate agent guide price set on the open market?

When setting a price guide for houses for a property being sold on the open market, there are several factors which are considered. The primary determinant is the minimum price the seller hopes to achieve from the sale.

 

This figure is not randomly chosen; instead it’s carefully calculated based on the agent’s knowledge and research of the current property values in the area. 

 

The agent assesses comparable properties, current market trends and the unique attributes of the property to arrive at a realistic yet attractive house guide price. This guide price aims to generate interest among potential buyers while still aligning with the seller’s financial expectations.

How is a house guide price set at an auction house?

In the context of auctioned properties, the process of setting an auction guide price involves a different approach. First, the auctioneer conducts a valuation of the property to determine its market value. 

 

Based on this valuation, the seller then sets a reserve price – the lowest price they are willing to accept. This reserve price is influenced by factors such as the seller’s urgency to sell, their financial needs and the property’s valuation.

 

The house guide price is then determined with respect to the reserve price. It usually falls within a specific range, often within 10% of the reserve price. This is to ensure a fair and realistic starting point for the auction while maintaining the seller’s interests. 

 

The guide, therefore, acts as an indicator of where bidding might start and gives potential buyers a ballpark figure to consider before participating in the auction.

Are there any guidelines for guide prices?

In 2014, the Advertising Standards Authority established guidelines to regulate how guide prices are set. These guidelines stipulate that the guide price must either indicate a range or single price figure within 10% of the reserve price. 

 

Additionally the guide price cannot be more than 10% lower than the seller’s reserve price. These rules help ensure transparency and fairness in auctions, providing potential buyers with a more accurate expectation of the reserve price.

What’s the difference between house guide price and asking price?

The guide price, as an estimated value range, is used to indicate the minimum the seller is willing to accept and is often flexible. In contrast, the asking price is a more definitive figure representing what the seller specifically wants for their property.

 

The asking price is less about initiating interest and more about stating the seller’s firm valuation often set after considering the property’s condition, market conditions and comparable sales.

 

Both guide prices and asking prices are essential in the house selling process. House guide prices are instrumental in generating interest and fostering competitive bidding, while asking prices provide clear and specific valuations from the sellers to the buyers.

How much do houses sell for compared to asking price?

Based on data provided by Hometrack, Zoopla’s data business, there’s a notable trend of houses selling for less than the original asking price in the current market. On average, sellers are accepting offers that are approximately 3.8% below their initial asking price.

 

Furthermore there’s been an increase in the number of sellers agreeing to even larger discounts. Over two-fifths (42%) of sellers are accepting offers more than 5% below the asking price, a figure that represents the highest level of such discounts since 2018, a period when annual UK house price growth was just 1%. 

 

Additionally, over one in six sellers are accepting discounts of more than 10% below the asking price. This trend suggests that buyers are negotiating harder, and sellers are increasingly willing to lower their expectations to close deals, reflecting a shift in the market dynamics towards buyers.

Should you follow the guide price on property or decide the price for yourself?

Sellers need to balance their own financial expectations with the realities of the market. While it’s natural to aim for the highest possible return on investment, being realistic about the property’s market value is essential. 

Overpricing can lead to a stale property listing, whereas a competitive house guide price can create more interest and potentially lead to better offers, especially if it triggers a bidding war in a seller’s market. 

 

Sellers and vendors should be prepared for negotiations. The guide price is a starting point and buyers may offer less than this amount. It’s important to understand the range of acceptable offers before listing the property. 

Being too rigid can result in missed opportunities, but understanding the lowest acceptable offer helps in making informed decisions during negotiations. 

 

Sellers should also consider the buyers’ perspective. Buyers are likely to conduct their own research and valuations. Therefore, a guide price that closely aligns with market valuations is more likely to be taken seriously by prospective buyers. Unrealistic  property guide prices might be dismissed by savvy buyers, reducing the pool of potential buyers.

Can buyers offer lower than the guide price?

Yes, buyers can offer lower than the guide price, although the success of such offers depends on various factors, including market conditions and the seller’s circumstances.

 

The house guide price is essentially an invitation to begin negotiations, representing the seller’s initial expectation but not a fixed bottom line.

 

In a buyer’s market, where supply exceeds demand, sellers might be more included to consider offers below the guide price. Additionally, if a property has been on the market for an extended period, or if the seller is motivated to sell quickly due to personal circumstances, they may be more open to accepting lower offers.

 

However buyers should approach this thoughtfully, as excessively low offers might be dismissed outright or negatively impact the negotiation process.

What is the difference between guide price and ‘offers in excess of’?

The difference between a guide price and ‘offers in excess of’ lies primarily in the expectations they set for potential buyers. A guide price suggests an estimated range for starting point for negotiations, indicating the minimum amount the seller hopes to receive.

 

It’s often used to initiate interest and encourage offers, with room for negotiation up or down. On the other hand, ‘offers in excess of’ explicitly states that the seller expects offers to be higher than the specified amount. 

 

This approach is usually employed when a seller anticipates strong interest in their property or believes market conditions favour a higher selling price. It sets a clear baseline above which all offers must fall, reducing the likelihood of lower bids and steering negotiations towards a higher price range.

Should you trust an estate agent guide price?

When considering whether to trust an estate agent guide price, it’s important to assess the credibility and reputation of the agent. Experienced and reputable estate agents usually have a good understanding of the local property market and can set guide prices that accurately reflect current market conditions. 

They typically use their knowledge of recent sales, market demand, and specific property features to arrive at a guide price that’s realistic and competitive. However, it’s worth noting that estate agents might sometimes set guide prices to attract interest, possibly listing a slightly lower price to encourage more viewings and potential offers. 

 

Despite the expertise of estate agents, it’s advisable for buyers and sellers to conduct their own independent research. This includes looking at comparable properties in the area, understanding current market trends, and assessing the specific attributes and condition of the property in question. 

 

Independent research helps in forming a more indepth view of a property’s value, which can either corroborate or challenge the house guide price set by the agent.

 

It’s important to understand the motivations behind an estate agent guide price. Agents are usually motivated by the desire to make a sale, which can sometimes lead to setting more attractive (often lower) property guide prices to stimulate interest and competition among buyers. 

Conversely, if representing a seller, an agent might set a higher guide price if they believe the market conditions or the property’s unique features justify it. 

Can you trust an online estate agent?

When deciding whether to trust an estate agent guide price, considering the use of an online estate agent can offer a different perspective. Online estate agents have gained popularity due to several advantages they offer which can positively impact the reliability and approach towards house guide prices.

 

Here at The Property Selling Company, we are an online estate agents with a difference, we are completely honest and transparent in our process and will always try and get you the best price possible for your home.

 

You will benefit from using our service as we have access to extensive, data-driven market analysis tools, enabling us to set guide prices based on a wider range of data than a traditional estate agent. 

This can include seeing national and local market trends, a broader spectrum of property comparisons and real time data analytics, leading to potentially more accurate and objective guide prices. 

 

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Who pays for the probate valuation & who organises it?

woman having probate valuation

Who pays for the probate valuation & who organises it?

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Tom Condon
Tom Condon ★ Digital Content Writer

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When someone passes away, the estate must be probate valued, calculated and reported to HMRC. Then the probate process should begin so the estate can be split amongst all beneficiaries. 

 

The cost of probate valuations vary depending on the type of service and method chosen, but as an average, you can expect a probate valuation to cost you between 1% and 5% of the estate’s full value.

 

Most estate agencies will cover the probate valuation cost as part of their service and will agree upon the cost from the onstart. 

 

Many people during the house valuation process for probate, wonder “can I sell a property before probate?”, as the probate and selling property process can be extremely time-consuming. In this article we will cover all this and more!

What is a probate valuation?

The legal process of dealing with the value of the estate when a person passes away is called probate. Typically, the valuation for probate is executed by the deceased person’s executors via the Grant of Representation. 

 

The Grant of Representation allows executors to access all information – including bank accounts, stocks, shares, and the deceased person’s property – to determine the open market value of the assets.

 

A probate valuation will cover all items of value, minus any outstanding debts, with the remaining amount being liable for inheritance tax. If the probate valuation reveals the assets are £325,000 or less, then you are not required to pay inheritance tax – anything above this and you will be liable to 40% tax.

 

If someone passes away without leaving a will, then a professional valuation must be done on their estate according to the Rules of Intestacy.

How is the value of a property defined?

The value of a property is defined through a probate valuation, with the valuer taking note of the size of property, amount of bedrooms, amount of storage, the age of the property, any wear and tear, and room layout.

 

All of this information is paired with local market trends, similar and neighbouring properties and what amenities are available in the local area, in order to come up with a house valuation for probate.

How is a property valued for probate?

The property probate valuation will be carried out from the day of death, which is known as a date of death valuation. This is where the values are generated from selling prices on the open market. 

 

If a person dies on the 12th December, but the house valuation for probate takes place on the 4th January, then the selling prices would be based on the 12th December valuations.

Why should you value an estate for probate?

Probate valuations are different from normal valuations, as probate valuations are conducted in such a way that HMRC will accept it. You cannot use a market valuation to determine the probate value of a property or you will face penalties from HMRC.

 

By carrying out a probate valuation, you are ensuring that you are providing the correct amount of assets to be taxed with inheritance tax.

What are the different types of probate valuations?

There are two different variations of probate valuations which can be carried out; formal and informal valuations.  

 

Formal probate valuations are needed on properties that are subject to inheritance tax or have gains of £10,000 or more, or are considered as a “larger” property. The formal probate valuation report is far more in depth than an informal valuation and will cover any commercial properties or land with development potential.  

 

Informal probate valuations will usually be part of an estate agent’s service and are low on cost, or cost-free.

Who pays for probate valuations?

The person who pays for probate valuations, largely depends on what type of probate valuation you are getting and the value of the property itself.  

 

If you are using an estate agent (like us), then an informal probate valuation will be covered within the agency service or fee. But, if you are using a professional probate RICS surveyor or solicitor who carries out a formal valuation, then you will need to cover the fee.

Who needs to organise the valuation?

The personal representatives of the deceased person are responsible for arranging probate, and the probate valuation. If they decided to sell the property through an estate agent, the estate agent should organise the valuation on their behalf. But if they go through a probate valuations company then they will need to liaise with the valuers themselves.

How much do probate valuations cost?

Probate valuations through an estate agent won’t charge the property probate valuation fee as part of their service, but some agencies may charge a low fee (below 1% of the property’s value).  

 

Specialist probate solicitors will usually charge between 2% and 5% of the estate’s total value (+VAT), with the more experienced solicitor charging a higher rate. 

 

RICS Chartered surveyors will charge between £150 and £800 per valuation and are the most recommended type of probate valuation as they are HMRC approved.

Who owns a property during probate?

During probate, the ownership of a deceased person’s estate is in a transitional state as it is in the process of being transferred to the beneficiaries as determined by the will, or by the rules of intestacy.

How long after probate can a property be sold?

You will be able to sell a property as soon as probate has been granted, but you will be able to put the house on the market before this has been reached. With the average UK probate process can take between 9 and 12 months, you could put the house on the market and find a potential buyer.

Can I sell a property before probate?

Dealing with probate and selling property is a complicated process, often involving layers of conveyancing and considerations for the wishes of the deceased. 

 

Unfortunately, you cannot sell a property before probate, you will need to wait until probate has been granted in order to sell a property. You can however put a property on the market during the probate process in order to generate interest and attract more buyers.

What is the probate selling a property process?

If you are looking at the probate selling a property process, it can be very complicated, but below is our quick guide on how to achieve it:

 

  1. Carry out a house valuation for probate.
  2. Pay any inheritance tax due.
  3. Obtain the grant of probate.
  4. Prepare for private and selling property.
  5. List the property for sale.
  6. Accept an offer, exchange and complete as usual.

Is selling property after probate taxable?

When selling property after probate, the executors of the estate will need to raise enough funds to cover the Inheritance Tax and any other costs which have arisen over the probate period. 

 

HMRC will request that Inheritance tax is due on the estate within 6 months of the date of death, and Capital Gains Tax will be due within 60 days of completion. 

 

Luckily, as a beneficiary you will not need to pay Capital Gains Tax when the property is transferred to you.

What happens if you sell a property for less than the probate value?

If you decide to sell the probate property within four years of the deceased passing then you may be due a Inheritance Tax overpayment refund from HMRC. Furthermore you will not need to pay Capital Gains Tax on the sale of your property as it does not make any profit.

Are probate properties cheaper?

Probate properties are often sought after from first time buyers, property investors or people looking to renovate a house. This is simply because most probate properties were owned by older generations and will need updating.

 

Because of the cost of property taxes, like Capital Gains Tax and Inheritance Tax, and the cost of maintenance, the executor of the estate may wish to sell the property as soon as they can.

 

Luckily, executors of an estate may be more willing to accept a below market value cash offer as this speeds up the selling process after a long and drawn out probate process. The probate process is often so long that many property investors avoid it entirely, which means that there is less demand for probate properties.

How The Property Selling Company can help you with probate properties

Here at The Property Selling Company, we pride ourselves on offering a different way of selling and buying probate properties. We are part of a leading UK property selling solution, and have many different ways to sell.

 

Using our service, however, you will benefit from a sale in at least 28 days, for free, with no hidden fees. We believe that selling a house shouldn’t be complicated or costly and will do everything in our power to ensure you have a smooth service.

 

If you are looking for a property after probate service or even during service, well we can do this too! All of our agents are trained in dealing with probate houses and can even help you with valuing property for probate. 

 

We will even cover all the legal and marketing fees usually associated with selling a probate property. Want to find out more about our service? Contact one of our team today!

Probate valuation FAQs

While estate agents will be able to give you an informal house valuation for probate and this allows you to have a rough understanding of the estates value, you will need to get a formal RICS house valuation for HMRC purposes.

 

It is generally easy to organise as there are many Chartered Surveyor firms out there that specialise in probate properties and Red Book valuations. If you want to know more about this, please feel free to contact one of our team and we can direct you in the right direction.

Because the probate and selling process can be quite drawn out, it is your duty to do everything you can to increase the speed and efficiency of the process. This can be achieved by:

 

  • Understanding your duty as the executor of estate or personal representative.
  • Starting probate as soon as you possibly can.
  • Obtain death certificates as soon as possible.
  • Collect as many details about the deceased person’s estate as possible, in the early stages of probate. 

 

These will help speed up the process by ensuring you aren’t sorting these at the last minute, and make the transfer of property far more efficient.

No you cannot sell a house in probate as before you can sell the probate property, you will need to apply for a grant of probate which can take 12 weeks or more to get. But, you will be able to list the home for sale before you get the probate granted.

While you cannot complete on a house during probate, you will be able to market it and gather interest from potential buyers.