Are you thinking about selling? And are you ready to move house? The answers to these questions may have different answers!
This blog should give you some top tips for moving house – how to be ready psychologically, as well as physically. It’s a tricky market out there, and hopefully, we can help you to navigate it.
We’ve had great news in the mortgage world this month. With the base rate decision to stay at 5.25%*, together with falling inflation**, and falling mortgage rates***, it should mean a better market outlook. There are more houses coming onto the market, and the run-up to Christmas (and yes I did mention the C word, sorry) are generally positive months for the property market.
However, many people’s minds aren’t quite in the space of a falling market yet. You will need to adjust to how to navigate this difficult market, where houses stay unsold for months, if not priced correctly. Do you really know how to compare what your house is worth to where it was in the highs of 2022?
We help a lot of people understand what tactics there are to be able to negotiate and understand what your property is really worth.
There are unfortunately a few rogue agents (none of which we work with I hasten to add) who will still inflate a property’s value, just to win your business. This doesn’t help you to understand what your home is worth, and as you know, your home is only worth what someone is prepared to pay for it. It just makes the whole process much more painful in the long run. Being ready for a realistic valuation, and an offer shortly afterwards is about being prepared. Have you had a look to see how much others have sold their houses in your area?
Have a look at the square footage of a property local to you, with a similar build and number of bedrooms to compare it to yours, thinking about your plot size, and internal decor. You can check the sold prices of houses in your street by using the property portals, Rightmove is a good one. Just bear in mind, that the Land Registry are still quite far behind with updating their records, so some may be from 6 months ago, and the market has fallen a little since then. Always appoint a good independent agent, with a good reputation and go by your gut feeling when talking to them. If you think you are being sold to, you are!
Once you are armed with a realistic valuation, you are much more likely to generate interest in your property. People want to feel like they are getting value for money. They (and you) will want to know you’ve both got a ‘good deal’ on the price of the property you are selling. There are lots of non-proceedable buyers out there (not under offer or ready to move, i.e. not being cash or first-time buyers) because the market isn’t moving very fast. There is a benefit to this, as it means you can take your time in considering your next move, and not have to decide under the pressure of other bidders (or full and final offers – that happened a lot in 2022). This should mean you are making the right long-term decision for you.
That does mean that if you are proceedable, or a cash or first-time buyer, your position is strong. You may have a very short chain, if any at all – which also helps your position. If you do have a property to sell, and you get an offer lower than you expected, you can always then pass that reduction on to the property you want to buy, when you make your offer. In this, a buyer’s market, proceedable buyers are few and far between, so make the deal work for you all. And remember, whatever you offer, the worst answer is only ever no, you can always negotiate upwards.
Understand your walk-away price and stand by it. Speak to a friendly mortgage broker to get an agreement in principle in advance of any offer. That way your offer, when you make it, will be taken seriously because you have done your homework in advance, and the agent will know you are ‘good for the money’.
Lastly, always be open and communicative with the agent, and put your intentions honestly. That way you will be viewed as a good buyer, who someone will want to sell their property to!
We are always on hand to answer any questions you may have – so just shout!
Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage. The information contained within was correct at the time of publication but is subject to change. 1st October 2023.
*Bank of England’s interest rate pause raises hopes peak has been reached | Interest rates | The Guardian
**Inflation fall gives Bank of England knife-edge interest rate decision | Inflation | The Guardian
***Average Five-year Mortgage Rate Drops Below 6% (moneyfactscompare.co.uk)