4 December, 2020
Although the deadline is still four months away, if you want to give yourself the best chance of cashing in on the stamp duty holiday, it makes sense to get your property on the market as soon as humanly possible. To find out how much you could save, check out our recent stamp duty that will give you an estimate.
If you have just put your property on the market, there are things you can do to try and get under offer quickly and to also speed the selling process along.
Highlight desirable features
Since the pandemic, certain features that have risen to the top of people’s home buying wish lists. The tedious period of lockdown in spring and early summer meant that people had plenty of time to notice the shortcomings of their properties and experience frustration with compromised living areas and lack of outdoor space. Statistics from RightMove and Zoopla show that decent sized gardens are more in demand than ever and properties with a home office carry a premium.
Invest as much in your garden as you would in your main living spaces! While there may not be time for a full landscaping job, a good clear up and the strategic placing of sought-after items such as wood-burners, attractive plant pots, smart outdoor furniture will help to set the scene.
To make your garden appear bigger, cut back over-grown bushes, clear any fallen leaves and tidy away any clutter. A few late-flowering plants such as pansies or primroses can add an appealing splash of winter colour. A would-be buyer wants to be able to envisage long lazy days and (hopefully!) outdoor entertaining come next summer, surrounded by beautiful plants and greenery.
If your home will appeal to a family, scrub up any outdoor play equipment, and if any of it has seen better days, consider rehoming or a trip to the tip. A rotting trampoline will do nothing to enhance the appeal of an otherwise pleasant garden!
Home offices or desk space will continue to be a priority as people consider flexible working for the foreseeable future. Many of us will be changing our work habits for good and be wanting a dedicated space for home working for at least part of the week. Demonstrate how your spare room can double up as a comfortable office, highlight areas of the house such as under stair space could house a work station or if the loft space is ripe for conversion, then make sure to point this out.
Present your property in its best light
As ever, first impressions are incredibly important when you want to get a would-be buyer to snap up your property! There are a few tried and tested ways to showcase your home in its very best light and make it seem as spacious as possible:
- De-clutter and clear worktops. This is an obvious way to create an impression of more space and furthermore, de-personalising your home a little will allow a prospective buyer to imagine themselves living there.
- A lick of neutral paint. If you have some bold colours or bright patterns adorning your walls, you can broaden your home’s appeal (and potentially make it look larger) by updating it with a more subtle colour.
- Use mirrors and lighting to give the illusion of more space. Interior designers often add mirrors to small spaces to make them appear more light and airy and strategically placed lamps are good for brightening dingy corners of your home.
- Have a really good clean. Going beyond your usual weekly effort (for example by using decorator’s wipes to remove scuffs from skirting) will be appreciated and can even make your home appear to be more freshly decorated than it really is!
Read more about our top tips for getting a quick sale
Invest in a 3D virtual tour
There are numerous benefits to getting a 3D virtual tour created of your property. Right now, we all want to minimise the number of people traipsing through our homes and if all first viewings can be carried out virtually, you can be sure that only serious buyers will be walking through your door. In fact, by enabling interested parties to conduct a virtual ‘walk-through’ at a time that suits them (rather than waiting to try and book in a weekend viewing) you could even sell your home quicker!
Our 3D camera provider, Matterport, has conducted research that shows that properties marketed with a 3D tour, get under offer 31% faster than those without. Find out more about virtual viewings
Get all your ducks in a row
Do as much preparation as you can in advance so your sale and your onward purchase (if this applies) can proceed quickly once you have accepted an offer.
Line up a local solicitor or conveyancer, but choose carefully as they are crucial to the whole process. Check online reviews and ask for recommendations from friends or colleagues, to ensure your sale is in good hands. We would urge caution with using online conveyancing firms based outside the area!
The following documents will be required for both yourself and your buyer:
- proof of funds for your deposit (if you are taking out a mortgage) or proof of cash
- your agreement in principle/mortgage promise
- the details of the solicitors/conveyancing firm you will be using
- proof of identity
If you have had structural alterations, new windows or a boiler fitted, you will need to supply copies of Building regulations documents, the FENSA certificate (for windows) or Gas Safety certificate.
Follow all these tips and it should give you the best chance of both getting under offer and completing on your sale before the stamp duty holiday ends in 2021. More information about the sales process