How to Get Your Home Ready for a Quick Sale

At Property Cash Buyers we know how daunting it can be, getting ready to sell your home. You’ve heard the UK property market horror stories, and you’re keen not to fall foul of a sometimes bewildering and risk-ridden system. You don’t want to be hanging in limbo for months, constantly trying to get your home to sell. You want to sell your home fast, and you need to know how.

Why Might You Need to Sell Your Home Fast

We all have different reasons for needing to sell a property quickly. However, one thing we all have in common is that the reason is personal and usually borne out of some level of desperation somewhere.

It might be that we urgently need some equity release to pay for future care, or a family emergency, or simply to support our growing family or adult children starting their own lives. Perhaps there has been a relationship breakdown and the property needs to be sold as part of this process, perhaps along with a divorce, and emotions are already running high. Disposing of the marital property quickly is one of the biggest ways of ending the emotional ties and enabling you to move on with your lives. A job opportunity may have presented itself and you need to relocate, or even emigrate, quickly. Alternatively you simply might need to clear some debts and are looking for a clean slate to enable you to start again.

Whatever your reason for wanting or needing to sell, if you want to have the sale happen as fast as possible, then this guide is for you.

How Can I Sell My Home Fast

Your first hurdle with the British property market is knowing all of the options that are available to you and fully understanding the system. Many people believe there isn’t much choice – rather it’s a case of selecting the Estate Agent who gives you the highest valuation and crossing your fingers and hoping for the best.

This isn’t your only option.

Of course you may choose to go down the Estate Agent route. However, you should be warned that this might not be the most economical option, and certainly isn’t the most stress-free. Rather, using a traditional estate agent route, you are likely to be doing a fair amount of the legwork, chasing, and crossing fingers yourself, yet still handing over a cut of the sale.

You may feel that going for an independent sale could be the solution for you. This route also isn’t for the faint-hearted. Whilst you will undoubtedly save on estate agent fees, you need to consider independent selling as a near full time job. It requires skill and experience to navigate the English house-selling process.

Another option open to you is to get a company to sell your house fast – on your behalf. Property Cash Buyers offer these services. Once you’ve realised you want to sell and you want to sell fast, we can take over the legwork for you, still ensuring you get a fair and equitable value for your property. There are three models of Quick Sales for Cash that we work within, but for the purposes of this guide, our second, the ‘Assisted Property Sale’ is most relevant.

What is an Assisted Property Sale?

Not all cash buyers are created equal. There may be the odd individual cash buyer out there who happens to be sat on a large lump sum and ready to complete a purchase quickly, but the vast majority of cash buyers don’t fall under this umbrella. Most are firms, like Property Cash Buyers, who have access to investors on your behalf, operating nationally and using their connections to ensure you get the most value for your home.

Whilst Property Cash Buyers offer an even faster house selling option, our ‘Quick Cash Sale’ option, and a completely different sort of option, the ‘Lease Option Sale’, our middle of the road option – if you have a little more time on your hands and want to see the maximum value for your home – is the ‘Assisted Property Sale.

With the Assisted Property Sale you are looking at a 2-3 month sell. So still pretty quick compared to most sales on the market. With this scheme, we sign an ‘Option Agreement’ to buy your property at close to the market value. We then go on to use our extensive marketing knowledge, techniques, avenues and connections to sell your property through our National Network of Estate Agents. You sell at a fixed price with no additional fees to pay.

Using our Assisted Property Sale option you can be sure that you will get a similar price to using a traditional estate agent, with only a fraction of the hassle. But there are some things you need to know in order to get your property and yourself ready for that quick sale.

What Do I Need to Do to Make a Quick Sale?

The single biggest factor that will determine whether your property fetches very close to the market value in your pocket is the condition of your property and having realistic, market-correct expectations.

1. Know Your Area

Before you start getting your property for sale, the key is to know your area and know your local market. What property sells for what amount where you live? Is there a demand for your style and size of property? What are the pros and cons of your area? Bear in mind that in order for a quick sale through the Assisted Property Sale option, an independent valuer from the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) will be coming around to make an independent assessment. If your expectations, based on your local market understanding, match their assessment of your property then you are far more likely to achieve close to the market value.

2. Get Rid of the Clutter

It’s a simple act, one that is essential for moving house anyway, so one that makes sense to do at the earliest opportunity. It gives you the best chance of achieving the highest valuation. Clutter masks the beauty of your home, but it also tells of a lackadaisical attitude towards property maintenance.

When viewers, estate agents and valuers come to see your home, they may think they can see beyond the clutter, but the reality is they shouldn’t have to. Make it easy for them to envisage the lifestyle that living in your home can bring, help them to envisage that it is spacious and isn’t short on storage. Don’t forget to make sure that you have the right sized furniture for your room. An enormous television and L-shaped 6-seater sofa is going to make the average living room look even smaller than necessary.

This isn’t to say that you should remove all trace of your household’s existence: Far from it. You need to demonstrate how you live in this home, with space and comfort. So think: declutter, not depersonalise.

3. Freshen Up

Wear and tear on our homes is happening all the time, day in day out: The dog jumped up at the kitchen wall with muddy paw prints; the cat used the curtains as a climbing exercise; your errant toddler enjoyed their gardening in the family room; and when you moved that new bed in you scratched the paintwork all along the landing.

These bumps and bruises to your home soon become invisible to you and you forget they are even there. Someone coming in to your home with fresh eyes, on the other hand, sees the collective damage.

So – purchase some cheap neutral paint and give your home a fresh feel. Get rid of the signs of wear and tear with a super-quick lick of paint. The added benefit of making your home a fairly neutral blank canvas is that your potential buyers can envisage themselves in your home far more easily. They also are able to see that they will be able to move in and get living in the property much more quickly than facing the prospect of a major de-personalisation job thanks to your love of bright colours.

4. First Impressions Count

Don’t underestimate the power of kerb-appeal. Whilst most people spend some time sprucing up the inside of their home ready for a quick sale, not everyone takes the time to look at their property as if viewing it for the first time as a buyer.

Head out to the front of your home and do an honest critique. Is that fence panel really beyond the end of its life? Can you see where your neighbour likes playing with his noisy motorbike? Do you have to dodge weeds down your front path? And importantly, when you go to knock on your own front door, what does it look and feel like?

Bear in mind, any potential buyer and valuer will be stood on your doorstep taking in their first impressions right here: It’s not much good if they are put off before they’ve even got over the threshold.

5. Get Your DIY Hat On

Again, you’ve probably come to live with a whole bunch of idiosyncrasies. So the bathroom door doesn’t shut, you’re all family anyway. Your family play “dodge the too-low light fitting”, but all your visitors bump their heads. You schedule in a monthly date with the superglue to re-stick that stubborn door threshold. If you want a quick sale you need to get rid of these annoying house quirks.

Replace that door threshold, raise the low light, fix the bathroom door handle, and spruce the place up. Fill holes and cracks, Fix breakages. Repair grout.

6. Now Get Your Apron On

Once your house is in relatively good nick, it’s now time to make it as clean as can be. Similarly to viewers not having to overlook clutter, they shouldn’t have to overlook grime. Remove it from the equation.

Get scrubbing, get rid of limescale, and tart up grout. Clean the windows to let in more light, change bedding and towels, and make the place as clean as you can.

7. Don’t Forget the Garden

You don’t need to spend a huge amount of time cleaning up and sprucing up the garden, but do take the time to give it a quick once over. Cut the grass, do a quick weed, and tidy up your outside furniture. It all adds to the overall impression of your home and more likely to ensure a quick house sale.

8. Pay Attention to the Kitchen

The kitchen plays a vital role in the selling and the valuation of your home. Ultimately, it should be viewed as the most valuable room in your home in terms of making a quick house sale. The easiest and cheapest way to do this is to replace your kitchen cupboard doors and to pay real attention to the decluttering here. Remove the bulkiest appliances from the work tops, and give the illusion of plenty of space.

9. Brighten Things Up

When selling your home, light and airy is the feeling you want to aim for. Therefore, think of ways that you can help your house sale in this way. As well as cleaning the windows, strategically place mirrors to reflect light back in to your home. Ensure your windows are well dressed but also that they have maximum light potential by having curtains or blinds drawn to their furthest points. Put lamps and lights in particularly dark corners.

10. Get the Temperature Right

You might be happy to live in 5 layers through the winter to save on your fuel bills, but welcoming viewers in to a chilly home isn’t going to entice them in to a quick sale. Rather, have the place warm and comfortable. If you have an open fireplace, then light the fire.
11. Be Honest About the Smell
Everyone’s home smells of them. However, properties for sale shouldn’t smell of dog, cigarette smoke, or drains. Bad odours can be off-putting for even the hardiest of viewers and valuers. Therefore clean the drains, wash the bins, and change your linens. Make time to air the rooms before any viewers or valuers come round.

Your House is Ready for a Quick Sale, What About You?

Alongside working to get your house as perfect for a quick sale as possible, you need to make sure you yourself are ready for a quick property sale.

  • Know the Answers: You’re going to be asked the same questions over and over so make sure you don’t only know where the local schools are, but you know how kids get to them. Know how you’re going to answer honestly, but without being off-putting, about the dispute with your neighbour over the fallen fence panels. Know when you had work done and any other relevant information pertaining to your property.
  • Have Your Exit Plan Arranged: You don’t want to have a quick sale lined up and then it be you who holds things up. Where are you going, how are you going to move out quickly, and how can you shorten the chain?
  • Organise Your Finances: Find out how large your outstanding mortgage us and whether there will be any early redemption charges. You don’t want any nasty surprises.
  • Decide Who Will Sell: Are you going to rely on Estate Agencies or do you think it makes more sense to use a firm specialising in quick cash sales such as Property Cash Buyers?
  • Understand Stamp Duty Thresholds: and importantly, make sure you know of the ones close to your valuation.
  • Think About the Legal Side: Consider if you want to be dealing with solicitors and conveyancers and their legal jargon yourself, or whether you’d rather not have that complication. At Property Cash Buyers, we can take the hassle of the legal legwork out of the equation for you.
  • Fill Out Relevant Questionnaires: If you want to sell your property quickly then you need to have all the paperwork in order to smooth the process along. Make sure you’ve completed forms such as the TA6 which outlines boundaries, disputes, complaints, developments, council tax etc. Also be sure you can complete the TA10 with which fixtures and fittings are staying, and which are moving with you. You will also need to think about finalisation details for the TA13 form.

Get Set for a Quick House Sale

If you follow Property Cash Buyer’s Guide to a Quick House Sale then you will undoubtedly shorten the time it takes from the moment you make the decision to sell, until the moment you firmly close the door behind you. Putting in the time and effort to make the appropriate preparations means that you are more likely to get closer to the correct market value for your home, as well as a quick sale.

Published on 5th July 2016

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