It is with great pleasure and excitement that I write this article on selling your house. I have been in the business for nearly 24 years and I have seen it all. I have been through the different stages of people’s lives selling from selling their first home, trading up and then moving to their forever home.
For the buyer
I always say to people selling your home, it is one of the most important decisions of your life and more stressful then planning your wedding and that is through years of experience. However, in saying that it can be made easier if one does and looks for the following. I am going to explain today and what to look out for when buying a house and what to do in order to get your house ready for sale. If you follow these guidelines, it will all run smoothly and require less last-minute panic.
When a person comes to look at your house for the first time – first impressions last so that is why it is so important to ensure your house is looking it best and presented well. You don’t need to get in someone to stage it or though you can if you don’t have the time. What you need to do is make a list of what you need to do – painting, fixing door knobs, dressing the beds with nice linen, decluttering, cleaning the house within an inch of its life etc. (I will expand more on this next time). The main thing for me is that the house is warm when I walk in and there is a nice smell – it just creates this warm feel which is what people want. Even if your house is empty – time the heating to come on for 2 hours normally in the afternoon as that is when viewings are most likely to happen.
Paperwork, paperwork – no one likes it but it is essential in order to avoid delays down the road. Firstly, engage a solicitor and one you feel comfortable with, then engage an Auctioneer again you feel comfortable with and one you can talk to you and relay your concerns throughout the process as you will need a shoulder to cry on the odd time. One of the first pieces of paperwork you will your exemption cert for the NPPR (if it is your principle residence) and confirmation you paid the NPPR if it is an investment property. Proof that your LPT is paid to date and for the coming year, all management costs are paid to date if a management company are running the development you are living in or renting out, up to date DOA map of the property, request your deeds from the bank and if in negative equity ensure you have permission to sell your house from the bank – if you don’t do this it will delay the sale of your house by months.
Selling your home is emotional and exciting all at the same time but as I always say when selling you are entering into the next phase of your life. Sometimes people have no choice to sell and again whomever is engaged to sell your will work closely with you to carry you through the process.
TOP TIPS WHEN BUYING A HOUSE
Through years of experience of selling houses – I feel invigorated to pass on advice to the first-time buyer or indeed the trader up or trader down.
For the buyer
When you are buying a house, it can be extremely daunting but it doesn’t have to be, if you know what to look out and how the process works. First things first get your loan approval in principle and have it to hand as you need that if you are bidding on a house as the auctioneer in question will request same before your offer is accepted. When you are buying your first home or investment property have a look at a few houses – don’t just pick the first one. What to look out for – location, is it near amenities, train, bus and schools. If you like being in the country again just check out where the amenities are as a lot of people don’t mind driving as I say for every shoe there is a foot. Another helpful tip is asking yourself if I was selling this house in 2/3 years would I be able to sell it.
When you have found the house you like, you must then put in your bid with the auctioneer accompanied with your proof of funding this will give the auctioneer piece of mind that you can afford the house. If there are a few people bidding, keep with it but set a max price in your head and go to that then stop, if this house doesn’t happen another one will turn up – I always say to buyers what is meant to be is meant to be. Remember buying a house is for life and a mortgage is a huge commitment.
Once your bid is accepted, you will then engage an engineer to survey the house and land. I would also recommend that you check when the boiler was last serviced, was there any works done over the last few years and if so what. Again, you can discuss same with your engineer. The auctioneer will ask for a booking deposit prior to the engineer inspecting and this is fully refundable prior to signing of the contract – it is referred to as a gentleman’s agreement. Next step engage a solicitor – an auctioneer will normally recommend a few to you as auctioneer and solicitors work very closely together throughout the whole process but again you must engage a solicitor you feel comfortable with. Once your contracts are issued to your solicitor, it can take up to 4 weeks for the conveyancing to be completed and once the solicitor is happy to go ahead he or she will ask you come in, sign and pay your balance of the 10% deposit ( less booking deposit you have paid to the auctioneer ) and once this part of the contract is signed it is now legally binding and a closing date can be determined. The whole process can take between 3-6months. Again, the auctioneer is there to act for both parties to ensure the sale goes through and answer any concerns you may have, basically they keep it together.
Buying your first home, trading up or indeed purchasing for investment is all exciting and one that can be a good experience if you prepared and informed.