If you haven’t used an Estate Agent before, or just need to refresh your memory on what happens next, this is where we provide a brief guide to each process. Whether you plan to sell, buy, let or rent, these guides should make the task a little easier. Print out and tick off the stages as you go.
Before you do anything else, check your mortgage paperwork to see whether you will owe your lender an early redemption charge if you pay off your mortgage in the next few months. If you are buying elsewhere you may be able to transfer your existing mortgage and avoid this penalty, or you may have no penalty, in which case Franklyn James can provide details of a mortgage broker who may be able to assist you with switching to a more attractive mortgage product — for further information, please see our Mortgages section.
Contact Franklyn James and arrange an appointment for a free and frank valuation. We won’t inflate our valuations to ensure an instruction, because we know that a property has to be priced correctly in order to sell. Be aware that in a rising market your property will probably sell for a bit more than the last similar property and in a falling market you will probably achieve a bit less.
If your eventual buyer needs a mortgage, an independent valuation will have to be carried out by a surveyor on behalf of the new lender, so the selling price needs to be appropriate to the property, although an asking price is normally pitched a bit higher than the expected sale price to allow room for negotiation. Sign the agency terms and conditions and provide ID to comply with money laundering regulations. For further information on valuations provided by Franklyn James, please see our Valuations section.
Have a bit of a clean and tidy up in preparation for photos and viewings. On instruction, Franklyn James arrange free professional photography, a detailed floor plan and an Energy Performance Certificate where required. If the property is tenanted, ensure that your tenants know that the property is being marketed for sale. Provide the agent with a set of keys if you can. Try to make it as easy as possible for viewings to be carried out. Often the best price is achieved while a property is still new to the market and viewers are worried they might lose out to someone else.
Accept an offer which is realistic and which is in the region of what was discussed at the initial valuation. Get confirmation in writing of the position of the proposed buyer. Are they a cash buyer or do they need a mortgage? Are they currently living with family, renting or selling their home? What are their expectations regarding a completion date? Once you have accepted an offer and the buyer has instructed a solicitor, take the property off the market.
Select a local, reliable solicitor. Franklyn James can provide you with a list of experienced conveyancing solicitors — for further information, please see our Solicitors section. Complete the property forms as quickly and fully as possible. This may take some time, but it is one of the most important stages in the selling process. Reply promptly and as fully as possible to all additional queries raised. Come to an agreement via the agent on a completion date which is acceptable to both you and the buyer.
Read the contract, sign and return it promptly to your solicitor. Once the deposit has been received from the buyer, your solicitor will ask you to confirm the completion date and will request your permission to exchange contracts.
Congratulations, you have exchanged!
Celebrate, book a removals van and if parking can be tricky, contact the council to get a parking bay suspended for completion day. Contact all relevant utility providers and let them know when you will be leaving the property.
Completion of a sale often takes place in the early afternoon, so as soon as you hear from your solicitor that the sale has completed, drop a full set of keys round to the Estate Agency for the new owner to collect. Take meter readings before you leave the property and off you go!
All information provided correct at time of publication.
" Dovile was Excellent.
Booked a viewing with her towards the end of December, she made every effort to work around my busy work schedule, unlike other estate agents she actually turned up and was knowledgeable about the property she was showing. She would pick up calls after hours and during her day off to answer any question I had.
She made this whole process very enjoyable and by end of January I had moved into my new flat. "
Miss JohnsonJanuary, 2018
" David has been amazing and completely professional in our first property purchase. We wanted to see the property a number of times before deciding and he has been so accommodating. David is/was very easy to reach and always contactable for any questions throughout the whole process. David is probably the most patient and down to earth estate agent I've met - Thank you David! I would recommend to anyone. "
" Mark was an extremely helpful in the buying of our first property. Friendly, informative, always available and quickly responsive to help us through the process every step of the way. I would thoroughly recommend his services as an estate agent. Thanks Mark! "
William BatemanNovember, 2017
" Mark was the first agent we saw. We described our rough tick-list of what we wanted, where how much we wanted to pay etc. As it transpired, the perfect house came onto the market in that evening and Mark knew it would be right for us.
He was pretty spot on. We took it straight off the market and were the first to view the property. A month down the line, we're moved in and couldn't be happier.
Mark is a top bloke - friendly, not too salesy, understood what we wanted and post offer was really helpful. "
Jack PayneMarch, 2018
" I rented an apartment, with two friends, in North Greenwich (Rent PCM: £2600). Moving in, the agency was incredibly accommodating with our situation and made the whole process of moving in so smooth. We had the opportunity to move in one day early at short notice. Throughout the tenancy, they have been respectful of our space and understanding. When we first moved in, the extractor hob wasn't working and Nicole was very quick to respond to emails and sort the situation out! (Not easy with manufacturers based in Germany). "
" Stephanie provided a professional service through out the whole process. She kept updated with everything that was going on. Will recommend to others. "
" A very good Estate Agent. Found David to be professional throughout the buying process, sticks to his words and happy to resolve issues when needed. David is also easy to reach and always contactable. Would recommend David to friends, colleagues etc. "
" We were glad we made the enquiry to Franklyn James and was passed directly to Tristan.
Tristan is the epiphany of professionalism and courtesy.
He was happy to hear our requirements, discuss our options and make valuable proposals. He had never refused to revert and respond to even the most difficult of questions, almost seven days a weeks! He is an asset to the Organisation.
I highly recommend Tristan and indeed Frankly James! "
JC & SYSeptember, 2017
" David found the buyer for my property, successfully identifying someone who could proceed quickly with the sale. Throughout the process David was helpful, professional and always replied swiftly to queries, keeping in daily contact. He helped to ensure a smooth sale throughout and was the key link to ensuring that solicitors on both sides spoke with each other and all outstanding issues could be resolved. He relayed messages between the buyer and myself on a regular basis to keep processes moving on the sale and keep me reassured throughout. I was really pleased with the services David provided and would highly recommend this agent. "
Ms DeenJanuary, 2018
" Mark was very helpful and prompt with helping me on renting a flat.
He was very proactive and performed a very professional liasion between myself and the landlord.
The process was very straight forward, professional and hassle free. "