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!