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How Long Does It Take To Sell A House

How Long Does It Take To Sell A House

When it comes to selling your home, you may wonder how long it will sell your house. It's a common concern, and the answer is that it can vary due to many factors, which we cover below. There are legal steps involving reports and contracts, chains of buyers, and other limiting factors that can make a property sale drag on for many weeks, even months.

Thankfully, there are options available to speed up the selling process for the most motivated sellers. To help you in your journey, online estate agent Griffin Property Co has compiled all the tricks and tips to help you sell your property as soon as possible.

What is a property chain?

A property chain is a standard term amongst solicitors and estate agencies, and most buyers and sellers know the phrase. Property chains exist because most people cannot afford to buy multiple properties, and as such, they require the sale of their existing property before purchasing their next home.

This process of sale-and-purchase can lead to chains of buyers who all require their contracts to be signed simultaneously, requiring solicitors to synchronise with each other.

Chain-free purchases are where a buyer offers to purchase a property without the requirements of selling their property first. At the same time, the seller likewise is free to leave the home and does not plan to use the incoming funds to buy another house immediately. Chain-free purchases make up only 10% of UK house purchases.

Whether you've opted to use an online estate agent or one from the high street, your agent will help chase up solicitors for the most recent updates and keep them on their toes. At Griffin Property Co, we are experienced with following up with solicitors to ensure they do not drag their toes for any of our clients' transactions.

How long will it take to sell my house online?

The total time to sell a property is not just the time it takes from receiving the offer to exchanging contracts. Unlike buyers (unless they are selling their own home), sellers have to wait for an interested party. Using one or more low cost online agents is a great way to ensure your property is listed on sites like Right move and Zoopla for maximum exposure.

Here are some key facts about how long it takes to sell:

  • The average house sale period for 2021/2022 (from listing to completion) is 114 days, as reported by the Post Office. Of course, this is an average, with places like Edinburgh averaging only 45 days, while Blackpool and Aberdeen saw 146 and 151 days, respectively.
  • The asking price plays the most decisive role in determining how long a property will take to sell, while characteristics like condition and uniqueness had the least effect on-sale period. Price your home appropriately, and you will gain more interest from day one.
  • The quality and type of estate agents used plays a substantial role also. Look for reputable agents with a robust online presence to ensure your listing is widely seen. For example, at Griffin Properties Co, our packages include listings on Right Move, Zoopla, PrimeLocation, and OnTheMarket. We were the Silver winner in the Estate Agents Awards 2021, so we know a thing or two about getting our clients' properties seen.
  • On average, properties in the UK will have 15 viewings before they sell. Again, this varies, with northern UK cities requiring fewer viewings than the south.
  • New properties on the market will have a flurry of viewings, which slows down over time, making it increasingly difficult to achieve a sale. For this reason, it's important to get your asking price right from the start while you have the traffic through the door.
  • The seasons affect the sale time. Typically, people do not want to move in winter, and properties are not shown to their best on overcast days, with their gardens in hibernation mode. Aim to show off your home in spring, or early summer, so that buyers can envision moving in and enjoying the summer in their new home.
  • The average period before an offer is accepted is 50 days. It takes a further 70 days from the acceptance of the offer to when an exchange occurs.

Finally, the average time it takes from exchange to completion can be up to 14 days. This time frame is when all the solicitors in the chain have completed the majority of the paperwork and have agreed to a day and time where everyone must leave their old properties so that buyers can claim their new home.

What factors can affect how long it takes to sell my home?

As we touched on above, some aspects of selling your home are under your control, and others are not. While you cannot change the location of your home, there are decisions to be made that can help you achieve a sale more quickly.

1. The Asking Price

Your asking price is the single most influential factor in selling any home in the UK. Estate agents will provide you with their estimate of a fair house price based on its style, condition, features, curb appeal, and location. Estate agents are experienced in this area, and while they can only ever offer a guide, it is generally sensible to list your property at their suggested asking price. Depending on your decision, your asking price will be reflected in one of three ways:

  • Overpriced. Naturally, you hope to achieve a higher asking price and make a greater return on your original purchase. However, comparisons to local examples will be made by buyers, and consequently, you will receive fewer viewings. Once any initial interest dies down, you're likely to see your house on the market for a while until your agent suggests you bring your price back down to a realistic price.
  • Appropriately Priced. Pricing your home as guided by the experts means that your sale process should align with the time scales we provided above.
  • Under-Priced. If you elect to underprice your property, you will receive a significantly higher level of interest, resulting in a quicker offer. Of course, this comes at a cost, as you receive a lower value than your home's estimated value.

At Griffin Property Co, we would guide you to list your property only slightly under the estimated value of your home when speed is essential to you. If you are in no great rush, go ahead and list your property at the appropriately estimated value and bide our time.

2. Property Condition

An essential part of selling your house online is to have an outstanding package of photographs. Most online estate agents will list 10-20 images of your home on their chosen platforms. But when the buyer comes to view the property, it needs to live up to their expectations.

Modern houses, with revamped looks, sell quicker than older homes do. A fresh coat of paint in neutral tones can do wonders for a property. Older homes may require some essential maintenance to ensure they are up to code, with certificates in place for recent boiler history and any other work carried out.

It is common practice for homes to be 'staged' to improve sales in America. In other words, the house is presented like a show home – everything is tidied away perfectly, surfaces are spotless, and the home looks ready to move into there. While this practice isn't as common here in the UK, it is good to present your home at its best if you want to achieve a quick and easy sale.

3. Market Type

The property market divides into two – The hot market and the cold market. These two market types significantly impact the average time to sell homes in the UK.

Hot Market. Also known as a seller's market. Higher demand for houses is identified as a hot market, which slowly strips away the available housing market and pushes prices up. During the peak of the Covid-19 pandemic, we saw an increase in demand for countryside homes and townhomes with more extensive gardens.

Cold Market. A Buyers market. When property sales have slowed, there is a lower demand for homes, and these properties tend to sit on the market for considerably longer. Buyers can make lowball offers with more opportunities for them to be accepted.

As we saw with Covid-19, markets can shift. If the market is cold, and you are in no rush to sell, you can opt to wait. However, for hot markets, sellers always have the opportunity to try to ask for more money. By studying the market and pricing accordingly, you can achieve the best sales price versus sales time.

4. Location, Location, Location

Sadly, location is not something that a seller can do much about. Of course, knowing what sort of buyers will be interested in your property may help you make the most of those who come to view it. If your property is small and located near a train station, it may not appeal to a family, but it could be perfect for a young couple or commuters. Declutter and hide away any kids' toys to help viewers better imagine the property in their hands.

Urban locations will receive more viewings than rural locations. Sadly, this is not something the seller or their agents can do anything to change.

5. Seasonal Patterns.

Seasonal changes mean that people prefer to move in the spring and summer here in the UK, allowing them to get stuck in with DIY projects and make their hew house a home. For this reason, expect more interest if you first list your home in these seasons.

Be aware of seasonal changes if you decide to sell your property, especially in the winter. If possible, provide your agent with images taken in warmer months, perhaps showing your garden in full bloom.

How can I sell my house online quickly?

We know there are times when a house needs to be sold quickly. Sometimes an unexpected opportunity arises; other times, financial difficulties or family changes require the property to be sold.

  • 8 weeks. If you require your house to sell within this time frame, you will most likely need to consider a cash-buying company or have your home sent to auction. In either case, expect to receive a below-market payout.
  • 8-16 weeks. It is possible to sell your home within this time frame during hot market conditions and at a sensible price, using an excellent estate agency that promises to chase up solicitors and the other party's agents. Be aware that it may require a sizable drop in your asking price in cold market conditions to achieve a fast transaction.

What steps can I take to sell my home quickly?

When you are ready to sell your home, you will need to prepare by researching the current market and knowing how you want to proceed. It would help if you considered the following:

1. Who do you want to sell your home to?

Whether you elect to use a low cost online agent (who usually charge a set fee) or a high street real estate agent (who typically charge 2-3% of the property value), you need to decide on who will represent you as early as possible in the process. Griffin Property Co offers fixed price options to ensure you know what you have to pay and what services you will receive, with no nasty surprises.

Next, pick a local solicitor that suits your needs. Most specialist property solicitors will be able to offer you a set price for completing the conveyancing on your behalf.

2. Value your property.

Assuming you elect to work with a reputable estate agent, they will be able to provide you with an estimate on the value of your home. If you need a fast sale, ask their advice. They may guide you to drop a specific sum off your property price or alter how the listing will be advertised.

Sometimes it may be worth including extras on the sales documents, such as existing garden sheds, greenhouses, and so on if you are attempting to get a rapid sale.

3. Have the property ready to show

There is nothing worse than being caught off guard with a request to view the property when it looks messy. You don't want to put off any potential buyer, so endeavour to have it ready to go for the duration of the listing - neat and as minimalistic as possible.

Why should I choose Griffin Property Co as my real estate agency?

Griffin Property Co is a renowned online estate agency in the UK. Here are a few factors that make us the preferred choice for so many customers:

1. Professionalism

We ensure that we give the most professional online estate agent service you can find anywhere. There is no space for sentimentalism or other emotions when providing the service our clients expect.

2. Maximum exposure

At Griffin Property Co, we ensure that your property is seen across as many platforms as possible. In addition to the big four, Right Move, Zoopla, OnTheMarket, and Primelocation, we also use a network of hundreds of other sites, including social media. Your property will be seen on Facebook Markets, LinkedIn, and google. We have a 100% success rate with properties assigned to us for sale.

3. Control and track the sale

One of the many features that help us stand out from the crowd is the ability for you to control and track the progress of the sale and the associated services that it entails. You can view bookings online at any time, along with details of the potential buyers.

4. Experienced Estate Agents

Our team of friendly agents are always available to help you through the selling process. From negotiation to completion, we're here for you. We will guide you to help you attain the highest sales price, the quickest sale, or somewhere in between.

How long does it take to sell a house after receiving an offer?

The average time to go from initial listing to completion in the UK is 114 days as of 2021/2022. To achieve a sale faster than this, we recommend that you aim to sell during hot market conditions.

How long does it take to sell a house with no chain?

When there is no chain involved, the sales time can be as quick as ten days. However, this does rely on both parties' solicitors being firmly on board with achieving this time scale. More commonly, it can take up to six weeks. Cash purchases will reduce this timescale and are more frequent in no-chain transactions.

How long does it take to buy a house with no chain?

It takes about the same time (minus listing times) to sell or buy a house in a chain-free market. As above, the completion time will vary depending on the solicitors used and the payment method.

For Griffin Property Co clients, we aim to take charge and influence the time it takes to receive offers and move through to completion. Contact us for more information or to begin getting your property listed with us.