Selling your house can be a highly complicated process with multiple steps and many potential problems. Here are some of the most common problems you may face when selling your house:
Working With the Wrong People
When selling a property, you need to think about who you want to work with for the most seamless selling process. For many, this is an estate agent. However, within choosing an estate agent, there are certain things that could be problematic when selling your home. One thing that can be off-putting when working with an estate agent is the cost incurred. The majority of traditional high-street estate agents work on a commission basis – this can be anything from 1% to 3.5% of the final sale price.
Another problem that comes with estate agents is that you may need to cover their costs even if you decide not to sell. If there is a break in the property chain, this could mean that you are out of pocket even if the sale does not go through.
One major problem with estate agents is poor communication which can massively slow down the selling process. If they take multiple days or weeks to respond to you, it can be extremely slow to sell.
Choosing the wrong surveyor could also lead to problems. If there are any issues with the house valuation later down the line, the valuer could be held liable. Valuers and surveyors owe you a duty of care and need to be extremely careful in their property inspections.
This could also be a problem when trying to get a mortgage as their value may not match that of the mortgage lender. Another issue that comes with mortgage lenders is the delay between getting a mortgage offer and approving the mortgage.
Property Chain Falling Through
The main issue that comes from working with buyers is that they withdraw their offer before contracts have been exchanged. Up until this point, they have no legal obligation to purchase the home and do not need to cover any costs. Buyers may also reduce their agreed offer before exchange of contracts which can put the seller in a difficult situation if they do not have another buyer lined up.
If a buyer’s financing falls through for any reason, they may withdraw their offer completely and leave the seller back at square one.
Property chains could also fall through at the seller’s side. This could happen if a seller accepts a higher offer from another buyer before the exchange of contracts (a term known as ‘gazumping‘). If sellers accept more than one offer and send draft contracts to more than one potential buyer, it is unethical but not illegal and it begins a contract race. The first to exchange contracts will be the one who gets the property.
Problems with the Asking Price
One of the biggest mistakes you can make is to set an asking price which is too high. You should always do your research before settling on a particular price to make sure that what you are asking is realistic for similar properties in your local area. The asking price should be fair and should reflect the property type, size, condition and location.
It is important to also remain flexible with your asking price. If you are after a quick house sale, you may need to compromise the asking price in order to sell your home quicker. Similarly, if your house has been on the market for a long time and there is little to no interest from buyers, it could be an indication that your price has been set too high.