So much has changed about the house selling process during my near thirty-five years since starting in Estate Agency, yet, in truth, very little has changed. The ten essential steps to success, outlined below, have always held true, we just may not have talked about them so openly, in so much detail. There is a very good reason why step eight is not step one. Step eight is crucial for you ultimately, but it is the one that is most abused by agents because the other steps are not followed.
Technology has radically altered our daily lives, mobile communication, computing and digital processing. Technology was supposed to dramatically improve the buying and selling experience and, once again, the government have announced a major review of the way we go about it and how it can be altered. Watch this space, so to speak.
At the core of all this, the truth is nothing has changed and that is because moving home isn’t about property, it’s about people and people are incredibly complex and have lives that are complicated, ruled by too many things that are uncontrollable.
There may be a day in the future when you are woken in the morning by your AI alter ego, where artificial intelligence knows you better than you yourself and says, ‘Good morning, today is the optimal day to move, we’ve cleared your diary, the removal bots will be here momentarily and keys are being printed for your new home, you will be taking your breakfast there, in the surroundings we have determined will suit you perfectly!’
Heaven forbid! Or perhaps not, perhaps that might be wonderful?
Some people love the idea of moving, not the process perhaps, but the excitement of the search, of finding the right home for them, of starting a new stage in their life.
If you are looking to sell your home, how do you ensure yours is the one that is found by the right buyer? It is down to much more than just appearing on the internet, trust me, I know, we’ve problem solved for lots of people where agents have simply, ‘put their home on the internet’.
There are some simple things you should consider and, whether you are going to market in a rush or planning well in advance, these steps are essential, what may vary is the time you have to implement, but read on, analyse and do what you can to make the process as likely to succeed for you as is possible.
Fail to plan, Plan to fail!
Most people will have heard that phrase, or a similar one to it!
Here they are: Ten Essential Steps to Success
Step 1: The very first question many people should ask themselves is, should I actually move? For some, extending their current home may be a better option and we cover that in this article Extend or Move: Should I Stay or Should I Go? A huge part of this decision making is, will moving make financial sense? Ask yourself whether the gain is the right one for the cost. You’ll find some useful thoughts here Thinking of Buying? Do this First!
Step 2: Timing. You may be forced to act quickly (even more reason to be aware of The Property See-Saw) so understanding how active the market is likely to be, at the time you enter it, is essential. For those who can plan ahead, picking the optimal time to start makes it easier to plan your preparation and control as much of the process as you can. We cover all of this in our article When Should I Sell? Here is a great article on Planning Ahead
Step 3: Get Advice. It’s great to read and research, to talk with friends and family and ask for advice but in truth, there will be a little bias to all of it. Ask a good estate agent or two in, as early on in the process as you can, and get their thoughts. Read this, an article on What is the Most Important Consideration?
Step 4: Look at your home with a critical eye and think about how it will appear to people, what impression will it give? Is yours a home that people can’t help but fall in love with? Is de-cluttering really something you should consider? Guess what? Here is an article for you! Debunking the De-Clutter myth!
Step 5: This is an extension of step four really, take a close look at your home, step by step, room by room and think about how it will be perceived and what impression it will leave people with. There are a series of articles here that will help. Start by reading Preparing your Home, Where to Begin. Then read these articles:
Step 6: Don’t Forget The Yes, Yes, No! Rule of Home Selling
Step 7: Think about your very own Property See-Saw (if you didn’t follow the link earlier) and how you want it to balance for you.
Step 8: Price correctly. Why did I say earlier; this step is the one most abused by agents? Pricing is often used as a lure to win your signature, the promise of what may be. It is also often the first place fingers are pointed if you struggle to sell. There have been far too many instances where clients have come to us, unable to sell through another agent and we have raised the asking price and achieved a sale. Price is always important, but it is your money, your future and, if an agent tells you that you need to reduce your house price in order to sell, they should have reviewed their marketing, they better have made sure they have done everything possible before they tell you this and they need to be able to show proof of why. Do not reduce your asking price just because an agent needs to hit their sales target! Do however refer back to step 7 when you are considering pricing. It’s also important to be wary of online house price calculators and here’s some thoughts on The Perfect Valuation Equation
Step 9: It’s often The little things that matter!
Step 10: Breathe deeply, breathe slowly and go for it!
There you have it, a distillation of nearly thirty five years and how many thousands upon thousands of people and homes I’ve had the joy of dealing with, all put into Ten Essential Steps to Success.
There are other things to consider when moving, choosing a solicitor is a hugely important one. I could go on, but there are already other articles in our blog and more will join them.
Every person is unique, every home individual and so the answers and considerations are hugely varied. I hope this article helps and please feel free to contact us, to contact me, if you would like to discuss something further.