Having made that important decision to sell your property you need to decide who is going to undertake the legal work.  At Dibbens Solicitors we are well placed to undertake this work for you and to guide you through the process.

The Conveyancing Team at Dibbens have compiled 10 tips to help you, before putting your house on the market.

1.  Firstly, check your Mortgage/loan/finances

If you have a mortgage or loan check the terms and conditions. These will help you establish whether you can transfer the mortgage to a new property with/without early repayment charges.  Even though you wish to move the mortgage to your new property/home you will more than likely need to go through a formal mortgage application process.

2. Obtain a pre-market appraisal.

An Estate Agent can undertake a pre-market appraisal to obtain an indication of the current value of your property, and discuss any maintenance issues as well as the selling process, agreeing jointly a marketing strategy.

If your property is priced too high then it is difficult to get people through the door.  Get the views of four or five different Estate Agents before you put the property on the market to ensure that an overly ambitious Agent does not price your property too high.

3. Instruct your solicitor

Dibbens recommend that when you sell you involve your Solicitor at the earliest possible stage in the process, when you actually place the property on the market. By instructing Dibbens simultaneously with the marketing of the property considerable preparatory work can be undertaken in advance of a buyer being found. This will help to ensure that title information is obtained, answers gathered to standard property information forms and the fittings and contents form. With the increasing tendancy of lenders to not require title documents it is more important than ever that property owners maintain good records of work they have undertaken to their property, retained information given at the time they purchased and hand all of this to their Solicitor with the initial request for paperwork. In addition it is important to provide details of any new boiler installation with the supporting Corgi or Gas Safe installation certificates, replacement window contract, invoice, any guarantee and FENSA Certificate and in connection with any electrical work the necessary Building Regulation Compliance Certificate. The more information that is available the less likely buyers and their advisors are to raise queries.

If all this information is provided before a buyer has been found then a complete contract package can be prepared and everything ready to send out immediately following the sale being agreed.

Whilst there is undoubtedly more work to be done in advance when comparing a sale to a purchase it is equally important as a buyer to instruct solicitors at an early stage so that we are ready to act immediately a deal is agreed on the chosen property.

4. Clean

Your home must sparkle! Spring Clean your house from top to bottom before putting it on the market. Having a weekly cleaning service while selling is probably a pretty good investment. Make sure your windows are clean inside and out too.

They say you can only make one “first impression,” and people usually form their first impression within 30 seconds. The front of your house is a good place to spend a little extra time and money. Plant flowers, trim bushes, weed, pick up leaves, repaint your front door, replace tarnished house numbers or a dented mailbox, get a brand-new neutral doormat and consider anything else which might improve first impressions.

Pay particular attention to your kitchen as  Greasy hobs, crumby surfaces and sticky floors are an immediate turn off.  Make sure work surfaces are clear.   The Bathroom is another room that needs particular attention.  Expensive soaps a plant and matching towels together with sparkling taps and clean tub and loo will make a good impression.

5. Fix

Got a dripping tap or a cracked tile? These will send the wrong message to potential buyers. Getting all the problems fixed before you put your house on the market is a smart idea.

6. Remove Clutter

This may be the hardest rule of all! We love our clutter – it reflects our memories, hobbies, and values. But it doesn’t sell homes! Clutter makes homes seem smaller and disorganized. (Have you ever noticed that the really expensive stores seem to have an expansive, clutter-free layout, while “cheap” stores are often a jumble of merchandise?) Even the ancient practice of Feng Shui has, as a central focus, the elimination of clutter.

This can help during exchange and completion. Do it now.

7. Presentation, De-personalise and Neutralise

Bear in mind that you are selling a lifestyle. Whether it’s redoing the grouting in the bathroom, giving the walls a lick of paint, industrial cleaning the carpets or getting planning permission for that basement conversion. You are basically trying not to give prospective buyers any reason to offer below the asking price.

8. Sell a life-style

Know your Buyer and think about who you are selling to and try to ensure that your property appeals to that type of person.

Buyers want to feel they are buying into a lifestyle or area, so make the most of it. Establish beneficial local features and school catchment areas.

Buyers need to know what each room is for, so that they can decide where they will place their own items. Sell the lifestyle and you’ll sell your house.

Make sure you have adequate lighting in every room, use subtle mood lighting to create the right atmosphere in each room and check all your bulbs work.

By using the right accessories, you can enhance your rooms and create a feeling of unity by using harmonious colours. Use mirrors to reflect light and space, and use plants and fresh flowers to bring life to rooms and add a natural fragrance.

9.  Keep your pets under control.

Try confining them to a specific area. Although you may love your pets, they can be off-putting to other people, and smells can be offensive, so make sure there are no lingering odours in furniture or flooring, and if there is, get them cleaned before you sell.

10.  Define Areas and Keep the Property Furnished.

Nobody likes to see a property empty even if the furnishings are not to their taste. You can always hire furniture if necessary.

With each part of the house furnished you define a possible use for it and demonstrate that it can be used in that way even if the area could be used differently.  Make sure all parts of the property are accessible and try not to pile everything up in the garage.