New Year, New Home? Jennifer Smith – Partner in our Residential Property department – provides some sound advice for those selling up and moving house

New year, new start!  January is often the time when people make decisions and plans for the year ahead.  Deciding to sell up and move on could be one of those big life decisions, but the process can be both an exciting time and a daunting prospect.  Whether you are full of enthusiasm of buying the perfect home or taking the big step of selling up or moving out of the area there are a few pointers that can help you make sensible decisions and make the process easier:

  1. Selling Your Property

If you have made the decision to sell,  here are a couple of pointers to help boost your chances of getting a buyer on board:

  • You may have heard it before, but it has often been said that there are two rooms that sell a house – the kitchen and the bathroom.  Whilst not a rule of thumb, it makes sense to ensure these two key rooms are looking their best.  A lick of paint and simple clean to get rid of any lingering grease on the cooker or mould in the corners may be all that is needed to make these rooms stand out from the competition.
  • De-cluttering can also help to show your home in its best light.  Make sure any interesting features such as original fireplaces or decorative glass are not covered up as these can be attractive features that help increase buyer interest.
  • There may not be a need to redecorate the whole house, but a few simple touch ups or repairs can make a difference.
  • Don’t forget your outside space.  The approach to the house can be a particular selling point, so make sure your garden, yard or pathway is tidy, clear of weeds and rubbish and looking welcoming.  First impressions count!
  1. Finding Your New Home

You might be one of the lucky ones, but the first house you view may not be your dream home.   Try to keep an open mind and remind yourself of the following:

  • Consider taking a friend or relative with you for the viewing who might offer a different perspective or pick up on something you may not have seen or considered yourself.  A second opinion is often helpful, particularly if you are more emotional about the purchase rather than practical.  There is also no harm in speaking to the neighbours.
  • Remember what is important to you.  Whilst compromising on certain points may be inevitable, don’t lose sight of the key elements that matter to you.  If a garden or outside space is the biggest thing on your wish list, make sure that remains your focus.
  • Ask for a second viewing.  A house is, for most people, the most expensive thing you will ever buy so it is perfectly reasonable to ask for a second look.  You might pick up on something on the second viewing that you just hadn’t noticed before such as a wonky floor or damp patches.  It may not change your mind overall, but at least you can be armed with a bit more information before putting an offer in and you can plan ahead on potential future expenditure if you do decide to proceed.
  • Don’t forget to take a look around the neighbourhood as well as the property itself and consider doing so at different times of the day and week.  The house might seem perfect, but consider if the road becomes a busy shortcut during the rush hour or is a little too close to a rowdy social club that comes to life at night.  Being close to some playing fields might seems great on first look, but consider if they are used at the weekend by local sports teams perhaps, whether this creates lots of traffic and parked cars.  These things might not seems a problem at at the time of the day you go to view, but could make you think twice when you look again.
  1. Moving Day

The day has arrived and you are ready to move to your new home.  Moving day can be a hectic and stressful time so planning ahead can take away some of the strain.  Here’s some tips to help make the day go smoothly:

  • Make sure you have confirmed your removal arrangements in advance of moving day and are clear with the removal company what time they can be expected to arrive.  Also, make sure it is clear as to what you are expecting them to do; i.e. will they be packing boxes as well or are they just expecting to be loading up the van and moving on.  Be sure to tell them if you have any particular items that need special care or attention to help avoid any disasters and consider if you would rather transport some items yourself just for your own peace of mind.
  • Take meter readings for all services that are connected to your house when you leave and also for the new property on the day you move in.  You will then be able to set up your accounts with the service providers of your choice and be able to ensure you are paying for the right period at each property.
  • Check with your solicitor where the keys will be.  Usually they will be left with the estate agents, or alternatively the seller may be handing them over in person at the property.
  • Take some time to get things as you want them in the new house.  Unloading everything immediately might not be the best plan and things that once fit snugly in your old house, may not look quite right in the new place.  Take your time and perhaps use the move as an opportunity to get rid of things you no longer want or need.  There are many charities and other organisations that would be happy to take donations of certain unwanted items.  Perhaps take a note in advance of their contact details in case this is useful.

When you have a buyer or have decided on a new home to buy, our Residential Property team at Davis Blank Furniss would be happy to help you.  Please do not hesitate to contact us on 0161 832 3304 or 01457 860606.

For more information about Jenny and her work, please click HERE.

Share this article

This entry was posted in , , . Bookmark the permalink.