What Percentage of Houses Sell?
March 23rd, 2023
I’ve been asked recently “What percentage of houses sell?” No one really knows how many houses sell as a percentage of those that are listed. The reason is that estate agents don’t ‘show their wares’ or disclose how many properties they have sold. It’s sort of a trade secret, for some reason.
It’s different in other countries, where house sales are often associated with an estate agent, and so you can see who are the best agents at selling and who aren’t so good – something we could probably do with here in the UK, but not something I can see happening any time soon!
If agents did show their stats and figures, then perhaps the customer would be able to make a more informed decision as to which agent they use to sell their own property.
There are various data companies out there who claim to monitor property sales, but none are 100% accurate. There are situations quite often where the owner will take their house off the market and then put it back on a few weeks or months later. A movement like this will count against the agent as an unsold property, when in actual fact they may well sell it when the owner puts it back on the market, but they just had challenging circumstances the first time round.
Similarly, a house may sell and then fall through and then sell again. We’re not 100% sure how these data companies calculate their data, but in this situation, if they are counting that listing as 1 listing, but 2 sales, then they are crediting the agent with 2 sales and 1 listing, which is frankly an impossibility!
As a general guide, from nothing more than experience of working within the industry for many years, agents tend to agree sales (note the term ‘agree sales’ and not ‘sell’) on around 65%-70% of properties, with around 20%-25% of these sales falling through. If you do the maths on that, it means they actually sell around 55% of the properties they put on the market.
Of course, it all depends on market conditions. In 2008-2009, only around 35% of properties were selling, but during Covid times, it was more like 90%! If you’d like to have a chat about current market conditions and see if I can help you just use this link to book a call at a time that suits you https://calendly.com/craigthompsonbespoke/30min or click here for an in person valuation appointment https://craigthompson.exp.uk.com/contact-us/
A Guide to Instant Online Valuations
March 13th, 2023
They are everywhere at the moment. Almost every agent has one and they can be useful, but also quite annoying. Here is a guide to instant online valuations and how you treat the results. I’ve even got one on my homepage, so after you’ve read this article take a look and see what yours “could” be worth https://craigthompson.exp.uk.com/
You see an advert on Facebook asking if you’d like to ‘know the value of your house within 60 seconds’
You enter your postcode, address, the number of bedrooms and your email address and up pops an instant online valuation, literally within a few seconds.
Are you disappointed, surprised or neither?
Instant online valuations can be useful for a quick guide as to what your property *might* be worth, but a guide is all they are.
The way they are done is through a number of data points of what your property sold for previously, what other neighbouring properties sold for and then seeing the market conditions since. However, there are a number of problems with this method.
Firstly, what you paid for it has no bearing on what it might be worth, especially if you have improved the property or extended it.
Secondly, the average price rises in one part of the area you live in can be very different to another area, let alone the differences around the country!
The one piece of advice I can give when it comes to getting an instant online valuation is not to ‘blame’ the estate agent for providing you with a figure that is too low, or too high – take the instant valuation tool for exactly what it is, which is a guide that might, or might not, be right.
So instant valuations can give you a guide and they are useful to help you plan best and worst case scenarios, but while this technology is still in its early stages of development, there is nothing better than getting an actual estate agent out to value the property and give you a real view of current market conditions in your area, along with the right marketing strategy for your property.
If you are considering selling and would like me to pop round at a t time that suits you, you can request an appointment here https://craigthompson.exp.uk.com/contact-us/
What is Sales Progression?
March 7th, 2023
If you are buying or selling in Christchurch, Bournemouth, or Poole at some point you’ll come across this term and think “What is sales progression?”
Sales progression is the term that agents use for getting a sale through to exchange & completion after a sale has been agreed.
Once you accept an offer on the property you’re selling, or have had an offer accepted on a property you want to buy, the agent will organise a memorandum of sale and issue this to both the seller and the buyer, as well as their respective solicitors/conveyancers.
At this point, it is over to the conveyancers to organise the legal details of the house sale/purchase and it is up to the buyer to apply for finances (assuming they’re getting a mortgage.)
Although the estate agent is not able to directly effect the sales process, they are able to chase people up, including other estate agents in the chain, conveyancers, surveyors and mortgage brokers, and this is essentially what ‘sales progression’ is – keeping on top of a sale whilst it is going through the legal processes.
It’s a useful service and one that some agents embrace and others just do on a proactive basis.
Either way, it’s an important part of the process to help keep the sale ‘on track’
Make sure you ask agents when you first meet them what their approach to sales progression is and see if it fits with your expectations.
I always recommend using a local solicitor to handle your sale or purchase as this can speed things up considerably. My solicitor of choice is https://mm4law.co.uk/ and in particular, Lalitha Dodwell. She is fantastic and gets the job done!
If you would like to have an informal chat about anything property related you can request a phone call with me using my handy calendar link at time that suits you, I’m available 7 days a week and often work outside of normal business hours https://craigthompson.exp.uk.com/contact-us/
How Do You Value a House?
September 7th, 2022
How do you value a house?
This is the first thing you need to do when you’re thinking of selling.
But do you really need to get an estate agent out to value your house?
Here are a few ways that you can determine the value of your own house and how estate agents come to the conclusion they do…
It’s fairly straightforward to get an idea of what the value of your house is. Firstly, go to this link – https://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale.html – although Zoopla has some great tools, I think Rightmove just edges it, simply because more agents use Rightmove and so it has by default held more property records that are For Sale and so can give a fuller picture. (If only agents used Zoopla instead of Rightmove as the actual tools on Zoopla are better, but anyway, I digress…)
Pop your postcode into Rightmove and search for properties in your postcode and ¼ of a mile around. Make sure you tick the box to ‘include under offer, sold stc’
Generally speaking, you should look at the ones that are ‘For Sale’ as your competition, and not base the value of your house on the asking price of houses that are ‘For Sale’. Properties that are ‘For Sale’ can give you a guide, but only a guide. The ones to look at closely, are the ones that have got the green sticker on them, that say ‘Sold, stc’ or ‘Under offer’.
The reason for this is simple – the ones that are ‘For Sale’ may be on the market for too much money and this may be why the property hasn’t sold. The ones that are under offer or sold stc, are ‘proof’ that someone has bought that house at a price. The tricky thing is, you don’t know what price was achieved and the agent probably won’t tell you.
If you see a house that’s the same as yours on for £200,000 and it’s under offer, that makes your house worth £200,000 as well, right?
Perhaps, but what if it only sold for £180,000? This is why agents claim to be able to value properties better as they will know what that property actually sold for.
The second thing to do is to go here – https://www.rightmove.co.uk/house-prices.html – pop your postcode in and see what other properties have sold, and what they actually sold for according to land registry data. This is actual true data from land registry so can be relied upon as fact and not what someone told you down the pub!
Remember though, that land registry doesn’t document the price until around 3 months after the house sale has gone through, so if you spot a ‘Sold’ board going up at your neighbours house and you’re desperate to find out if they got what they were asking, you’re either going to have to bite the bullet and ask them directly, or you’re going to have to be patient and wait for land registry to publish the update…
At this link, you will see the properties listed in the order of the most recent date of completion first. You can also extend the area to ¼ or a mile, ½ a mile, a mile, 3, 5 and 10 miles. If you’re in a built up area of similar properties, then I would suggest no more than ½ a mile. If you’re in a rural area or your house is worth more than say £1m, and there are less houses to compare too, then search for a wider radius.
When the list comes up, you will also see some of the addresses are ‘linked’ and coloured in blue. Click on these links and you can often see all the photos from when it last sold, along with a floorplan. This can really help you to value your own home as you will be able to see what your house is like, compared to the one that sold up the road. Is yours better, bigger, smaller, etc, etc. The tricky part for you (and this is where estate agents come in), is knowing what an extension has added in value, what a loft conversion has added in value, what a South facing garden compared to a North facing garden adds in value.
The next thing to do is head on over to https://www.rightmove.co.uk/house-value.html – this is a similar area to an area called ‘Rightmove Plus’ that only estate agents get access too, but this is essentially a slightly watered down version of what I can see, and can give you a really good idea of properties that didn’t sell.
Ones that didn’t sell may have been asking too much money, or they could have just been badly presented by the estate agent.
As a general rule when looking at all these areas, you must be objective about it. The biggest mistake I see and hear is when potential sellers get wrapped up in a house that was asking £250k and was on for 6 months and didn’t ever sell, when the one a few doors down achieved £200k in the space of a few weeks. We often have customers tell us that their neighbour who sold for the lower price were “desperate to sell and so took a lower offer to get moved.”
Although that could be the case, it is often not the case. As long as it was marketed to its maximum with the maximum coverage, then it’s probably achieved what it’s worth and the owner perhaps didn’t ‘undersell’ it.
So those are the best ways to value your own house.
Of course, if you are unable to do this, or you need a second opinion, then the best bet is to get an estate agent to come and value the property.
As estate agents, our job is not just to advise on the value of the property, but also to advise on the correct asking price and marketing strategy that will help you to maximise the value of the property, depending on the circumstances you are in.
If you’re ready for that, then don’t hesitate to give me a call! You can book a face to face appointment or just a phone call to begin with to see if you think I might be a good fit by using my handy calendar https://craigthompson.exp.uk.com/contact-us/
6 Home Updates to make after a decade
January 11th, 2022
6 Home Updates to Make After a Decade
Home updates to make after a decade. All homes need a bit of TLC after a while and there comes a time when you have to face up to the fact that, no matter how much you love where you live and no matter how much you think your decor looks great, your home needs to be freshened up after a while- especially if you’re looking to sell.
So, if you’ve lived in your house for a decade, chances are some things will need to be updated. Here are six things to freshen up after ten years:
Get Painting: This is the fastest and cheapest way to give your property a facelift and breathe new life into it. You may not be a fan of neutral colours, but creams, whites and grey will take years off the surface of your home. Plus, not only do neutral walls make a room look clean and fresh, but they also make it look bigger and brighter too. It’s a no-brainer.
Replace your Flooring: After a decade of walking all over it, it will definitely be time to change your floor coverings as they will no doubt be worn, stained and look a bit shabby.
Redo Bathroom & Kitchen Sealant & Grouting: If you want a quick way of making your bathroom look fantastic, re-grout your tiles or clean or replace the sealant around your bath, sink and toilet.
Make sure to do this in your kitchen as well. A super-quick way to do this is by using a grout pen which literally allows you to quickly colour in discoloured grout.
Invest in a New Mattress: Ten years down the line, you’ll probably be in need of a new mattress for hygiene reasons as you don’t want to be sharing your bed with bed bugs.
After a while, your mattress will also become a bit lumpy and bumpy, something that can cause discomfort, body aches and interfere with your need for a good night’s sleep.
Get a New Washing Machine: Did you know that a washing machine can last up to ten years? After this, it’s highly recommended that you get a new one. You’ll know if you do need a new one if it leaks, there’s a bad smell from it that won’t go away or if it makes a lot of noise.
Older models are not always as energy-efficient as they are now, so definitely consider this if you’re looking to save water and bring your monthly bills down.
Replace the Dishwasher: As with the washing machine, this is something else you might need to replace after every 10 years. You’ll know when your dishwasher is at the end of its life if the dishes are not getting cleaned properly or if the main control board is acting up.
As with a washing machine, it’s important to take saving water and energy into consideration when shopping around for a new model.
Just follow these simple tips every ten years or so and your home will always look as good as new – and be ready for viewers should you want to sell!
Thinking of moving? Get in touch today for your FREE home valuation. Book a date and time that suits you by clicking this link https://craigthompson.exp.uk.com/contact-us/
4 Ways to Improve your Kerb Appeal
June 16th, 2021
Here are 4 ways to boost your kerb appeal within 60 minutes:
When a potential buyer arrives at your home you instantly want them to fall in love with it. However, that won’t happen unless your house looks good.
Paint Your Doors: Does your front or garage door look tired? If so give it a lick of paint to give people a great first impression.
Wash Your Windows: Wash all of your windows, inside and out, as this will give buyers a fresh feel as they walk through your home.
Pressure wash Your Outdoor Surfaces: Pressure washing your driveway, front path and decking is a quick and easy way of freshening up your house’s outdoor appearance as it will give it a ‘like new’ feel.
Tidy Your Garden: Make sure your garden looks neat. Cut your grass, weed your flower beds, trim your trees or plant some nice flowers to make your garden look pretty. A tidy garden gives out a great first impression as it shows buyers you have taken care of it.
Thinking of moving? Get in touch today for your FREE home valuation.
8 Ways to Improve Kerb Appeal
May 9th, 2021
8 Ways to Improve Your House’s Kerb Appeal
When a potential buyer arrives at your house you want them to instantly fall in love with it. However, that won’t happen if your property has poor ‘Kerb Appeal.
Here are 8 simple things you can do to make your home look more attractive from the outside:
Decorate Your Doors: Does your front or garage door look tired and need a lick of paint? Those are the first thing buyers will notice. A pretty entry will give people a great first impression.
Wash Your Windows: Wash all of your windows, inside and out, as this will give buyers a fresh feel as they walk through your home. Plus, if you have a good view or a lovely garden to look at, then clean windows will allow them to do that.
Pressure Wash Your Outdoor Surfaces: Pressure washing your outdoor surfaces is a quick and easy way of freshening up your house’s outdoor appearance. If you wash your driveway, garden path, porch, or decking then this will give your home a ‘like new’ feel.
Landscape Your Garden: Make sure your garden looks tidy. Cut your lawn, weed your flower beds, trim your trees or plant some nice flowers to make your garden look prettier. A tidy garden gives out a great first impression as it shows buyers you’ve taken care of it.
Gut Your Garage: We all use our garages as a dumping ground from time to time but when you’ve listed your home for sale then a cleanout is required, otherwise, it might put buyers off. They want to visualize what they can use the space for. Consider using a storage unit for a little while if you’ve items you just don’t want to get rid of.
Replace or Paint Your House Number: It’s amazing how many homeowners neglect their house number. Does yours need a lick of paint or can you get a new one made? A pretty house number will make your home stand out and give off the impression that you’re house proud.
Replace Your Welcome Mat: Buy a new welcome mat for your home as it’s one of the first things potential buyers will see just before they enter your house. You want to make people feel happy when they walk into your home, not left wondering what state the inside will be if your welcome mat is anything to go by.
Are All Exterior Lights Working? It’s easy to forget about outdoor bulbs that may have gone out. Have a quick sweep around your property and replace any bulbs that may have popped. Also, you might want to add some outdoor lighting to emphasize certain features of your property.
Just a few simple maintenance tasks can make a huge difference to whether your house looks attractive to buyers or not.
If you prepare your home in the right way to hit the market then you’ll help ensure your property will be sold quickly and for the best price possible.
Thinking of selling? Get in touch today for a FREE home valuation.
10 Questions to ask yourself before buying a new home
May 3rd, 2021
10 Questions to Ask Yourself before Buying a New Home
It’s a big decision to buy a new house and it’s important that you don’t make the mistake of buying a home that you’ll later regret.
Here are 10 questions to ask yourself if you are thinking of moving:
Why do you want to move house?
What is your budget?
Do you have a big enough deposit?
Can you get a mortgage?
Do you have the money to move house- can you afford an Estate Agent, a Solicitor, LBTT and removal fees?
Can you afford to decorate or repair a new house?
What neighbourhood do you want to live in?
Does that neighbourhood have good schools and local amenities?
Can you easily commute to work?
Will moving house make your life any better?
Thinking of selling? Get in touch today for a free home valuation.
5 Tips to Move Home Safely During Covid
April 29th, 2021
It’s said that moving into a new house is one of the most stressful things we can do in our lives. To top it all off, we face even more challenges just now thanks to the arrival of COVID-19.
The outbreak of the virus has affected almost every aspect of our everyday lives. We have all had to adapt to a ‘new normal’. Sanitizing, socially distancing and wearing masks are just some of the things we have to keep in mind as we try to carry on with our lives as best as we can.
The housing market has also been affected by COVID-19 but thankfully you are still allowed to buy and sell property and move into your dream homes. However, if you are preparing to move house then you have to be even more prepared to ensure that you and your family are safe from germs.
The safety and wellbeing of everyone involved with a house move are of paramount importance. So, to help take the stress out of your move and to keep everyone involved as safe as possible, here are five tips to make your big move amid coronavirus go as smooth as possible:
- Buy New Boxes: Instead of asking your local shop for spare boxes to pack your things in, buy fresh ones instead because cardboard is difficult to sanitize. You can bulk-buy 30 cardboard boxes online from as little as £5. Always remember that only you and your immediate household members should do all the packing.
- Disinfect & Sanitize: Once you get the keys to your new home, make it your top priority to do a sanitizing sweep of the place as soon as you come in by washing down kitchen surfaces, toilets, door handles and any switches. Pack all of your antibacterial cleaning products and store them somewhere within easy reach. When you arrive at your new home you can get straight to work.
- Social Distancing: Some removal companies are still on hand to help you move with some changes in place. Always remember to keep a safe distance of at least two metres from anyone who is not in your immediate household bubble. If you’re having furniture delivered, you’d be best to go into another room until the delivery and construction of all items are complete and the delivery people leave your home.
- Stock Up On PPE: On moving day, make sure you have a healthy supply of PPE to hand. Make sure you wear a mask at all times, use gloves and have plenty of hand sanitizer on standby as you’ll be loading and unloading boxes from a removals van into your new house.
- Wash Your Hands: When moving into a new property, you’ll be touching lots of surfaces so it’s best to wash your hands as much as possible. Above all, remember not to touch your face.
If you follow these five simple steps they will ensure a healthy and happy move for you and your family.
Happy moving day when it comes!
Are you thinking of selling your house? Get in touch today for your FREE valuation.
5 Ways to House Hunt When You’re in a Hurry
April 28th, 2021
House hunting in a hurry can be incredibly overwhelming- but there are certain steps you can take that will help to take some of the stress out of the process.
In an ideal world, you would want all the time in the world to land your dream home. However, it doesn’t always work out like that; maybe you have to relocate for work or there is a change to your personal or financial circumstances. Or it could just be that demand outweighs the supply of quality homes in the areas where you want to move to and you have to be quick on your feet before your dream house gets snapped up.
Fortunately, it doesn’t have to take months to find an awesome house. Here are five things you can do to speed up the whole process for yourself and all parties involved in a house sale:
- Contact all local Estate Agents
Any good, trusted and professional Estate Agent will always be the first in the know when it comes to properties that are getting ready to hit the market in their local area before anyone else does. Build a good relationship with them, get added to their mailing list, watch their Social Media channels and call them regularly to make sure you don’t miss out.
It’s really important to be clear about what you want and what your budget is, so be sure to let the agent know all of these essential details when you get in touch.
- Get your finances in order and get pre-approved
First thing’s first: get your deposit finalised and get your mortgage-in-principle in place. The best way to do this is by contacting a mortgage advisor who will take the stress out of the process for you. You can’t go house hunting if you don’t know what you can afford, plus, many Estate Agents won’t even let you through the door of a house if you haven’t been pre-approved.
- Make a list of things you need to have
If you’re in a rush to buy, never waste time looking at houses you know will not suit your needs. Therefore, you should draft up a list of things you really want to have in your new house as well as all of the amenities you want to have. Do you want an office at home? Do you want a private garden? Are you after a house or an apartment? Know what you’re after and cut out any uncertainty.
- Search areas with a lot of stock
Don’t waste time looking at areas that don’t have that many homes available as competition will be high. Instead, choose neighbourhoods that have plenty of houses on offer that meet your needs.
- Make informed decisions
If you need to purchase a new home quickly you have to be careful that you aren’t jumping in with both feet and getting in over your head. Speed may be of the essence but it’s still important to make informed decisions before you put in that offer. Remember to ask questions and to do your research. Just take a moment to understand all the consequences before moving forward with your purchase.
There is not any guarantee that buying your dream home will be plain-sailing, but as long as you have things sorted on your end with all of these handy tips, there is no reason why you shouldn’t be getting ready to pack up and move in no time!
Thinking of selling? Get in touch today for a free home valuation.