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When do you start house hunting?

(17 Posts)
ilovevegcrisps Mon 28-Mar-16 14:49:03

Tentatively thinking about moving.

Need to sell property first and arrange a mortgage - at what point do you start making appointments with estate agents?

Just wondering smile

wowfudge Mon 28-Mar-16 15:02:33

If you haven't already, set up alerts with the main property search sites and monitor asking prices and sold prices in the area where you are selling and the area where you are looking to buy. Inform yourself of the competition, which estate agents look to be achieving most sales, have the best looking and reading property adverts and what you are likely to need to spend to buy the kind of property you want to move to.

Unless you have your house on the market, you are unlikely to be taken seriously as a potential buyer. Worth getting an agreement in principle from a mortgage lender (using a soft credit search) to gauge whether you can borrow what you need in order to buy the kind of house you want. Look at the last mortgage statement or go online and look at your mortgage account to get a rough idea of the redemption figure. There are various online tools you can use to get an idea of conveyancing costs, removals, etc to work out the costs of moving. You'll also need to factor in estate agent commission costs.

Get at least three estate agents round to value your house and interview them to find the one you think most likely to get you a sale. Ask them what strategy they would adopt, what you need to do to your house to prepare it for sale, etc.

ilovevegcrisps Mon 28-Mar-16 15:55:33

Fudge that's so helpful, thank you thanks

wowfudge Mon 28-Mar-16 16:07:44

Good luck crisps - it's exciting to think of where you will next call home, but it can be bloody stressful getting there!

Sunnyshores Mon 28-Mar-16 20:07:16

Great advice there ^

Also drive around and look at areas of interest. Check prices of anything for sale, look for signs that an area is changing (for the better or for the worse), check Ofsted school reports (if thats an issue for you). When you do find a house of interest you will need to be decisive and know youre making the rigth decision - so all this homework and preparation is essential to avoid a costly mistake.

Sunnyshores Mon 28-Mar-16 20:10:44

And as far as selling your house goes - start doing all the little maintenance jobs now so it isnt a mad rush. Inside, outside, decluttering, garden etc.

Any bigger jobs get quotes for, even if you dont do them potential buyers will need to know costs (and without quotes they will be trying to reduce you by random thousands)

wowfudge Mon 28-Mar-16 20:41:25

Good point Sunny - decluttering and tidying is key. Look at your house with a critical eye and make it as presentable as you can.

ilovevegcrisps Mon 28-Mar-16 20:54:16

Thanks again.

I've got tenants in it at the moment so WIBU to decorate 'around' them?

Also I don't currently have a mortgage - would have a deposit of 50%?

wowfudge Mon 28-Mar-16 21:23:31

Er yes you would, unless they are very accommodating. Your tenants are entitled to the quiet enjoyment of the property. They do not need to agree to viewings or a visit by the estate agent or you. Have they given notice?

Lighteningirll Tue 29-Mar-16 08:15:38

Best to give tenants notice it's much harder to sell with tenants in so getting the property empty is probably the first thing you should do.

ilovevegcrisps Tue 29-Mar-16 08:17:00

No - I'm not starting the process yet but the kitchen and bathroom could do with new flooring and a new carpet in the hall/stairs. No need to get shirty- no tenants will be harmed in the selling of this property!

ilovevegcrisps Tue 29-Mar-16 08:17:16

I'll do that when the time comes Lightning, thanks.

wowfudge Tue 29-Mar-16 09:18:06

I don't think anyone responding has been shirty - your op stated you were thinking of moving not that you were thinking of selling a house let to tenants though. You probably won't get back what you spend on updating the kitchen and bathroom - depending on the value of the house and it's likely market a buyer may prefer to put their own stamp on the place. You'll have a shorter void period if you don't do that kind of work prior to selling.

RebeccaCloud9 Tue 29-Mar-16 14:16:26

Get looking on right move and get an idea of what you want. Narrow down your criteria, and view a range of possibilities which can help you refine your wants list even if it is not the right house for you. We have viewed quite a few which has really helped us decide on the size of rooms, garden and specific area we are looking for.

It is important to have an idea of the market in the area you are buying and selling. We have been looking for over a year with no joy and in that time, a few houses similar to ours have sold v quickly, so it totally depends on what the market is like near you!

Lighteningirll Tue 29-Mar-16 14:48:05

Sorry if I came over shirty confused but giving tenants notice is the first stage of selling most buyers won't even look at a tenanted property and the worry that tenants won't leave promptly will reduce the offers you do receive and no you really can't ask tenant to put up with the disruption of redecorating and new flooring when you will be asking them to leave anyway. This is a great forum for advice but no one intends to be shirty on the property boards it's not AIBU. In twenty years of buying and selling both my own homes and btl I've only once sold a property with tenants in situ and it's much more complicated.

JeffreySadsacIsUnwell Tue 29-Mar-16 15:34:34

I think you've been given good advice - your update about tenants does rather change matters from your first post, and makes the usual 'declutter/freshen up' advice totally unfeasible in the first instance. It will be one of the last things you do, and will be a 2-day job max as you'll be losing money everyday between end of tenancy and completion of sale... So I'd absolutely agree with forgetting a new carpet, unless the hall carpet actually has so many holes in and stinks so badly of dog piss that people wouldn't come through the front door to go up the stairs, or the sitting room carpet has fag burns all over it. Permanent evidence of pets and smokers would put a lot of buyers off.

As others have said, you need to make sure you know where you want to buy. This is even more important if you're selling a tenanted property to buy one to live in, as once you've got those tenants out, you won't be receiving income. If you can make an offer on a purchase within days of receiving an offer, you will obviously be minimising losses (assuming you are either paying rent or paying another mortgage on the property you're living in) compared to then taking two months to make an offer on somewhere else.

Line up solicitors, surveyors etc. At this stage you just need recommendations and quotes, but you need to be ready to go.

Then yes, when you're reasonably sorted, give notice - you're not going to be able to sell with them in place, you're not going to be able to make an offer until you're under offer yourself.

Sunnyshores Tue 29-Mar-16 18:45:47

OK the tenanted property puts a different spin on things. It makes it even more important that you know what you want to buy, what you can pay and are decisive when you find it. Any dithering will make the void longer.

So, once youre fairly certain of what sort of a house you're looking for and you have a mortgage agreed in principle, I would give your tenants their 2 months notice. Personally I leave my tenants alone during this stressful time (--unless theyve been complete pains--), but decide on what work you need, get rough quotes, buy any materials and aim to have the work all done within 2 weeks of them moving out, and on the market a week after this.

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