When you are contemplating selling your house, it seems as if there are endless questions racing through your mind. Among these may be: Can I wait months (and months!) for a sale to go through? How much is this going to cost me? Will I get any offers? Do I have any alternatives if I need to move quickly?
The good news for people who need or wish to sell quickly is that there does exist a viable option: with cash buyers houses that may otherwise linger on the market for ages can be sold in as little as 21 days. How does it work, and can it work for you?
With Cash Buyers, Houses Sell Fast
First and foremost it is essential that you are comfortable with the idea of a cash buyer for your house. Legitimate, reputable companies can complete a sale in as little as 21 days (more on this in a moment) – but there is also the worry that an untrustworthy schemer will leave you stranded with an dodgy agreement.
Unfortunately some house buyers do not actually have the funding and capital available to pay for properties. And some are seeking to take advantage of people who are in vulnerable positions in order to make money. They often require homeowners to sign an option agreement, obligating them to use their services for, say, six to 12 months. This is obviously not the quick sale you need – and you are essentially stuck with them.
This is why it is of paramount importance to carefully vet a company and select one with a sterling reputation – not to mention the funds necessary to purchase properties. They will have no issue with providing you with information pertaining to their financial standing and ability to purchase your house. You should also check to see if they are current members of relevant professional organisations, such as the National Association of Property Buyers or the Property Ombudsman.
How Does It Work?
While procedures can vary slightly depending on the specific company you choose, typically they follow a similar path. You will start by calling or by filling out a simple form on their website. Information given at this time is minimal, often just your postcode and perhaps a general descriptor of your home’s condition (e.g. good, fair). You will receive an initial ‘offer in agreement’ within 24 hours with most reputable companies with sufficient funds.
From there you are free to accept and continue. You are not obligated, however, to proceed if you do not wish to. Be wary of any company that requires you to sign an option agreement, as we have mentioned.
The next step is a more thorough valuation of the property so they can determine what the house is worth from an objective standpoint. The valuation experts will look at factors such as the age, size and condition of the house, the location, how much similar homes have sold for in the area and the current state of the market.
As investors, they will also look at your home’s development potential. For example, if it is in an emergent neighbourhood, this can help increase its value. Reputable cash house buyers do not charge a fee for this process. Upon receiving valuation and RICS reports, the company will make a formal offer. Often this is between 75-80% of the market value. (But remember: you do not have to pay for estate agent and solicitors’ fees or any of the other costs associated with a typical sale).
If you are comfortable going forward, arrangements are made to complete the sale. You hand over your keys in exchange for a deposit of funds in your bank account. This generally takes between seven and 28 days.
Will It Work for You?
This is a decision that only you can make, factoring in all of the relevant variables that we have discussed. For many though, it is an excellent opportunity to separate from a property that is not desirable to you any longer for whatever reason. With cash buyers, houses that may sit on the market for months can be sold in a fraction of the time – and this frees you to make the next move.