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Selling Your Home Online? What You Need To Know

Selling your home can be something tempting to try alone. Maybe you don’t want to hire a real estate agent as you need to save money and keep costs down. However you do need to be careful and use a reputable agent or service even if they are online. 

Some internet agents simply list your property online — leaving you to do all the work, from taking photographs, to conducting the viewings and handling negotiations. If you’re in a hurry to sell your property or need to liquidate fast then obviously this doesn’t help much.

The truth is that there are several factors involved when it comes to selling your residential properties. And if selling them by yourself, you might unknowingly ignore important issues. Depending on your level of experience in the real estate industry, you might lack the right knowledge of how things actually work and the best way to approach them. 

Have you ever thought of selling your properties directly to an online buying service? You could end up saving a lot of time and avoid a many of the headaches involved with an online listing agent or traditional agency.

At We Buy Property, we’ll reveal the most important things to consider when deciding to sell your property online and why you should sell your home to a buying service like us. Let’s get started:

Location

Regardless of your current location, an online buying service can help you. You don’t have to rely on a local market purchaser or agent to be in your area, in order to make the sale.

Using a reputable and reliable online buying service that purchases property nationally can be a huge advantage, as they can buy your home directly from you no matter where your based.

With online listings platforms and agents, you still have to wait for someone to show interest in your property listing for that area before they contact you. With an online buying service you can get a valuation and quote to purchase your property within 24 hours.

You’re Already Busy

Selling a residential property is sometimes a full-time job. It isn’t as simple as you may think. Things to consider are the time spent in fielding calls from prospective buyers. Or the time spent to source the platforms where you’ll have to advertise the property. There are also dozens of other essential tasks before you will be able to finalise the sale with a prospective buyer.

You are already busy with your life and your job, so why not eliminate all these extra tasks and just use and online buying service.

At We Buy Property, we can help ease the process and take care of all the details. We aren’t too busy to handle the solicitor fees, valuations and legal checks to help get you a final offer. We Buy Property offers the best possible price for your home without the worry of viewings, chains and long timelines. No need to worry about your position or the condition of the property as we purchase it for cash.

Incredibly, we always work around the clock to ensure that a large percentage of our clients actually turn into qualified sellers and help them complete a successful transaction with us. If you are already finding yourself busy with activities revolving around your job and personal life, you definitely need an online buying service like We Buy Property to purchase your home.

Understanding Contracts

Contracts can be complex and cost you time and money – when dealing with an online agent make sure you know what you’re signing and remember that they want your business, so challenge anything you don’t like and never pay more than you need to. 

No sale, no fee

Some online estate agents will ask you to pay upfront, but some do offer a ‘no sale, no fee’ guarantee – which means you won’t have to pay if the sale falls through. But check the small print first.

Tie-in periods

Lots of estate agents, even the big high street brands, include a tie in period. But if you end up not getting on with them or become unhappy with their service you will want to terminate the contract.  Make sure your contract gives you the flexibility to terminate without incurring a penalty, and go elsewhere if you’re unhappy with your agent.

At We Buy Property, we know everything that comes with contracts and closing and can simplify the whole process, and remove the stress. We are professionals. We know what is meant to be disclosed and are completely transparent and ethical in our whole process with you. 

Selling a property involves signing paperwork. We know the nitty-gritty of contracts and closing and can help keep things smooth and straightforward. Having us to help you navigate through the closing contract signing situation is a significant step towards the successful sale of your home.

Deal With Us Now!

We are We Buy Property! We Offer Quick Property Sales. No Fees. No-Fuss!

Based in London, our team has worked in the property industry for over 50 years. We are proud to offer clients a bespoke service. Whatever the circumstances, our experienced staff will guide you from start to finish, supporting you all the way. Sell your house in days, not months.

We are a cash-rich principle buyer who actively seeks motivated sellers that can transact and complete in a matter of days.  Our house buying service caters for all types of clientele and is designed to remove the hassle and stress associated with managing a property.

We can guarantee a quick sale that can be completed in a matter of days instead of weeks. If you think this might be of interest to you, visit our website and enter your postcode for a free no-obligation cash offer.

Are bridging loans worth it?

Bridging loans are used in a number of circumstances, particularly by property investors wanting to purchase for buy-to-let or development purposes, purchasing a distressed sale or via auction. They might also be used by people who don’t want to miss out on their dream home but haven’t sold their own house yet and sometimes in divorce settlements.

In the simplest form, bridging loans are used to finance the gap between buying a new home whilst waiting for your existing home to sell so you can release the equity.

As an example, let’s say you want to buy a property for £600,000, you plan to have a £200,000 deposit and a £400,000 mortgage. However, you currently only have £60,000 in cash and need your existing property to sell in order to free up the rest of the deposit. However, the sale of your home has just fallen through and you don’t want to risk losing your dream home which you have already paid various fees on such as surveys etc. So, you take out a bridging loan for £140,000 to ‘bridge the gap’ and repay it once your property sells.

Seems likely a fairly simple solution, right? Before you make your mind up, let’s look at bridging loans in a little more detail.

There are two types of bridging loans.  The first is an open bridge loan which has no set end date, meaning it can be repaid when the funds become available, although typically within 6 to 12 months. The other is a closed bridge loan which is typically used when you know exactly when you will have the funds available to repay – these are normally used for shorter term loans of a few weeks or months.

However, it is important to know that bridging loans can be quite costly, particularly open bridge loans due to their flexibility, so you need to factor this into your calculations and your plan to repay. As an example, annual rates on bridging loans can be more than 10% and can often have fees attached to the terms such as admin, legal and even exit fees.

The pros are obviously that they can provide a great short-term source of finance to help with a property purchase and in many cases can be repaid early without penalty.

The cons are that, if you are borrowing over a longer period, then the interest charges are likely to be much higher than a standard mortgage and if you don’t keep up with payments, your home is at risk.

You need to be mindful that having another mortgage size debt is a big financial burden. Unless you know when your home sale is going to go through, it could leave you significantly out of pocket and therefore is not always the best way of beating property-chain problems. In a property boom, like now, where buyer demand is high, the risk is lower as the chances are your property will sell sooner rather than later.  However, if the market suddenly slackens off, as it very easily could as the economic impact of the pandemic becomes reality, then buyers should take a cautious approach.

If you have been considering a bridging loan, we would advise that you consider all alternatives as well, before putting yourself in greater debt.

Have you considered selling your home to a cash buyer like WeBuyProperty? If you need to have sold your property by a certain date for any reason, feel free to contact us for a no-obligation chat about how we could help you achieve this and save you having to take out a loan.
Phone number: 0207 449 9797
Email: info@webuyproperty.com

Short-term holiday lets – boom or bust post pandemic?

 

Finally, lockdown as started to ease (just slightly), and the sun has poked its head out (temporarily). Unlike the headlines of last year, the UK is receiving praise thanks to its successful vaccine rollout and it seems, for once, we are on a positive trajectory. As we head into the Easter weekend there is definitely a sense of optimism in the air for the first time in months.

Over the last year we have talked about a number of property related topics and some in relation to what impact the pandemic has had on the market.  I think what is really interesting, as mentioned last week, is that we have lost any kind of predictability when it comes to the property market and in truth, no one really knows what is round the corner.

One side of property investment we haven’t spoken about before is short-term holiday lets. We know that people who invested in property, purely for the purposes of using it to let on a short-term basis in the self-catering holiday sector, have experienced some extreme peaks and troughs over the last year.

From being completely shut down one minute, to being inundated with enquiries the next, only the lucky few who managed to make significant gains in summer 2020 have been able to recoup some of their losses. Others have turned to the private rented sector for longer-term security. Although that’s another topic altogether.

One positive for owners that currently pay business rates on their holiday let, is that there is a business rates relief scheme available, which offers a 12-month payment holiday for 2020/2021 for all retail, hospitality and leisure businesses in England.

 

But today is 1st April, and here we are again. The beginning of the peak season for short-term holiday-lets and unable to open until May.  By that time we should have a clearer idea whether international travel will or won’t be permitted this summer, so could that change everything? Whilst it could sway some people to ditch the staycation and jet off to sunnier climes, I think most holiday-let owners can be confident that there will be enough demand this summer not to worry. Prices on sites like Airbnb have reached astronomical levels over the last few months, as Brits scramble to secure something for the summer holidays.

But let’s fast-forward one maybe even two years. After being advised to stay at home and remain in sunny old Blighty, are the masses going to be itching to get away and turn their backs on the Great British holiday? Or will there be a renewed love for our home country, it’s beautiful seaside villages, countryside and National Parks?

I think, much like the residential sales market, where buyer criteria has shifted from, for instance, city bolthole to country escape, the short-term rental market will do much the same. People’s priorities and desires have changed and a getaway for the weekend to the coast will be even more appealing.   I think since people will still be wary for some time to come about spending time in crowded cities, those are the property owners that may question the sustainability of their investment choice.

However, the key is being creative, and adapting to the new world in order to appeal to a new market. For example, a short-term let in a city may appeal to someone who has now moved out of the city because they no-longer need to be there 5 days a week but still needs to occasionally frequent for meetings etc. Before you may have marketed nearby tourist hot-spots, restaurants and bars, but now, perhaps highlighting fast wi-fi, close proximity to travel routes and creating a nice workspace could help appeal to a different market.

Or perhaps you have decided that the short-let market is no longer for you and you are looking for a quick sale?  WeBuyProperty can offer you a no obligation valuation and are able to transact within a matter of weeks.

Contacts us on 0207 449 9797 or Email info@webuyproperty.com

Why isn’t my property selling in a seller’s market?

You will have seen the many many reports that despite our economic woes, the thriving property market is bucking the trend with booming demand and record house prices.

So why, in this seemingly perfect market for sellers, is your property not selling? As we mentioned in our blog last week, if your property has been sitting on the market for a couple of months now with little or no interest, the first thing you need to do is get to the root cause of the problem. It could be simpler than you think.

Changes you can make

Price

The classic supply and demand conditions are at play in a seller’s market i.e. not enough supply to meet growing demand. This means that sellers can usually ask more for their home. However, sometimes agents and homeowners can be overconfident in a seller’s market and overlook some of the aspects of the house which may be less appealing to prospective buyers. These should still be taken into account when reaching the best asking price, and the price should reflect what similar properties on the market are selling for. If you push it too far then you risk missing out on prospective buyers.  You also risk your property sitting on the market for longer, which can also strangely deter buyers who assume something must be wrong with it.

Don’t be tempted to instruct the agent that promises you the highest price for your property. Instruct the agent that can demonstrate success at selling properties similar to yours, in your area, and that you believe will offer the best service.

 Curb appeal

In a seller’s market it can be tempting to just list your property and see what happens rather than spend time and money making improvements that you won’t benefit from. This is the wrong approach. Remember, photos on property portals are your shop window and your house is the item you are selling. How do you make it stand out from all the other houses on there? This does not have to involve vast expensive home improvements.  Trimming bushes, painting the front door or fences, fixing broken drainpipes and moving cars and vans out of the way when the pictures are being taken can make a big difference to that all important first impression. Consider what will be important to you when you look for your next home.

Internal presentation

Some people like to live in very minimalist surrounds with nothing on their surfaces and just a few select pieces of furniture. Others prefer to be surrounded by all their worldly goods. There is nothing wrong with either, but when it comes to selling a house, you have to strike a balance which appeals to the masses. You would be surprised how many buyers struggle to visualise anything but what is put in front of them. On the whole, having a tidy up, a de-clutter and a good spring clean can make all the  difference.

Market to today’s buyer

Remember to adapt and/or market your property to today’s buyer.  Over the last year, having a home office with good Wi-Fi and garden space has become more important than ever before. You can’t make rooms that don’t exist, but you can repurpose rooms you have, or areas of a room, to demonstrate where a home office may go and ask the agents to point this out to prospective buyers based on their criteria.As we head into spring, get in the garden, pull up those weeds, cut the lawn, plant a few colourful flowers and jet-wash the patio to bring life back to your garden.

 

Changes you can’t make

 Other people’s property criteria
As well as knowing all the best bits about your property, it is equally important to recognise and accept some of things which might be less appealing to some buyers.  Unfortunately, these might be things which you can’t change, such as the location of the property, the number of bedrooms, the direction the garden faces, a shared driveway or an awkward layout. All buyers have a list of things they are looking for and a list of things they are not willing to compromise on and you cannot control what other people are looking for. However, for the right price, most sellers will find a buyer that can compromise on aspects they are not so keen on, in favour of the ones they are.

Problems with the property

One of the biggest issues sellers have is if there is something fundamentally wrong with the property. For example, there is Japanese knotweed in the garden, the property has subsidence, is at risk of flooding, or has damp. Perhaps it has a short lease, unsafe cladding or structural issues from past building work.

Whilst you might be tempted to keep quiet about any issues your property has, in the long run it is best to be honest as you will only waste more of your own time and other people’s. Estate agents also have an obligation to disclose any material information which may influence a buyer’s decision to purchase, so you must tell them everything you know when instructing them.

If you are in this position and struggling to sell your property, no matter what the reason, a property buying service like WeBuyProperty might be the best route to a guaranteed sale.
We will listen to where you are in the selling process, understand any challenges you have faced and provide a no-obligation valuation based on the information you provide. There will also be no estate agent fees to pay and we can transact in a matter of week or in a timeframe to suit you.

Should you wish to keep your property on the open market, we hope that some of the tips in this blog are useful for you and wish you the best of luck with your house move.

Call: 0207 449 9797
Email: info@webuyproperty.com

Spring has Sprung – is now the best time to sell

Traditionally, as soon as the daffodils peep through and the days start to draw out, that is the peak time to put your house on the market. As well as looking more attractive on a bright sunny day with life returning to gardens, and the Easter break giving homeowners the chance to do some DIY touch ups, it means movers can be in their new abode by summer.  For those with children, is also enables them to be settled in their new home before the start of the academic year in September.

The second most popular time is usually autumn. With summer holidays over and children back at school, September and October gives homeowners a chance to be sold and moved into their new home by Christmas.

However, that is a rough rule of thumb and one that has all but gone out of the window since the last 12 months has ripped up the rule book in pretty much all areas of life.

 

Moving home has been, and always will be, predominately dictated by a person’s objectives.  Not only has activity in the housing market over the last year been largely influenced by various lockdowns and the Stamp Duty holiday, but also by peoples’ changing objectives.  I believe this is something which will influence the property market for some time to come, making it really difficult to predict the usual peaks and troughs of the market.

For example, some people no longer feel they need to be near a city as their employer will allow them to continue working from home. These people might be more inclined to move to the countryside. Others are having to relocate for work because their existing employment sector has been ravished by the pandemic. Being lockdown has encouraged some to realise they would like to live closer to family, whilst others living in flats have an increased desire for outdoor space or a dedicated area to work. The last year has given everyone more time to reflect on their current circumstances.  We know of more retirees wishing to downsize because they have realised their current home is unmanageable. Some people will have decided to expand their family while others may sadly have decided to separate. All of these changing life choices impact the property market.

Overall, activity in the property market has remained buoyant during the first quarter of this year, with the exception of some regional variants, as demand continues to outstrip supply. But reading the market and predicting what is going to happen next is nearly impossible. You can read one report which will say we are heading for a house price crash, only to read the next day that experts believe that house prices will steadily increase over the next 12 to 18 months.

 

So, if you want to know the best time to sell, the honest answer at the moment is there isn’t one and my best advice is to make sure you are moving for the right reasons.  These are likely to be driven by necessity and lifestyle rather than investment.

If you are in a position where you need to move for whatever reason and have had your property on the market for some time without receiving many viewings or offers, you might wish to consider reasons why you are struggling to sell. In the current sellers’ market, if you have the right ingredients it shouldn’t be too challenging. Look out for our blog later this week on ‘why isn’t my property selling’. You may also want to keep in mind that the average time for an agreed sale to complete has currently extended from 90 days to 110-115 days according to Zoopla, with some taking even longer. So if you are in a rush and haven’t sold yet, you may need to factor this in.

WeBuyProperty is here to provide a no obligation quote to purchase your property for cash and transact within a matter of days leaving you free to move to wherever and whenever you wish. If you are struggling to sell and would like to discuss your options with us, please do get in contact by calling 0207 449 9797 or email info@webuyproperty.com.

Selling a property to pay for care

It’s common knowledge that, as an aging population, more and more people are becoming reliant on care homes later in life. The biggest issue with this, is that the cost of social care is rarely free and a person’s ability to pay for care is worked out through a means test.

Under a means test run by councils in England, if a person needs to go into permanent care, anyone with savings and property worth more than £23,250 must pay their care home bills. Once that threshold is reached, councils pay a share of the bills until a resident’s assets are down to £14,250.
After someone’s savings have dwindled to this figure, the council will pay care home fees, but those who still own a property must sell it to meet the bills. The only caveat to this is if the property is still occupied by:

  • a partner or former partner
  • an estranged or divorced partner IF they are also a lone parent
  • a relative who is aged 60 or over
  • a relative who is disabled
  • a child of the person going into care is aged under 18

Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s election pledge was that ‘Nobody should sell their home to pay for the cost of that care.’ However, up to now there has been no count of how many people have sold their homes to pay for care, therefore, Mr Johnson has no way of knowing the potential cost of his pledge. It is estimated that between 40,000 and 70,000 people per year sell their home to pay for care. Now with billions of pounds of national debt following the Pandemic, it is hard to see that this is a pledge the Tory’s will be able to uphold.

Some people, if eligible, are able to enter into a ‘deferred payment agreement’ (DPA) with the local council. This is where the council makes a legal agreement to provide financial support for a person’s care costs, on the condition they will be repaid from the property at a later date. This usually involves the council placing a legal charge on your property with the Land Registry to secure repayment.

A DPA could last until the person passes away, after which the costs will be paid from their estate, or could be a temporary arrangement to give the person or their family time to sell the home when they choose to do so.

The decision to sell a family home, or a property belonging to a family member, is never an easy one, particularly if the decision has been forced through financial necessity. We have worked with many families in this position who do not want the heartache of putting the property on the open market and having to conduct viewings or deal with agents and solicitors.

If you are facing the difficult decision of having to sell your home, or someone else’s, to pay for care, and would like to speak confidentially and without obligation about the possibility of a quick property sale for cash, WeBuyProperty  will be happy to discuss this with you and answer any questions you may have.

Phone number: 0207 449 9797
Email:  info@webuyproperty.com

Stamp Duty holiday extended – but is it just kicking the can down the street?

In this week’s Spring Budget, Rishi Sunak extended the Stamp Duty holiday (which from July 2020, suspended the tax on the first £500,000 of all property purchases in England). The holiday was due to end on 31 March but will now continue for a further three months until 30 June.  After that date, the starting rate of Stamp Duty will fall to £250,000 until 30 September, thereafter, returning to £125,000 – the level it was before the holiday.

Whilst this extension will of course be welcomed by those who have been frantically trying to get their sale/purchase over the line, my concern is that extending the holiday to everyone, not just those already in the process, simply kicks the can down the street for the problems to ensue in July.

There are several reasons I think the extension in its current format could be problematic:

Transaction Volumes

Although grateful for the surge in business, the current volume of transactions has left many in the sector, such as conveyancers and solicitors, at breaking point. Many are working at home without their usual support structure and this, coupled with high volumes of work, means the process is taking much longer.
The three-month extension may still not provide enough time for many of the more recent property deals to be completed, leaving these buyers and seller in the same position they faced at the end of March – having to pay Stamp Duty they may not have accounted for or finding their buyer pulls out.

Applicable to all

Similarly, by opening the extension to everyone, rather than making it only applicable to transactions which had already started, there is likely to be a further stampede of property buyers entering the ‘race’. In fact, Rightmove reported an immediate spike in activity on Budget Day following the chancellor Rishi Sunak’s announcement – it recorded its busiest day ever. The problems we were about to experience at the end of March are now just stored up for the end of June, and although the Chancellor has attempted to manage this with the tapering system until September, the property industry is facing some level of chaos over the summer.

House Prices

The property market re-opened in full force before the Stamp Duty holiday was introduced, driven by pent up demand from the first national lockdown and following Brexit. Adding the Stamp Duty holiday, whilst a welcome boost for many, has created an artificial bubble where house prices in many areas have increased to unsustainable levels (an average of 8.5% according to ONS).

This means that first time buyers are having to save more to come up with a deposit, when things were already difficult enough for them to get on the property ladder. Yes, it could be argued that the new Government-backed 95% mortgage loans, also announced in the Budget, will support FTBs, but on an inflated market that’s a risky place to be.

When the Stamp Duty holiday ends, there is a real risk that property prices may well go down meaning those who bought during this period may find they have overpaid, potentially negating any saving they made from not paying stamp duty.

The holiday has created a buoyant market and banks are currently more relaxed about lending.  However, it is concerning that if unemployment starts to rise, or interest rates are pushed up in the future, some people could find they have stretched themselves too far and be stuck with a property they cannot sell for the same price they paid for it.

Final thoughts

It is impossible to know what will happen over the next 12 months and of course, the economy could start to bounce back, and the property market may simply adjust to more normal level of tractions.

The benefit to those who are looking for a quick sale is that property prices are high.  Therefore, any below market valuation offered now is greater than it would have been a year ago, enabling sellers to move quickly and for the best price.

If you need to have sold your property by a certain date for any reason, feel free to contact us for a no-obligation chat about how we could help you achieve this.

Phone number: 0207 449 9797
Email: info@webuyproperty.com

 

What will the Spring Budget mean for the property market?

The roadmap out of lockdown laid out by Boris Johnson earlier this week has provided some hope and optimism, but this must obviously be met with caution as we know all too well that everything is subject to change.

In the midst of this, on 3rd March the Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, will deliver his Spring Budget and is facing an almost impossible task.  He must continue to support those impacted by the pandemic, whilst trying to start reclaiming the national debt and encourage consumer spending!

As we have said before, the property market has not only been fortunate enough to continue operating throughout much of the pandemic, but it was also given a significant boost in July with the announcement of the Stamp Duty holiday on properties up to the value of £500,000.

 

Whilst this has been extremely positive for thousands of people, with many calling on the Government to extend the stamp duty holiday, personally I feel the quicker the Chancellor stops it the better.  The Stamp Duty holiday combined with continuous furlough is creating a false sense of security and delaying the inevitable collapse in the lower and middle housing market. Once furlough ends and the unavoidable increase in unemployment starts to bite, we are going to more people struggling to meet their mortgage payments. This will lead to a catastrophic housing slump.

Whilst delaying until June would help more of those existing transactions over the line, without scrapping Stamp Duty up to £500,000 indefinitely, it is still likely the brakes on the housing market will start to be applied.

However, for many, Stamp Duty should not be of top priority and a key focus should be further support for victims of unsafe cladding. The Government recently announced a further £3.5 billion towards the cladding scandal but critics say the issue will require far more to remove and repair all of the buildings affected by unsafe cladding.

 

In relation to landlords, popularity in buy-to-let has waned over the last few years since the Government introduced a 3 per cent surcharge on Stamp Duty, scrapped higher-rate tax relief and reduced “wear and tear” allowance. Now with tenants looking for more space and fleeing city centre locations, coupled with the possibility that Rishi Sunak could increase capital gains tax (CGT) next week, more landlords are considering exiting the market.

Currently, higher or additional rate taxpayers pay 28 per cent on gains when selling an investment property, while basic rate taxpayers have to pay 18 per cent. If these are increased in line with income tax, higher or additional rate taxpayers would pay 40 or 45 per cent CGT respectively, while basic-rate taxpayers will pay 20 per cent.

There is speculation that the Chancellor’s initial focus will be on COVID-19 recovery and therefore it’s possible that the property market may escape any major raids, but it is inevitable that the debts must be repaid somehow, someway, so it is only a matter of time.

Get A Quote Now

If you are looking to sell your home or an investment property quickly, WeBuyProperty will be happy to have an informal chat and offer a no-obligation valuation on your property for a quick sale.

Phone number: 0207 449 9797
Email: info@webuyproperty.com

Is London Losing its Lust?

There is no denying that the pandemic has been catastrophic for millions of people.  However, for better or for worse, it has also reshaped the way many of us live our lives, which I believe could have a lasting effect not only on individuals and businesses, but also towns and cities.

The most obvious example of this, is of course London. For the first time in decades, London’s population is falling and demand for boltholes in the countryside are on the rise. Overseas students have stayed away and many foreign-born residents have returned to their home countries, either due to job-losses or to spend lockdown with their families rather than be alone.  As the pandemic and its subsequent lockdowns have dragged on, many tenants are not renewing their tenancies so that they can move further out of the city and live somewhere with more space, both indoors and outdoors.

In terms of the lettings market, this diminishing demand, particularly for apartments, has seen rental prices plummet.  According to Zoopla, reductions of more than 25% are not uncommon across central London, rents have fallen by 15 per cent in the City and 10.2 per cent in Kensington & Chelsea.

Despite London house prices having grown since the first lockdown ended, it is the outer boroughs that have been of greatest appeal, as more people look to move away from the inner-city in search of space. House prices have been bolstered by the government’s stamp duty holiday, and as the 31 March deadline draws near, this is suddenly changing the sentiment of the market. Sold prices across prime central London Postcodes have actually fallen 10 per cent since the start of the pandemic.  Mayfair and St James’s were the worst hit followed by Kensington’s W8 postcode.

In December, London property prices suffered their biggest fall since the market re-opened in May. The average cost of a home in the capital dropped 1.1 per cent in the month making London the only region in the country to record a fall. That dragged the annual rate of increase down from seven per cent in November to just 3.5 per cent in December, the lowest in the UK.

There is, of course, the possibility that with the vaccine rollout underway and case numbers dropping daily, that once lockdown is released the Capital will return to its previous vibrant and bustling way of life. Personally, taking into consideration economic conditions, unemployment levels and a new found appreciation for a slower way of life, I believe we are more likely to see a longer-term reduction in demand for both sales and rental properties in London.

Get A Quote Now

If you have a property in London and are looking to sell quickly for whatever reason, WeBuyProperty would be happy to give you a no-obligation cash-sale valuation. We can complete in a matter of weeks.

Contact us on:
Phone: 0207 449 9797    Email: info@webuyproperty.com

Selling a Property under Probate

The loss of a loved one is a traumatic time for anyone and whilst trying to come to terms with such a loss, being faced with a barrage of legal and financial administration only adds to the distress.

When someone passes away their estate, which includes their own home, any other properties they may own, money, investments and other assets like cars, must be disposed of in accordance with the law and their will, if they have made one.

Applying for the legal right to deal with someone’s property, money and possessions (their ‘estate’) is called ‘applying for probate’. Once a grant of probate is made the deceased person’s property can be transferred to their beneficiaries or sold.

Unfortunately, selling a probate property is not always straight forward and can take longer than a normal sale. Granting probate can take around 12-14 weeks (but much longer in more complex cases) and you cannot legally sell a house while it is under probate.  Then there is also the average time it takes to sell a property, which at the moment is around 5 months.

The difficulty for some people is they have to pay out fees like Inheritance Tax and probate fees before they can obtain probate.  This can sometimes be problematic, because even though the beneficiary can claim those cost from the estate later, it involves having enough money to pay these fees upfront.

If you decide to sell the probate property through an estate agent on the market, you can market the property, conduct viewings and agree a sale with a buyer but you cannot exchange contracts or complete until probate is granted.  However, you will need to inform the agent that it is a probate property so that they can inform buyers that they will not be able to complete until probate is granted. This can be off-putting for some buyers if they need to move quickly or are involved in a chain as it holds the process up and is often why people wait until probate is granted.

If you find it too distressing having people come to view the home of your loved one, or perhaps you cannot face the drawn-out process and need the money quickly in order to pay off debts etc. you may want to consider selling the property directly to a cash buyer.

WeBuyProperty has vast experience in buying probate properties and can guarantee the transaction is handled efficiently, sensitively and hassle free. We offer a fixed cash price and can complete as soon as probate is granted. We’re happy to guide you through the process, giving advice about securing the property, informing the insurance company and local authority, and will take away as much of the administration hassle as we possibly can.

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To discuss your options and find out more about how the process works, feel free to contact us:
Phone: 0207 449 9797    Email: info@webuyproperty.com

The time it takes for property transactions to complete has nearly doubled

In comparison to most industries during the pandemic, the property market welcomed some buoyant activity in 2020. Despite transactions of residential properties and property prices temporarily falling in April 2020 following the national lockdown, the market soon saw a resurgence when restrictions were eased.  Both transactions and price growth rose considerably in the latter half of 2020, reflecting pent-up demand and a response to the temporary Stamp Duty Holiday introduced in July 2020.  According to Zoopla, demand in 2020 was 40% higher than in 2019.

You would think this would be all positive news for buyers and sellers, and in the most part it is.  Sellers have benefited from achieving a higher price for their property than they might have a year ago, and many buyers feel they have benefited from the Stamp Duty holiday. However, for those who were hoping for a quick completion, perhaps they had committed to moving by a certain timeframe, are starting a new job, or have chosen to relocate, the story is not so plain sailing.

Thanks to the pandemic, property sales are taking nearly twice the time to complete.  Prior to the pandemic, property sales would go through on average between three and four months. Now, they are currently taking between five and six months, sometimes longer!

There are a number of factors which are contributing to these delays. Firstly, the uplift in transactions means there is a bottleneck in the conveyancing process.  Councils are struggling to cope with the level of property searches being requested and conveyances are struggling to keep up with the increased workload. In addition, mortgages are also taking longer to agree.

In some cases, buyers are finding they have to reapply for searches and mortgage offers due to the length of time the buying process is taking.

We have had instances where sellers have contacted us because they thought they would have completed by now and are not much further along in the process than when they agreed the offer on their property. For those movers who are not in any particular rush, it’s not a problem, but some people have made plans and commitments that are hanging in the balance.

At this point, with no guarantee that the Stamp Duty holiday is going to extended or tapered, buyers should only make offers on the understanding that they will not benefit from the Stamp Duty Holiday. However, vendors that have found keen buyers who can only afford to move if they can complete before the 31st March, could consider a quick sale option.  WeBuyProperty will be happy to have an informal chat about your options and offer you a no-obligation quote for a quick sale.

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Phone number: 0207 449 9797
Email: info@webuyproperty.com