Phew! This year’s property market, thus far, has been insane; however, the housing market is beginning to revert back to a ‘standard’ market from the hyper-busy market we’ve been experiencing throughout the course of 2022 so far.
With house prices rising at record speed since the pandemic began, the market has been at an all-time high with difficulties meeting buyer demand (in other words, too many buyers and not enough properties for sale!). Now the market is beginning to slow.
According to Rightmove, it is now expected that house price growth will slow to 7% for the rest of 2022, down from the 9.2% growth experienced thus far. For sellers, this means that there will be more sensitivity around price and more effort will need to be made to ensure the best possible price is achieved.
Here’s our top tips on making a price-sensitive market work to your advantage:
Set the right asking price
In a buyer-lead market, where there are less new properties being listed, many estate agents may overvalue properties to try and win new business. It’s very easy to go with the agent who values your property the highest, but, more often than not, listing your property at higher than true market value can lead to longer time on the market and a tiresome wait for the right buyer. You may end up being encouraged to continually drop the price which leads buyers to believe they can bargain further.
Should you be successful in finding a buyer at above market value, it can be incredibly frustrating when a Surveyor or Mortgage Valuer down-values the property. This can often mean a loss of the sale – yes, that’s right, you have to start the process all over again.
It’s wise to choose an agent that uses indisputable, comparable evidence to support their valuation of your property in the first instance; rather than waste months being annoyed and disheartened.
When listing your property with an estate agent it’s imperative that it’s launched correctly. First impressions count. This is particularly true when selling a property as the initial 4 weeks of marketing are the most crucial to it’s success (another reason to ensure your property is priced correctly).
Because of the importance on this initial period, when putting your property on the market it’s always wise to be mindful of your personal circumstances at the time. If you’re planning on going on holiday for 2 weeks, for example, and can’t give your estate agent access to the property for viewings while you’re away, it’s probably best to wait until you’re home.
Ensure that you are 100% happy with the photographs, videos and descriptions of your property before it goes live; and, to save time later, make sure that your estate agent understands what is important to you and what your boundaries are. For example, do they need to call you before each viewing or can they book as many as needed? Communication is key when putting your property on the market.
This goes without saying: How you market your property can be the difference between selling your home within 24 hours or waiting 4 months before receiving an offer. Make sure you have a pro-active team working for you who know their buyer’s needs and will call them before it even hits Rightmove, because that’s the best form of marketing you can get.
When signing up with an estate agency, it’s important to know where and how your property will be marketed too. There are key digital platforms such as property portals, social media channels, email marketing and so on…and various ways in which your property could be showcased, such as 360 virtual tours, video and photography.
Now what you can do: it’s important to make sure your home looks at its best for any media capture, as well as for viewings. It’s not ideal leaving clutter on the sides or dirty laundry on the floor! Your home needs to be as clean and depersonalised as possible in order for potential buyers to envision how they would make it their own home. You can look for support from a home staging specialist if you want to.
Sims Williams also highly recommended having a ‘for sale’ board erected outside the property. One of the cheapest forms of marketing, yet one of the most effective. A board incites discussion and ‘spreads the word’ locally, whilst also makes it obvious to any out-of-area visitors that your home is for sale.
Sims Williams are independent estate agents in Chichester, Bognor Regis, Arundel and the Six Villages. For advice on achieving the best possible price for your property in a timescale that works for you, book an appraisal with your local branch.