Tag: Estate agent advice

So you’ve done your online valuation.  Got your finances in place, know what you can afford.  Decluttered and finished off your DIY todo list.  You now think you are ready to sell your home.  All you have to do now, is choose and estate agent.   If you are thinking of selling your home, here are 10 questions to ask your estate agent:

  1. What is you average time for selling a property?
  2. What percentage of the original asking price are you achieving for your sellers?
  3. What percentage of properties do you reduce from the original asking price?
  4. What is your timeframe from agreement of sale to completion?
  5. What are you doing to offer security to any sales agreed?
  6. What do you do differently to other agencies?
  7. What is your marketing strategy?
  8. What is your success rate for selling properties?
  9. How do you ensure all buyers are financially qualified to proceed with a house purchase?
  10. How long is your contract and can you explain the terms of your notice period?



Tag: Estate agent advice

How Long Does it Take to Sell a House?

In 2021 the average time to sell a house in the UK, from offer being agreed to completion is just over 11 weeks, 81 days to be exact.  Here at Harrisons Homes we are agreeing sales within 16 days of going to the market.  So from listing to completion you are looking at 97 days, or 13.9 weeks.

However, it can take longer for homes in poor condition or that are an unusual building. Additional factors, such as the time of year and the “heat” of the market can also affect how long it takes to sell a property. Last year houses took longer to complete due to the backlog of house sales caused by the first lockdown in March and the pressure on conveyancing as a result of the demand caused by the stamp duty holiday.

My House Is Not Selling – What should I Do?

If you’ve identified that your house sale is sticking, here are some suggestions of what you can do to increase your chances of finding a buyer and selling your home.

  • Asking price. Sadly, some agents, who are financially rewarded for the number of houses they put up for sale, rather than the number of houses they sell. can inflate their valuation in a bid to get your business. This can result in a high asking price that puts people off.  Very few people will put in a “cheeky offer” on a house that they believe is overpriced.  Take a look at similar properties (size, location, condition, etc.) that have sold recently in your area.  Then look at those that have been sitting on the market for some time. This is a simple way that you can research prices and should give you a good idea if you’ve priced your home too high.
  • Switch estate agents. Currently houses are selling very quickly.  If your home hasn’t sold within four weeks it’s time to have a serious conversation with your estate agent.  Ask for their advice and suggestions to get your house infront of active buyers who are able to make an offer.  You should only have buyers coming through your door for a viewing that are either chain free, under offer or true cash buyers.  If you aren’t satisfied with how your agent is performing, you can switch.  Shop around and ask friends for recommendations. There are also some helpful estate agent comparison tools online. Try to understand why your current agent isn’t getting results.  Then take your list of expectations to some different agencies to find one that can serve you better.
  • Prepare Your Home for Viewings. Make sure that the property is de-cluttered and clean for viewings.  Consider staging the rooms, for example, placing fresh flowers around your home, lay the table for meals.  Or, with so many people working from home, create a designated home office space.  When it comes to presenting your home for viewings, the little touches really help.
  • Ask for feedback. Asking potential buyers for feedback after viewings can provide valuable insight into why the property isn’t selling.  Consider what they are saying with this feed back. For example, if people are people put off by the messy garden. It is worth spending a little time or money giving it a good tidy.
  • Vet Offers Before Accepting. If you receive multiple offers, consider the bidders’ circumstances and how much they are willing to pay for your property. Do they have an agreement in principle from a mortgage company? Are they in a property chain, or are they a cash buyer? Opt for the buyer who is most likely to see the deal through to completion. Over the one who makes a high offer but is part of a lengthy chain or has yet to secure the finance they need.

Act Today

In a perfect world, the home selling process would be straightforward and quick. You’d list your home for sale, schedule viewings, receive multiple offers, and sell your home fast and above list price. Unfortunately, selling your house isn’t always that simple and your home could end up sitting on the market longer than you anticipated.

If you are concerned about the amount of time that it is taking to sell your house, why not give our team a call on 01795 474848 for some no obligation, no pressure to switch to us, just some honest advice.

Tag: Estate agent advice

The damaged caused when your home doesn’t sell quickly can be costly, both emotionally and financially. In this article we explain the why it’s not great news when your home doesn’t sell quickly. And how to ensure your house sells within four weeks of going onto the market.

Sittingbourne Estate Agents

What a year it has been for the Sittingbourne property market: the Stamp Duty holiday causing a frenzy, the pandemic changing people’s perspectives on what they want from a home, and a constant lack of properties coming onto the market. With buyer demand still high, the prospect of your home not selling fast has probably not crossed your mind, especially when you see homes in your area come on the market one day and sold the next. But what damage is caused when your home doesn’t sell quickly?

The first 4 weeks

As you know, many homes in Sittingbourne, Faversham and Sheppey are selling well within the first four weeks of being placed on the market, but did you know how crucial these first four weeks are?  This is the period when your home is launched by your estate agent, buyers become aware and viewings are abundant.  Your expectations will be high, and your estate agent should be working tirelessly to market your home effectively in a variety of ways. They know that what they do within this first few weeks can impact the speed of your sale.  It’s the optimum time to make things happen.

What happens after four weeks?

After four weeks a property starts to become stale, and you could see enquiries and viewings dwindle. A good agent will be constantly reviewing their marketing and looking for new opportunities to attract potential buyers.  They will also be having an honest conversation with you on why they feel that your property is not appealing to buyers.

But does the fault lie with you or your agent?

what happens when your house doesn't sell within four weeks

A buyer’s perspective

Homebuyers are savvy, they know all the tools to help them find their next home. They will no doubt have alerts on property websites so they are informed as soon as a new property in Swale hits the market.  When they start to look they will be doing their research, and one thing they will always note is how long a property has been on the market.

What would you think if a house was still not under offer after four weeks or more?  Like most people, you will no doubt be wondering what is wrong with the property if it hasn’t been sold yet.  You may decide to view the home, but even before you have walked through the door you will already be in the mindset of making a low offer, because there must not be any real interest.


We can not stress enough how price can have such an effect on the attractiveness of your home to buyers.  Your home, as soon as it is listed, will be compared with other houses within a similar price bracket, and if your home seems overpriced it will be noticed instantly. Of course it is alluring to have an estate agent tell you they can sell your home for a wonderfully high figure.  But is that an actual fact based on their ability with recently sold properties in the area? Could be. Or is it a tactic to try to win your business?

At Harrisons Homes we are not here to list properties, we sell homes. We use our experience in the local property market, understanding which streets are on the up, and those areas that are falling out of favour. When we appraise your home we take so many factors into account. Including condition, presentation, location and up-to-the minute data. We always aim to achieve the highest possible price for your property, and we will not inflate that to win your business.

Overpriced homes will sit on the market longer; you will probably find yourself frustrated when the agent requests you lower the price a few weeks later.  More reductions could follow. The quality of the offers you receive could be a lot lower than you had ever expected. Choose an agent who can back up their figures with their actions – do your research to find the right fit for you and your property.

How to sell your home fast

Presentation – do the work

If you have been browsing property websites in the search for your next home, you will notice those sellers who have put in the work to ensure that their property is looking its best for potential buyers. You will also notice those who haven’t. Often there could be something off-putting.  Such as a cluttered room, an untidy bedroom, a unloved garden, that can put you off going to view.

Unless your house is a project you need to make sure it is presented properly using home staging methods. Ensuring your home is clean and organised is a great start. However, it isn’t just about having an immaculate home but projecting the lifestyle that your home gives.  You only have to watch house programmes, or flick through home magazines to see home staging in action. A loaf and breadknife stylishly placed on the kitchen work surface, a thoughtfully placed throw on a bed with a book at its side; these little touches add warmth and personality to your home.

Having the mindset ‘buyers will see past …’ will never win. They may view your rooms as small due to the amount of stuff inside them. ‘Too much work to do’, could be another view point if the décor is tired, and a couple of odd jobs are spotted.  And these views, and more, are made whilst looking at your property online. Why place your property in a challenging position when with some work, you can attract buyers easily.

Get it right from the start

You need to get everything right when placing your home on the market. The price, the presentation and also your choice of agent. The damaged caused if your home isn’t under offer in the first four weeks is hard to repair. We are often contacted by sellers who have had struggles selling previously, and come to us for a fresh approach. Get it right from the start by calling us on 01795 474848 today.

If you enjoyed this article, you may also find these interesting.

How to reduce the risk of my house sale falling through

Is my house priced correctly?

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Tag: Estate agent advice

“One question we often get asked is “If My Property Is Priced Too High, Why Are People Not Offering Less?”  In this blog we will try to share our thoughts on this and why home owners should always ask” Is my house priced correctly?”

The market is booming, I’m going to try to get a bit extra for my home

In the current market, at first it would seem like a good idea to try for a higher price on the sale of your property.  Interested buyers can offer what they are prepared to pay for your home and this could get you a few extra pounds in your pocket.

With every other news article being about how house prices have increased this year and how people are offering over asking prices anyway, perhaps there has never been a better time to try your luck and list your home for a higher price.  You’ve nothing to lose right?

Unfortunately listing your home for a higher value could end up costing you money in the long run. To get offers (even low offers) you need to have viewings, and to get viewings we need to understand what will get people through the door and to view your home in the first instance.

Buying a home is an emotional thing, the majority of people buy with their heart; but it’s their head that makes the shortlist of properties they are going to view.  They have criteria such as an area, number of bedrooms and most importantly that it’s within budget.

Let’s assume that your home is worth £295,000 to £300,000.  However, as this price range is very competitive with houses often receiving multiple offers going £5K, £10K – or sometimes in excess of £20K over asking price – you decide to list your home for £325,000 in the hope you will attract an offer over £300,000.

Yet, despite being in a competitive market, you find you are getting few viewings and no offers.  Why?

How people select homes they wish to view

People who will pay £300,000 for a house usually start off with a comfortable budget of say £280,000 to £290,000 and will stretch to find the extra for the right property.  They search for all properties from £275,000 to £300,000.  If your home were listed at market value it would shine compared to those properties listed for £275,000.  This would mean it’s very likely to get viewings, and hopefully, in turn, offers. It just takes two different buyers to fall in love with your home who are prepared to offer to start to see the offers increase to asking price, and in some cases beyond.

If you move into the mind-set of a buyer searching £300,000 to £325,000.  Compared to property genuinely worth £325,000 yours might not look so good in relation.  Maybe it is smaller; not in such a good location; hasn’t got the finish etc.  The buyer has skimmed past yours and fallen in love with the bigger, better, shinier house.  They probably had a comfortable budget of £315,000, they could have bought your for less, but they didn’t even consider it.

Understanding feedback

You could ‘test the market’ at a higher figure but understand that no feedback is feedback in itself. Low viewing numbers, mean that buyers are saying they think it’s overpriced.  Or, if you are getting viewings but no offers, this is also an indication that the price is wrong.

Buyers don’t like to say something is overpriced, they will all say the price is fine, but for them, these are the reasons they won’t be making an offer… You get comments such as:

“The third bedroom is too small.”

“The garden is the wrong aspect.”

“Needs too much work.”

and so on.

What does this feedback mean?

If you find you are getting these kinds of comments in your feedback, ask yourself what this really means.  The buyers are basically saying, my ideal home at the top of my budget would have a bigger third bedroom, a southerly aspect garden, a better finish.  They won’t offer lower because their expectations were to fall in love with the perfect home that is right at the top of their budget and you have lost them.

Yet, if you showed the same buyer your home priced in a lower price bracket their expectations are more realistic.  It’s where the compromises come in.  “The third bedroom is a little small, but the garden office makes up for that.”  “We don’t really like sitting in the sun all day, it’s nice the garden has some shade.” “It’s not an immaculate finish, we can put our stamp on it and we will get a bargain.” The same house (your house) can look totally different to the same buyer(s).

Now the buyers have fallen for your home and they will offer to get it.  If you have several buyers wanting it, the offers will increase.  Don’t put some of these buyers off by pricing it over their search criteria.

This applies to any house regardless of its value, and to any buyer regardless of their situation.

I think my house is overpriced, what should I do?

React quickly. In the current market place, it should be no more than two weeks before you adjust your price to save your property appearing stale.  No one will pay full price for a property that’s been hanging around for too long.

Ask “Is my house priced correctly?” Then ask your agent for advice with the new price.  Have the lead marketing photo changed. Where else your property will be marketed other than the portals? Such as social media pages and local groups. Check that your agent is contacting interested potential buyers from their own database.

What if one agent values my home higher than the others?

Beware of estate agents that value your home higher than the others. Remember the question,  Is my house priced correctly? High valuations are given to win listings.  If you choose to use an agent that gives you a high valuation, ask for comparable sold properties in the local area that have sold for that figure.  Ensure they are comparable to your property in terms of size, condition and features.

Only agree to list your home at their higher valuation provided you have a short contract term.  If they are truly confident that they can achieve this price, most agents will have no issue of agreeing to a four week contract or less.  A good agent will get you the maximum the market will pay. Not leave you stranded above that figure where you have no option but to watch the price tumble. Probably to lower than market value as it has lost its ‘new instruction’ shine.

 Is my house priced correctly?

Harrisons pride themselves on getting the best price in the shortest time possible. We have helped thousands of families move home in the Sittingbourne area over the past 35 years. If you are concerned your listing price may be putting off putting an offer on your home or you would like to know more about how we can help to get you moving contact us today 01795 474848.