It can be tricky to line up a house move, knowing when to press the button for your sale to coincide with your next move. To help, here’s a guide to the timescales you should expect when selling your home. 


1. Choosing and instructing your estate agent

It’s worth reaching out to several agents to find out more about their approach to selling, including understanding the quality of their marketing and to see if you can build a rapport with them. Some agents offer a free instant online property valuation, online sign-up forms and ID Checks to speed things up. Estate agents will also recommend, and arrange introductions to, a solicitor if you need one to carry out the legal work on the sale once an offer has been accepted.


2. Repairs, decoration and dressing

It’s worth taking care of any little repairs or paint touch-ups so that your home looks its best for marketing and viewings. Your estate agent should advise on any improvements worth carrying out prior to selling. If you don’t live in the property it might be worth dressing the property to show prospective buyers how the space could be used with a bit of life thrown in. At Umega estate our in-house maintenance team and 3rd party property stager take care of everything needed during this stage.


3. Home report & Marketing

Your estate agent will organise a Chartered Surveyor to carry out a Home Report inspection, following which they’ll send you a draft Home Report for you to check and approve before they send out the final version. This normally takes 3-4 days. At the same time, your estate agent will organise the various marketing bits and pieces to be produced. The quality of these can vary a lot between agents with some using simple iphone photos and other’s producing impressive visuals through drone footage, aerial photography and 3D tours. When selling a home you’ve got one shot to create the biggest impact with potential buyers so it’s worth taking the time and effort to produce high quality marketing visuals to show your home off at its best. 


4. Going live

It’s time to press go. Your home will be added to the online advertising portals and a For Sale board will be put up. Some estate agents will also send your details out to potential buyers on their database.


5. Viewings

This is when you have to get into reactive mode and your estate agent will receive viewing requests or deal with viewings on your behalf. At Umega, prospective buyers can book viewings of our properties online to avoid having to phone our office. We also recommend Sunday open viewings for some properties to get as many potential buyers round at one time as possible, to avoid disruption.


6. Offers, negotiations and closing date

It’s common for interested parties to ask their solicitor to note interest so they’re kept informed about each home they’re interested in and once an agent has several notes in place they normally set a closing date for anything from 2 days away to 2 weeks away, inviting each Note of Interest to submit their best offer. Some buyers won’t always wait for a closing date and will submit an offer early in the hope that this will be accepted without having to wait for the closing date. Each offer that is received might involve a bit of negotiation on the price, date of entry or any survey the buyer wants to carry out. The average time for a home to go under offer on the ESPC is 16 days. Over the past 3 months our average time to agree a sale was only 10 days


7. Handover to solicitor

 Once an offer has been accepted by your estate agent it’s time to pass over to the solicitor to send out the formal acceptance which they will normally do within a day or two of the offer being informally accepted by the estate agent.


8. Conveyancing

Once the sale is in the hands of the solicitors the pace tends to slow down a bit. A bit of back and fro-ing between solicitors as they work through the due diligence normally coincides with the buyer working with their lender to arrange finance, if required (say 6-8 weeks). If it’s a cash buyer this stage can be shorter (say 4 weeks), with the only hold up being the time taken for solicitors to complete their due diligence and other paperwork.


9. Completion

There’s usually a lot of activity in the final week, including things like lenders wanting a refreshed home report, solicitors asking for additional paperwork or confirmation before they will instruct keys to be sent to your estate agent ready to be picked up by the new owner. Funds are then normally sent over within 2-3 days, with the solicitor paying any invoices including the estate agency fee and any other costs incurred.


End-to-end selling your home can take anything from 8 to 14 weeks based on all of the stages above. UMEGA Letting Agents & Estate Agents is an award winning agent delivering very high quality marketing of your home, supported by an award-winning customer service team. If you’re interested in selling your home through UMEGA just contact our estate agency team on 0131 221 8289 or [email protected].