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The market is booming, prices are rising, there's a stamp duty holiday and buyers are out in droves: could it be any more of a seller's market?


And it's true: we are achieving record prices for property; multiple offers have become the norm and, for many sellers, their home is only available for a matter of days before they receive an offer that is not only acceptable, but more than they dreamed possible.


But while there is plenty to celebrate for homeowners during this bonanza, a darker side of estate agency has unfortunately come to the fore: overvaluing. While it’s nothing particularly new, the practice has been historically limited to a small number of estate agents. But now it’s become rife and causes untold heartache and stress for sellers, with results that can be seen in the high percentage of properties that are not selling (even with the favourable conditions of today): 70% of UK homes put on the market in the last month have not sold.


So let's take a look at why overvaluing happens, why it's increasing, the problems it causes and the true path to getting the best price. Having the tools to spot an overvaluation and knowing how to deal with it can help you minimise the damage to your move.

GOLDEN OPPORTUNITY: OPPORTUNITIES FOR SELLING THIS AUTUMN With a unique set of circumstances and incentives, there has never been an autumn like 2020 with so many opportunities and advantages for selling your home. From the pent-up demand unleashed after lockdown, to the Stamp Duty Holiday announced in July, to the working-from-home phenomenon freeing up more people to view property in the week, it’s very unlikely that such a seasonal combination will ever exist again, which makes it an excellent time to put your plans for moving into action. So let's take a look at how you can make the most of an unusually auspicious autumn: one that could have you moving home before Christmas and achieving an excellent price in very special times.



You don’t even need to be contemplating a move to think about making the most of your home. Upgrading your surroundings for maximum comfort; opening the door to a place that fills you with joy; adding value for when you come to sell, rent, or refinance: these are all meaningful and valuable considerations for you and your future.


Perhaps you’ve just bought a property and have taken on a real fixer-upper. Maybe you need more bedrooms, a bigger kitchen or another extra space, but don’t want to move away. Or you could simply have been where you are for a while and want to repurpose, remodel or renovate.


Wherever you’re at, this week’s blog is all about exploring your options, not only for your homelife today, but also for an insight into the minds of property buyers. So let’s take a look at the qualities they’re looking for, and, crucially, what they’ll pay extra for.


How to sell quickly and get the best price


Countless surveys show that the priorities of most people selling a property are getting the best price, and finding a buyer fast. Nobody wants to sit on the market for months, particularly with no viewings at all, but neither being told that no-one likes their home.


In case you’re thinking that selling fast means selling low, it's usually the opposite. The first month when your property is for sale is the time you make the biggest splash: as a new listing on the block, you get extra promotion by the property portals for the first two weeks that your home is live, while buyers will act with extra enthusiasm for a property that’s fresh.


It's also far easier to achieve a higher price on a home that hasn’t gone stale. With so much information available to buyers around how long a property has been on the market and whether the price has been reduced one or more times, it's easy for someone to use the data to negotiate downwards. But when your property is new to the market, the odds are weighed in your favour.


So there are many positives to finding a buyer while your home is truly hot property, and we like to call them the FIVE Ps: price, photography, presentation, profile and passion. Here’s how to make the most of them.


How to choose a buy-to-let property


What kind of property makes a good rental investment? Is it better to buy an old or new home? What sort of location will attract the tenants you want? And what should you look out for to avoid buying into hassle? These questions and more are answered in this week's blog to help you identify the right kind of property to begin or expand your portfolio


While there's probably a person for any property if the price is right, being a landlord is about getting the highest, rather than lowest, return. So when you're choosing a buy-to-let property, your priorities should be regular and continued occupation combined with ease of finding tenants, which means anything too specialist, no matter how lovely, might prove to be hard work.


Staying focused on properties that will work as a business is the way to make your landlord life as easy and profitable as possible.

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