Moving house is taking longer than ever. Reports now say it takes on average 133 days from purchase to completion to buy a house – and 157 days to sell one. That’s up 60 per cent on ten years ago and the longest wait times on record.
Much as Covid did admittedly add its delays, things still don’t seem to be anywhere near back to ‘normal’. Local authority searches are taking an age, solicitors are facing a huge backlog – it doesn’t seem like it will get better any time soon.
Once you’ve put an offer in, you just want to get moving – it’s human nature. Plus, you might need to get things going at a bit of a quicker pace to ensure your mortgage offer is still valid. As a Yorkshire removals company, we recommend you get in touch with us to start discussing your removals needs once you know where you’re moving to and from. But it can be some time from that point until you actually get a moving date (don’t worry – it’s still worth contacting us nice and early for removal prices and details – we can get everything lined up and ready to go once you know when it’s happening).
So, what can you do to help ensure a speedier house move? Here are some top tips:
- Decide on your suppliers in plenty of time – that goes for mortgage brokers/lenders, solicitors, surveyors, removals companies and so on. In terms of solicitors, if you’re selling a property, appoint them in plenty of time so they can begin their due diligence immediately and look for any potential issues with your sale which may need dealing with. Forewarned is forearmed.
- Complete documentation as soon as you receive it – some of the documents will be lengthy and it will be tempting to put them aside until you have more time. But don’t delay. Get filling in the ‘fixtures and fittings’ list, even if it seems painfully detailed!
- Get paperwork in line – if you’ve had building work done, make sure you have all the necessary paperwork around planning regulations and consent so it doesn’t cause delays. That can include conservatories, porches, loft conversions, garage conversions – even decking or driveways. Remember that internal work such as new windows, cavity wall insulation, electrical work or a new boiler will also require the necessary certificates (e.g. FENSA/Gas Safe). It’s worth looking back a good couple of decades if your house is old enough – if you haven’t lived there all that time, you should have the details from when you purchased via your own conveyancer.
- Be open and honest – so many delays are caused by people unwilling to accept or discuss any issues or by misunderstandings like someone claiming to be a cash buyer, when they’re dependent on a mortgage or another house sale which hasn’t yet exchanged. That’s obviously not necessarily a problem, but don’t create ill-feeling or wariness by not being open.
- Be realistic and flexible – many properties tend to have something which needs sorting, especially older ones. But be realistic about what it’s reasonable to ask the sellers to sort and what you want to negotiate about. Things like that can cause stressful delays and back people into corners where chains break. Take professional advice.
- Talk about preferred dates with other parties in the chain – but again be realistic. Things are taking longer across the board and insisting everyone has to complete in a certain time frame or you’re pulling out won’t help anyone – least of all you.
If things are taking longer than you might like, it does at least give you more time to get your stuff packed up and your clutter disposed of. If you’re looking for document disposal, storage units in Leeds or home shredding companies, we can also be of assistance.