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Top 10 features that sell your home fast for more cash

Good strong broadband connection, double glazing and central heating are ‘must haves’ for modern-day homebuyers, putting practicality above aesthetics.

Reliable broadband, central heating and double glazing are key priorities, but energy-efficiency matters as well, for today’s discerning homebuyers!

10 top features

  1. Central heating
  2. Double glazing
  3. The garden
  4. Home security
  5. Off-road parking
  6. The bathroom
  7. Local amenities
  8. Neighbours
  9. Broadband
  10. Energy-efficiency

#1 Central heating


One of the first questions posed by homebuyers is ‘how old is the central heating boiler?’ The importance of having a modern condensing gas boiler with a constant stream of hot water at the turn of a tap is well understood. Ensure your boiler is regularly serviced and the paperwork is readily to hand. When showing potential homebuyers around ensure the house is aired and heating suits the outside temperature/season.

#2 Double-glazing

Double glazing is a must-have feature in this day and age. UPVC the favourite, provides a draught-free environment, and, according to estate agents, is a feature which adds value to your home, making it more sellable.

#3 The garden

A home with a garden undoubtedly increases saleability. Even if yours isn’t particularly large or you live in an apartment or flat, try and create an attractive area using pot plants and a decking area with table and chairs.

#4 Home security

Nobody likes to arrive home late at night to find the house in darkness, therefore use low level lighting and PIRs to increase security and illuminate dark areas, or to light up the access to entrance doors. A solid secure front door also creates a good first impression with potential buyers.

#5 Off-road parking

Off-road parking is a big deal these days with many homes having two cars and fewer spaces caused by increased parking restrictions imposed by local councils. In London, many homeowners can rent out their ‘drives’ for considerable sums! If you have a garden or unused space in front of your home, consider creating an off-road area, it may help to sell your home faster!

#6 The bathroom

Bathrooms, like kitchens, are seen as one of the key rooms in a property appealing to prospective buyers. A bathroom with a bath is definitely seen as an advantage even though showers are very much considered a more modern replacement. Baths are more suited for babies and young children, so keep options open and retain the bath at all costs when modernising. White baths and basins are a bonus, as a change of taps and lighting with freshened up walls and new grouting, can transform a bathroom relatively inexpensively. Keep colours neutral.

#7 Local amenities

Travel to work time is important, none more so than in London and the South East. Prepare a short schedule of walking times to nearby train stations and bus stops, and the routes to key destinations. List out local amenities too; the local pub, supermarket post office and chemist, all useful to note.

#8 The neighbours

Emphasis just how friendly and welcoming your neighbours are. Is there a neighbourhood watch and a good sense of community? Make a note, buyers want to visualise themselves fitting in and getting on with everyone.

#9 The broadband connection

With so many televisions and gadgets all requiring a fast reliable internet connection, the quality of the broadband can really be a deal-breaker. Broadband has come down in price over the years and if yours is fast, then say so, it might not swing a sale but could be a major issue if it doesn’t seem that fast when buyers have a viewing. Often slow broadband can be down to outdated or faulty equipment, so check yours for speed and reliability, and update or upgrade if needed.

#10 Energy-efficiency – EPC

The EPC rating for your home should be average or better. If you don’t have a recent EPC, you’ll need one to sell your home. Buyers expect a reasonably good rating, so get one done as early as possible and take steps to ensure the rating is good. A good rating goes hand in hand with a modern boiler, double glazing and good insulation.

Ensure buyers can picture themselves living in your home

Looks are important, so de-clutter tidy up and freshen ceilings and walls with neutral colours and tidy up outside. Good first impressions are essential but don’t forget to have all electrical and gas checks completed with the relevant certification to hand. Missing certificates can hold up a house sale, particularly when it gets to the legal process

If your home has all the above, then good luck it may sell your house faster than ones without.

The key is to be organised and present your home to it’s best, highlighting the most important features to sell it faster and for more cash!


Everything You Need to Know About Property Part Exchange Schemes

If you need to sell a house fast, there are several options available to you. You can drastically reduce your initial asking price; you can also turn to a company such as Sell Property Fast Cash. But an increasingly popular method is to take advantage of a builder’s part exchange scheme.

What is part exchange?

Property part exchange schemes offered by construction companies allow you to trade in your existing home in partial payment for your next property. In effect, the company buys your home directly from you and subtracts the agreed price from the cost of your new property.

If you want to move fast and with the minimum of fuss, this is a possible option. There’s no need for estate agents, marketing, property viewings or complex conveyancing processes. And there’s no need to worry about a property chain.

Property part exchange schemes

Of course, there is a trade-off to consider. You’re giving the headache of selling your house to the property developer. And for that, you should expect to receive considerably less than you might receive on the open market.

How do property part exchange schemes work?

Part exchange schemes aren’t for everyone. For a start, you must be prepared to buy a new-build property. If you decide to go ahead, the process tends to be almost identical across the entire industry.

  • Find a new-build home you want — built by a company that offers part exchange
  • Get at least two independent house valuations
  • Accept or decline the developer’s offer. Note: any offer will be subject to a satisfactory survey
  • Arrange or confirm your mortgage
  • Hire a conveyancer/solicitor
  • Pay the necessary reservation fee
  • Finalise contracts and exchange
  • Pay 10% deposit on exchange of contracts
  • Take possession of your new home once the funds are released

Am I eligible for a part exchange scheme?

Housebuilders have their own eligibility rules when it comes to part exchange schemes. However, there are certain criteria most developers insist on:

  • You must own your home and have the legal right to sell it
  • The property must be worth at least 65% of the new-build property you want to buy
  • The property you’re selling should be structurally solid and in a reasonable condition
  • If your home is leasehold, you’ll need a fixed-term agreement with at least 80 years remaining

Depending on the developer, you might need to demonstrate that there’s a reasonable chance of selling your property. A home’s saleability and location might preclude you from a part exchange offer — and this is often at the discretion of the developer.

And there may be specific exclusions imposed by developers. For example, some builders will not consider flat-roof homes for their part exchange schemes.

Is part exchange right for me?

Before you decide whether to part exchange your home or go down the traditional house selling route, consider all the advantages and disadvantages:

Advantages of part exchange schemes:

  • Avoid the unpredictable open market
  • Avoid estate agents’ fees
  • Avoid a property chain
  • Avoid hosting property viewings
  • A guaranteed sale without delay
  • Avoid the stress of selling a house the traditional way

Disadvantages of part exchange schemes

  • Expect to receive up to 15% less than market value for your property
  • Less chance of negotiating a discount on your new-build home
  • Not all types of homes are eligible for part exchange schemes
  • Part exchange homes generally have to be worth at least 65% of the value of the new house being bought
  • Newer homes tend to be smaller and “less substantial” than older properties

property part exchange schemes

If you need to sell a house fast, opting for a part exchange deal is a possibility. But it’s not without its drawbacks. If you’d rather sell your home fast and have the freedom to choose your next property, Flying Homes can help.

We buy houses directly from their owners. We work in partnership with cash buyers so you can avoid the pitfalls of the open market. And in the right circumstances, we can complete a property purchase in just a matter of days.

How to Sell a Home with a Short Lease

If you need to know how to sell a home with a short lease, we’ve got you covered. The process is fraught with complications and potential for delay.

Mortgage providers are very strict on this issue. After all, they won’t be prepared to loan you a large amount of money to buy a house unless they know it’s definitely going to be yours for a lifetime.

What is a short lease?

A leasehold home is one that sits on land that is owned by someone else. The leasehold permits you to occupy the land for a predetermined period.

The owner of the land is known as the freeholder. And that person or organisation can decide who occupies the land — and for how long. But most leases are long-term, lasting anywhere between 90 and 1,000 years. Once the lease runs out, legal possession of the land returns to the freeholder unless an extension can be agreed.

Find out the length of your lease

Sell a house with a short lease

Access the Land Registry website to obtain a full copy of your title deeds. This document will tell you whether you own a leasehold or freehold property. You should do this before you list your house for sale.

If you have less than 80 years remaining on your lease, the value of your property could be significantly lower than the local average. And buyers will find getting a mortgage on the property very difficult indeed.

Extending your lease

If you can extend your lease, you can make your home a lot more attractive to potential buyers. It’s important to remember that owners of a property aren’t able to apply for an extension until they’ve lived there for two years.

There are two ways to apply for a lease extension when selling a home:

An extension before a sale

The buyer can make the obtaining of a lease extension a condition of sale. The owner then applies to the freeholder for the extension. But this process can take several months. And if a homeowner needs to sell a house fast, this may not be a viable option.

Seller serves a statutory notice

To speed things along, the seller can serve the freeholder with a statutory notice requesting the extension. The notice would then be passed on to the new owner upon completion. However, most sellers would only do this after contracts have been exchanged.

Selling a short lease home fast

Sell a home with a short lease

In most cases, the pool of buyers potentially interested in a short lease home is low. And this means the price can be adversely affected. Traditional estate agents will sell short lease homes, but they’ll highlight the lease issue on all their marketing materials. This will slow the process down and reduce your property’s price potential.

You also have the option of selling at auction. Once the hammer falls, a sale at auction becomes legally binding, so there’s a lower chance of the buyer pulling out because of a short lease.

But you might need to sell your home quickly. You might also want to avoid all the hassle that comes with selling a short lease home. And that’s where Flying Homes can help. We buy homes directly from their owners — in partnership with cash buyers. This means you can avoid marketing, property viewings, negotiations and collapsed property chains.

Call us today for a free, no-obligation quote. We might be able to complete the purchase of your short lease home within a matter of days.

Can I Sell a House with Negative Equity?

Negative equity is the term used to describe a home that is worth less than the mortgage secured on it. If you’re in this position, selling your home at a good price on the open market wouldn’t raise sufficient money to pay off your mortgage.

If you don’t have the means to pay the difference, there’s a good chance you’re stuck in your property indefinitely. That’s why we’ve put together a list of potential options. Yes, you can sell a house with negative equity — but is it the right move?

Speak to your mortgage provider

If you’re happy to remain in your home and can afford the mortgage repayments, negative equity might not be a major short-term concern for you. However, if you want to move, you might need to take a proactive approach.

Reach out to your mortgage advisor and ask about transferring your mortgage to another home. A lot of lenders will transfer the mortgage to a more expensive property if you sign up to a larger balance.

Sell a house with negative equity Sell a house with negative equity

Alternatively, you might be able to make overpayments on your mortgage without incurring penalties. This is usually the quickest way to get yourself back into positive equity. You should be allowed to pay off at least 10% of your balance early without incurring penalties. So if you can unlock savings or investments elsewhere, this is a good option.

Stay at home

The simplest and cheapest option is to ride things out. If you’re in negative equity, it’s probably because of a sudden decline in the local property market. These things tend to right themselves over time.

If you’re happy in your property and have no problem paying your mortgage, wait until the market recovers. If you don’t have to worry about repossession, you can ride out the storm and wait for local house prices to recover.

Negative equity only becomes a significant problem when you can’t afford repayments, or you need to sell your house fast.

Increase the market value of your home

Three things get you out of negative equity: debt reduction, rising house prices and an increase in the market value of the property.

Take a look at the houses for sale in your area. What do they have that your home doesn’t? In many cases, you’ll be able to improve your house without a huge cash outlay. A few enhancements or repairs might add a couple of thousand to your home’s market value.

Rent out your property

So, you can’t afford to move home, but you need to leave as soon as possible. Perhaps you’re struggling to keep up with mortgage repayments. Or maybe you need to relocate for a new job. In either case, negative equity could be holding you back.

In these circumstances, the most logical decision is to rent out your home. You can use the income to pay off your mortgage or any debts secured on your home. You might even be able to turn a profit. Renting gives you breathing space. House prices always recover eventually; you just need to be patient.

Take out a loan

Sell a house with negative equity

If the negative equity in your home is relatively modest, an unsecured loan might be enough to make up the difference. Make sure you get a good rate of interest, and that you can comfortably afford the repayments. But beware: this type of borrowing is always more expensive than securing a loan against your property.

Sell as quickly as possible

Check with your mortgage provider about the best way forward. But if you’re in serious financial difficulties, you might need to ask about selling your home as quickly as possible. Some lenders will accept repayment programmes after the property is sold.

If you need to sell a home quickly to alleviate financial problems, Flying Homes can help. We buy homes directly from owners for up to 100% of their market value. If the circumstances are right, you could have the proceeds of the sale within just a few days.

How Do I Value My Home?

Not even an experienced estate agent can value a UK property with total accuracy. This isn’t an exact science — it’s educated guesswork.

Estate agents buy and sell homes every week, so they’re often best placed to estimate local property values. But this doesn’t mean you stop doing the guesswork yourself. Search the Internet for ways to “value my home,” and you’ll find plenty of resources.

Knowing the potential value of your home is essential. After all, if you don’t know how much your property will fetch on the open market, how can you decide whether listing it for sale is the best course of action?

Five ways to value my home

1. Research trends in the area

Take a look at recent house sales data on the Land Registry web portal. Look for details of houses similar to yours in design, age and size. Is there a trend in your neighbourhood? Does your house possess advantages others in the area don’t?

Once you have the sale price data you need, work out an average range.

2. Look for market forecasts

Property experts continually monitor the housing market for signs of upturns and downturns. Using current and historical data, these experts can make some pretty accurate predictions about where house prices are headed. The Financial Times, Hometrack and the Land Registry are great places to start your forecast research.

3. Assess local factors

Value my home

The housing market is volatile and reactive. And it can differ from street to street in certain regions. In many cases, external issues beyond your control are responsible for these differences.

A new school, for example, could dramatically push up house prices in the catchment area. The addition of a new train station or a new road could also have a positive effect on house prices.

When valuing your home, think about what is happening in the area — and what is expected to happen in the future. If you can demonstrate to buyers that your area is going to benefit from new amenities and infrastructure in the future, you might be able to extract a premium for your property.
The most common issues that affect UK house prices include:

  • Crime levels
  • Environmental issues such as flood risk
  • Transport links
  • Local schools
  • Local amenities
  • Localised subsidence issues
  • The neighbours

4. Get a free valuation on the Internet

There are several online resources that offer free, no-obligation house valuations. And in many cases, all you need to do is enter your postcode and the number of bedrooms your home has. This isn’t very accurate, but it’s a good way of starting the valuation process.

5. Ask an estate agent

Value my home

Estate agents want your business. If they think you’re serious about selling your home, they’ll give up their time to value it. And their experience and knowledge are irreplaceable in this regard.

Only by using all of these five steps together can you hope to value your home accurately. And once you know what your home is capable of achieving, you can start to formulate a personalised house selling strategy.

But what do you do if you need to sell a house fast? What if quick cash is your priority? This is where Flying Homes can help. We buy houses directly from their owners for up to 100% of their market value. And because we allow you to bypass the traditional housing market, you may get the proceeds of your house sale within just two weeks.

Do I Need Indemnity Insurance When Selling a House?

Imagine you sold a house six months ago. Now imagine you received a legal letter this morning about possible defects with the property. The buyer is claiming thousands to cover repair costs. What do you do?

If you didn’t inform the buyer about the defects before contracts were exchanged, you might be liable for their costs. Indemnity insurance covers you against this type of scenario.

Indemnity insurance usually involves a single payment. And cover lasts forever. This type of insurance is also a viable alternative to fixing a major defect with your property before it’s sold.

What does indemnity insurance cover me for?

Indemnity insurance covers you against a range of potential issues, including:

Restrictive covenant

A restrictive covenant forbids certain alterations to a property — such as an extension. Indemnity insurance covers and legal costs you might incur as a result of a covenant breach.

Building regulations

If a home you sold is found not to have the necessary building regs documentation, indemnity insurance covers the costs of altering the property for compliance. The insurance also covers the administrative costs of putting things right.

Absence of easement

If a neighbour prevents you from accessing drains that serve your home, indemnity insurance covers the costs of legal action.

Planning permission

Indemnity insurance for planning permission isssues

Building without planning permission can lead to legal action. In certain circumstances, this action might culminate in the demolition of a building or extension. Indemnity insurance covers all the costs associated with a non-compliant property.

Missing particulars

Indemnity insurance covers the seller for the costs of updating title deeds with missing or incorrect information.

No build-over agreement

If you decide to build an extension within three metres of a sewer, you might need to acquire a build-over agreement from the local water authority. Homes without such an agreement might be forced to remove all or part of the offending structure.

Adverse possession

If you can’t prove you, as the homeowner, own all of the land on which your property sits, you might need to take steps to prove legal ownership. Insurance covers you against the costs associated with someone else claiming ownership of the land.

Is indemnity insurance expensive?

In most cases, indemnity insurance is well worth the expense. The cost of dealing with the issues raised above can be astronomical. Yet the cost of a good indemnity insurance policy can be as little as £20.

If you want cover for the costs of dealing with a lack of planning or building regulations, however, the policy will cost a lot more. Don’t be surprised to find quotes of between £300 and £600.

Is indemnity insurance for property sellers necessary?

Indemnity insurance

The chances of running into legal issues after you’ve sold a property are low. Most indemnity policies never pay out — as problems are rare. But for your peace of mind, parting with £20 or £30 for a basic policy makes sense.

If you suspect there may be problems with building regulations, planning permission or land ownership, get indemnity insurance. But be prepared to pay a hefty premium.

Taking out indemnity insurance is a good way to sell a house fast. This covers you for a range of legal issues, so you don’t have to waste too much time searching for missing paperwork, certificates and permissions. Indeed, a lot of conveyancers and mortgage providers insist the seller takes out indemnity insurance at the earliest opportunity.

Having indemnity insurance can help you to sell a home quickly — but not that quickly. If you need to raise cash in a hurry, it might be best to avoid the market altogether. And that’s where Flying Homes comes in. We buy houses fast. In some cases, we’re able to complete a purchase within a matter of days.

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