Selling through a quick sale company? What you need to know.

A quick sale company offers you a swift house sale at a discounted price. Is it worth considering, or should you be steering clear?

Fast house sale

How does it work?

A quick sale company offers a discounted price on your home in exchange for a quick sale; they either sell to a third party or can buy the property themselves, and promise to significantly undercut the average completion time of 8-12 weeks.

If you’re desperate to sell because your buyer has pulled out, you’re in financial difficulty or need to relocate fast, you may be tempted to go down this route. You will still need a conveyancing solicitor to do the legal work, but there will be no chain.

If you are tempted, what do you need to know when selling through a quick sale company?

Only consider a realistic offer

If a company is telling you they can sell your home in record time for anything close to 100% of its market price, be skeptical.

You can expect a quick sale company to offer you a price discounted by around 25% of the amount you could get by selling through the conventional estate agent route.

Don’t sign anything that restricts your options

Another red flag is being asked to sign anything that may prohibit you from accepting a better offer should it come along.

The practice of quick sale companies lowering their offer at the last minute is reportedly common, taking advantage of the pressure you’re under to sell.

Such pressure will only increase if you tie yourself into a process that excludes other options.

Gather as much information and advice as you can 

Get a handful of valuations from estate agents so as to be completely clear of the open market value of your home.

Get independent legal advice, and ascertain whether the quick sale company you’re considering is adhering to the required codes of practice (set out by The Property Ombudsman).

This specific market is not regulated, and there are companies out there looking to take advantage. So, compare several.

A quick sale company could be offering you the solution you’re looking for – assuming they are being straight with you. To be sure, ask for written guarantees of what they’re offering you, not verbal promises.

This sounds too risky. What are my other options?

Your other options depend on whether you can buy yourself more time to sell your property.

An estate agent could possibly secure you a buyer much faster with a sale price strategy that under cuts similar properties but still higher than a quick sale company’s offer. 

Difficulties paying your mortgage?

If you a’re struggling to pay your mortgage, speak to your mortgage lender before you assume you need to sell up fast.

The lender may agree to lengthen the terms of your mortgage, for example, which would reduce your regular repayments.   The lender may even consider a repayment holiday of any number of months.

If you’re buying a property and are afraid the vendor will look elsewhere for someone who can sell faster, talk to them. Communication can reveal unexpected options.

Don’t make a snap decision 

When you’re under pressure to make a quick sale, the temptation is to prioritise speed over everything else, which can lead to too-hasty decision making. 

Selling your home is a major undertaking, so don’t rush into anything; take your time, look closely at all the options, and take professional advice where possible to ensure you get what you need out of the sale.

Gaynor Haliday, Legal researcher

About the author

Gaynor Haliday is an experienced legal researcher and published author. She has had numerous articles published in the press and is a legal industry commentator.

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