Buying or selling a home is an exciting time in your life but it can also be stressful and confusing.
All the paperwork, processes, and legal jargon can be overwhelming.
We’re here to help you with friendly, expert advice on all things property related, from buying your first home to selling your last.
Resale values of retirement properties significantly underperform the rest of the housing market. Some properties lost more than half their value compared with the market average in just eight years. Buyers prefer new-build retirement homes to “second-hand” ones. Unsold properties can cost thousands of pounds a year in service charges and council tax, so finding the right sales approach is vital
Different ways to sell your property
There are different ways to market your retirement property and help maximise its value. Here are six tips to help you: Always make sure you live in the property. Ensure it is clean and well decorated. Plan where you would like to move. Start with a clear marketing strategy. Be clear about what you want – what the potential buyers are looking for in a property. Be positive. Aim to be a positive and friendly seller. If possible, set up a viewing yourself to have a first-hand experience of the property. Prepare yourself for the emotions of selling your property. Be prepared to find out why someone is interested in your property. Also understand why they might be interested in a different property. If you are tempted to lower the price, offer your best price.
Preparing your house for sale
You can’t sell your house in your old age. Rather than lowering its value in preparation, the most important thing is to make it the best property it can be. But how can you do this when you’re too old and infirm to take charge of the process yourself? Shaun Ward, head of retirement sales and property management at A&L Goodbody, is keen to stress the importance of bringing in an experienced agent. “You will save a fortune if you have somebody experienced, who understands what’s going on in the market and has access to a professional network,” he says. More On This… Why Making Some Smart Closures May Save You Money on Home Insurance Ward adds: “There are a lot of pensioners who don’t want to get involved with the house selling side of things. It’s very intimidating.
If you are planning to sell, you need to make sure you have everything to hand and ready for buyers to view the property, so get yourself organised and start now.
To help you market your retirement home effectively, make sure you understand your market and property type. The days of a house just selling itself are gone. This is particularly true of retirement homes, because there are only a limited number of retirement properties for sale. Also, retirees are unlikely to be willing to wait around for you to complete the necessary housework and improvement projects, or make it their first-time move into a new home.
Select a good location
Location, location, location! You want the property in the right place in terms of pricing. Don’t discount any part of the country.
Unique selling points
Most second-hand retirement properties aren’t actually second-hand. They have all been renovated and updated. Buyers look at how a property has been used in the past, rather than how it looks now. In reality, the real estate market has developed into a bidding war, with the top bid getting paid. Once again, because of the increased demand, the average property price is increasing. But your special features can still add value. By renovating to offer independent living options, or providing a wider range of facilities, you can increase your property’s value to a buyer. Keep your properties beautifully decorated, and add a touch of classic British style to create a warm and welcoming retirement property. There are plenty of different ways to sell your retirement property.
Time is of the essence
Time is of the essence for sales; the longer a retirement property remains unsold, the harder it is to sell. The average house for sale on property websites needs six weeks to be sold. Buyers have become pickier and more experienced, having the benefit of second-hand homes which, unlike first-hand ones, tend to be in good condition, offer low maintenance costs, and last longer. They will pay more for a property which has been decorated and furnished to suit their needs, are located in the right area, and are on sale. Boost the price It is likely to be more profitable to list the property and then sell at a higher price. It will give a higher starting point and allow you to leave a bigger profit when you finally sell.
Know when to put it on the market
A common mistake retirement property owners make is failing to consider when their property is ready to sell. The property might not be ready in terms of the layout, layout standards or decor or indeed some features may need updating. If you want to move before a sale of your home, it may be worth selling now rather than waiting for the right time or price. Be ready to ask a lot of questions When negotiating with potential buyers, it’s important to ask them the right questions about your home, and be prepared to prove that it meets their needs. The following questions may help in identifying the right buyer for your property. How many bedrooms? Is there a master bedroom, or can they share? Do they prefer a studio, apartment or something else? How many bathrooms are there?
Create a good impression
Your retirement property should appeal to a wide range of buyers. After all, your property isn’t a “tombstone” – it is a business that will be left empty for weeks, months or even years at a time. Make sure it is well-decorated, has good lighting, comfortable furniture, plenty of natural light and features you’d like your family to enjoy. Keep the decor simple. You don’t need an orgy of colour to make it interesting, and don’t decorate for every possible possible buyer. For example, dark brown furniture is popular in the UK, so don’t go with that to the USA. Redecorating costs money – and time – and needs careful consideration. Look to start with small changes to furniture, then work your way up to bigger schemes. Take your time to decide what is right for you, and for your clients.
Pricing your property correctly
Make sure your price is competitive for the location you are selling in and the condition of the property. As you are selling a second-hand property, you should price it at a fixed, guide-linked rent. This means you’re not buying the value of your property up. The fixed rent is calculated to be the same as a comparable home would fetch in the area. You are aiming to sell your home at a profit, not to generate a profit on the money that you have already spent on its refurbishment. If you sell your property at a guide-linked rent, you’ll receive a guaranteed rent for a minimum period of five years. Your property will be monitored to ensure it’s performing in the way you want. Don’t be tempted to cheapen your property’s appeal by painting and decorating to make it more attractive.
Property sales in retirement homes are a big business. And, if they’re done right, they can make you millions of pounds. Here are six useful tips to help you make the most of your property. 1. Hire a professional to sell your property. It’s your investment, after all. You’re running a business, not a garage sale. You’ll need someone who’s respected and trusted, someone who can spot genuine bargains and who understands the property market. Don’t attempt to sell your retirement home yourself. The role of a property sales agent is to provide professional advice on your behalf. Always hire a commercial agent to sell your retirement home. We all need to find that elusive bit of real estate gold. If you think your retirement property will go down in value, there’s nothing wrong with renting it out for cash flow. If it’s holding its value, then we’ve got some helpful tips to help you get the best price possible.