If you want to successfully sell your house quickly and ensure you get a decent price then finding a company which is honest and fair to both parties involved should be central to your search. There are both good companies (like Ready Steady Sell) and bad companies (not naming names) out there so we have formalised four important questions for you to ask so that so you make your choice as someone who is both well informed and with confidence.
Question 1 – Are they buying in cash?
When speaking to a property cash buyer the first thing you need to establish is whether they actually have the funding in the bank ready to complete the sale or whether they are reliant upon external funding. Without them have the funds in the bank then they are not classed as cash buyers and they won’t be able to guarantee you a sale, especially a quick one.
Many companies advertise themselves as cash buyers, but it has been found that many are not and are simply estate agents pretending to be cash buyers so that you will sign a legally binding contract with them so that they then have you held over a barrel. This has regrettably become more common over recent years and is at the best false advertising, so make sure you keep an eye out for any such tactics.
Question 2 – Are they credible?
If you think you have managed to find a real cash buyer then ask them to provide evidence of the fact. Don’t simply accept a printed bank statement as it is easy to print a doctored copy just by using some photo editing software and a printer. Instead accompany them to their local banks high street branch or watch them log into their account on the bank or building societies website.
This may seem a little excessive and you may feel rude doing so, but make sure you do as any genuine cash buyer will have reservation is proving their ability to buy your house and will be glad to have such a well informed customer to deal with who is serious about selling their home.
Question 3 – Do they need to view the property?
Cash buying firms very rarely feel the need to view a property in person unless that property has some specific problems which need investigating first hand. The legitimate ones are quite happy to just see pictures of the inside and exterior. If they do insist then be cautious as some use this to try and buy themselves time so that you become dependent on them and don’t try to look elsewhere. The only people normally coming out to view your property is the valuation expert who’s role it is to check that the property is correctly priced and matches other similar properties in the area.
Question 4 – Are they asking you to make any up-front payments?
The whole idea of using a cash buying property company (or individual) is that you are quickly able to complete the sale and since all will offer less than your properties true market value it is them who is expected to cover all their associated legal fees.
If the one you are speaking to asks you to cover these fees yourself before the transaction can go ahead then we suggest you walk away. They should have no reservation in paying a small by comparison of charge of say £500 when they are paying £1000s less than what the property is worth.
If this happens to you find another one as there are many, a fully legitimate one who understand this is the standard protocol and expects this to be how the transaction will be carried out.
By asking these four questions you can be confident that the buyer is serious, is in a position to buy the property quickly and won’t be trying to back you into a corner where it is only them you can deal with.
If in doubt walk away and find another as there are many who work in both proper and ethical ways.