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Lockdown 3.0 – Can I still sell my house?
In the first lockdown, the property market was paused, but this time the market can still continue, allowing homeowners to buy and sell as long as they are abiding by social distancing measures and wearing face coverings.
After an announcement of a 3rd lockdown and with stay-at-home measures put in place until at least mid-February across the whole country, homeowners are concerned about what this means for them. If you were wanting to sell your house in the next few months, or you’re already in the process and aren’t sure what this lockdown means for you, We Buy Any House have put together all of the information you need.
Can I still sell my house?
The biggest concern for homeowners is how the property market will be affected, as during the first lockdown in March last year saw everything pause. Thankfully, the government have confirmed that during this lockdown, similar to the second lockdown in November, homeowners are still able to sell and move houses. They have released further guidance to follow on how to move in the safest manner, such as:
Keep at least 2 metres apart from anyone that isn’t in your household or support bubble
Wear face coverings when in close proximity to others
Be prepared to be flexible on timelines. If you or your buyer experiences symptoms or has to isolate as they’ve been in contact with someone who tests positive, you will need to wait to keep everyone involved safe
You are still able to view properties that you’re looking to buy, but you should be aware that individual agents will likely have different procedures and again, if you or the owner of the house that you have planned to view tests positive for the virus or needs to isolate, you will have to cancel the appointment and rearrange until it’s safe.
If you’re in the early stages and are still looking at several properties that you may be interested in, virtual viewings are the first call for almost all agents. This means that rather than attending the property in person, you will usually be sent a video of a walk-through of the house so you can get a better idea of size and layout. We’ve got some more detailed information about this here in our blog post, how are house sales turning virtual?
How can I stay safe viewing houses in person?
For homeowners that are past the initial stages of viewing, going to view a house is still allowed. You will need to make sure that you’re doing so in the safest ways possible, following the guidelines that have been established:
Viewings should be by appointment only, and you should avoid touching any surfaces in the house to reduce contact
You should wear a face covering at all times while viewing the property, keep a distance from the sellers, and regularly wash your hands and sanitise
Where possible, limit the amount of people coming to the viewing to only the absolute necessary
Will the buying process be delayed by the lockdown?
While viewings and sales are still able to go ahead in the lockdown, another concern is how conveyancing and the other processes of selling will be affected. Estate agents, conveyancers and solicitors are still able to work, however, most are likely to be working from home again which can disrupt the workflow.
It is normal for house sales to be delayed in normal times, so it’s to be expected that going back into a lockdown there will be further pushbacks. For some, it may be in the conveyancing area, which can take up to 20 weeks standardly – we’ve got a helpful article that covers how to speed up your conveyancing here.
What else could delay my move?
One of the biggest reasons that you could see your sale delayed is if someone in your household or your buyers’ household tests positive for the virus. The best thing to do to ensure that this sort of delay doesn’t cause you too much stress is to have some sort of clause in place in your contracts that confirms your buyer, and seller if you’re also purchasing, are prepared to wait if one party does have to isolate due to the virus. This means that even if you face delays, you shouldn’t have to worry about one party dropping out and breaking the chain. A lot of homeowners are worried as these breaks can be catastrophic, but we’ve got plenty of information on what options there are if the property chain collapses here.
How can I speed my sale up?
Some homeowners are not in a position to face these delays and wait for their sale, so thankfully, there is another option for anyone who needs to sell their house fast. We are still open and running, providing homeowners with a quick and easy sale in troubling times. With We Buy Any House, you can sell in as little as 7 days, avoiding the delays that are expected on the open market and the concerns of having to have multiple viewers in your house with no guarantee of a sale at the end of it.
Whether you’re looking to sell to avoid a repossession order, or you’ve been affected by a chain break and don’t want the chain to break entirely, we’re here to help. Get in contact with us today for your free cash offer and find out more about how you can sell to us quickly and safely during this lockdown.