Are you hoping to sell this year but unsure how long it may take you? You have heard stories of some houses taking over a year to sell, and others getting an offer within a week of being on the market. But what’s the average selling time?
According to Zoopla, over 50% of homeowners think it’ll take over 2 months to sell, but in fact the average is under 2 months at 50 days.
How does average selling time depend on region?
Zoopla released data at the start of 2019 showing the average number of days homes take to go under offer in different regions. Here are the results, from longest to quickest:
- London – 58 days
- North East England – 57 days
- Wales – 55 days
- South East England – 53 days
- East of England – 53 days
- North West England – 51 days
- South West England – 51 days
- Yorkshire and The Humber – 49 days
- East Midlands – 43 days
- West Midlands – 42 days
- Scotland – 39 days
The region which takes the longest to sell is England’s capital, London. The quickest selling region is Scotland, where it takes just 39 days on average to sell. In the middle of the scale is North and South West England.
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Which factors contribute to selling time?
According to The Advisory, the factor with the largest impact on selling time is the asking price of the property. This means the price asked compared to similar properties on the market. If the asking price is too high, you may get viewings but will find it harder to get a buyer. If you ask for less than other competing houses, you will likely get interest quickly and sell faster. Fortunately, asking price is something that you do have control of when you’re selling.
Coming up joint second on factors affecting selling time are the heat of the market, and the quality of the solicitors used.
A cold market, also known as a buyer’s market, is when the market is in the buyers’ favour so sellers need to price their homes more competitively. A hot market, also known as a sellers’ market, is when the market is in the sellers’ favour so buyers may find themselves entering bidding wars, and reasonably priced houses sell quickly.
If you’ve ever bought or sold a house before, you’re likely to know that solicitors play a major part in the transaction. Overworked solicitors can take a long time to respond to any questions or carry out basic work, really hampering the progression of the sale or purchase. Unfortunately the only control you have over this is trying to pick a good solicitor, and often the cheaper ones will be the slower ones. Plus, if the other party involved has a slow solicitor it will still delay the process.
Other items which affect selling time are:
- quality of estate agents
- buyer’s position
- length of chain
- title, search or survey problems
- condition of neighbouring property
- leasehold vs freehold
- local authority
- time of year
- condition of property
- uniqueness of property
Your options if you need to sell fast
If you’re looking to sell in 0-8 weeks, only genuine cash house buying companies can help. This applies to both hot and cold markets.
If you’re looking to sell in 8-16 weeks, your route depends on the market. If it’s a sellers’ market, you should be able to achieve this with sensible pricing and choice of estate agency. If it’s a buyers’ market, you aren’t likely to find someone to buy your property in this timescale. In this case, you may be best off using a cash house buying company, or consider going to auction.
I began writing for Property Press Online in October 2019. Particular areas of interest are housing market news and new developments in the market.