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How happy is your buyer?

By Sophia Wood-Burgess

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A buyer has just made a great offer and you've accepted. But don't bring out the champagne just yet. A new Zoopla study uncovers a very good reason to remain focussed.

According to a recent report by Zoopla, after the offer has been accepted, buyers' satisfaction can dwindle, depending on how long it takes to exchange. We’ll look into into what that means for selling your property, and what you can do to keep your buyer happy.

Navigating the timeline

A satisfied buyer is important. Everyone must work together to keep the momentum high from offer to exchange, avoiding changes of heart or "cold feet." The longer a deal takes, the more opportunity for something to crop up and cause it to fall through. So, it should not come as a surprise that satisfaction diminishes the longer the process takes. According to Zoopla's report:

  • Respondents who labelled their satisfaction levels as "good/very good" averaged 56 days to exchange.
  • Respondents who labelled their satisfaction levels as "ok" averaged 91 days to exchange
  • Respondents who labelled their satisfaction levels as "poor" averaged 136 days to exchange.

Interestingly, the Zoopla report also found that "Older Households" took the longest on average to search for a property - perhaps because they are likelier to have experience with home buying. When selling to an older household, transparency may be key. "Families" took the least amount of time in all stages - search, offer accepted and exchange. So if you're selling to a family, you may want to pay particularly close attention to the next section.

Be Prepared

We know we say this a lot, but being prepared is probably the best thing you can do for your property sale. If you have an agent who’s on the ball, all your documents ready and uploaded, your onward process started, your financial adviser notified and your solicitor instructed you’ll be in a much better position to complete the sale quickly.

Our partner, Conveyan, can send across a sale-ready pack, which will help you get all the paperwork and supporting information in place, so contracts can be sent out the same day an offer is accepted.

You may even consider getting a survey undertaken first, before you even have a buyer. That way, instead of waiting for a buyer to request a survey and find something, you know about any potential issues in advance. You can fix issues or factor them into the asking price, which can build trust with your buyer and move the process along more quickly.

Keep in touch

Zoopla’s survey also found that efficient communication is important to buyers, “Over 85% of buyers were receptive to streamlining [the buying] process by using technology – such as an online portal that tracked and monitored the progress of their purchase end-to-end.”

This is something we’ve also seen, when setting buyers and vendors up with My Foxtons accounts. On your account, you can sign documents, see buyers’ comments from viewings, chat to your valuer, see how many online views your property has on Foxtons and Zoopla - you can even accept an offer here.

More to learn

We have more tips for selling your property quickly in 10 simple steps, or check out our overview of the sale process.

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