The process of buying or selling a house

How to arrange moving home

Whether you’re selling up or renting out your home and moving to a new property, there’s plenty to think about – here are some tips to help you plan.

Selling or letting your home

Whether you’re selling up and relocating or renting out your current house or flat to live elsewhere, you’ll need to put the property on the market. Traditional estate agents now compete with a growing number of online agents, some of which advertise lower selling fees. Paying less to sell a property is attractive, but check the terms of the service very carefully before agreeing to anything so you understand exactly what you’ll get for your money.

The same applies to high-street agents. Ask what’s included in their service, specifically about any potential additional fees. For example, some may charge extra for photography services or if you decide to take your property off the market.

You can ask friends, neighbours and family for high-street estate agent recommendations – but remember that their circumstances may be different than yours.

So take a look at our tips on how the selling and buying process usually works – it’s just a rough outline, so if you’re starting to move home make sure you get professional advice from a solicitor or conveyancer.

And don’t forget to think about your mortgage options – moving gives you a good opportunity to see if you get a new deal from your current lender, like our reward rates for Barclays mortgage holders. But you could also move to a new mortgage lender. For example, see how we can help with mortgages when you’re moving home.

  •  If you’re planning to rent out the property, contact your mortgage lender to get their approval – this may be a condition of your mortgage, so check to be sure
  • Appoint an agent and agree a starting price or rental amount for the property
  • Make sure the place is clean and tidy for viewings, and consider fixing or decorating any parts that might put off potential buyers or renters
  • The agent will arrange viewings of your home and tell you about any offers
  • Once you decide to accept an offer to buy, property buyers may arrange a survey of the property to check its condition carefully, and may lower their offer if any problems are found
  • Appoint a solicitor (or conveyancer) – a legal expert who will represent you in the selling process. It can make sense to use the same person or firm for the home you’re purchasing
  • Your solicitor will negotiate a contract of sale with the buyer’s solicitor – this covers the purchase price and date, and which items are included (such as curtains, blinds, carpets and domestic appliances)
  • Once you’re happy with the details you formally accept the arrangement – this is known as ‘exchanging contracts’
  • If you’re renting the property, you’ll need to make sure you understand your legal duties to tenants and have the appropriate landlord insurance
  • Start making arrangements to move
  • The day when you finalise the sale is called ‘completion’, when the solicitors take care of the final details and exchange the purchase money, and the buyer gets the keys to your old home

Buying your new home

  • Think about the area you want to live in and the type of property you want to buy
  • Once you’ve decided to undertake the process of selling a house or flat, work out a rough budget taking into account what you owe on the mortgage – remember that you may sell for less than your asking price 
  • Contact agents in the area and register your interest as a buyer – some agents may ask to see an Agreement in Principle from a mortgage lender to get a realistic idea of what you can afford
  • Start visiting potential properties and making offers. The amount you can afford will be based on the offer price you’ve received for your current home – but remember it could still change during the sale process
  • Once a seller has accepted your offer, appoint a solicitor or conveyancer. You can pay for a full survey of the property to check its condition, and potentially lower your offer if any problems are found. Your mortgage provider may arrange its own valuation of the property
  • The buying process follows the same stages as your sale – with you as the buyer instead of the seller
  • If your mortgage lender is happy with the valuation, they’ll confirm their offer in writing
  • You usually need to arrange to pay any fees to your solicitor by the completion date. Your mortgage lender will do the same for the money it is lending you
  • Your solicitor pays the seller’s solicitor and you get the keys to your new home

How to get a mortgage for your move

I have a Barclays mortgage

Take a look at the rates we offer if you have a mortgage with us and you’re thinking about selling your current home and living somewhere else.

I have a mortgage with another lender

See how we can help if you want to move home – our expert advisers will recommend a deal that suits your needs.

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