Doorsteps blog posts

Blog entry by Doorsteps

How to Sell Your Home When You Don’t Know Where To Begin

Sometimes selling your home can feel overwhelming. If you've never sold a property before, you may not even know where to begin. We've prepared this guide specifically for new UK home sellers like yourself who may want some guidance in the property sale process. Follow these steps to easily list and sell your property.

Prepare Your Home For Sale
Before you can even begin to sell your home, you first need to do some initial preparation work. In order to get the most from your home valuation, you'll want to begin by doing the following:

  1. Fix minor cosmetic issues. Paint chipped walls, replace torn carpets, and repair anything broken in the home. Doing so now will prevent you from scrambling once the house is listed, and can affect your asking price.
  2. Enlist the help of professionals to fix bigger issues. For bigger breaks or issues -- leaking faucets, for instance, or a broken boiler -- enlist the help of a trained professional. Most home buyers will expect these repairs to be made before they purchase.
  3. Get an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC). Not only is it required by British law, it's also a great resource to help you evaluate what you can improve before listing.

Complete A Property Valuation
After you've prepared your home for sale and made any necessary fixes, you should then complete a property valuation. Doorsteps offer a free instant online home valuation. You can access the feature 
on our website.

List Your Home
You've completed the prep work and received your valuation. It's now time to list your home. Your listing should include:

  • A 250 word written property description with an eye-catching headline.
  • Professional photos and/or videos of your property (smartphone snaps will usually not suffice).
  • A 2D property floor plan, to help buyers visualise your house's layout.
  • The asking price for your property.
  • A contact method where you can be reached at most anytime. If you're providing a phone number, make sure you have your answerphone set up so you won't miss a sale!

Show Your Home and Negotiate Offers
Now that your home is listed, you'll soon be receiving enquiries and offers from potential buyers. Provide property showings to those most interested, and negotiate the final sale price as necessary. 

Finalise the Sell
Once you've received your best offer, it's time to finalise the sale. Complete the required documents, title deeds, and so on, then receive your property payment from the buyer.

After completing all these steps, your property sale is complete. If you still feel confused, or you'd like the help of a professional agent for £99 all-in, then 
reach out to Doorsteps today.


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Blog entry by Doorsteps

3 Reasons Houses May Sell Quicker Online

The internet has brought about great change in the world these past few decades, and that change has reached the property sell market as well. It's easier than ever to sell your property thanks to advances in technology, and with a decline in traditional media and advert models, the prospects for online property sales grow greater with each day. There are many reasons your house might sell quicker online than elsewhere. Here are three reasons why.

1. The internet has a wider audience reach than traditional advert models. 
According to 
data provided by the UK's Office For National Statistics, nearly 89% of all adults in the UK actively use the internet. Of that number, virtually all persons aged 16 to 34 -- a whopping great 99% -- use the internet regularly. To say that the internet has a wide reach is not an exaggeration. 

With the rise of internet use comes a shift in the advert models. More and more property sellers are moving away from traditional newspaper classified listings to listing houses on property sell websites. As the shift in advert platforms continue, so does the demand for such websites.

2. People are actively seeking property sells online.
Aligned with the shift in advert models moving to the internet comes the throngs of UK internet users who now go online to find property for sale. Property sell sites like Zoopla and Rightmove continue to see record numbers of monthly website traffic and users. They're also seeing an equivalent increase in online property sales, a testament to people actively seeking property sells online.

3. The internet makes it easy to list your advert on multiple sites simultaneously.
There are literally hundreds of property listing sites on the web. Many sites are trafficked specifically by UK users, while others have a more international audience. Consequently, it is now easier than ever to list your property advert on multiple sites simultaneously, significantly increasing your potential buyer pool.

The internet is a great catalyst for launching property sales. The professional agents at Doorsteps can guide you through the online property listing process from initial listing to final sale. To learn more about how we can help, 
visit our website.

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Blog entry by Doorsteps

5 Steps to Successfully Sell Your House Online

Selling your house online can seem overwhelming, but the process is fairly simple. Follow these five easy steps to experience a successful online sale.

1. Create an eye-catching property description.
Your description is the sales-pitch that potential buyers will read to become familiar with your property. It needs to be descriptive, concise, and eye-catching, without fluff or over-exaggeration. Some points to remember when crafting a quality property description:

  • Keep it short. Writing for an internet audience means your description should be short. Keep it to a maximum 250 words.
  • Write a strong headline. A headline must draw interest in your property, or buyers will likely pass your advert. Make sure you craft a unique headline that captures a buyer's attention.
  • Use your words to show, not just tell. Imagine you were trying to describe your house to a neighbour who has never seen it. Use words to paint a picture of what you want the buyer to see.
2. Enlist the help of a professional photographer or videographer.
Smartphone snaps will not do the trick for a well-designed property listing. Hire the services of a professional photographer or videographer who can make your house stand out amongst all the other online adverts.

3. Develop a 2D floor plan.
A 2D floor plan allows potential buyers to visualise the layout of your home. Adding one to your property listing gives buyers a better understanding of the overall flow of your house.

4. List your home on multiple property sell websites.
To reach as broad a buying audience as possible, you'll want to market your listing on numerous property sell websites. Some of the largest UK sellers include Zoopla, Rightmove and Prime Location, but hundreds of other sites exist.

5. Choose the premium or featured listing options, when possible.
Some property sell websites have premium or featured listing options, usually for an additional fee. Purchasing these services can give higher ranking to your listing, allowing website users to more easily find your advert and giving you an even broader purchasing audience.

Selling your house online is easy if you follow these procedures. If you'd like an experienced property agent to walk you through this process, Doorsteps offers various one-off fee packages that will tackle these steps for you. Compare our 
package offerings here.

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Blog entry by Doorsteps

Live in One Of These UK Property Hotspots? Now Is A Great Time To Sell

Property marketing website Zoopla released a list of some of the best property hotspots in all of the UK, and if you live in one of these towns, you may want to consider selling your home.

The report, which was featured on the 
Daily Express' website, described the average home price and days on market for some of the most sought-after areas in the UK. Zoopla spokesman Lawrence Hall told the Express that at the time of the report's release, the average English home was on the market for 47 days. 

Here are some of the top cities listed in Zoopla's report.

1. Northampton
Average Days on Market: 27
Average Home Price: £245,288
Why you should sell if you live here: Northampton beat the national average sell time by nearly 20 days. A quick sell time indicates property buyers are excited about the area. Your property could sell in a matter of weeks here.

2. Milton Keynes
Average Days on Market: 29
Average Home Price: £299,079
Why you should sell if you live here: Though homes in Milton Keynes took slightly longer to sell than those in Northampton (by a mere two days, to be exact), Milton Keynes sellers netted just under £53,800 more on their selling price. Your Milton Keynes property could be worth more than you thought.

3. Croydon
Average Days on Market: 30
Average Home Price: £374,342
Why you should sell if you live here: Are you starting to see a trend here? For one more day on the market, home sellers in the London commuter town of Croydon earned an average of £75,200 more than their Milton Keynes neighbours. If you own property in Croydon, you could be sitting on a mound of dosh. 

In all, the Zoopla report lists ten cities with great property selling outlooks in the UK. Other cities to make the list: Coventry, Glasgow, Edinburgh, Southampton and Ipswich, among others. 

If you live in one of the listed cities, you should consider selling your home. If you're looking for an affordable agency to help you sell your home online, Doorsteps offers packages beginning at £99 -- no commission fees taken. 
Learn more about our packages, or get your free instant valuation online today.

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Blog entry by Doorsteps

5 Must-Do Things To Tick Off Your Home Sell To-Do List

When preparing your house for selling, there are many things to remember to do. You must gather all the necessary documents, create an eye-catching listing, and ensure that no issues creep up in the process. During all this, some simple tasks may be forgotten. Here are five must-do things you'll want to be sure not to forget when ticking off the items on your home sell to-do list.

1. Be sure to get an EPC.
Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs) are required for all homes being sold in the UK. Be sure to find an accredited Domestic Energy Assessor to complete your EPC. You can find an accredited person on the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government's 
Domestic Energy Performance Certificate Register website.

2. Fix the small issues around your home.
Leaking pipes, outdated light fixtures, cracked faucets -- little everyday issues can have a big effect on your ability to sell your property. Be sure to correct any small issues before you list and begin showing your house. 

3. Tidy up the place.
Make sure the entire house is neat and tidy. Remember to inspect and clean the often forgotten places, too: behind the curtains, inside cubby holes, even around the telly. You'll want it to look the best for your professional photos and for showing prospective buyers.

4. Move the settee.
When preparing your house for a showing, make sure all the furniture is arranged to give the space a cosy, lived-in feel. Move the settee and other sitting room furnishings so they're arranged in a manner that brings attention to one central focal point in the room. Use simple interior design techniques like this to help the potential buyer see what can be done with space.

5. Take out the secateurs.
Preparing to sell your house may seem a strange time to be gardening, but the reality is that the first thing a potential buyer sees is your yard. You'll want to make sure that the outside is as tidy as the inside. Mow the lawn, trim the bushes, and plant a few flowers if needed.

You don't have to go it alone when selling your house. An experienced agent can help you be sure that you have all the to-dos ticked -- even the ones you may forget. 
Learn more about how a Doorsteps agent can help you.

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Blog entry by Doorsteps

Understanding an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)

You may be familiar with the requirement that all UK houses must have an energy performance certificate (EPC). Any person considering selling their property must have one as part of the sales process. But perhaps you're confused about what they are, or where you can get one. The following is a brief guide with questions and answers to help you better understand an EPC.

Question: What is an energy performance certificate (EPC)?
Answer: An energy performance certificate (EPC) is a report that is gathered by an accredited person who measures the energy efficiency of your house. EPCs were first introduced in the UK in 2007 and were transposed into British law that same year.

Question: What does the EPC measure?
Answer: An EPC is a rating scheme that summarises your building's efficiency. As part of the process, an accredited Domestic Energy Assessor comes to your house and undertakes an EPC of your home. Using government approved software, he or she enters information about your property's radiators, domestic boilers, loft insulation, hot water tank, and so on. The software then calculates the efficiency of your home. You are given two scores: one that rates your current efficiency, and one that shows the efficiency mark you could have if you make suggested improvements.

Question: Who needs an EPC?
Answer: Simply put: everyone. As per the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government's Domestic Energy Performance Certificate Register website, "an Energy Performance Certificate is required for properties when constructed, sold or let." If you're considering the sale of your own home, you'll need to find a Domestic Energy Assessor to create the report for you. You will be charged a fee for the report, which usually amounts to around £60 for a four-bedroom house.

Question: Where can you find a Domestic Energy Assessor?
Answer: The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government's Domestic Energy Performance Certificate Register website enables you to find an accredited Domestic Energy Assessor near you. The website can be 
accessed here.

Getting an EPC is easy. If you'd like further assistance in getting an EPC to sell your home, 
contact Doorsteps today.

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Blog entry by Doorsteps

3 Reasons Your Home Won't Sale -- And How To Fix Them

Your house isn't selling. You seem to have done everything right: you wrote an awesome description, attached several snaps, even listed it on several property sites, but nothing seems to be working. What's the problem?

If this scenario sounds familiar, don't lose hope. The problem is usually corrected in a few simple steps. Here are three problems that may be preventing you from selling your house, and the solutions you can take to finally make that sell. 

Problem #1: You're Listing Your Property Without Assistance
While it's possible to post your property on multiple individual sites by yourself, a professional agent knows the best sites and can help guide you through the process. In addition, an agent can also help you pinpoint troublesome spots in your listing before it goes live.

The Solution: Though hiring an agent may sound expensive, there are affordable solutions. Doorsteps offers professional agents 24/7, with no commission fee, in our £99 package. 

Problem #2: Your Snaps Aren't The Best
90 percent of buyers first look at a listing's photos before they read the description. If you're not getting any interested buyers, it could be because your snaps are sub-par. 

The Solution: Try hiring a professional photographer who can take care of the photos for you. Doorsteps offers a professional photographer service as part of our £199 package.

Problem #3: Your Advert Is Not Easily Found on Property Sites
In order for interested property buyers to be able to buy your property, they must first be able to find its listing. There can be a lot of factors that influence where your listing is found on property sites, including:

  • The number of properties being sold on the listing site.
  • The property market for your particular postcode.
  • How long your listing has been on the property site.
The Solution: Sometimes, the only thing you can do to bring your advert more attention is to purchase the property site's premier service, which makes your listing featured and gives it priority ranking. Doorsteps offers you a featured listing on Rightmove and a premium listing on Zoopla in our £499 package.

Finding the solution to your house selling problem is easy if you know where to turn. 
Compare the various packages offered by Doorsteps to see if one might offer the solution you're looking for.

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Blog entry by Doorsteps

Here's How To Have a Successful Showing

You've taken an online advert listing your home. You've received some interest, and are expecting the potential buyers for a viewing in a few hours’ time. You've cleaned the house, taken the dog to your mum's, and notified the neighbours of the coming guests. But have you finished everything?

Here's a list of tasks to tick off your next showing to-do list.


Create A Comfortable Atmosphere
The key to making a potential buyer fall in love with your property is to make sure everything is in order and the atmosphere is welcoming, comfortable and cosy. Create a mood that is relaxing and facilitate the guest's need to explore.
Be sure to:

  • Have The Right Temperature: Make sure the thermostat is set appropriately for the season. Make it cooler in hotter weather and warmer when it's cold.
  • Rid The House of Sight-Line Impairments: Choose a focal point in each room. Arrange furnishings and other items so that the eye is drawn to the central focus, and rid the place of those things that distract.
  • De-odourise, But Keep The Scent Neutral: Ensure that there are no foul odours in your house, but don't use sprays or other de-odourisers that may cause a bad experience for those with allergies.
Make It Bright
Light brings a certain cheerfulness to a room. Use natural light when possible. Pull the curtains open on bright days and let the sunlight shine through. Create a pleasant mood in the home by using light to draw attention to features you wish to highlight.


Keep It Personable
Buyers do not make purchases from places, they make purchases from people. Be personable with your guests. Greet them upon their entry. Offer to show them around the property but allow them to venture around on their own if they so choose. Be wholesomely hospitable and attentive to their needs.

Be Prepared
Some buyers may have a lot of questions about the property. Answer everything they ask truthfully to the best of your ability. Ask them about any concerns they may have, and provide them with achievable, satisfactory solutions when you are able. 

By following these simple steps, you can have a successful showing. If you'd like help with scheduling showings, Doorsteps would be glad to assist. 
Contact us to get started today.

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Blog entry by Doorsteps

3 UK Property Facts You Should Know

Deciding to sell your property is a big decision. As with any large decision we make in life, we need to approach it with the facts. Here are three interesting facts about the UK's property market that you might want to know before selling your home. 

1. £242,000 Is The Average UK House Price
According to a report released by the 
Office for National Statistics in April of this year, the average UK house price was £242,000, with that number expected to continue to climb. The uptick comes after a period of economic downturn during 2008 and 2009.

What this means for home sellers: An uptick in prices means your property value has probably gone up as well. You may very well stand to gain a higher profit on your home today than you could have in the past.

2. First-Time UK Buyers May Not Have To Pay The Stamp Duty
In November 2017, the stamp duty on first-time buyers was cut on properties up to £300,000. Announced by Chancellor Philip Hammond, the move was expected to save 80% of first-time buyers nearly £5,000. So far, nearly 70,000 first-time buyers have benefited, many paying no stamp duty at all, a report said.

What this means for home sellers: A cut of the stamp duty has significant benefit to the home seller. Not only does it mean that your property has the potential to now reach more interested ladies and gents, it also means that those first-time buyers will be more likely to buy your home for the savings they'll incur. 

3. Virginia Water Is The UK's Highest Value Town
According to Zoopla, Virginia Water offers some of the highest value on the property market in all of the UK. Other towns getting ticks on the top five boxes: Cobham, Keston, Beaconsfield and Chalfont St. Giles. 

What this means for home sellers: If you live in one of these towns, you stand to gain the most pound for pound on your property listing. 

There's a whole lot more to know about the UK housing market. Fortunately, our team of dedicated agents are here to help. If you're interested in selling your home, get a 
free instant evaluation or contact one of our professional agents today.

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Blog entry by Doorsteps

3 Steps To Writing A Property Description That Sells

One of the toughest aspects of making an online property listing is writing the property description. Choosing the right words, and knowing which words to avoid, can seem overwhelming. Fortunately, there are some strategies that will help cut some of the stress. Try following these three steps to write a property description that sells.

1. Help Us See With Words
The point of an online property description is to tell us about the features in your home. But you'll want to do more than just tell -- you'll also want to show. Use descriptions to indicate why we should care. Online property market database Zillow says
these words can often help you sell your property for an above-asking price:

  • spotless
  • upgraded
  • landscaped
  • impeccable
  • stainless

There are words that you'll want to avoid using as well. Property firm Market Leader says you should 
not be using these words:

  • clean
  • quiet
  • vacant
  • value
  • motivated

2. Keep Your Description Around 250 Words
That may not seem like a lot of words to tout the features of your home, but it actually provides you with more than enough space to have your say. Remember, you are writing for an online audience, where attention spans wane quickly. To keep a potential buyer's interest, try to highlight these things in your online advert:

  • The number of rooms, the size of the house, etc.
  • The neighbourhood and local attractions, including primary and secondary schools and universities
  • Any unique selling points, including rare features or other inimitable details

3. Don't Forget The Headline!
An advert's well-written headline will quickly capture the attention of a potential buyer.
It should:

  • Be short and to the point
  • Stand out from all the other headlines
  • Make a good first impression

Still stuck at writing the perfect property description? The team at Doorsteps can help. 
Contact us to enquire about how we can assist. 

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