The UK housing market has awoken from its slumber. Covid-19 effectively froze property transactions throughout March, April and May, but now things are beginning to thaw as the Government green lights physical viewings.

But will there be a surge of activity, and how will the new normal look for people buying and selling homes? According to property portal Zoopla, housing demand surged by 88% the week after the market reopened. 

Pent-up demand during the height of coronavirus seems to have eager sellers and buyers coming back in their droves. And if you’re a vendor, you probably want to know how property viewings look during Covid-19, along with any particulars around selling your home. 

Worry not! We’ve put this guide together so that you can sell your home with confidence. Find out what you need to do to get your home sale-ready and make sure that you’re well prepared for demand from buyers.

The property market reopens post Covid-19

The seven-week stasis is over, and the housing market was one of the first industries to open after the nationwide lockdown. Previously, the Government asked people to put moves on hold where possible. Now, however, you’re free to resume the buying and selling of bricks and mortar. 

An estimated 450,000 people had their moves logged in a queue, so the news will come as a huge relief to them — as it will to the millions who want to move to a new home. Yet it’s vital to make sure everything is done safely, and there are a few precautions you can take to ensure a smooth sales process. 

The Ultimate Seller's Guide to Moving During Covid-19

Use an estate agent who’s always “on”

Communication is vital during a time of social distancing. Instructing an estate agent is one of the most important parts of selling your home, and you’ll want to work with one who is transparent and communicative. 

One of the primary benefits of emoov is that we’re always switched “on”. If you’ve got a question or query, no matter the time of day, a property professional is on hand to help you. You’ll also get a dedicated expert who sticks with you throughout the sale, rather than being passed around from person to person. 

You can build up a rapport with your agent, who will keep you up to date with selling post-Covid-19 while providing essential guidance that helps smooth the process. Access to an online dashboard also means you’ll have a complete overview of the viewings, offers and the entire sales process. 

Having as much control as you need over your sale, as well as on-demand access to a dedicated expert, provides the perfect combination to sell your home in the current climate.

Read our official guide “How to choose an estate agent during Covid-19”

The Ultimate Seller's Guide to Moving During Covid-19

Spruce up your property with small refurbishments

In the early stages of listing your home, you might decide to add a few DIY touch-ups that make it more appealing and potentially increase its value. Give the walls a once over if necessary and de-clutter outside spaces and spare rooms. 

It’s best to avoid any work that requires the use of a handyperson or any other external help unless completely necessary. But a bit of extra love and care for your home can go a long way to attracting potential buyers. 

Read our guide: Is Covid-19 the perfect excuse to spruce up your home?

The Ultimate Seller's Guide to Moving During Covid-19

Prepare for property viewings in the ‘new normal’

Viewings are arguably the most vital part of selling your home. A buyer is unlikely to make an offer if they haven’t seen your property, so you’ll need to be well prepared for this stage of the process. 

Social distancing means physical property viewings will take on a different guise for the foreseeable future. Fortunately, it’s that little bit easier if you’re selling your home with emoov. 

Our sales team provides support and assistance, so there’s no need to contend with an extra person (the agent) around your home. You’ll receive viewing requests via your online account and can arrange a time slot with the interested buyer directly. 

There’s also a set of vital practices you should follow to ensure the property viewing process in a post-Covid-19 world runs smoothly. These include: 

  • • Wear gloves and a facemask where possible
  • • Supply spare gloves and face masks for viewers 
  • • Leave all cupboards and doors open, so people don’t need to touch them
  • • Remain two meters apart
  • • If possible, leave the property or wait in the garden during the viewing
  • • Make sure the property is thoroughly cleaned, including any communal areas
  • • Air the property thoroughly before, after and during the viewing

 

It’s also worth offering the option of video walkthroughs, with potential buyers seeing your home via a live Facetime or Skype video tour. While it’s unlikely a buyer will make a decision based solely off a video, it will help to sort the serious buyers from those who are only casually looking. 

Read our guide: How to prepare your property for viewings during Covid-19? 

The Ultimate Seller's Guide to Moving During Covid-19

Conveyancing, surveyors and removals during Covid-19

There’s more than one component needed for the house-selling machine to function at full force. Once you’ve accepted an offer to sell your home, you’ll need to get solicitors involved and possibly removal companies for moving day

Mortgages advisors and surveyors may also be required. These industries are now open and have resumed some form of normality, though social distancing measures will be in place where necessary.  

How will surveyors operate post Covid-19?

Surveyors, in particular, have been asked to adhere to special guidelines, as they will need to visit the property. 

  • • Surveyors shouldn’t enter properties where a member of the household shows signs of coronavirus
  • • Only one person should visit the property, and inspections must be by appointment only
  • • Surveyors should follow social distancing rules
  • • You should ensure that surveyors don’t need to open and doors or touch any surfaces
  • • How will mortgages work post Covid-19?

 

Many banks are offering desktop valuations for mortgage surveys, though a growing number are now conducting them physically as restrictions around lockdown ease.

We’ve teamed up with the Mortgage Advice Bureau, who can help you secure a mortgage if your next move requires any borrowing. It’s just another part of keeping everything under one roof, making it easier for our vendors and the experience more seamless. 

How will removal companies operate post Covid-19?

Removal companies are operating with a few tweaks to keep in line with social distancing measures. These include: 

  • • Contacting removal firms as early as possible, as there is plenty of demand for their services
  • • Cleaning your belongings where possible and packing as much as you can by yourself
  • • Leaving all doors and cupboard open and maintaining social distancing
  • • Not offering refreshments, but providing handwashing facilities where possible

How will conveyancing work post Covid-19?

Most of the conveyancing and solicitors services can be done online, which means they are still mostly working remotely. This won’t affect the sales process, and the majority of conveyancers were still operating throughout the lockdown. 

However, we recommend working with a good solicitor, one who is a property expert and recognises the situation and can prepare flexible contracts where possible in case either party shows coronavirus-related symptoms.

Read our guide: How does conveyancing work during Covid-19?

The Ultimate Seller's Guide to Moving During Covid-19

Post-Covid-19 home selling has changed

The key to a successful sale is selling your home safely while achieving the property’s valuation. Covid-19 has changed many aspects of the sales process, but new protocols will help create a safer and more secure environment for everyone involved. 

As a vendor, you can start getting excited about selling your home — especially if you have five-star help from an estate agent fully equipped for the new normal.