Buying and selling with Jackson-Stops

In this month’s blog Jackson–Stops of Chipping Campden – winners of the Excellence in Service Award, at the 2021 Concierge Medical Business and Young Entrepreneurs Awards, provide an overview on the property market in the Cotswolds and a few tips on how you can navigate your way to a successful outcome when buying or selling property.

Rupert and Annabel Wakley re-opened the Jackson-Stops Chipping Campden office in June 2020 having purchased the business in March 2020, two weeks into the Covid-19 lockdown.

No one could have predicted the Covid-19 lockdown would result in a surge of activity in rural areas, particularly in the Cotswolds housing market.

Since June 2020 the Jackson-Stops Chipping Campden office has sold over £90,000,000 worth of property varying from £275,000 to £5,000,000. These properties include apartments, townhouses, village houses, Manor houses, farms, equestrian and small estates.

Buying and selling in today’s market

Intense demand in the middle and upper country house markets has outlasted the stamp duty holiday, lockdowns, and winter. Volumes have only slowed because of a lack of supply.

This makes it even more of a sellers’ market and thus even more frustrating for the legion of would-be home movers, waiting for a market not dominated by buyers without a dependent sale. Waiting, though, is not in their best interests.

A co-operative endeavour selling in order to buy, is always something of a dance. As both a seller and a buyer, the market can only ever be partially in your favour, so holding out for the perfect time rarely makes sense, even before factoring in the unpredictable preferences of whoever you sell to and buy from.

It is, though, a co-operative dance: all involved want to trade, so a fund of goodwill is there. Create enough flexibility, and your offer might be more attractive to a seller than that of, say, the cash buyer who wants possession by the end of the month.

Indeed, looking at feedback from our offices around the country, it’s clear that the majority of sales do still involve buyers who themselves have related sales.

How do they do it?

Here are the essentials:

Get real about your move
A clear plan will reveal how realistic your expectations are and any steps – such as checks on property title and eligibility for finance – that must be taken along the way. Being well prepared encourages buyer interest, helping to attract competing bids and thus the best buyer for your circumstances. It’s also hard to overstate just how important it is to choose a good conveyancer: more sales than ever are failing, or taking literally months longer than expected, because of legal service delays.

Get a buyer
Without a buyer, you can’t buy, and no seller (or agent) will take your interest in a house, seriously. Ideally, you want a buyer willing to pay a top price and fit in with your timing. Right now, your chances of this are good, because it’s a seller’s market.

Get flexible
There are two main ways to do this. The simplest is to sell first and move to a rented house with a flexible term. If – like most – you regard renting as possible but unattractive, the next best thing is to have exchanged contracts with your buyer, with a delayed completion. ‘Completion in six months or less by mutual agreement’, has proved a winning formula with many of our country house deals.

It gives your buyer certainty, whilst putting you in just as strong a position as most buyers in rented accommodation. If exchanging contracts without a purchase is also a step too far, do not despair. Sellers will take your offer very seriously, if your lawyers can confirm that your sale is 100% ready to exchange, and your timing fits with theirs. Of course, you might need to offer a little more.

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Jackson-Stops Office
The Jackson-Stops, Chipping Campden

The office is centrally located on the High Street and has been for over 50 years, strategically based to cover the North Cotswolds, Gloucestershire and Warwickshire.

Together with the larger Jackson-Stops national network including the nearby Burford office, properties are extensively marketed to local, regional and national buyers and tenants via a comprehensive applicant database, social media, primary websites and a London based PR agency whom regularly feed properties into The Sunday Times, The Telegraph, Country Life and Cotswold Life.

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