As an Estate Agent, I am often surprised by vendors/sellers of property not focusing on the difference between what they sell and buy at as the pertinent decision making factor.

Too often, vendors focus entirely on the offer they have received on their own property before making an assessment of the difference between what they sell and buy at.  For example, we recently acted for clients in the Fleet area who were looking to move to the West Country.  After an extensive marketing campaign the best offer we could secure from a viable purchaser was £25,000 below our clients aspirations. On an emotional level this offer may have been rejected and the search for a new buyer continued, with the resultant risk of losing the property identified in the West Country; however, a more proactive approach was adopted.

We identified that the difference between the sale price in Fleet and the West Country was £75,000.  We then approached the vendors of the property in the West Country and duly offered a figure of £25,000 below their asking price in order that the difference that we wanted to maintain for our clients was protected.

As the owners of that property in the West Country had not managed to find another buyer in the intervening period, and after a period of consideration they decided to accept the reduced figure, which enabled our own clients to accept the lower offer on their own property without being any worse off.

This is something that owners of property need to consider, as flexibility is required in fairly challenging market conditions.

It is my advice that when initially thinking about making a move, that the price difference, be it up or down, needs to be identified and calculated before placing your own property on the market.

For example, if you are selling at £400,000 and hoping to buy at £600,000, then your price difference is £200,000.  This means, in theory and as an extreme example, you could accept a lower offer, sell your own property for £100,000 and make an offer of £300,000 for the next property, the difference is still £200,000.

It is very natural to adopt a defensive position in that you want to protect the value of your own property and do not want to  feel that you are giving your own money away, but when you consider the property that you are buying during your decision making process , you can see that it can be a commercial overall decision, so, providing the difference between the two properties is maintained,  then a more flexible approach can be taken in terms of considering perfectly good offers on your own property.

Ed Mackenzie Smith