Protecting an empty home during a lengthy sale process
Posted on 16 July, 2018
According to the latest City Rate of Sale report [i] from Post Office Money, the average UK property takes 96 days to sell. While most people selling a home will be living at the property there are some that aren’t, which can mean properties are left empty for many months.
These could include people selling second homes, those that choose to move into a new home before completing the sale, those who have relocated abroad or those selling the home of a loved one who has died.
Empty properties can be vulnerable to theft or vandalism. Squatters are also a possibility, even though it’s illegal to squat in a residential property the UK. If squatters do break in, they may cause damage to the property.
Burst water pipes, broken windows or even falling trees during bad weather are also risks for empty homes and such incidences need to be dealt with straightaway. Insurance companies are often reluctant to insure empty homes or will charge a larger premium.
One solution is to employ a live-in caretaker to stay in the home and provide property security until the sale is completed, preventing it becoming a target for thieves and vandals. The home will also look lived-in and homely which is more appealing for prospective buyers.
There is nothing worse than looking around a property that is cold and unventilated because no one is living there. A live-in caretaker can help owners achieve a sale more quickly as they can ensure the home is presented well for each viewing.
Having the property occupied can also reduce insurance premiums and if something happens such as a burst pipe there is someone on hand to deal with it promptly. At Homesitters, we provide live-in caretakers who will not leave the property for more than three consecutive hours during daylight or one hour after dark, and they won’t let anyone in the property without prior authorisation. Assignments can last for any length of time, from a couple of days to a few years.
With house sales often taking many months, live-in caretakers offer peace of mind and security that an empty home is being looked after.
If you are selling an empty home and want to find out more about our live-in caretaker services, please contact us on 01296 630 730 or click here to complete our online booking form.