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What are my Rights when Selling a Home?

By: Christine Whitfield BA (hons) - Updated: 8 Sep 2012 | comments*Discuss
Selling Rights Home Inspectors Estate

Selling a home is a very stressful experience. Any transaction where a lot of money is involved is daunting but selling your family home is particularly demanding. Therefore it's inevitable that you want to know your rights so you know you are getting a fair deal.The government claim Home Information Packs are going to make buying and selling a home easier than ever before. And to ensure that is the case there a various regulations in place to ensure everyone gets a fair deal, including you, the seller.

Home Inspectors

Firstly home inspectors must be fully qualified to inspect your property. Therefore you can rest assured that the report will be undertaken properly. The inspectors must be part of the Home Inspectors Certification Scheme. The scheme serves to ensure all inspectors are fully qualified. There are various Certification schemes and the providers and if for any reason the providers thinks the inspector is not performing correctly it has the ability to suspend him or her from duty.

If you feel you are not getting the best service from your inspector then there is a complaints procedure in place. You should be completely satisfied with the work your home inspector carries out.

Estate Agents

All estate agents that deal with houses with HIPs (currently three and four bedroom houses but from December 14th all houses) have to be part of an independent redress scheme. This means anyone wishing to complain can do so through the scheme provider. The providers are the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors and the Ombudsman for Estate Agents.

Sellers also have legal rights when it comes to using estate agents. There are various contracts that you can sign which will specify how your house will be marketed. For example if you sign a Sole Agency contract then only the estate agent you sign with is able to sell your home. Sole Selling is similar to this except it also means even if you find a buyer yourself you still need to pay the agent.

If you sign a multi-agency contract then several estate agents can sell your home but you only pay the agent that actually sells your home. Contracts that have a "ready, willing and able" clause state you have to pay the agent if he/she finds a buyer for the home - even if you later decided you do not want to go through with the sale.

As with all contracts you should make sure you should make sure you read the contract first and, if in any doubt, ask your solicitor to go through it with you. Contracts are often written in "legal speak" and it can be very difficult to understand them. You do not want to sign into something you don't want and don't understand.

Selling a house is a big deal and it is certainly not something you want to get wrong. Do not rush into anything, and make sure you seek advice about anything you are unsure about or any issue you feel uneasy with.

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