If you've ever done a long car journey with children, you'll no doubt have heard; 'Are we there yet?'And if you have ever had the misfortune to deal with a dodgy mechanic (Forest Hill has plenty of good, honest, hardworking ones by the way) you may recall hearing, accompanied by a dramatic intake of breath 'It's the (insert a mechanical term you have never heard of) that's gone. That'll cost you a lot.”

As estate agents and residents in Forest Hill we've been serving people here for years.And during that time, we have heard a few phrases repeated constantly.

The top one from vendors and buyers is 'we want to be in before Christmas.'Remember most people selling a home are moving to another home. And most people see Christmas as a great time to be settled into a new property.

The average house sale takes 10- 14 weeks from the moment a sale is agreed. But how do you give yourself the best possible chance of being 'in for Christmas'?

Here are five easy, peasy tips from the Benjamin Matthews team.

1) Contact estate agents at the start of September to come to your property and give you valuations.

2) Instruct the agent who you think will get you the best price in the shortest possible time (don't just go for the cheapest fee, as cheap won't leave you cheerful when it comes to selling a home).

3) Instruct a solicitor who has come recommended. A good solicitor is key to getting everything sorted in a time scale that suits you. You shouldn't have to chase your solicitor to get things done, they are working for you after all.

4) The run up to Christmas is always a busy time for good removal firms. There's a reason why certain removal companies can do your move at the drop of a hat and it's usually not a good one. With that in mind remember to get a free quote before you have a confirmed moving date – some firms will pencil you in, but this needs to be confirmed as soon as you know the completion date and when contracts have been exchanged.

5) Throughout the process a good estate agent will keep in constant contact with you to ensure your sale is being handled well.

This draws us back to our second point. Many agencies that charge rocket bottom fees deliver poor quality service with communication a victim of their price cutting. This can leave you out of pocket and stressed.

So, if you are looking to be 'in for Christmas' give us a call as we'd love to help you do exactly that.Thanks for reading


Whether you are selling, buying, letting or renting, we're here to help. Call us on 020 8699 5139 or email: info@benjamin-matthews.co.uk for expert advice which is honest, accurate and informative.Most people selling a home are moving to another home. And most people see Christmas as a great time to be settled into a new property.