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How Long Does it Take to Sell a House?

The age old question: how long will it take to sell my house? We’re here to help you with a timeline so you can figure out how long it will probably take to sell your house.

Selling a house timeline

Waiting for your house to sell can be frustrating, especially if you’re in a rush to move to your next place. True, there’s no exact answer to “how long will it take?”, because every property is different and the housing market is always changing. But we know that it’s helpful to have a timeline of the process. This timeline should help you to feel armed with up-to-date information, so you don’t feel you’re in the dark anywhere along the selling journey. You can also use it to estimate how long you might be waiting for the sale, and to set some realistic expectations and goals. There are also some things you can do along the way to speed up the process if you’re looking to sell your home in a hurry. Strike has some handy tips to get the process rolling as fast as possible. 

(0-2 weeks)

Choosing an estate agent

So you think you’re ready to sell. You might have done an online valuation for a rough estimate of what you might expect to get for your property. Next up, you’ll be thinking about estate agents — and there are a lot of estate agents out there. You have a choice of traditional and high street estate agents, or online and hybrid agents. What’s the difference?

Traditional Estate Agents

Lots of people default to using a traditional agent because it’s what they know — your parents or friends may have used them, or you might walk past them on your way to work and spy some good properties in the window. It’s true that high street agents have a few positives that some sellers find particularly appealing. For example, they tend to work on a no-sell-no-fee commission basis — so they will take a proportion of your sale only if the sale is successful. That means it might not cost you anything up front, but most likely will cost you much more money later on.

Online and Hybrid Estate Agents

Online estate agents charge a flat fee, rather than a commission. This means you end up saving a lot of money, especially if you’re selling a very expensive property. An online agent usually charges between £300-£1500, depending on how much the agent is doing for you. A purely online agent means you (the seller) has total control over the sale — from planning viewings and taking the photos, you’re in the driver’s seat. A hybrid agent will do those bits for you, but still follow a mostly online model.

Here at Strike, we’re obviously pro online estate agency. One of the main perks of Strike is the control you can have over the sales process: you can manage viewings, offers and liaise with buyers all in our app. Or, as with a traditional agent, you can have one of our agents do all that legwork for you. 

The key thing is picking someone you can trust and checking the reviews. If you need some more guidance, we’ve got a list of questions to ask your estate agent.

Top tip: Start researching estate agents before you decide to sell. That way you won’t have to spend ages looking for the right match when you want to get the ball rolling.

1-14 Weeks


Once you’ve found the estate agent for you and you’ve decided on a contract, it’s time to get down to the selling. The marketing can happen quickly; in fact at Strike we like to have you online in a few hours, but it can take a few days. 

When you’re selling your house you definitely want your property to be seen by as many people as possible, so it's good to have a broad scope when it comes to marketing. It’s worth ensuring that your agent is planning on getting your property out on a lot of platforms, and definitely one of the main property portals like Rightmove or Zoopla. This way you can get a lot of eyes on the property. Here at Strike we know how much power social media has (mainly judging by our screen time count each week…) So, we advertise your property on socials too, with Facebook being one of our biggest tools to draw in viewings and offers.

...and viewings

Once the property has been marketed and is online, the viewings can start. These will either be hosted by you or your agent. At Strike, our app puts the seller and the buyer in direct communication, so there’s no middleman slowing anything down. (Would you rather have someone host them for you? We can do that, too. Have a look at a breakdown of our packages and fees). 

This part of your selling process will probably be the most nail-biting, and it’s really hard to predict how long it will take. The time from viewings beginning to making the sale will depend on the state of the market, and how competitively priced your house is. We’ve had houses snapped up in a matter of hours, but if you’re priced at the optimistic end of the spectrum, or the market isn’t quite as healthy, it can take a long time. Whilst it can be hours, it can take up to 14 weeks or even longer. If it’s taking too long (only you can decide what is “too long” for you) you and your agent can go back to the drawing board to decide what to do next, which could be taking it off the market for a while, or decreasing the price a little.

Oh, and one little thing — we sell faster and for more than other top agents. (Don’t take our word for it, you can check it out for yourself here.) Just thought we’d mention that.

9 weeks

Offer accepted to exchanging

You got an offer! And the price is right — so you’ve accepted it. Brilliant news. You’ve worked hard to get to this stage, and it’s worth celebrating, but maybe Lambrini rather than a Prosecco, because things aren’t set in stone yet. In fact, this is one of the most common times for things to fall through.

So what happens now? During this period your solicitor and the buyers’ solicitor will work together to get the sale through. The buyer's solicitor will run any necessary searches and enquiries, and the buyer may opt to have a survey done to make sure the home is sound. Your agent should be liaising with the solicitors and with you, to reassure you that the sale is running smoothly and advising on any bumps in the road. Your buyer’s mortgage lender may also want a valuation survey done to make sure the house is worth what they're lending. Based on the findings of the surveys, the buyer may want to negotiate the price again.

Once this is all done and you’ve both signed the contract, you’ll be exchanging. Firstly: hooray! Secondly: what does that mean? It’s one of those phrases you hear people say a lot, but basically it just means the exchange of contracts. In the olden days (yes, that’s an official period of history) the solicitors on both sides would meet and physically swap the contracts. Now it just means both parties’ solicitors have the signed contract, a completion date (the date the keys are handed over) has been agreed upon and your solicitor will also have the transfer of the title deed (also called the TF1 form, but don’t worry, your solicitor will sort this). The contracts are then exchanged, usually over the phone nowadays, and the contracts are now legally binding. It is now much harder for your buyer to drop out. 

And there’s more good news: Whether the market is hot or cold, data shows that this part of the process usually takes the same amount of time — about 9 weeks— so it's easy to plan for.

2 weeks

Exchanging to completing

You should have an agreed upon completion date set out in your contract, so you’ll know exactly how long between exchanging and completion. Some people do it at the same time, if they’re in a rush, while others prefer a longer gap. The completion date is the final stage of your selling journey — congratulations! It’s time to start booking your moving vans and wondering why you have 17 of the same charger that don’t charge anything you own. What happens on completion day itself? The buyer’s solicitors release the funds to your solicitor and the estate agent hands over the keys. The house is sold. You made it!

12-27 weeks

Total process?

So what's the answer? How long does it take to sell a home? As you can see, a quick sale might go from choosing an estate agent to completion in as little as 12 weeks — or it could take up to 27. In fact, in some extreme cases, it could be even faster or take even longer. But if you know the factors that you need to consider — the market, your agent, your pricing, how organised you are — you can start to plan ahead.

What other factors affect your selling journey?

Is it a “hot” or “cold” market?

The temperature of the market (which just means how strong the market is) will directly relate to the speed that your house will sell. You can check the “weather” of the housing market via this “PropCast”. Generally speaking, the “hotter” the market, the higher the demand for houses, and the quicker your property should sell. If the market is “colder”, there is a lower demand in the market. A reason for this could be a financial event or crisis; an example of this was the mini-budget in 2022, and the subsequent removal of mortgages from the market. 

Asking price

One hot tip to remember: just because an estate agent gives you the highest valuation, doesn’t mean you should instantly go for them. If a few agents give you roughly the same valuation but one goes much higher, it could be an indication that they’re being over optimistic, or even attempting to pitch high in order to win the deal. Though it seems exciting to reach for the sky, valuing your property too high could slow down the process in the long run, or even kill the sale totally. A good indicator that your house is priced too high is if you’re getting lots of viewings, but no offers. If you’ve had more than 10 viewings but no offers, you may want to think about reducing the price (especially if you’ve already made reasonable design and structural changes).  

How good is your solicitor?

Get advice from friends, estate agents and online about estate agents. Online reviews are useful tools for assessing the standards of your solicitor. The quality of your solicitor will relate to how fast you get your property sold, so don’t just go for the cheapest one - they will often be over-worked and therefore slow and hard to get hold of. Not what we want!

How good is your estate agent?

Again, do your research and look at reviews. Ok we didn’t WANT to mention this but you forced our hand! Yep, it’s true: we have tens of thousands of 5-star reviews on TrustPilot We’ve also won Online Estate Agent of the Year 3 years running, as voted for by actual customers. It’s credits like this that make estate agents worth considering. 

Are you doing all you can?

As much as you can point the finger at lots of different people and factors, you have a part to play in the process too. This should be an empowering thing! You have the ability to speed things up. How? Avoid going on holiday, particularly somewhere without WiFi. Do weekly checkups with your estate agent and your solicitor - keeping your foot on the pedal definitely speeds up the sale. And remember - sign and return all your paperwork quickly and correctly to avoid delays.