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What are the Costs of Selling a House in Central London?

By Maurice Shasha  //  Mon 22nd January 2024
What's the actual cost of selling a house in central London? Read on to find out how to estimate estate agent fees, legal fees, removal costs, taxes and other expenses.
Cost of Selling a House in London

There's always a chance that unexpected costs will arise, but most costs can be predicted. We'll walk through the costs of selling a house, including the hidden extras that can eat into your budget.

In the last 12 months, Rightmove estimated the average sale price in Knightsbridge was £2,733,734. In Mayfair, the average sale price was  £6,710,780. Consider that some costs are directly linked to your property's price tag, the costs involved in selling a house can quickly spiral.  

For example, estate agent and conveyancing fees will be higher on properties valued at over £2,000,000. Professional service prices are also higher in London compared to other parts of the UK.

Average Cost to Sell a House in Central London

To help you avoid any nasty surprises during the process of selling your home, we've collated a list of the average costs and fees for selling a house in central London:

Average cost to sell property in central London (based on average property price in Knightsbridge)

  • Estate agent fees  £38,272*
  • Preparing for sale  £1,500
  • Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) £100
  • Conveyancing fees £5,000
  • Removals £800
  • Mortgage fees £200     
    Total: £45,872

*Based on 1.4% of property sold for £2,733,734 (average property price in Knightsbridge December 2023)

Estate Agent Fees for Selling a Property

The most significant cost of selling a home in the UK is often estate agent fees. An estate agent is your route to promoting your home, finding a buyer, and a point of contact throughout the process. You may be able to save money, but weighing up the cost versus the value of additional services is essential.
 
Selling a house with a high-street estate agent typically costs around 0.75% to 3.5% of the final sale price. Online estate agents usually charge a fixed fee of £1,000 to £2,000, which you must pay at the start of the process, and you will have to do most of the work yourself.

High Street Estate Agents

High street estate agents offer the benefit of expertise. A good estate agent knows how to market houses in your area, has the contact details of interested buyers at their fingertips, and knows the process inside out.

Most high street agents will offer professional photography for marketing. This may come as an additional cost when you sell your home, but professional photographers know the tips and tricks to highlight your home to its potential. At Plaza Estates we pay for a professional photographer as part of the service.
 
Once your house has attracted interest from potential buyers, high-street agents will conduct viewings and handle negotiations. Commission costs of selling a house are part and parcel of utilising your agent's professional input.

Online Estate Agents

You can save on estate agent fees by opting for an online estate agent. The services you get in return will be minimal, and you could lose money overall.  

While a high street estate agent will do all the marketing work, arrange and conduct viewings, and negotiate for you, an online estate agent will list your property but may not offer many additional services.
 
Home sellers who choose an online estate agent pay less in agent fees but often lose money overall because they accept a lower offer than they could have achieved. High street agents know the local market and will find the best buyer with the highest offer.  
 
A recent survey revealed that a good high street agent can secure a 5% higher asking price than a listing service. Findings also included that a high street agent generated a more secure buyer 73% of the time, significantly reducing the chance of sale fall-throughs.

If you are considering using an online estate agent, do lots of research to check what is included in the fee before you put your house on the market.
 
Does your online estate agent carry out viewings? Some do, some don't, and others offer these services for an extra fee.  
 

Preparing Your Home for Sale

The money you spend preparing your house for sale can pay off. Some buyers are looking for a project house, but most want a home they can move straight into.
 

Make necessary repairs

Before you invite prospective buyers into your home, take care of annoying maintenance problems. If it's easy to rectify, the cost and effort can outweigh the chance of putting a buyer off.

If there are more significant problems, such as a damaged roof or damp problems, it may be worth getting a quote to see how much it would be to resolve the issue. Otherwise, expect potential buyers to request a discount on the sale price.

Redecorate

Many agents recommend a new coat of paint throughout to refresh your house. The cost will vary depending on the size of the property, the cost of decorators in your area, and the paint you select. The cost to repaint the interior of an entire house will usually cost at least £2,000.

Deep clean

And don't underestimate the value of a clean house. You can do it yourself on a shoestring budget or set aside between £100-200 to hire a cleaner. If you want the reassurance of a professional clean, ask a local cleaning service for a bespoke quote.

Energy Performance Certificate

All sellers must provide prospective buyers with an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) to indicate their house's energy efficiency rating. The cost of an EPC when you sell your home is usually between £55 and £120. The scale classifies properties between A and G. A is very energy efficient, with lower running costs. G is the least efficient, attracting higher running costs.
 
Sellers in Scotland have a slightly different process and must provide a Home Report, including the EPC or energy report and a survey.
 

Conveyancing Solicitor Fees

The cost of a conveyancer to sell your house is typically around £600 to £1,000, depending on the property's mortgage status and whether it's freehold or leasehold.

Selling a property with a mortgage can add around £50 to your total costs. If your property is leasehold, the additional paperwork and dealings with the leaseholder can add around £300.
 
Hiring a good solicitor can pay off in the long run if they help the deal run smoothly. Ask for recommendations, read reviews and compare different law firms' rates and services.
 
If you are buying a house at the same time as selling, you can usually save on legal fees using the same conveyancing solicitor.  

Removal Costs

When selling a house, expect removal costs to come between £300 and £1,500. The exact cost of removals when you sell will depend on how many possessions you're moving and how far you travel to your new home.
 
Longer journeys, overnight stays, the number of workers, and any storage periods all add up. If you need a professional removal team to pack your possessions, that will add to the cost.
 
Are you moving at a peak time? Specific days and times can be more expensive than others.

If you can, get quotes from more than one removal company. You'll find that some charge a higher fixed fee, others charge less but don't include the cost of packing materials. Check the total costs before you commit.
 

Mortgage Fees

If you are taking out a new mortgage by moving your mortgage to a new lender, your existing lender may charge you a mortgage exit fee, even if you are not repaying it early. Mortgage exit fees can range from under £100 to around £300. Your terms should be listed in the original documentation from your lender.
 
You may also be liable for an early repayment charge if you are still within the fixed term of your mortgage deal. Early repayment charges are typically calculated as a percentage, which should be stated in the terms of your mortgage. It's often between 1% and 5% of the total borrowing. As a result, it can add significantly to the cost of selling a home in central London.
 
Porting your mortgage can be a money-saving option. As you are staying with your existing lender, you may avoid paying an exit fee and early repayment charge.
 

Capital Gains Tax

Do you need to pay Capital Gains Tax when you sell your house in the UK? If you're selling your only home, then it's likely that you won't have to pay CGT. This is known as Private Residence Relief. However, if you own more than one property, Capital Gains Tax will typically be calculated as a percentage of the gain in value throughout your ownership.

Read the government guidelines if you're unclear whether you're liable to pay Capital Gains Tax on the sale. You should always check the financial implications with a professional to ensure you meet all your tax commitments.

Are you ready to sell your property in central London? Contact our team today with your queries about the process and costs involved, and we can set your sale in motion. 

Offices at

Marble Arch
29 Edgware Road
London
W2 2JE
f: 020-7258-3090
Knightsbridge
34 Beauchamp Place
London
SW3 1NU
f: 020-7581-7005