Fast forward to 2012, we had done a bit of being thrifty, so had moolah in the bank, our house 'to do' snagging list was almost complete. We were ready to go, for realsies this time!
We have had valuations done over the years to see where we were at but never could take the plunge. We either did not have enough equity in the flat or enough bones in the bank, or in the very early days both. So the fact we only planned to live there for a couple of years before moving up the ladder was merely a nice idea, but in real life wholly impractical.
Come sale time, the housing market was not our friend, she was a cruel mistress, as back at the top of the boom, we could have put the flat on the market for £10k more than we did back in Feb 2012, and that was without all the renovations.
Luckily we had made our purchase prior to the ceiling being reached on house prices in the area so we were not working with negative equity, score one for us. We were not going to get back all the money we had put into the property, but as some of the money spent was maintenance to have it at a decent state of repair, we accepted this as normal and we were in a position to take a small hit, all the while thinking in the back of our minds that it would help us sell as lots of people love a place you can dump your stuff in and call it home without all of the faffing around with paint and expensive repairs, one lucky new owner was going to get a maintenance free pad for a good while to come.
So we got hoards of estate agents round to value the property, some were being wholly unreasonable, some were more pragmatic, advising they believed it would sell quickly for £X, but giving us the flexibility to put it on for a figure we found reasonable. We were in no rush, and priced it what we thought it was worth, and what we thought the all important new owner would pay.
So initially we went with a sole agency agreement with a local firm, meaning you cannot market the property with another agent, and in return you get to pay a lower fee for the sale. We went with the cheapest company, which initially did not work for us, in all fairness a freezing cold February does not a buoyant house market make. Plus for such a small fee, where was the incentive!
Two weeks into operation 'For Sale', we hit a speed bump, the husband was getting made redundant, and the property was promptly removed from the market so we could take stock and decide how to proceed.