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How To Sell An Empty House?

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Sellers often search for ‘how to sell an empty property’ and come across our article.

Often, empty properties are targeted by vandals, drug addicts, squatters and criminals for their nefarious purposes.  A swift sale is ideal to get the property re-occupied.

Securing an empty house until it is sold is key to deter unwanted attention.

You will also get harassed by the council’s empty homes officer, who may apply for a compulsory purchase order if a property appears abandoned and neighbours complain.

To sell an empty property, you will need to present it well, de-clutter and consider giving it a good clean.

Let’s take a look.

Table of Contents

Reasons a Property Becomes Vacant

Often, a property can fall into disrepair through no fault of the owners.  For instance, an owner has sadly passed away, leaving no immediate family, but may have extended family who eventually are made aware of their inheritance after several years have passed. 

If probate takes several years to sort due to a contested Will, it is easy to see why a property can fall into a state of disrepair.

The property may have a leaky roof, but through neglect, it now has damp.  Leaving a property exposed to the elements means it has suffered substantial damage to the flooring and exposed beams.  Eventually, the floors would collapse, and you could find trees/shrubs growing into the property.

How To Sell An Empty House Fast?

Are you selling an empty house?

With over 676,000 empty homes in the UK, a real shortage of housing means that councils have been given extraordinary powers to purchase properties under compulsory purchase schemes and put these empty homes back into use.

Selling an empty house requires a strategic approach emphasising asset protection as a top priority.

It becomes difficult to insure a run-down building because empty property insurance requires a property to be in good order.  Keeping up with repairs is usually an uphill battle, as you could spend tens of thousands of pounds, and squatters could still vandalise property.  Another bad news is that you still have to pay council tax on an empty property.

With overgrown grass, an empty house gets attention from squatters looking for their latest squat.  Squatters know that it is illegal to occupy an empty property, and that’s why they have locksmiths as their friends. 

This enables them to ‘gain entry’ without breaking it. Squatters claim that the front door was wide open, show photographs, and they have moved in.  Police think the owner was negligent and don’t want to take on any responsibility.

It confuses the Police as they say it is trespassing and not squatting and, therefore, tells the owner that it is a civil offence and not a criminal offence.

An empty can also become a drug den for addicts to hang out, as they wouldn’t really care if any damage was done.  Empty buildings are stripped of all copper and sold to fund their addiction.  Your home will be vandalised with graffiti, sadly.

Any abandoned property can attract criminals who wish to turn it into a cannabis factory.

Whether you are trying to sell a dilapidated or run-down property, this handy guide reveals how to sell any abandoned or dilapidated property for the best price.

You could sell your run-down property as it is.  Property Saviour offer a We Buy Any Property service where we will buy any residential or commercial property for cash, pay all your legal fees and complete within a couple of weeks.  We will even buy a hoarder’s house.

can you sell an abandoned house
Can you sell an abandoned house? Yes you can to Property Saviour for cash and complete within 10 days or at a timescale that suits you.

9 Considerations When Selling An Empty House

You can take certain steps to increase the appeal of your empty property.  If you own an empty, run-down property, you could be exposed to serious financial fraud. 

Please follow our tips below to protect your financial interest in this property:

Title Fraud

Fraudsters often target vacant properties with no mortgages secured on them. Their strategy involves changing their name through deed poll and then selling the property without the original owner or the Executor being aware.

It is important to register your property in the Land Registry’s fraud alert service for free.

Empty Property Insurance

You may be eligible for empty property insurance if your property is in good, safe condition and not exposed to the elements. It is recommended to use a specialist broker, as most typical insurance companies have fine print that excludes many claims.

When a property is left empty, it becomes a target for thieves, vandals, and squatters. Arson attacks and fire damage are common risks for empty properties. It is important to visit the property weekly and ensure it is properly maintained and secure. However, it’s worth noting that empty property insurance can be quite costly, with premiums as high as five times the normal annual premium.


It can be a valuable investment if you have the financial means to install internet-connected cameras that provide real-time alerts.

It is always advisable to have sensor-operated security lights to deter a trespasser.  If your property will be empty for long term, then you might consider having it boarded with metal security shutters.

Keeping The Property Watertight

An exposed property can invite birds and other habitants into the property, which over an extended period could result in substantial damage.

Disconnect Utilities

It is best to disconnect all utilities, including water, gas and electricity.  Not only will this save you on bills, but it could also prevent your property from becoming a cannabis factory.

The only negative of this approach is that prospective buyers will be considering how much it will cost to reconnect utilities.

Become Friendly With Your Neighbour

Your neighbour could monitor the property and ring the Police if they see any suspicious activity.

Pay a Gardner To Cut Your Grass Regularly

An overgrown garden is a clue that the property is unoccupied.  You might consider paying a gardener to cut the grass and invoice you.

If you are an Executor selling an inherited house, you can offset these expenses.

Regular Inspections

An empty property needs to be inspected weekly by the owner.

If you live far away, it might be a good idea to have a security firm visit the property on a weekly basis. However, this can become quite expensive over time.

Alternatively, your friendly neighbour can do this for you, for a nominal fee perhaps?

Rent It Out To Live In Guardians

If your property is habitable, you might consider a live-in guardian who will keep an eye on the property for you.  They would be a tenant at a reduced rent. 

This is a great deterrent to keep squatters out but does not work in all long-term empty properties due to the property’s poor condition.

You must ensure that the property is safe and meets all legislation. You will have to do all background checks on any prospective tenant.  

If you are a landlord who lives 200 miles away, dealing with repairs and inspections can become a major issue for your rental property.

Is It Harder To Sell An Empty House?

It is definitely harder to sell an empty house because a cold home can be off-putting to buyers.  This is particularly true for cottages with stoves and no central heating.

The cottage can become very warm when the stove is on. However, if viewers were to see the small electric heaters, they might think that they would freeze to death.  Estate agents are unlikely to get on their knees to start a fire prior to any viewings.

Most owners of derelict homes would love to sell but cannot because of legal complications such as missing deeds or unregistered property.  They guard the property and do whatever maintenance they can over the years.

Property Saviour will buy any property in any condition. If you own an empty property, why not chat with us to see how we can buy it?

What Are Your Options For Selling An Empty Property?

These are your options for selling a vacant house:

Method of Sale



Estate agents

If you can find an owner-occupier with cash, you are likely to get better price than compared to an investor or a property developer.

Demand for selling vacant houses remains low on the open market because they cannot be bought with a mortgage. This applies to any long-term property, such as cottages, bungalows, houses, flats, and commercial buildings, including offices, warehouses, industrial units or old barns. Empty or run-down properties can be tough to sell on the open market.


Provided you can present a legal pack and pay all upfront fees, an auction can create a competitive bidding environment. We can help you avoid pitfalls using our Assisted Sale service with no fees to pay.

Property Saviour team are well-versed in assisting one to sell an unregistered property with missing deeds or complex title issues.

Lack of documentation or authority to sell.

It may be that a property has been neglected due to a legal dispute such as a contested Will. The owner has passed away, leaving a house empty for a year while probate is granted.

Or the owner cannot be found. 

Decay over the long term can turn a run-down property into a real liability whereby the council might issue an enforcement notice, forcing you to repair the property or, worse, do it at an inflated rate and send you the bill.

Home-buying company

You’d be dealing with an expert here at Property Saviour.

We won’t be able to offer full market value because we are looking to make a profit.

can you sell your house empty
Can you sell your house empty? Yes you can even if it needs work. Selling a property couldn't be any easier with Property Saviour.

Pros and Cons of Selling an Empty House

There are many advantages to selling an empty house, but also a few disadvantages to consider if you’re unsure whether it’s best to empty a house before selling it.

Here are some things to think about:


  • You don’t have to do much work to make the house sellable.
  • The buyer has a blank canvas to create whatever they want in the house.
  • The rooms may appear larger and brighter without furniture.
  • A vacant home means there’s no need to schedule viewings around someone’s presence.
  • There’s no risk of a tenant returning during a viewing.
  • Keeping a vacant home clean is easy since there’s nothing to dust and no one to leave crumbs behind.


  • You must remove the furniture if it’s still in the house.  We can do this for you.
  • Some people may find it more challenging to imagine living in an empty house.
  • It can be harder for someone to develop an emotional connection with a house devoid of furniture.

How do I sell my dilapidated property?

If you ever try to sell an uninhabitable property that’s been empty over the long term, likely, your buyer won’t be able to get a mortgage. 

Property Saviour will buy dilapidated property for cash in ten working days.  There are no fees to pay. 

Is it harder to sell an empty property?

Yes, it is much harder to sell any empty property because buyers find it difficult to imagine where all furniture will fit in.

You may consider staging the property or if the house needs work, sell it for cash instead to us.

Beautiful row of English homes
There are many advantages to selling an empty house, but also a few disadvantages to consider if you're unsure whether it's best to empty a house before selling it.

How long can you leave a house empty?

Typically, standard home insurance policies provide coverage for empty houses for up to 30 days.

If you own a vacant property or plan to leave your home unoccupied for an extended period, reviewing your home insurance policy is crucial. 

How To Sell An Empty House Fast?

The great news is that Property Saviour are looking to buy any abandoned or derelict property within England or Wales.  Because we are cash buyers, we do not really care too much about the condition of the property, and we can make you a fair offer on your property to proceed. 

The only question will be how quickly you can get your solicitor to send us a contract of sale once a price has been agreed.

You can sell your unmortgageable property quickly with no hassle, and we promise to meet your timescale. 

We do not need a mortgage, and that’s why we only view it once. 

All you have to do is make an enquiry, then let us call you back, do some research and make you an indicative cash offer.

If you accept, we will come and view your property and issue you a formal offer.  You are in total control of the sale of your property. 

You can use your own solicitor if you wish and get them to send the sale contract to our solicitors.

We will agree on a date for exchange.  This has several benefits:

  1. You have our 10% deposit to do with as you wish if we don’t complete the sale within an agreed timescale.
  2. You have certainty that the sale will go through. Statistically speaking, around 99% of all properties with exchanged contracts complete.
  3. The price we agree on is the price you will receive with no deductions.

You have the option to sell your empty property. Just give us a call now at 0113 320 6700 or send us an enquiry.

We are prepared to purchase your property.

Property Saviour is one of the few genuine cash house buyers who will buy your house.

We will need some more information about your property and schedule a viewing. Once we have seen the property, we will make you a 100% cash offer and agree on a completion date that works for you.

Start the process of selling your empty property today by contacting Property Saviour on our 24-hour helpline at 0113 320 6700.

auction hammer

Property Saviour Price Promise

  • The price we’ll offer is the price that you will receive with no hidden deductions.
  • Be careful with ‘cash buyers’ who require a valuation needed for a mortgage or bridging loan.
  • These valuations or surveys result in delays and price reductions later on.
  • We are cash buyers.  There are no surveys.
  • We always provide proof of funds with every formal offer issued.

We'll Pay £1,500 Towards Your Legal Fees

  • No long exclusivity agreement to sign because we are the buyers.
  • You are welcome to use your own solicitor. 
  • If you don’t have one, we can ask our solicitors for recommendations.
  • We share our solicitor’s details and issue a Memorandum of Sale. 

Sell With Certainty & Speed

  • Our approach is transparent and ethical, which is why sellers trust us.
  • 100% Discretion guaranteed. 
  • If you have another buyer, you can put us in a contracts race to see who completes first.
  • Complete in 10 days or at a timescale that works for you.  You are in control.

Sell with certainty & speed

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