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Selling a Basement Flat

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Are you looking to sell a basement flat? Selling a basement flat can be challenging due to potential issues such as damp, subsidence, and rot.

So, are basement flats hard to sell?

Whether you work with an estate agent or opt for a quick home buyer like Property Saviour, making a well-informed choice is key for a successful sale.

In this article, we will answer these common questions:

  • What are the advantages of owning a basement flat?
  • Why do some people view basement flats negatively?
    What’s the quickest method for selling a basement flat?
  • Will I have to pay fees when selling my basement flat?
  • How can I ensure that fast property buyers are reputable?
  • Should I renovate my basement flat before attempting to sell it?
  • Why is it sometimes more complicated to sell a basement flat?

Table of Contents

What Is a Basement Flat?

A basement flat is a type of property located below the ground level. 

No two basement flats are the same. Some can be easy to sell, and others hard to sell. Technically, a basement flat is the opposite of a penthouse flat, with one at the bottom of the building and the other at the top.

Basement flats, or garden flats, provide a unique living experience. When selling a basement flat, you must focus on its positive aspects.  Basement flats come in larger sizes due to no staircase, private entrance, and possibly a private garden.

Basement flats also provide a good value for money.

Basement flats tend to have damp problems.  The lack of natural light and noise disturbances from the road can put off buyers.

Selling basement flat
Basement flats tend to get lots of damage and leaks from flats above resulting it them being less desirable.

The Advantages and Disadvantages of a Basement Flat

Selling a basement flat requires careful consideration of the pros and cons of your home.

Pros

  •       Basement flats can be larger than flats above due to the absence of a stairwell.
  •       Some basement flats may have their own garden or patio, providing outdoor space.
  •       They can be good value for money, especially in desirable areas.
  •       The privacy factor is appealing, as basement flats are usually on quiet residential roads.
  •        Some basement flats have their own garden.
  •       Families like living in a basement flat.

Cons

  •       Lack of natural light is common in basement flats.
  •       Damp problems, subsidence, and dry/wet rot can be potential issues.
  •       Problems with the flats above, such as leaks or loud neighbours, can affect the basement flat.
  •       Lack of privacy, with people walking past and looking in windows, can be an issue.
  •       Flood Risk: proximity to sea level increases the risk of flooding, which can deter potential buyers.
  •       Leasehold problems such as shared garden arrangements, high service charges, missing freeholders, and neglected building repair issues can put off buyers.

Personal experiences and opinions about basement flats can vary. Some sellers have had positive experiences living in basement flats without any issues, while others have encountered problems such as damp and lack of light. 

One group of individuals who find basement flats appealing is the elderly people. This is because basement flats offer accommodation on a single floor and can often be more affordable compared to bungalows. 

While basement flats can be well-maintained and have a good layout, it’s important to note that additional ventilation and measures to control condensation may be necessary for the bedrooms and bathrooms. 

It’s worth considering that buyers generally prefer to live on higher floors due to security and privacy reasons.

When selling a basement flat, pricing plays a crucial role. Having three bedrooms and a garden in a desirable location can make the flat more attractive to potential buyers.

Setting a competitive asking price for your basement flat is essential. 

You’ll need to address potential buyers’ concerns. This includes carrying out an insurance-backed damp-proof course and enhancing the privacy of the basement flat.

A gorgeous kitchen diner with a combination of retro & modern kitchen cupboards.
In a booming property market, when prices are high, studio flats are quickly bought up because larger flats are unaffordable for many.

Should You Renovate Before Selling a Basement Flat?

If your basement flat needs a fresh coat of paint, starting a renovation project is not recommended because you will get carried away. Buyers will want to add their own personal touch, so cosmetic changes are subjective. 

If your basement flat already has a fully functional kitchen and bathroom, selling it ‘as is’ is acceptable. Just make sure to price it competitively and consider any refurbishments that may be needed. 

There’s no guarantee that you’ll recoup your investment if you install a new kitchen or bathroom.

Reasons why it can be harder to sell a basement flat.

Ex-council basement flats can be harder to sell because owner-occupiers prefer living in a building that’s looked after. 

Council buildings lack maintenance and care by tenants who are likely to stay there in the short term.

Getting a management pack ready prior to selling your basement flat is key.  Management companies can take several weeks or months to prepare it, and a fee will be paid.

Basement flats are great value for money, providing accommodation on one floor with its own entrance and may have a small garden, which is ideal for a young couple with children. 

Addressing any potential buyer’s concerns is a great way to sell your basement flat quickly.  Putting their mind at ease, that flat will receive a favourable surveyor’s report.

Your end buyers are most likely to be first-time buyers or elderly couples. They may not have much experience dealing with complex building issues like damp, noise, or seeking approval from the freeholder to install larger windows.

Here are some common problems with basement apartments that you might want to consider addressing:

Problem

Solution

Lack of natural light

Install larger windows to maximise the natural light coming in.

Damp and moisture issues

Waterproof the basement and install proper drainage systems.

Lack of privacy

Install blinds and, if you can, grow hedges in the garden.

Noise disturbances

Soundproof the walls and ceilings to reduce the noise transfer.

Lower ceilings

If well insulated, this can keep the energy bills lower.

Minimum space standards

All flats must have a floor area of at least 40 square meters to meet minimum space standards for a mortgage.

Stairs leading up to a dark entrance of a basement flat.
Choosing a buyer with a substantial deposit will also increase their chances of obtaining a mortgage.

Options for finding a buyer for your basement flat

Estate agents

Find an estate agent who has sold most properties in your area and incentivise them to sell your flat within a fixed timeframe.  However, due to a wobbly property market, it can take up to six months to sell a basement flat and another three months for the conveyancing process to complete.

Selling a basement via an estate agent can help you get the most equity out of your property.

Sell basement flat to a cash property buyer

If you need to sell your basement flat immediately, perhaps within the next 2-3 weeks, we will make you a cash offer.

We will exchange contracts in days and agree to a completion date to suit your needs.

You can decide when you want to move out when it is convenient for you.

You will have money in your bank within days instead of waiting months for the sale to be completed.

This option allows you to sell your flat without hassle and move on with your life. Just request a free callback now to get your free cash offer

There are no estate agency fees to pay. We will even give you £1,500 towards your legal fees. We pay for everything, so you do not have to. Do not delay.

Why Sell To Property Saviour?

We’ll always be open and honest in our communication with you.  We’d like to earn your five star review. Here’s why we are different:

Sell with certainty & speed

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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.
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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

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.
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