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Searching for your dream home can be an exhilarating experience. However, the property market can be volatile, and finding the perfect house only sometimes coincides with selling your current home.

In this situation, you may need to make an offer on a house before your property is sold. This can be a tricky process, but with the right guidance, navigating this challenging scenario successfully is possible.

This article will discuss the steps you need to take to make an offer on the house before selling yours.

Step 1: Assess Your Financial Situation

Before you even start looking at potential new homes, it's crucial to understand your financial situation clearly. You should have a detailed budget that accounts for all your monthly expenses, outstanding debts, and any potential costs associated with selling your current home.

Having an accurate estimate of your home's value is also essential, as this will impact the amount you can afford to offer on a new property.

Step 2: Speak to a Mortgage Advisor

If you need to secure a mortgage for a new property, speaking with a mortgage advisor as early as possible is vital. They can provide advice on the different types of mortgages available, help you calculate your borrowing capacity and even provide a mortgage in principle.

This is a conditional offer from a lender, which indicates how much they are willing to lend you based on your financial situation. A mortgage can make your offer more attractive to sellers, showing you are serious about purchasing the property and have the necessary funds in place.

Step 3: Consult with a Property Solicitor

Navigating the legal aspects of purchasing a property can be complex, so having an experienced property solicitor on your side is vital.

They can help you understand the process, ensure all legal documents are in order, and provide guidance on potential issues.

A property solicitor can also advise on structuring your offer to protect your interests if your current home sells less quickly than expected.

Step 4: Consider a Contingency Clause

One option to protect yourself when making an offer on the house before selling yours is to include a contingency clause. This stipulation states that your offer is conditional upon the sale of your existing home.

While this can provide some peace of mind, it's worth noting that contingency clauses can make your offer less attractive to sellers—particularly in a competitive property market.

Be prepared to negotiate with the seller if you include a contingency clause, and consider other ways to make your offer more appealing, such as offering a higher deposit or a flexible completion date.

Step 5: Have a Backup Plan

It's essential to have a backup plan in place in case your current home takes longer to sell than expected.

This could include arranging a bridging loan to cover the cost of purchasing the new property before your existing home is sold or considering renting out your current home until it sells. Discussing these options with your mortgage advisor and property solicitor is crucial to ensure they are viable and won't negatively impact your financial situation.

Step 6: Be Prepared to Negotiate

The property market is often unpredictable, and preparation for setbacks is essential. If your current home isn't selling as quickly as you'd hoped, consider lowering your asking price or making other concessions to attract potential buyers.

Similarly, if the seller of your desired new property receives multiple offers, you may need to revise your offer to remain competitive. It's essential to remain flexible and open to negotiation throughout the process to increase your chances of success.

Benefits of Making an Offer on a New Property Before Selling Your Own

1. Securing Your Dream Home

One of the main reasons homeowners choose to make an offer on a new property before selling their own is to secure their dream home.

In a competitive property market, waiting until you have sold your current home might mean missing out on the perfect property, as someone else could snap it up.

By making an offer on a new property before selling your own, you can ensure you take advantage of the opportunity to secure your ideal home.

2. More Time to Make a Decision

When you sell your current home before making an offer on a new one, you may feel pressured to make a quick decision, as you will need somewhere to live once your home is sold.

This can lead to hasty decisions and potential regrets later down the line. By making an offer on a new property before selling your own, you can consider your options and ensure that you make the right choice for your family and your future.

3. A Stronger Negotiating Position

You may be in a stronger negotiating position by making an offer on a new property before selling your own. Sellers are often more likely to accept an offer from a buyer who has yet to sell their home, as this means they will not have to wait for the buyer's property to sell before the sale can proceed. This can give you a competitive edge, resulting in a better deal on your new home.

Risks of Making an Offer on a New Property Before Selling Your Own

1. Financial Strain

One of the main risks of making an offer on a new property before selling your own is the potential for financial strain. If you have yet to sell your current home, you may need to take out a bridging loan to cover the cost of your new property.

Bridging loans can be expensive, with high-interest rates, and can add significant financial pressure to an already stressful situation.

2. Chain Collapse

Another risk of offering a new property before selling your own is the potential for a chain collapse. If the sale of your current home falls through, this can knock on your purchase of a new property, causing the entire chain to collapse. This can be incredibly frustrating and may mean you have to start the process repeatedly.


Making an offer on the house before selling yours can be a daunting prospect, but with careful planning, expert advice, and a willingness to be flexible, it's possible to achieve your property goals.

You can confidently navigate this challenging scenario by assessing your financial situation, consulting with a mortgage advisor and property solicitor, considering contingency clauses, and having a backup plan in place. With patience and perseverance, you'll soon move into your dream home while securing the best possible outcome for your existing property.

If you need to find conveyancing quotes in the UK, we’re here to help you. Conveyancing Calculator is an online residential conveyancing calculator. We use our trust and accurate conveyancing fees calculator to ensure you get the best idea of your costs. Get a quote today.


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