Buying and Selling an Empty Home

For Sale/Sold Image

Buying an empty home can seem like a daunting and painstaking prospect for some people, although can provide excellent bargains, particularly for those who are looking for properties to renovate themselves.

Be warned, it can be a lengthy and difficult process and there are many complicated reasons why a home might be empty. Every empty home has its own story.


However, in many ways selling an empty home is no different to selling any other type of property

Here is some practical information and advice to help you through the process.

Buying an Empty Home

How to Identify an Empty Home
Obviously your first step is to find an empty home and with thousands of long term empty homes across North Wales this might be easier than you think!

Walk the Streets
If you know where you’d like to buy it’s worth walking around the area to see what you can find. Walk rather than drive, it’s the only way to look at the properties properly.

You’ll be surprised what you can find, but don’t assume that every unloved looking house is empty!

Estate Agents & Auction Houses
Go into your local estate agents and ask about empty homes. They might not have photographs of them in their shop window, but that doesn’t mean they haven’t got some empty houses for sale.

Auction catalogues are also a good place to find empty homes that are for sale. Auctions are used by mortgage companies to sell repossessed properties and local Councils may also sell any property that they no longer need in this way.

Specialist Websites to Help Find an Empty Home specialises in properties in need of work, renovation or modernisation.

There are also other websites which advertise building land for sale, often with an empty home already on it, some of these include:

Self build ABC

The National Building Plot Register


Selling an Empty Home

Estate Agents
You may wish to sell the property either privately yourself or through an estate agent. With so many estate agents around it can be difficult to decide which one to choose, therefore make sure you shop around to find the right company for you.

There is no obligation to sell when getting your property valued and it is recommended you obtain three valuations for a balanced view. When selling through an estate agent you will be required to sign a legally binding contract, ensure you read it carefully and understand it. Remember to ask is there a cancellation penalty and how long the contract will run.

Auction Houses
If you decide to put the property on the market, please remember it can take anything from several weeks to several months to sell if a chain is involved. Therefore you may wish to consider selling at auction.

Auctions have a targeted audience of developers, investors, portfolio landlords and cash buyers. The fact that a property is empty may be extremely appealing to these types of buyers.

Selling your empty home at auction may have several advantages:

  • For peace of mind a reserve price, agreed by the seller and the auctioneer, is set to ensures the minimum acceptable price is obtained
  • Maximum exposure of the property - No outstanding negotiations—purchasers must bid on the day or lose the property
  • Encourages the best offer for the property
  • Certainty of an unconditional sale - when the hammer falls there is a binding contract between the buyer and seller

Here’s where to find some further advice: