We Buy Any House Companies Compared (Updated 2022)

We buy any house Companies

‘We Buy Any House’ companies are popping up all over the place, and they’ve been luring in home-owners with the promise of achieving a super fast cash sale. But naturally, with so much at stack, there’s a lot of scepticism around these companies, and the question that keeps being asked is, “are they a scam?”

Let’s get into it…

Table of contents:

What is a ‘We Buy Any House’ company?

While webuyanyhome.com and webuyanyhouse.co.uk are two different trading companies (neither connected to the ‘WeBuyAnyCar’ brand), which are both rightfully ‘We Buy Any House’ companies, I feel it’s important to clarify that I’m not talking about any particular brand or company when referring to a ‘We Buy Any House’ service.

We use the term ‘We Buy Any House’ as a descriptive term to describe any company that, essentially, is willing to purchase your property quickly for cash. They’re also commonly known as Quick House Sale and Cash Buyer Companies.

As alluded to in the introduction, there are currently a boatload of them to choose from – so you’re certainly not limited to the two companies that have [unimaginatively] branded themselves around the concept. Although, I get why they did it.

There are generally two types of ‘We Buy Any House’ companies:

  1. A company that directly buys the properties with their own cash reserve
  2. A company that sources a 3rd party cash-buyer (I don’t recommend using one these companies, because the process tends to be longer, and you’re effectively dealing with a middle man)

Either way, you’re getting a cash-buyer.

Why use a ‘We Buy Any House’ company?

‘We Buy Any House’ companies used to be considered the last resort to selling a house, appealing largely to those most vulnerable and/or desperate to sell quickly in order to access cash quickly (usually due to financial difficulties). And while that’s still the case, there has been an undeniable shift over recent years, as the appeal of bypassing the hassle of traditional methods of selling a house – which are notoriously long and tedious – has managed to capture the attention of ordinary sellers. Simply, a lot of people are willing to lower their asking price because of the perks that We Buy Any House companies bring to the table.

Is a ‘We Buy Any House’ company a suitable option for you? Here are some of the reasons why they may work for you…

  • If you want a super quick cash sale (in as little as 7 days in many cases);
  • You want to avoid the aggro that typically comes with selling on the open market (time-wasters, the unknown, solicitor/conveyancing delays etc.);
  • You don’t like the idea of working with traditional high-street estate agents;
  • Your property requires renovation/work and you don’t have the finances, time or will to handle it yourself;
  • You don’t want to pay any legal costs (e.g. solicitor fees);
  • You’ve inherited a property and want a quick and hassle-free sale;
  • You need access to cash quickly to settle debt;
  • You don’t want to deal with any potential property chains (which can be very delicate and volatile, leading to major delays).

But they’re not the only reasons why they’ve become extremely popular, they’re also become a saving grace for homeowners that are trying to sell difficult properties, which includes:

On the open market, properties suffering with any of those issues can be a tough sell, but most ‘We Buy Any House’ companies will happily gobble them up. Case in point (a Tweet I randomly bumped into from a professional landlord, that goes by the alias @landlord_secret):

Cash buyer Tweet

Yes, it’s true, ‘We Buy Any House’ companies can buy your property for cash and push the sale through very quickly (many of them boast about completing sales in as little as seven days), but the drawback is that you’ll have to sell below the market value. Most of them will pay between 75% – 90% of the market value. But I’m hoping you already knew that.

Be wary of any property cash buyer that offers 100% of the market value! A genuine property cash buyer will never pay full market value!

Bottom line, people use these companies if they need to sell their property very quickly and don’t mind selling below the market value (for whatever reason)!

How fast can a genuine cash buying company buy my house?

As absurd as it may sound, a reputable and professional cash homebuyer can actually make an offer with in 48 hours and buy your house and put cash in your account within 7 – 28 days. So essentially, many of them do live up to their bold claims.

In complex situations (e.g. dealing with tenanted properties, properties that require extensive surveys etc), it may take longer, but that’s expected.

Of course, if you end up dealing with a not-so reputable company, expect the process to be tedious and drawn out. This is often the case when dealing with companies need to to secure finance or find you a buyer before being able to complete.

How is it possible for them to buy so quickly Vs an “open market transaction”?

First and foremost, the obvious answer to that is they don’t need to find a buyer (they are the buyer). But beyond the obvious, it usually boils down to the following (when you’re dealing with a reputable company):

  • Searches – ordering searches at the moment, depending on where you are buying/selling, are taking anything up to 6 weeks to come back. Cash buying companies indemnify their searches to speed up the process. Yes, that comes with some risks [for the buyer], but it’s calculated and ensures a speedy sale.
  • Financing – mortgage applications take time to process and arrange. Cash buyers have their financing ready and can draw funds immediately, so there are no delays on that front.
  • Solicitors – they have relationships with solicitors that understand the business and prioritise their files in order to get things turned around.

So it’s easy to understand why it’s all possible.

How “We Buy Any House” companies work

To help better understand and explain the entire process – from enquiry to completion – I reached out to MyHomeBuyers.co.uk (a reputable ‘We buy any house’ company) and asked them for a step-by-step breakdown of a typical process for a quick sale (2 – 3-week completion timeline). What better than from the horse’s mouth, right?

  1. During first call, provide formal valuation
  2. Present formal offer (within 24 hours)
  3. Sale agreed instruct solicitors and RICS
  4. Vendor completes property information forms and returns them to their solicitor
  5. Their solicitor issues draft contracts
  6. Our solicitors raise basic enquires and indemnify searches
  7. RICS is back and signed off
  8. Our solicitors provide report on title
  9. Funds sent and completion takes place
  10. Vendor hands keys to a local agent once they have funds in their account

It’s important to note that the breakdown is just an example of a typical transaction, and it may vary for purchases that come with complexities. Moreover, that’s not exactly how every ‘We buy any house’ company will operate, but it should hopefully give you a general guide.

Are they safe to use? Are they a scam?

Broadly and generally speaking, no, they’re not all scammers – there are reputable and legitimate ‘We buy any house’ companies out there that provide excellent service. In short, they’ll do exactly what they say on the tin: buy your house super quick for cash.

However, the industry is notoriously riddled with cowboys, because the ‘property cash buyers’ sector is currently unregulated, making it a prime breeding ground for corruption. Needless to say, you should choose wisely if you’re interested in using a cash buyer service.

The ‘we buy any house’ and ‘property cash buyers’ market isn’t currently regulated by any government body so consumer protection is very limited. Beware of any company claiming otherwise.

However, the National Association of Property Buyers (NAPB) is an association that was setup in 2013 to help build trust and standards in the sector. Cash buying companies can voluntarily join as a member, and once doing so it means that they must adhere to certain standards. Failing to do so can lead to hefty sanctions.

So by using a company that is a member of the NAPB, homeowners can access its independent redress in the event of a dispute.

It is imperative that you use a company that is registered with the NAPB.

  • There are plenty of success stories online- many people have sold property to these companies and felt satisfied by the experience.
  • As when dealing with traditional high-street estate agents, there are good and bad eggs out there, so due diligence is essential when choosing a cash house sale company.
  • There are several common traps to avoid when dealing with ‘we buy any house’ companies, along with good practises to follow when choosing a company to work with. I’ve already covered them in depth in my ‘Compare Quick House Sale / Cash Buyer Companies‘ blog post, so I won’t go over them again here. I recommend reading through them, and doing as much research as possible.
  • I think it’s important to fully understand that low-balling is the lifeblood of their business model, and to be fair to them, they make no secret of the fact.

    We buy any house companies are always going to try and buy property for as cheap as possible (within reason, of course), so there’s always going to be a natural struggle, since sellers want the highest price possible. This isn’t necessarily a scam, but many sellers feel like it is when they’re not happy with the cash offer. So it helps to have realistic expectations.

‘We Buy Any House’ Vs High-street Estate Agents

Cost / Net value compared

Here’s an example I found on a We Buy Any House website, which displays what you can expect in terms of costs/net value when comparing against an estate agent, so make of it what you will (I’m just the messenger)…

Cash buying company VS Estate agent

They sure do paint a pretty little picture, don’t they?

Is it accurate? Well, it does highlight real benefits of using a cash buying service, but for one specific example. The reality is, using traditional methods to sell can be a notoriously long process, which in itself comes at a cost that many don’t consider (but should), and I think that’s what the comparison table shows above anything else. Basically, time is money.

Which ‘We Buy Any House’ company is the best? Which should I use?

As said, there are many ‘We Buy Any House’ companies out there, some (incredibly) better than others. After drudging through dozens of them, I compiled a shortlist of the ones that appealed to me the most, which was defined by the following requirements:

  • Genuine cash buyer (not acting as a middleman or need to secure finance before being able to proceed)
  • Highly rated on impartial review platforms (e.g. TrustPilot, Feefo)
  • Functional and professional website
  • Transparent contact details, including physical premises
  • Registered company on Companies House
  • Member of The National Association of Property Buyers and The Property Ombudsman
  • Offer competitive valuations (75% – 85% of market value)
  • Reputation (meaning, they didn’t just start trading last week)

Best “We Buy Any House” Companies
ServiceRatingFeaturesOffers (up to)
Rating

4.8

TrustPilot Reviews
Features

  • Guarantee to beat any genuine cash offer
  • Members of The National Association of Property Buyers, members of The Property Ombudsman and Trading Standards
  • Any property, any condition considered (England or Wales)
  • Cash offer within 24 hours, Sales completed in as little as 7 days
  • Free Legal fees included, No agent costs or hidden fees
  • Guaranteed sale
  • Direct buyer, with no middlemen
Offers (up to)
80-85%of Market Value
Get cash offer
Rating

4.9

Reviews.co.uk
Features

  • Members of The National Association of Property Buyers, members of The Property Ombudsman and Trading Standards
  • 14 days average sale time
  • Service is 100% FREE
  • Cash offer guaranteed for 7 days
  • Direct buyer, with no middlemen
Offers (up to)
80-85%of Market Value
Get cash offer
Rating

4.8

feefo Reviews
Features

  • Founder of The National Association of Property Buyers, members of The Property Ombudsman, NAEA Propertymark and Trading Standards.
  • Any property, any condition considered (England and Wales)
  • No legal or estate agency fees to pay
  • No viewings required
  • Property bought vacant or let
  • Direct buyer, with no middlemen
Offers (up to)
85%of Market Value
Get cash offer
Rating

5.0

Reviews.co.uk
Features

  • Members of The Property Ombudsman, The National Association Of Property Buyers, Trading Standards & Anti-Money Laundering regulations
  • Any property, any condition considered (UK)
  • Sales completed in as little as 7 days (with exchange in 24 hours)
  • No legal or estate agency fees to pay
  • Guaranteed sale
  • Cash offer within 24 hours
  • Direct buyer, with no middlemen
Offers (up to)
75%of Market Value
Get cash offer
Rating

5.0

feefo Reviews
Features

  • Members of The Property Ombudsman & The National Association Of Property Buyers
  • Any property, any condition, any location considered (UK)
  • They claim to buy it quicker than any of our competitors (can have funds in your bank within 14 days)
  • No fees or hidden costs, free Legal service
  • Cash offer within 24 hours
  • Direct buyer, with no middlemen
Offers (up to)
75-85%of Market Value
Get cash offer

Please note, I try my best to keep the information of each ‘We Buy Any House’ service up-to-date, but you should read the T&C’s from each companies website for the most accurate and up-to-date information.

I do want to clarify, for all the “We Buy Any House” companies that didn’t make my shortlist, that doesn’t necessarily mean I think they suck balls (although, it could mean exactly that). It might just mean I didn’t come across their service. Moreover, I did try and keep my list as compact as possible in order to avoid inflicting analysis paralysis (in other words, too many options often causes confusion), so I had to be cutthroat during the filtering process.

Happy selling, friends!

2 Join the Conversation...

Guest Avatar
ROBERTS 25th February, 2022 @ 08:17

Hi I`m a landlord looking to sell one of my tenanted property`s and have had an offer from "THE PROPERTY BUYING COMPANY " .
They check out ok on trust pilot so I`m tempted to go with them . Does anyone out there have experience of this company or this type of company . Is this the future , seems a lot less hastle .

1
The Landlord Avatar
The Landlord 25th February, 2022 @ 08:32

@ROBERTS
Not personally dealt with them. Have you spoken to any other company? Before making a decision, I recommend getting a few offers and doing your due diligence on each company.

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