Housing, pt5: The liquidity rush

Avid readers will know I’m in the process of buying a Dream Home.  This event has not been pre-planned and is happening at speed. This means I’m not yet selling my previous home, but instead I am frantically liquidating my investment portfolio. This is quite a bizarre thing to do in a hurry and is taking a lot of time and energy.

The housebuying process in the UK involves two key steps: exchanging contracts (at which point a 10% deposit is paid), and subsequently completing the transaction (at which point keys are handed over, the 90% balance is paid to the seller, and property taxes are paid to the government). In my case I exchanged contracts a few days before Christmas (shown on the lighter green triangle below) and I complete the purchase at the end of January (shown as the yellow/dark green triangle).

Having managed to rustle up the 10% deposit in a few days, I now have about a month to find a further 100% of the purchase price – enough to pay the 90% balance and the ~10% property taxes (stamp duty).

After a week of doing more Sell Orders than I’ve done in the last two years combined, my bank account remains depressingly modest.  While some of this is because money is in transit, it has led to me mapping out in detail what I need to find the money to complete at the end of January. My action plan has no fewer than 62 steps in it, 24 of which have happened already.

I’ve plotted below my notional target trajectory for liquidating funds.

2015 12 dream home liquidation timetable

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