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Buying and Selling a Listed Building

Listed buildings can be some of the most desirable properties on the market, because they’re usually protected due to their high quality internal or external features or their historic location. However, despite this, many buyers are wary of taking on listed properties because they fear that they might be prevented from carrying out extensions, renovations or modernisation due to the requirement for listed building consent. This can be a headache for everyone involved including buyers, sellers and estate agents, because it can get in the way of the sale for everybody. So what can you do to break the deadlock for all parties involved?

Listed Buildings for Buyers

Engaging a professional Heritage Consultant to help you out can seriously move forward your ambitions when it comes to a listed building, because they can do a thorough survey of the house or commercial building to determine what your opportunities and roadblocks might be if you bought the building. For the cost of a tiny fraction of the overall sale price, they can determine for you ahead of time what may or may not be possible and how you could go about achieving your plans – giving you all the clarity you need. They can also flag up potential issues, such as work done without planning in the past that would become your responsibility as the new owner, which could prevent costly mistakes or at least enable you to negotiate a more realistic price for the property.

Listed Buildings for Sellers

Even as the current owner of a listed building you’re not safe, because you may simply find it harder to sell on the basis of potential buyers’ misgivings. If you own a listed property with great potential for renovation or extension, but you’re finding buyers are turned off by the prospect of negotiating the planning system, getting a Heritage Consultant to conduct a thorough report on the building can go a long way to calming their fears. By laying out exactly what the opportunities and constraints are, and clearing up the exact protected status of the house and land, you can sell the potential of your property with much more confidence, allowing you to attract a higher price. It also means you can move faster, upholding your chain and starting your new life all the sooner.

Listed Buildings for Estate Agents

Selling historic buildings can come with a lot of questions and substantial grey areas, and while helping clients conjure visions of a buildings’ potential and their future lives in a lovely new home is a great selling tactic, it can fall flat if potential buyers just aren’t convinced that the planning process will make it possible. There’s also the question of price: Unsure buyers may be persuaded to make the move, but they’ll want that uncertainty reflected in the price, and you may find listed buildings sell for way under their potential value as a result. Facilitating a buyer or seller to engage a Heritage Consultant in the process can take all of those uncertainties and fears away, giving all sides the clarity they need to know that the big extension or the sympathetic conversion they’re planning is indeed on the table. Not only can that unstick the wheels when it comes to moving a sale along, it can also help firm up a higher price when the extent of what is possible becomes clear.


The unknown is the biggest problem for all parties when it comes to buying and selling listed or historic buildings, which is where Blue Willow Heritage can help you out. By establishing the potential opportunities and barriers early in the process, Heritage Consultants like us can lay out the facts and allow you to use them to your best advantage, whatever your objective happens to be. Buying or selling a listed house, a non-designated heritage asset or commercial building and want to know how to proceed? Give us a call or drop us an email today.

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