Selling your home can be a very stressful time and finding an estate agent who can manage the processes and look after your interests can be a difficult task. Most people who sell their home rarely go through the whole process without some hiccups such as withdrawn offers, problems with buyers and other glitches, so finding an excellent estate agent is really important.
As a mortgage broker I hear about the good, bad and ugly – my clients are often keen to offload their estate agent woes on me! So here are some tips to help you find the best estate agent and sell your property.
Ask People You Know for Recommendations
Probably the easiest place to start is to ask people for recommendations of estate agents that they have used or had contact with. That may be family members or friends. It may be worth putting a quick status update on various social media platforms such as Facebook where a lot of people can see your query and hopefully be able to help.
Naturally I can give you my thoughts from my perspective, sitting on the sidelines of many house-selling stories!
Performing a quick Google search of estate agents in your local area is a great way to find out which estate agents are out there, but also how well they rate. Most estate agents will have a presence on Google and will often have ratings and comments about service. Be sure to read all of the comments and look out for recommendations for specific agents and also look at the poor reviews to see what potential problems might arise with using that company.
Check Agency Credentials
Estate Agents are all required to be members of The Property Ombudsman or The Surveyors Ombudsman Scheme. They may also be members of various trade bodies that requires them to adhere to codes of conduct and can indicate professionalism, diligence and a higher level of service. Some top trade bodies to look out for are:
- Guild of Professional Estate Agents (GPEA)
- National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA)
- Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS)
You can find out if an estate agent is a part of one of these trade bodies either on the bodies’ websites or indeed the estate agents website.
Test an Agency as a Potential Buyer
It may be a good idea to visit a few prospects and pose as a potential buyer for a similar property to your home. You need to decide whether they are the type of company that you want to handle the sale of your property and ask yourself if you would buy a property from them.
Invite Estate Agents to Value Your Property
Once you have a shortlist of estate agents, invite two or three of them to value your property. You are looking for the estate agents to be honest and fair with their valuation and don’t be duped into going with the agent who values your property the highest as they could just be pandering to you to win your business.
Choose Between Sole and Multi-Agency and Haggle for the Best Price
You need to decide whether you want to work with one agency or multiple agencies. Using one agency will be cheaper but they will have a small catchment area compared to using a few agencies. Using more agencies will increase the exposure of your property and the chances of you getting a quicker sale. It may be worth going with one agent first, and then move to a multi-agency strategy if you are not getting the amount of viewings and offers you would like.
Whatever strategy you decide to go for, be sure to haggle for the best price. There is always room for negotiation and playing different agents prices off of each other will help you drive the price of their services and commission down.
Start Looking for a Great Estate Agent!
Finding a great estate agent is crucial when it comes to selling your property with the least amount of stress. By following the tips in this post you should be able to get a decent shortlist of agents and have the tools at your disposal to choose the right agent for you.
If you would like a few recommendations, get in touch. More importantly, if you haven’t yet thought about mortgages and what you need for your next property purchases – if you’re selling and buying – give me a call for an impartial chat about your mortgage options. Call 020 3355 4841 or email email@example.com