Buying and selling a property can be complicated and stressful. There are several factors to consider too. This article will help you choose an estate agent, one of the first steps of selling your property. Choose from the best estate agents HERE.
How To Choose An Estate Agent
RecommendationsNaturally, you will ask for recommendations from friends, neighbours, and family members. Whilst these recommendations are based on the person’s individual experience of a specific agent or even second hand information, a reliable recommendation is a good place to start. However, choosing an estate agent based on recommendations means understanding that others’ expectations might not necessarily reflect your own. If you are considering recommendations, speak to several agents in the area.
Check CredentialsEstate agents must be members of The Property Ombudsman or The Surveyors Ombudsman Scheme. Many will also be members of trade bodies. This means that they are obliged to comply with a certain code of conduct which protects you as their customer. This may indicate a higher level of professionalism.
- Trade bodies that many agents are affiliated may include:
- Guild of Professional Estate Agents (GPEA)
- National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA)
Do Your Own ResearchVisit and speak with your local estate agents as a potential buyer. This way you will get a sense of their professionalism (or lack of). You’ll get a general idea of whether you would be happy with them selling your home. Consider whether you feel confident that they would present your property in its best light?
Ask At Least 3 Agents To Value Your HomeAsk at least three agents to carry out a valuation of your property. Don’t be surprised if there is a variation in the price and the credentials that they base this valuation on. Do not necessarily be inclined towards the agent that values your property the highest. It is not a guarantee that this is the most realistic asking price. You need a realistic valuation, not an overvaluation of your property which will put off potential buyers.
Local Estate AgentsVisiting your local estate agents, or even making a cursory search of ‘local estate agents near me’ allows you to find potential Agents quickly. However, this does not indicate how each agent actually performs. Approach the agents you are considering and ask a number of questions that will indicate their level of professionalism as well whether you are likely to get on with them or not.
Important questions to ask
- How many similar properties have you sold recently?
- How much do you charge for a sole agency sale?
- What contracts do you offer?
- Is there a tie in period?
- What is their selling experience in the local area?
- Where do you advertise (papers/boards/property portals)?
- How long do your properties take to sell on average?
- Do you have buyers ready for a property such as mine? If so, how many?
- What checks have you in place to ensure a buyer can afford my property?
- How are viewings managed? Who conducts the viewings?
- Are there any additional charges?
Compare Estate Agents OnlineIf you want a comprehensive choice of estate agents you should compare estate agents online. This is where compare-agents.com comes in. Our site offers a free, unbiased collation of estate agent information in your area, meaning we do all the leg work for you. Databases such as ours hold the following information so that you don’t have to:
- The % of asking price the agent usually achieves.
- The number of properties they have listed in the area.
- The average time it takes the agent to sell a property.
- Information about fees.