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A Guide to Choosing your Estate Agent

Selling your house can be a herculean and frustrating endeavor especially if you are not knowledgeable about the property market. As such, it is often advisable to work with an estate agent.

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Estate agents are a link between you the seller and a buyer. They are well informed about the property market and are skilled in negotiating a good price on your behalf. Therefore, you need to ensure that you choose a good estate agent. Here are some guidelines to take into consideration when choosing your estate agent:

  • Ask for referrals. You will do well to seek references from friends, family as well as neighbours that have worked with estate agents recently to give you a recommendation that is based on their experience with the agent.
  • Generate a shortlist of estate agents. It is likely that you will be referred to more than one estate agent. If this is the case, consider creating a short list by further looking at how they market themselves, their subscription to professional bodies, the types of property they sell and how they market the properties. You also may need to know if they can sell a house quickly when it comes down to it!

You may then ask them to give you a valuation of your property. Keep in mind that the agent who gives you the highest valuation is not necessarily the best as it could simply mean that they have over priced your property and this will make it difficult to sell. If they undervalue they may not have considered expensive items that you have added to your property such as Artis Original worktops fitted in your kitchen.

  • Look out for sold boards outside various properties that are listed with the agent. This is a good way of telling if the agents are doing well.
  • Visit the estate agent’s office to get a general feel of who they are. In particular, pay attention to their premises and presentation of displays in the window. You will do well to also ask for an example of property details, as this will give you an idea of how your property will look like.
  • Ask the agency how they will go about marketing your property and whose bill will it be. A good agent will have the marketing costs factored in their fees, hence you will not be required to pay any additional fees.
  • Get advice. You will also do well to seek advice from experts in the property industry especially with regard to financial services and conveyancing. Remember, you will still need legal representation when dealing with the official paper work.
  • Find out about the terms of contract. Before selecting an estate agent, you need to ensure that you are well informed on the terms of contract. This is because you must be sure of what you are agreeing to sign up for which is legally binding.
  • Negotiate the agent commission fee. Generally, you need to understand that a high fee does not necessarily translate to the best service. If anything, you need to check what the agent is providing for the fee quoted. You may want to consider paying more for an agent that is proactive and guarantees you a better price for your property. Even then, ensure that there are not hidden costs that will come up once you have signed the contract.
  • Find out when you should expect feedback. It is important to ask the agent about when you should expect feedback. This way you can be sure to be informed every step of the way.

Choosing an estate agent to sell your property is as important as selling the property itself. Therefore, you will do well to pay attention to all the details discussed above and much more. Most importantly, you need to be careful about the type of contract that you opt for especially if you need flexibility.