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POSTED 21 December 2015 Guides and Top Tips

How to Choose the Right Estate Agent

Finding and choosing an estate agent if you're looking to sell your property can sometimes be difficult. There's a fair bit to take into consideration such as exactly how you want your house or flat to be advertised, or how much you're willing to pay in terms of fees. 

Plus there's also knowing what to ask an estate agent to ensure they will offer the service that best suits you - which for those new to the home selling market can sometimes be tricky.

Making the right decision to suit your requirements is hugely important if you want to get your property sold, so how can you be certain you're choosing the right estate agent?

Fortunately help is at hand via our estate agent guide flowchart below. Follow the chart's questions and your answers can point you in the right direction for choosing the right estate

how to choose estate agent

What to look for in an Estate Agent

To summarise the above, to find an estate agent you essentially have three options:

  • Traditional estate agent
  • Online estate agent
  • Private selling

Should you come to the decision you want to go with the services of an estate agent though, you need to look out for – or at least be aware of the following general points:

  • Agent package price
  • Estate Agency credentials 
  • Local Property Knowledge 
  • Valuation accuracy
  • Service quality
  • Effective marketing accessibility 

When Choosing a Traditional Estate Agent

With this choice you prefer more ‘hands-on’ local expertise for selling your home. They can provide all the pictures and create the adverts you need, and will be able to use their knowledge of the area to offer tips and advice to support your sale. There are however percentage fees involved which can be upwards of 2%, so for example if you're selling a property worth £250,000 you will usually be paying between £2000 and £7000 depending on the agent. You will need to be able to budget for this amongst other costs involved in selling your property. You can calculate the potential estate agent fees by using our fees calculator tool.

On top of this, as you’re dealing directly with people you’re paying to provide a service for you, it’s also worth looking at customer feedback and reviews. This can help to ensure you’re going to get a professional service that’s worth the cost and any negative feedback should also be taken into consideration before you make your decision.

When Choosing an Online Estate Agent

An online estate agent can essentially offer you the same level of service as a traditional one (including effective marketing on property portals, photography, free home valuation and more) but without the often high percentage fees you’d normally get, for example as you would be paying a fixed fee, normal charges are between £500- £1200 with online estate agents. Plus they can work around your schedule and support you with online bookings for viewings and more.

The main issue in the past with online estate agents is their lack of physical and local presence, this however is improving with local experts being utilised for house valuations. Again though, pay attention to customer feedback and reviews or look into any awards or recognition the estate agent has received to make doubly sure you’ll be getting a quality service.

Choosing to Sell Privately

If finding an estate agent seems all too much, there is an option to sell your home privately. With this third option of course you don’t have to worry about dealing with the issues you encounter when looking for the above. By choosing to sell privately you have complete control over how and when you want to sell your home, plus you won’t have to worry about any percentage fees.

That being said, you do take on a wealth of potentially difficult responsibilities by choosing this option. You will need to create your own advertisements and arrange viewings and other legal arrangements yourself. Furthermore you won’t be able to list your property on popular property-marketing sites like Zoopla and Rightmove; in turn this might mean it takes you much longer to sell.

A Final Consideration

As aforementioned, you need to make the right choice when picking an estate agent otherwise you risk complicating or making the sale of your house take longer and cost much more than it should. So be sure to use our estate agent guide and put yourself on the right path to a quick sale.

If you think that using an online estate agent could be the right option for you and would like further information or online estate agent advice, please call us.