How to Deal with Estate Agents
Dealing with Estate Agents when selling your property, you will need to deal with estate agents to assist you in the process. Estate agents have had an unfavourable reputation with consumers over the years, due to a minoriDealing with Estate Agents
Introduction – when selling your property, you will need to deal with estate agents to assist you in the process. Estate agents have had an unfavourable reputation with consumers over the years, due to a minority of rogue agents pushing up prices or behaving unethically, during the boom times. Despite this, the vast majority of properties in England and Wales are sold via the traditional estate agent. The Ombudsman for Estate Agents (OEA) and the National Association of Estate agents (NAEA), have done an excellent job at introducing a code of practice and promoting the professionalism of it’s members. This article explores the most appropriate ways to deal with estate agents when selling a property, in terms of valuation, presentation, viewings, and negotiation…
Setting the Asking Price – estate agents can potentially manage the entire selling process on behalf of the homeowner. One of the first things the estate agent will provide a valuation of the property to suggest an asking price. It is also worth getting three separate valuations to see what different estate agents would market your property for. In this declining property market, the agents valuation is critical. They will have a view on the potential future local market and local interest from homebuyers. There may be specific local factors which make your property, such as access to transport links or the catchment area of local school. Likewise, higher-priced, larger detached properties, suitable for families, may be more resilience to a price crash.
Marketing & Advertising – once the asking price has been set, and the terms and conditions of the estate agent signed and agreed to, the next step is to advertise and present your property. The estate agent will photograph your flat or house, and construct the property details, based on a survey of house, both inside and out. As the seller, is important you make sure you stress the unique selling points and features of interest, to the agent, so they may be noted on the particulars. Agents will put this in a standard format, and have a legal obligation to market the property honestly and fairly. Agents will naturally market the flat or home in it’s best possible light. Check the draft particulars, before you allow them to be published by the estate agent. They will want to ensure the advert goes out as soon as possible.
You should also check to understand where the particulars will be advertised, such as the agents office window, websites, local property newspapers, property magazines and third-party property portals. 70 to 80% of prospective homebuyers will begin their search of a new flat or home, using the Internet. Online property search provide the convenience and flexibility of qualifying, which estate agents offices to visit first. As the seller, you should choose an estate agent that has a good-quality looking website. and also lists it’s properties for sale in portals such as Rightmove and Propertyfinder.
Viewings – most agents will advise you to tidy away clutter, cut the grass, add a coat of paint to the interior walls if necessary – all to spruce up the general appearance of the property for viewings The estate agent will want to arrange viewings as soon as possible. As a seller, you will need to decide whether or not you will be showing around prospective homebuyers, yourself, or leave it to the agent. Many estate agents will ask for a set of keys and request your permission to arrange viewings, (in the event that you may be at work at the time of theviewing). Estate agents are practised at dealing with objections from homebuyers and will provide a neutral and impartial response to genuine buyer objections. On the other hand, you know your flat or home better than the agent and can welcome the homebuyer around the viewing, in a more relaxed and friendly way.
Commission – as estate agents fees are based on a commission linked to the sale value, it is no surprise that they will want to push through a quick sale – as opposed to putting up barriers to delay the process. Here their skills in negotiation will assist you in selling your property as quickly as possible. It is imperative that you convey what lower price you are potentially prepared to accept, should a buyer choose to offer underneath the asking price. The estate agent’s fee will normally be around 2% of the sale value. In this extremely harsh buyer’s market, many estate agents are going out of business and the surviving ones are seeing homes left on the books for a long period time. With this in mind, consider carefully how motivated your estate agent will be, if you reduce his commission. Some estate agents terms and conditions will insist on an exclusive rights to advertising market property, to exclude their local competitors. This may be linked to a discount on their fees. If you opt for a joint or multiple agency agreement, (employing more than one local estate agent), be prepared to accept potentially higher fees.
Offers – all offers from homebuyers must be passed on to you in writing, by your estate agent. The only exception to this is where you have given explicit instructions that offers below a certain value should be ignored. the office of fair trading says estate agents should not invent, bid or claim to have a cash or first-time buyer, unless this is true. In other words, the offers you received will be genuine offers from interested homebuyers. It is imperative that you understand how well qualified potential buyers are, by your agent In particular, has the buyer been fully approved for a mortgage? (not jus approved in principle). Do they currently have a property to sell? Are they stuck in a sales chain? Are there any issues regarding their future onward chain, which may slow down the sale?
These are the sorts of questions your estate agent should be asking the buyer, to validate whether their offer is credible, timely and has a good chance of not falling through. Remember that buyers can withdraw their offer at any time in the future. The last thing you want to do is instruct your agent to take your property off the market, only to see a poorly qualified offer, fall through.
ty of rogue agents pushing up prices or behaving unethically, during the boom times. Despite this, the vast majority of properties in England and Wales are sold via the traditional estate agent. The Ombudsman for Estate Agents (OEA) and the National Association of Estate agents (NAEA), have done an excellent job at introducing a code of practice and promoting the professionalism of it’s members. This article explores the most appropriate ways to deal with estate agents when selling a property, in terms of valuation, presentation, viewings, and negotiation…
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