May 16, 2018
It might feel like just five minutes ago that you were excitedly moving into your beautiful new build home, and now you’re considering putting it up for sale… Perhaps you’re moving for work, upgrading to a bigger space, or simply trying out the feel of a different estate, but have you thought about how you’re going to sell your property? Well, you ought to; high street estate agents are expensive, and you could save thousands of pounds by using an online agent instead. Here are the pros and cons of doing so…
Pros: Traditional estate agent fees are typically between 0.75% and 3.5% of the final selling price, plus VAT. So, selling your £300k home with a fee of 1.2% plus VAT could cost you £4,320. However, online estate agent fees are much cheaper, with fixed fees averaging between £400 and £1,000.
Cons: While online estate agents are typically cheaper, you’ll often have to pay their fees up front, regardless of whether or not the company is able to sell your property.
Pros: Remember how much you enjoyed walking round the show homes on your new build estate? Well, the advantage of using an online estate agent is that you’ll be responsible for conducting house viewings yourself, meaning prospective buyers can wander freely in the same way you did in order to buy a property on your estate.
Cons: Unfortunately, having to conduct house viewings on your own can be daunting for many homeowners. Using an online estate agent means you’ll need to be a confident communicator and know when to point something out versus knowing when it’s best to keep back and let a buyer explore on their own.
Pros: A good online estate agent will visit your home to value it, as well as using house prices of properties that have recently sold on your estate (and properties that are currently listed) in order to determine what yours is worth.
Cons: However, if you use an online estate agent, you’re unlikely to have your property valued by a professional with an excellent working knowledge of your local market. Therefore, it could be worth asking your high street estate agent for a valuation as well.
If a traditional high street agent has experience selling a few new build homes on your estate already, you’ll feel more confident in the accuracy of the figure your online agent has given you for your new build.
Pros: If you’re good at keeping on top of your email inbox and are happy to take phone calls throughout the week, you’ll enjoy having control over all the communications.
Cons: If you’re not confident taking charge of communication (with potential buyers as well as solicitors), and don’t have great negotiation skills, an online estate agent service is going to force you to take on responsibilities you don’t enjoy.
Ultimately, there’s lots to weigh up. Deciding to use an online estate agent is a decision that should be taken on a case by case basis after deciding what’s most important to you, and what you are and aren’t prepared to pay for when selling your home.