You don’t have to sell your house via an estate agent but we wouldn’t recommend doing it yourself, as there are many benefits to having a professional on board. Ultimately you are the one that makes the final decision but here are some pros and cons which might help.
- Although you do have to pay an estate agent commission, they will likely get you a better price than you would get going it alone.
- Agents will conduct a valuation of your home to give you a realistic market value. Without the help of an agent, this can be difficult to ascertain.
- Agents can help you screen potential buyers, so you won’t be wasting your time answering calls and emails and dealing with enquiries.
- Agents can deal with multiple aspects of selling, such as valuations and inspections.
- They have negotiation skills. If they are working on a commission basis, it is in their best interests to get the optimum price for your property and they have expertise to do this.
- Estate agents’ options for marketing the property are much greater. For example, independent sellers can’t list their homes on portals like PropertyPal.
- Selling a home involves a lot of legal issues and consequences. Estate agents can take care of this for you.
Finding the right estate agent
If you’ve made the decision to use an estate agent, finding the right one is key, as all have different styles and approaches. Many sellers will choose to go with the estate agent who sold them their home but you aren’t required to do this and if it’s not the route you want to take, here are some agent finding tips:
- Ask friends and family members. A personal recommendation goes a long way.
- Do some online research. You can go to propertypal.com/estate-agents and here you’ll find all the estate agents in Northern Ireland. You can refine by location to see agents who operate in your area and take a look at some of their listings. Evaluate the quality of photos and how long their properties tend to sit on the market.
- The next step is contacting agents to get more information. How quickly they respond to you is usually a good indication of the quality of their service and their level of care and attentiveness. These qualities are important during this process when impatience and frustrations can arise.
- Ask a lot of questions and know that no question is stupid. This isn’t your industry and estate agents don’t expect you to know the process inside out. Talk to them about their terms and conditions, contracts and fees/commission rate. Ask about the valuation and how they come to the final figure. Ask who will be dealing with your property. Will other members of staff have information if potential buyers enquire via phone or an office visit?
- Go with your gut. This is a significant period of your life so it pays to have a good rapport with your agent, as you’ll need to be frank and honest with them and unafraid to probe and ask questions.
- Talk marketing. Ask the estate agent how they will market your property. All accredited estate agents in NI will list properties on PropertyPal. All agents differ in the marketing they offer – some will give you a window display and others will provide an ad in the newspaper. Ask about the prices for this and determine if the offerings are right for you. A newspaper ad is all well and good but might not be effective if you’re trying to appeal to young first time buyers who would very seldom buy a paper
Last modified: 10/08/2022