It may seem obvious, but the first step after deciding to sell your home is selecting the right agent. Your agent is an invaluable resource when selling. Sam Funnell from Fine & Country Rugby offers guidance on choosing and working with estate agents.
The days are long gone when putting a For Sale sign at the front of your house is enough to sell a property. Professional help is vital in a competitive property market. The selection process for an agent should begin with inviting local agents to a property valuation. Make a shortlist of those who operate in the area your property is situated. A word-of-mouth recommendation from friends and testimonials can be invaluable.
Before inviting agents to a valuation, do your homework. Check out similar properties in the same area to determine a realistic price for the property. Your agent should help you with your pricing, but beware of agents who suggest an unrealistically high price just to get the listing, or those who suggests a lower price aiming for a quick sale. Setting the price at the correct level will get the best and quickest result.
Agents have access to a wealth of property data to help them make informed decisions when selling a home and they should be prepared to share this with you. Listen carefully to make sure they have a strong grasp of local market data. This is important to set your price guide, sale type, and how to make your property stand out. It’s also worth looking at the agent’s broader network – can they extend their reach beyond the local area to find a buyer?
When you sit down with a potential agent, check they have a clear idea of the likely buyers for your property. In any marketing campaign, it is essential to tailor the message to the target audience. Ask what kind of marketing campaign the agent will employ. This will indicate whether they have a full suite of marketing tools at their disposal. Look at the current properties they have on their books and how well they are presented. It is estimated that 90 per cent of buyers begin their property search on the internet. See how well the agent’s other properties are presented online – especially when it comes to high-quality property images.
Go with your gut instinct. If you trust them and think you could work well together, consider instructing them. If you have any doubts, avoid getting into a relationship, as it will only create problems further down the line. Remember, you will need to work closely together.
You should expect regular updates and feedback from your agent. Even if there are no offers, keeping in touch lets you know what activity is going on. As a home seller, there are some clues you can observe before you select an agent that will give you a good indication of how things will be moving forward. Do they return your calls or emails promptly?
When you have selected your agent, it is important to work with them. Listen to suggestions they make as far as presenting your property – it is their expertise and experience you are paying for. Taking time to prepare a property for an inspection or a photo shoot will help the agent do their job. Also, while you expect good communication skills, it is a two-way process. Make sure you communicate your expectations clearly and be prepared to ask questions if there is anything you don’t understand.
Selling a property is a can be a complicated and emotional process, but a good agent will smooth the way.
For advice on selling or buying property, please contact Fine & Country Rugby on 01788 820062 or visit www.fineandcountry.com