Selling a property is a bit like doing a jigsaw. Each piece comes together on moving day to create the final picture – and if there’s a piece missing your jigsaw sits there frustratingly incomplete.
Making the decision to move and getting valuations arranged can feel very uncomfortable. By the time you’ve talked to friends and family, you might feel full of fear about the future and question the process so much that you end up paralysed into doing nothing – and we wouldn’t want you to do that would we?
Everybody around you is suddenly an expert?
What do you do if you need help to get that ‘jigsaw’ started?
So here goes – familiarise yourself with my rules for finding the right estate agent – trust me, I am an expert.
- Make a list of your local agents and don’t forget to ask friends and family for recommendations. Agents they have actually experienced?
- Check which agents advertise on popular property websites – the more sites they advertise on the greater the audience of buyers your property will be seen by. Out of these, which have user-friendly websites themselves?
- How many members are in their sales team? Just a few part-timers is not enough
- Do these agents display their clients’ properties on the internet in their best light?
- Do they show location photographs to whet people’s appetites?
- Are the pictures up-to-date? I couldn’t believe it last week when I saw a ‘lazy’ agent displaying property’s with snow on them!
- Has the agent taken the care to sell all the benefits?
- Would you view one of their properties based on the photos and description? Try and think like a buyer.
Call three agents for now and invite them to come and have a look at your property and ask for their opinions.
How confident and informative are their replies when you ask for advice on presenting your property and information about the selling process?
- Visit the offices of the agents that made you feel comfortable – this is probably one of the most important assets’ you own so you’ve got to get it right.
- What’s the atmosphere in the office like? Where are their offices? How are you treated by the whole team? Mystery shop some agents? Why not? How many people will be working to find you the right buyer?
- Look at which agents suggest a realistic and attractive asking price for a BUYER, rather than to impress you? Over-valuing and offering discounted low fees is considered a winning tactic by many agents to get your business, but all it does is cause your property to sit on the market and stagnate until you lower the price in line with other comparable properties to yours – and often you land up selling for less than if you had asked the right price and agreed an appropriate fee in the first place – does that make sense? I promise you it’s not a good experience.
Choose the agent you feel you can trust to put together the pieces of the jigsaw.