Selecting the right estate agent to sell your property involves more than just a signature on a contract. In 2024, being a SMART home seller means arming yourself with knowledge and asking pertinent questions to ensure a smooth selling process. Below, we give you the nine crucial questions that you will need to ask before selling your home.
1. What’s the Fee Structure?
One of the pivotal enquiries when engaging with estate agents revolves around their fees.
They can charge you fees of up to 5% (depending on the estate agents, they might charge you more or less). With certain estate agents, the fee pricing can be negotiated depending on the value of your property, market value and other important factors.
However, certain agents have fixed fees, which gives you the seller a clear idea of the different packages, what you’re paying for and how your money is being handled for the service you are getting. The great part about fixed fees is you get transparency in where your money goes.
2. Additional Costs: What’s Included – Are There Any Hidden Fees?
You need to clarify whether the quoted estate agent fee covers all essential services, including property valuation, marketing, floor plans and professional photography and these are just to name a few factors. Different agents may include varying services in their fees, so you must ask them up-front if there is anything else you need to be aware of.
3. Contract Terms: What Am I Committing To?
Ask them the terms of the contract before committing. Ensure clarity on the duration of the contract, any exclusivity clauses, and the process of termination if needed. You need to know the details before putting your property up for sale with an agent. Asking them this question either before or during a valuation can save you time, a lot of heartache if things go wrong, and give you an understanding of what to expect.
4. How Will My Home Be Marketed?
Evaluate the estate agent’s marketing strategy. Beyond the standard presence on platforms like Rightmove and Zoopla, enquire about additional initiatives to showcase your property. Consider whether the agent plans to promote your product via social media platforms, the quality of content they produce and how many enquiries it brings when posted.
Good questions to ask are if they do paid Adverts – ensuring they reach as many of your potential buyers in the local area as possible. Also asking what platforms they post on – this shows your estate agent is being proactive in reaching as many people as possible.
5. How Will You Communicate With Us Throughout The Process?
Ensure a smooth and informed property-selling experience by enquiring about the estate agent’s communication strategy. Ask how they keep sellers updated on any updates to their property, property viewings, and potential enquiries. Clarity on communication practices is key to a confident and stress-free journey for any seller.
6. What Should You Price Your Home?
Setting the right price for your home is a critical step in the selling process, and it requires a careful balance between attracting potential buyers and ensuring you receive fair market value. Several factors influence the pricing decision, such as the market conditions, the location of your property, the condition, and unique features it has to offer. Seeking guidance from a local real estate agent can help you price your home accurately from the start increases the likelihood of attracting serious buyers and minimising the time your property spends on the market.
Remember that overpricing may deter potential buyers, while underpricing might lead to missed opportunities. Finding that sweet spot requires a strategic approach to maximise the value of your property in the current market.
7. Can You Suggest A Solicitor?
Seeking a reliable solicitor is a critical step in the property-selling process. Feel free to ask the estate agent for their trusted recommendations, drawing on their network of professionals to streamline your legal journey when selling your property. It gives you security on your sale, making sure you have the legal side of the house-selling process covered.
8. Who Is Responsible For The Progression Of My Sale
When choosing an estate agent, find out if they provide sales progression services. This essential support ensures a smooth transition from offer acceptance to completion, and understanding their approach can contribute to a more seamless selling experience. It shows that the estate agent cares about you as a seller, ensuring you are kept up to date with any updates, changes or news.
9. ‘Why Should WE Instruct YOU As An Agent?’ – Put Them On The Spot
Before making a decision, ask the estate agent why you should instruct them for your property sale. Inquire about their unique strengths, marketing strategies, and track record to ensure you align with an agent whose expertise best serves your selling your property for the highest possible.
Think of it as an interview, question them and put them under pressure to see how they react.
In essence, treating the selection of an estate agent as an interview, where you put them under pressure with strategic questions, will guide you towards making an informed decision. Armed with these insights, you are now equipped to sell your property with confidence.
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