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Why use an Estate Agent at all?

On the surface, it might seem reasonable to consider selling your house yourself, yet only the smallest minority of people attempt to do so, even in the face of so-called “online” estate agents, usually with disappointing results. Yes, you could put a homemade board up in your window or write your own ad and put it on some private sellers’ websites. But apart from the problem of appearing “cheapskate” to prospective buyers who might assume that you have also skimped on the home maintenance as well, there are some serious flaws to the idea of going it alone.

Not only are there the obvious security issues of letting strangers into your home, but could you show it with the skill of a trained salesperson, well-versed in the psychology of buying? Can you qualify the potential buyers properly? How will you know what they are really looking for? Could you handle the negotiations impassively? Would you be able to draw on various resources to determine the correct asking price, as a little knowledge can be a dangerous thing in this respect and could cost you thousands. Indeed, a failure to interpret the market correctly on an almost daily basis could mean that your house goes stale, severely limiting its saleability and eventual selling price.

And what about qualifying buyers, managing a chain, facilitating financial services, liaising with lawyers or handling a gazundering attempt following a misinterpretation of a survey? These are common issues that need to be handled by a well-trained and experienced professional real estate agent.

Do you have access to international marketing platforms that a professional agent uses? Limiting the reach of your property and the number of “eyeballs” that you can reach with your own marketing. This could limit the opportunities and price that you can achieve for your property.

Perhaps the most compelling reason of all to use an estate agent is a simple one. Most buyers end up buying a property that is often quite different to the one about which they first enquired. This is because an agent will identify a buyer’s wants and needs and, in working with them, may well offer the buyer a property that would not otherwise have been on the buyer’s radar initially. In other words, it is the volume of properties on an agent’s books that first attracts buyers. The skilful agent then helps the buyer to buy the right property – hopefully yours – and then makes sure the sale sticks!!

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