The pros and cons of selling without an estate agent

Thinking of selling your home? With the average UK house price hitting a new record of £289,099, now could be the best time to upsize, downsize, or just increase your equity. Even though using an estate agent is the most conventional approach, it’s also possible to sell privately. In this guide, we’ll outline the pros and cons of selling your own property without consulting an estate agent.

The pros
1. You’ll save money on fees

Estate agents always charge fees. The final amount, known as the commission rate, is usually determined by the final selling price and can vary from under 1% up to 3.5%. It’s likely that estate agents will also charge for advertising, including a ‘for sale’ board, and additional VAT.

2. You’re in control

Usually, estate agents also take control of all the administrative requirements involved in the process of selling your home. However, if you opt for a private sale, it will be up to you to arrange and conduct viewings, advertise your property, and negotiate the price.

Organising your own marketing – especially through preparing flyers and colourful banners to advertise in your local area – means you’ll be able to present your home exactly how you’d like to. Taking care of the promotional aspect of the sale gives you the freedom to show off everything you love most about your home.

3. You can settle on the price you want

Without an agent, you’ll be responsible for negotiating the final sale price of your property. If you’re not willing to settle for a lower price than the one you have in mind, it’s sensible to avoid estate agents. Instead, consider the prices of other similar properties in your area and don’t forget that buyers usually offer under the asking price.

The cons
1. Extra responsibilities

Even though private sale gives you more freedom over the sale process, it’s a double-edged sword. It’s difficult to determine exactly how much work is undertaken by estate agents until you attempt to cover it all independently. If you’re already overwhelmed, stressed, or working a hectic schedule, it might be a more sensible decision to sell with an estate agent.

2. No second opinion

Estate agents in the UK are professionally trained in all aspects of property sale, including price negotiation. Attempting to conduct your entire house sale alone can be daunting, with potential obstacles or grey areas only becoming clear once you’re in the middle of the process.

Opting to work with a reputable estate agent should encourage a transparent, collaborative relationship to help both of you achieve a brilliant outcome from the sale.

Selling a home is never easy. If you’re still undecided or you need to learn more before putting your home on the market, it’s worth reading detailed guidance from Citizens Advice to help you.

Written by Julie Hanson

Julie is passionate about property – development, investment and portfolio planning. Along with husband Alec, Julie is actively building a property portfolio while helping others to do the same.

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