CHOOSING the right estate agent to sell your home is an often overlooked part of the homebuying process, but it can make the difference between your property being snapped up and languishing on the market for months.
The beginning of autumn is one of the busiest times for sellers as house hunters return from their summer holidays and start their search for a new home.
It means sellers need to be poised ready to capture a buyer and one of the best ways of doing this is to have a proactive estate agent on side.
Making sure you choose the right agent for your situation will involve research, but there are questions to ask that will help reduce the risk of getting it wrong.
Zoopla can help you with this in its Find Agents section on the site. It details information on local agents, including the number of properties for sale, the average asking price for the properties they are selling and the average sale listing time.
For example, does the agent have a track record of selling similar properties to yours, as there is no point in hiring someone who has experience of selling country homes if yours is an urban flat?
If they are advertising similar properties to yours, they are likely to have a bank of buyers looking for that type of property.
Checking the details of some of the homes they are selling will give an indication of how they present properties and if the photos they use are good quality. It is also worth driving around your area to spot which agents have plenty of 'for sale' boards as this could indicate a strong presence in the area.
But perhaps above all, go with your gut instinct as nothing beats a good working relationship with them, because it will encourage the agent to go the extra mile to sell the property.
Once you have instructed an agent, a contract detailing the agreement will need to be signed. Make sure you read all of the small print in the contract so that you know exactly what you are signing up to.
It is particularly important to concentrate on the length of the agreement as you may want a more flexible arrangement allowing you to switch agents if your existing one under-performs.
If you instruct another agent at the same time, you may end up paying more fees.
Instructing multiple agents is often only for those under serious pressure to sell their property quickly, so it is worth putting an effort into choosing the right one from the start.