Why you need a property agent to sell your home
Fri 03 Mar 2023
In the online world in which we live, human input should not be underestimated, particularly for property transactions which often involve matters of complexity and emotion which only human dialogue and intervention can resolve and deliver the desired result for buyers and sellers."
Jeremy Baguley, Residential Partner, Retford.
We live in a world where you can do everything from book a holiday, renew insurance, order a meal or a prescription, do your tax and even sell your car without ever interacting with an actual person.
So, why do you need someone to sell your home when you can DIY?
At the peak of the market, hundreds of thousands of households moved in a month in the UK and people do so, on average, eight times in their lifetimes.
As a result, just like other sectors, the process has evolved with online-only estate 'agencies' offering to make the process quicker, cheaper, easier and more flexible. Such is technology now, you can basically list your home for sale in your lunch-hour along with booking your weekly food shop.
Yet, when it comes to people selling their homes, and as the old cliche goes, their 'biggest asset', many still choose to use a traditional property agency like ours rather than do it privately or by an online-only method.
Don't forget we're all online too - but we also offer 'real' experts in actual offices across counties with expertise and local knowledge.
Those sellers choosing to sell privately or using an online-only model usually do so as the perception is it is cheaper. Can they be sure?"
Jeremy Baguley, Residential Partner, Retford.
It's all about experience for a start and certainly, your asset's value is a major factor in people using an actual agency, where you can go to a real office and talk to real people who work and themselves live in the locality and have expertise and credentials to offer the best service possible. Paying for a service is the key here.
Certainly it seems the higher the price of the home you are selling, the more likely people will be to use an agency like us and less likely to use an online-only method.
The news around Purplebricks is currently bringing this entire issue under the spotlight but even before this, the trends were there which showed online-only agencies were struggling for instructions in the higher value house brackets.
Homemover data agency TwentyCi's 2022 Property and Homeowners Report states that as market conditions have toughened, vendors 'consistently opted to stick with traditional agents' rather than use the fixed-fee, lower cost models.
The report states these 'budget' agencies had just 1.1% of the market share of homes worth £1million or more last year compared to 9.2% of stock worth less than £200,000.
Jeremy Baguley, one of our Residential Partners, who manages the Retford office in Nottinghamshire, said: "In the online world in which we live, human input should not be underestimated, particularly for property transactions which often involve matters of complexity and emotion which only human dialogue and intervention can resolve and deliver the desired result for buyers and sellers.
"Unlike online-only agencies, traditional agents like myself are able to access and liaise fully with, for example, solicitors up and down a chain or a buyer's lenders to gain a full picture of the complete transaction, its areas of dependency, weakness and advise accordingly.
"This knowledge is vital in holding transactions together and achieving exchange of contracts.
"Without use of an experienced property agent, can a seller truly be certain a robust marketing campaign has been delivered and the best price/transaction agreed in the marketplace?
"We as property agents have the ability to conduct a best and final offer process where competitive bids are received and the agent undertakes prudent due diligence to make an informed decision on buyer selection."
"We can advise on the most appropriate method of sale for achieving the best sale; for instance, private treaty, informal tender or auction.
"So, that's why the vast majority of property transactions are conducted using traditional estate agency methods.
"Selling property for most is not an annual occurrence and it can be stressful. Human intervention by an experienced, knowledgeable and well-resourced property agent will help a vendor through the process.
"Those sellers choosing to sell privately or using an online-only model usually do so as the perception is it is cheaper. Can they be sure?
"This could be a false economy because we as experienced property agents can obtain the best price for our client by our ability and expertise to manage the transaction, deal with issues arising during the conveyancing process, survey issues etc to preserve the price agreed.
"The value of this is likely to outweigh any perceived saving in agency fee."
If a buyer pulls out, a chain breaks down or some legal document throws up a potential problem, you really do need someone with the expertise who can sort it out and get things back on track."
James Mulhall, Residential Sales and Auction Manager, Lincoln.
James Mulhall, Residential and Auction Sales Manager, based in our Lincoln city centre office said: "I believe the personality of an agent or auctioneer can make a difference to the sale price achieved for a client. This is why we continue to operate a livestream auction where bidders can still see and hear the auctioneer albeit, the sale is conducted online.
"When appropriate, we also hold some in-room auctions and last year we sold the Thurgarton Estate in the local Nottinghamshire village hall, which saw all 10 lots sold to people in the sale room.
"The problem for property agents now is that there is so much information available to people online about their home and its potential worth. Vendors can check using online instant valuation tools to find out values which are often misleading.
"So, there are those who want to DIY - using very little professional intervention except a basic online-only model. However, what this method doesn't give you is accuracy of value based on experience and current market conditions by an expert agent who knows the area well with the in-depth knowledge of how properties can differ in price street by street let alone in different villages or towns.
"You might be able to upload your own photos but are these the best quality, do you need a floor plan and are you, yourself prepared to do all the viewings which can be exhausting?"
"Most importantly, when you get a buyer, are you going to be losing any sleep worrying if your online-only agent has done the due diligence on their identity and proof of funds? And the time you are most likely to wish you had used a traditional agent like us is when something goes wrong.
"If a buyer pulls out, a chain breaks down or some legal document throws up a potential problem, you really do need someone with the expertise who can sort it out and get things back on track. Through all of this, you need someone you can pick up the phone to or go and see who'll offer guidance, support and probably what you want most of all, a solution."
You only have to look at this website to see we have over 20 homes currently for sale for £800,000 or more, 14 of which are for sale for more than £1million and three for £2million or above and with many already under offer."
Henry Cockerton, Head of Residential, based in Holt.
Henry Cockerton, our Head of Residential, said: "When selling a home of high value, you need an agency which can demonstrate experience in doing so.
"You can see our track record of selling homes, particularly those of high value. You only have to look at this website to see we have over 20 homes currently for sale for £800,000 or more, 14 of which are for sale for more than £1million and three for £2million or above and with many already under offer.
"Unlike many other agencies, we offer offices across many counties and we are a RICS regulated firm of agents headed by three Chartered Surveyors, including myself.
"As a result, we offer the reassurance that you will be looked after in accordance to professional codes of conduct set out by RICS. We conduct business in an 'honest, fair, transparent and professional manner.
"We carry out work with due skill, care and diligence and ensure clients are provided with terms of engagement which are fair and clear which meet all legal requirements and relevant codes of practice.
"We adhere to these fully transparent principles which set a framework for best practice and gives our clients the best assurance possible when selling their home with us."
For more information, you can contact Jeremy Baguley in our Retford office on 01777 712944, James Mulhall in our Lincoln city centre office on 01522 504318, Henry Cockerton in our Holt office on 01263 711167 as well as our Residential teams based in Norwich, King's Lynn, Humber, Bury St Edmunds and overseas.
Keep up-to-date with our latest news and updates. Sign up below and we'll add you to our mailing list.