Selling Your House Without An Estate Agent

Written by Mathew McCorry

If you read my property blog now, that’ll be the end of it. I will not look for you, I will not pursue you. But if you don’t, I will look for you, I will find you and I will make you read it.

Selling your home is always a challenge, and with so many different ways to now approach the market, it can seem an endless task. The traditionally chosen method to selling is usually through an estate agent. However, it is becoming the popular choice to sell without an estate agent. Here are a few top tips to making the process of selling without an estate agent as smooth as possible.

Making Your House Sellable

A pivotal starting point is making your property attractive to buyers. Sometimes, all that houses need is a little bit of TLC. You don’t have to fit a new kitchen or bathroom suite in your property to make its value increase. Why not add a fresh coat of paint to your walls, fix that leaky sink you never got around to or patch up the hole in the back fence of your garden? Improving the condition of your property can help work towards your desired sale price and modernise your home. Top Tip: the interior of the property needs to be matched with the exterior of your house, so make sure you cover all aspects of your property.

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Set a Price and Write a Description

With your property looking its best, the next step in the selling process would usually be to contact an estate agent. However, doing so is the more traditional route and doesn’t have to be the only avenue you explore.

If you decide to sell without an estate agent, then start off by conducting your own research. Look at properties around your area that are similar to yours, how much have they sold for? Or how much are they currently on the market for? Great websites you can use that compare properties Rightmove and Zoopla. Sometimes estate agents over evaluate properties so just be wary of this.

After research, start to write a description of your home. This needs to be something to entice buyers to your property and show off its potential for its new owners. The length of this only needs to be three or four sentences, the main aim is a brief description to go with the floor plan.

Before you can post about your home, make sure you take photos of the property. These need to be taken at the best angles, and with the optimum lighting to do the house justice. If your property has land, then make sure you include photos within your home’s portfolio. Communal areas are key to photograph as these will make potential buyers envisage whether they would live there.

Listing the Property

If you ended up deciding to sell yourself, you will have to manage the advertising and viewings of your home. This option works best if you know someone who already has an interest in buying your property.

To list a property, there are many websites made for owners that want to sell property themselves. Useful websites if you decide to choose this method are or Websites like these don’t usually charge on commission as they normally make their money through advertising. However, this will not give your property access to being on portals such as Zoopla and Rightmove. Another good tool you may use are social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook.

Although most sell online, make sure to check pricings of offline marketing. For example, advertising in your local paper may be a better solution to selling your property.

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Arranging Viewings

Usually when you sell your home through an estate agent, they will be on hand to guide potential buyers around your property. If you chose not to use an estate agent, to not pay fees you could enlist help from members of your family when you are unable to take viewings. However, make sure that you have safety precautions in place just in case. One way of doing so is by having a friend around when you are conducting a viewing.

Negotiating and Accepting an Offer

When negotiating a price, make sure to keep a clear head and not to be intimidated by the process. Beforehand, make a decision on what you are willing to accept and stick to that figure. If you do have to turn down any offers, it goes without saying this needs to be done in friendly but professional manner. Also acting in this fashion, may leave the door open in case you decide to accept the offer in the future. Being friendly will make you as a seller look more approachable and comfortable to work with.

When you manage to negotiate an offer, usually in the first instance, this is through verbal communication. After, there will be a document form of communication stating what was verbally communicated. However, nothing is legally binding until there has been exchanges of contracts which is normally a month down the line.

Speaking with your Solicitor

Once a provisional offer has been accepted, you will need to find a solicitor to help you with the legal side of the sale. Within any recruiting, make sure you research into solicitors’ firms to choose the correct one for the job. A useful website you may use is Gov.UK, as this will help guide you through the solicitor process.

The buyer of your property will then instruct their surveyor to survey the property. Be prepared for the surveyor to tell their client to renegotiate a price with you. As the surveyor may have found certain aspects wrong with your property and feel that the offer is now unfair.

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What are the alternative ways of selling your home?

Apart from selling your property through an estate agent and selling it yourself, there are other ways to sell.

- Part exchange – Some property developers will buy your property in return for you buying one of their new-build homes. The process starts with them valuing your home, which in most circumstances, will lead to you being given 65-70% of its market value. Although, they will take responsibility for selling your old home.

- Auction – Using an auction is great if you have problems with your home and want to get rid of it quickly. When a property is listed for auction, they usually start under market value, but if a bidding war occurs then this could work in your favour. In usual cases, a buyer has 28 days to pay 90% of the agreed price to make the transaction ‘complete’.

- Raffles – This method is seen as the most unusual and unpredictable. All you have to do is put your property into a raffle as the main prize, however there is no guarantee of how much money you may receive.

- Quick cash sale companies – These days, there are many different companies that have cash facilities to buy your home. Generally, these companies will give you a fair price which will be below market value. However, it is important to research these companies as some have may add extra costs which makes the process unnecessarily complicated.

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