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How to choose an estate agent

It’s not a hard job to find an estate agent these days, almost every High Street in the UK has at least one or two agencies based there. However, when trusting an estate agent with what could be one of the largest financial transactions of your life you need to be very confident that they are up to the task. We take a look at a few questions you should consider when choosing an estate agent.

What are their credentials like?
You can get a good indicator of how succesful an estate agent is by the number of sold boards you see outside their properties, so keep an eye out when you’re travelling about. You should also look and see which professional bodies they belong to; an estate agent that does not belong to any recognised bodies may leave you with nowhere to complain if your sale turns sour.

Have they come recommended?
To help you cement a shortlist of agencies you should ask those close to you about their experiences. You may find that friends, family and colleagues are all willing to share their experiences and may be able to help you come a little closer to making your decision.

Do they work hard for their clients?
You can get a good indication as to whether an estate agent is working hard for their clients by visiting their website to see how often they are promoting their properties. Look and see whether their listings on their website are up to to date and whether they have taken good quality pictures of the different rooms. You could also pick up your local newspaper to see whether they have featured their properties in their too.

Are they right for you?
Does the estate agent work with the type of property you are trying to sell, are they familiar with your area and are they personable enough for you to be able to work together?

Do you think their valuation is fair?
After you have drawn up a shortlist of agencies you should invite them to make a valuation of your property. Although it may be tempting to choose an estate agent who predicts the highest price, they might be being unrealistic and trying to get a higher commission. An unrealistic asking price will no doubt leave your property on the market for a long time – so make sure the price is right. If you feel that the price is too low, then you should speak to your agent. Finding an agent that you feel comfortable with is very important in this situation.

For further information about the selling and moving home, you can read our online guide to selling your home.

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