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High Street Vs Selling Privately

High Street Vs Selling Privately

Recently browsing through a page on a well known social media site I came across a member's question. The question was a fair enough question but it got to me a little. The question was on the lines of "how do I sell my house cheaply, without having to pay for an estate agent". When I read this I had a little grin on my face...

The process of successfully selling a house has been an art since the 1800s and is one that has kept us employed ever since; and there's a reason for that: the process is not an easy one. Selling a property isn't about just popping a private ad? in the local post office or on the work notice board, nor is it about just opening the door to strangers and agreeing an offer with fingers crossed that it goes through. The entire process has so many variables that a private seller can very rarely keep on top of whilst carrying on with everything else in their world.

As experienced agents here we have been trained to use photography equipment to its very best and the results are clear. In order to portray a property in its best light the photography must be very good and a private seller using perhaps their mobile phone or holiday camera with a flash will simply not be good enough. We use software to make sure that windows can be seen through and are not just bright white areas within a photo. So to achieve the best price it has been proven that presentation does matter. So there's one huge advantage towards not selling privately.

Moore & Partners will accompany, where physically possible, and deal with, every single viewing which in most peoples opinion's is the worst part of the process. Selling privately means that not only will you initially not know too much about the person viewing, other than maybe a name and number, you will have the potentially awkward job of trying to sell the viewer your pride and joy. Training and experience means that we find out the right facts at the beginning and ensure the people who view through us are the right viewers. For a private seller to ask/dig politely into the viewer's finances can be another awkward moment. Asking in a polite way "what is your budget?" "Do you have an agreement in principle?" Or "what sort of property are you looking for?" are not the first questions that would come to mind of a private seller, through the fact that they haven't been trained to do so. So this alone is a reason to employ a 'quality' estate agent to take the pressure off.

Once an offer has been received what would a private/inexperienced seller do next? The obvious answer would be to just leave it to the solicitors and mortgage company. Please do trust me that this is simply not enough. Sales chasing is an art form in itself, simple, and one that Moore & Partners have perfected. Initially all finances, chains, timescales and any other variables must all be agreed, through us, between the buyer and seller. Surely best to get all parties on the same level from the beginning to eradicate any silly problems down the line. Once that obstacle has been overcome then things do get passed over to the solicitors and mortgage companies. We actively and strategically know when to call them and know what to ask and at what stage to ask it. A private seller with no experience will just leave it to run its course. On more occasions than I can remember have I dealt with and sorted problems quickly that, left to solicitors, would factually not have been resolved and the sale would have fallen through.

So to summarise...Yes selling privately could save you thousands, I agree. But it is likely to also cost/lose you thousands!! Not having the experience to negotiate the best selling price, not having the experience and time to liaise with solicitors to overcome problems, not being able to get a grasp of what's happening are all reasons that people should use us to sell their properties. Would I think I could rewire my house and not use a qualified electrician, no I wouldn't. So in the same context why would somebody try to sell their property themselves? We are the professionals in what we do, and at Moore & Partners we do it extremely well.

Chris Penfold, Moore & Partners

Published on 07 October 2014