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So as always, it comes down to the aOn average it costs around 1-2% of your total property price to sell your home via a high street estate agent, but costs can actually range anywhere from 0.75-3% depending on the type of contract you sign.

Therefore, if your property is worth £350,000, that means you will be paying between £2,625 and £10,500 in estate agent fees, quite apart from the additional costs of conveyancing, removal and stamp duty fees to add to the mix! As such, the idea of selling your home privately will definitely appeal to many of us.

But can you sell your own home without having to use an estate agent? In short, the answer is yes, you can. But how do you go about doing so and what are the advantages and disadvantages of selling your home privately? Read on to discover more.

The obvious advantage of selling your home privately is the cost saving you gain by doing so. But what are the disadvantages?

Whilst you will be able to market the property to its best advantage since you know it better than anyone and are the person most invested in the sale, this will obviously come with a lot of additional legwork such as arranging and hosting viewings and liaising with potential buyers, quite apart from a significant amount of research on the local property market to ensure you don’t short change yourself or become overly ambitious with your asking price.

However, one of the main disadvantages of selling your home privately is the limited reach you will have when it comes to advertising your home.

Unless you already have a buyer lined up you will need to advertise far and wide. Whilst studies have shown that people don’t tend to move more than 6 miles from their current home when it comes to finding a new property and you can employ traditional methods such as leafleting, putting notices in local shops and newspapers or approaching local community groups in person and via social media, to reach the largest number of buyers you really need to head online to one or both of the two biggest property portals; Rightmove and Zoopla. Unfortunately, neither portal accepts private property listings.

As a compromise, you might consider selling your property by an online or hybrid estate agent who will be able to market your home via Rightmove and/or Zoopla but offer a more pared back approach to selling your home than a traditional high street agent which can come with significant cost savings.

The most well-known hybrid estate agents like Yopa and Purple Bricks offer a fixed fee approach with costs ranging from £999 – £1999 depending on the package you choose. This includes services offered by a traditional high street agent such as an on the ground expert who can value your property, take photographs, create a listing, host viewings and negotiate offers on your behalf plus provide post-sales support. Yopa also offer a handy ‘no sale no fee’ option and competitor Emoov offer a split fee whereby you pay an initial set up fee of £249 to market your property and then 0.5% of the total sale price once your house has sold, so you are not paying a significant sum upfront.

Whilst most online agents now offer a more hybrid service, you can still save a significant amount of money using agents like Doorsteps who focus on 24/7 technology and online data to sell your home and encourage you to do much of the physical legwork yourself. Their basic package costs an impressively low £99.00, however you will need to photograph your home, provide all of the listing details such as the floorplan, host viewings and liaise with potential buyers. This listing is also only provided on a 12-month basis, although you are not tied into a sole agency agreement and can also market your property elsewhere.

Online agency Strike takes a different approach again, offering their hybrid estate agency service completely free of charge. This includes a valuation by a local expert, photographs, floorplan, advertising on Zoopla and Rightmove, a For Sale board and support with the negotiation and completion of your sale. Strike make money via optional extras such as hosted viewings and premium listings plus referral fees from partner services for mortgage advice and removals.

So, in essence, whilst it is possible to sell a house without using an estate agent and achieve significant cost savings, what you save in agent fees means more of an investment of your own time. So as always, it comes down to the age-old money versus time quandary when it comes to selling your home.
ge-old money versus time quandary when it comes to selling your home.

Claire Preece

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