The average time taken from securing a mortgage in principle to completion on a new home is typically around 6 months. For some homeowners, particularly those who need a quick sale, this timeframe is undesirable. Furthermore, it is no secret that estate agent fees can be high; 3%+VAT is not uncommon. It is no surprise that more sellers than ever are choosing alternative routes to sale, such as selling privately, online estate agents, cash house buying companies and property auctions.
Whilst it is still commonplace for people to use a high street estate agent to sell their home, numbers are decreasing. Throughout the pandemic online estate agencies thrived as they already had the online and virtual tools in place to facilitate the buying and selling of property. The digital evolution, in general, has had an impact of the property industry and there is now a wide variety of different companies operating under the estate agent umbrella. Cash house buyers, those that can sell your house online for free, and a plethora of other services are available to those who would prefer to avoid a traditional estate agent.
If you’d prefer an alternative way to sell your home, you will be pleased to hear there are countless benefits. You can sell your house without a high street estate agent and enjoy the likes of a free valuation, quick completion times, and fully managed sales.
Below, SOLD.CO.UK uncover the points you need to consider before moving away from a traditional estate agent. Furthermore, we shine a light on the different ways in which you can sell your house today.
How much is my house worth?
If you have decided that an estate agent isn’t for you then seek a valuation. Start by using an online property portal, like Rightmove, to see how much similar properties in your area have sold for. You can also contact estate agents in your area. Although you won’t be using their services (perhaps keep this nugget of information to yourself) they will typically give you a free valuation. There is no harm in getting a property valuation from a handful of local estate agents to get a clear and realistic price bracket.
Can I save money by not using an estate agent?
Estate agents typically charge between 0.75% and 3% on the final sale value of your property. This means, if your home sold for £280,000 you could see up to £8,400 of that go to your estate agent. Furthermore, if you’re purchasing another property you will need to pay stamp duty. Stamp duty cannot be avoided but estate agent fees can if you look for an alternative.
Some online estate agents have a set fee when you sell your home with them. This can vary but often falls between £300 and £1,500. The fee will not change depending on how much your home sells for. If your property sells for £800,000 you will still only be expected to pay the flat fee.
At SOLD.CO.UK we offer our customers an opportunity to sell their house for free. Unlike other ways of selling, it doesn’t cost you anything to sell your property with us. We even cover your legal fees to make selling your home as affordable as possible.
Get an Energy Performance Certificate
Before you can sell your property by any route you will need to get an Energy Performance Certificate. You can then put your home on the market. A registered energy assessor can do this for you. Simply search the EPC register website for a professional in your area.
Private house sales no estate agent
If you’re happy to put in some time and effort, then selling privately could be for you. It’s helpful if you have an above average understanding of the property industry or have purchased or sold a property before. There are a number of websites that will allow you to list your property for free – such as House Ladder or Property Sell – and advertising via social media, the local newspaper and in local shops will all help market your home as much as possible without incurring a cost.
Selling privately isn’t any easy task and no sale is guaranteed. However, you will get to keep 100% of the money you make selling your home and will only have to settle solicitor’s fees.
Can I sell my house myself?
Much of the work estate agents carry out is marketing your home effectively and securing viewings. Understandably there are a lot of considerations with DIY property sales. You will need to determine:
- Do you have enough knowledge to help you with the process?
- Do you have enough time to organise the sale?
- Are you comfortable negotiating directly with people?
- Do you and an interested party and tight timeframes?
- Are you happy to conduct viewings on your own?
These questions will be particularly useful if you are marketing your home yourself and there is not already an interested party lined up. You will be your own estate agent and you will need to be aware of costs relating to EPC certificates, solicitors, floor plan designers, photographs, and content writers if you aren’t an expert. There are a lot of online resources, forums and groups available online where other successful DIY sellers share their stories.
Please see below some of the most common and basic costs associated with selling your home privately:
|Conveyancing||£500 – £1,800|
|EPC||£50 – £120|
|Total||£550 – £1,920|
Comparatively, bricks and mortar estate agent costs are below:
|Estate agent fees||0.75% – 3% of selling price|
|Conveyancing||£500 – £1,800|
|EPC||£50 – £120|
If you sold a property for £350,000 privately your max expenditure would be around £1,920. If you were to use an estate agent this figure would settle between £3,175 and £12,420. Using an online estate agent, this figure could vary between £300 and £1,500. Therefore, looking at all options before automatically selecting a traditional estate agent may be wise.
If I have a buyer for my house do I need an estate agent?
If a relative is buying your home or somebody has expressed an interest in your property, then there is no rule that you will need to get an estate agent involved. As we have touched upon, this will mean taking a lot of the administrative tasks that an agent would complete on yourself. You would also need to instruct a solicitor on your behalf who has experience with this kind of property sale. Buying or selling a home without an estate agent is perfectly legal you will just need to ensure you have sound legal support and follow all the necessary steps such as obtaining an EPC, conveyancing, and contract signing etc.
Selling your home at auction
Auctions have become a favourite for those who are selling secondary properties, such as those which they have inherited. Other circumstances include selling homes which have been neglected or have legal complications attached to them. Selling a property you own at auction has its advantages, such as the likelihood of a quick sale and the potential for people to outbid each other, meaning more money for you. Furthermore, the timeframe of auctioning off a property tends to be 10 weeks, which is significantly shorter than the average six months with a traditional agent.
However, there is no guarantee that your property will sell at auction. If it does, the buyer is legally tied in so there is little wiggle room once the hammer falls. Auction fees can be a little pricey and percentage fees fall in the same remit as high street estate agents.
Can I use an online estate agent?
Fast becoming one of the preferred methods of selling, online estate agents have climbed in popularity over recent years. Traditionally, estate agents charge commission on the final sale value of your home. Online estate agents tend to charge a one-off fee, typically between £300 and £1,500. However, others – like us here at SOLD.CO.UK – don’t charge a penny and even cover your legal costs too.
Whilst you may not have the face-to-face contact with an agent that is considered the norm regarding property sales, being kept in the loop is not an issue. Your property can be listed online quickly, and your agent will keep you in the loop regarding views and progress. Furthermore, quicker house sales are more common with online estate agents compared to bricks and mortar agents, so this is something to bear in mind if time is not on your side.
How to sell your house without an estate agent
We know that there are some sellers who want to avoid traditional estate agents. This is where SOLD.CO.UK can help. As an online estate agent we strike the perfect balance between the support of an agent but the freedom to sell on your terms. We can work with your timeframes, but it’s worth bearing in mind hat we sell faster than any estate agent in the UK – if speed is something you require. We also don’t charge any fees and cover your legal costs. Interested? Get an online valuation today to start the process.