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Property for sale? The estate agent advice you must avoid to sell your home quickly

WHEN trying to sell a property, homeowners might enlist the help of an estate agent to make it easier. However, some tips and tricks estate agents use might not actually benefit the seller. This is the advice you should avoid, according to an expert.

Selling your home is not an easy task and getting the help of an estate agent might seem like a necessity. However, they may not always act in the best interest of the seller and homeowners must be careful when dealing with them. According to experts, there are some tricks estate agents use which sellers need to be on the look out for. What are the key warning signs to watch out for?

While many estate agents will try hard to help sellers shift a property, others may not give the best advice.

Jonathan Hopper, managing director of buying agent Garrington Property Finders, told: “You would think that in the current market – in which demand for homes far exceeds supply – estate agents wouldn’t have to work too hard to attract buyers.

“But there are a few perennial tricks that estate agents use both to drum up greater interest, and to encourage would-be buyers to make higher offers.”

When meeting with an estate agent, sellers must beware of property valuations which seem too good to be true, the website explained.

Some will overvalue a property in a bid to secure business and later advise sellers to cut the price of their house.

The expert said: “To avoid losing business, agencies will commonly sign you up to a 12 or 16 week contract – possibly even as long as 26 weeks – and leave you out of pocket as a result.”

As well as overvaluing a house, sellers should look out as some estate agents could actually get less for the property than it is worth.

Although estate agents work on commission, the national average for this is relatively small and could affect how hard they push to get the best price.

“Fees for estate agents vary enormously, but consumer group Which? says the national average is 1.8 per cent,” explained.

“So while you might make an additional £10,000 by selling at £190,000 rather than £180,000, at 1.8 per cent an estate agent will only receive another £180.”

To avoid getting caught out, HomeOwners Alliance suggested using a sliding scale of commission where it is negotiable based on how much the house goes for.

Sellers should never let an estate agent put an under offer sign by their house, an expert revealed.

This can actually put potential buyers off and only does well for the estate agents by giving them local credibility.

If hoping to boost the value of a property, homeowners should focus on their garden as many buyers are willing to pay a premium on this.

In fact, some buyers will spend as much as £22,000 extra on a home if they can get some greenery.