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The vast majority of people use an estate agent to sell their home on the open market rather than privately. There are plenty of reasons for doing so, whether you are marketing a house, flat, cottage, bungalow or studio apartment.

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  • Despite having to pay agents a fee, good ones can be worth their weight in gold. So, what do estate agents offer you if you are looking to sell your home?

    Knowledge of the local market

    An estate agent's knowledge of the local area, the type of properties for sale within it and the potential demand will allow them to calculate your property's value accurately and realistically for sale. They should be able to substantiate why your home will sell, the kind of buyers that might be interested in it and how best to present and promote the property to that target market. Read more about property valuations.

    A database full of potential buyers

    An estate agent will already be in contact with a substantial number of potential buyers on their database, buyers who have listed their criteria with the agent and who are searching for property, ready to start viewing homes for sale immediately.

    Marketing expertise and power

    It is unlikely that any other organisation will be able to market your property like an estate agent can. In today's market, estate agents invest heavily in maximising the potential reach of their audience to give them, and you, the best possible chance of finding the right buyer for your property at the best possible sale price. Your property is likely to be advertised through a number of channels:

    • On the Internet, via their own websites and major property portals like PrimeLocation
    • 'For sale' board at your property
    • At their local branch
    • Through the post
    • Mobile phone alerts
    • In local or national newspapers and magazines

    In short, estate agents have the capacity to make sure your property is seen by the right buyers, wherever they might be.

    Managing and conducting viewings

    Your estate agent will liaise between the potential buyers and you to arrange viewings of your property. The majority will also be present at the viewing to sell your home to the interested parties, as well as being on hand to answer questions that may arise. After a viewing has taken place, the estate agent should contact you with an update of how the viewing went and give you any useful feedback.

    Advice and guidance

    Should any difficulties or problems arise throughout the selling process, your estate agent will provide you with advice for the best course of action and guidance to overcome any obstacles that may be blocking a quick sale of your property.

    Managing the sales process

    A good estate agent will regularly check up and down the property chain, and with the solicitors, to make sure everything is running smoothly for the sale of your property. By instructing an estate agent to sell your home, you are employing a company to manage as much of the process as you are comfortable with, taking away many of the stresses and strains of the task.

    Negotiating with the buyer

    One particular advantage of using an estate agent is that you don't have to negotiate directly with the buyers, which may cause embarrassment and awkwardness for the more faint hearted and may weaken your bargaining position. Your estate agent will be well equipped to manage the negotiation on your behalf and will make sure you get the best deal possible.

    For more information, read our how to sell a house guide. Alternatively, you can search for an estate agent on PrimeLocation right now.

    Some information contained herein may have changed since it was first published. PrimeLocation strongly advises you to seek current legal and/or financial advise from a qualified professional.

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