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High street vs online: what’s the best way to sell your property?

23.03.2017

Selling a house can be a daunting process, and those that wish to sell their property have to go through a somewhat long and complex process to secure the best price. In an ideal world the process would be simple, including less fees, paperwork and time taken to buy and sell.

As the age of window shopping for properties fades, potential buyers and sellers now use the internet more than ever as their first port of call for choosing and selling properties.

In the last few years, a number of online estate agents have emerged to rival the high street agents, positioning themselves as a more cost effective alternative to selling properties. But are they the best option?

We look at some of the pros and cons of high street and online agents to determine which is the best way to sell your property.

High street or online?

High street estate agents have been around for many years, with some specialising in a particular area or type of property. These are usually well-established, have expert knowledge of properties in the area and are able to offer a more personal service.

However, for this level of service, high street agents charge fees based on the sale price of your property (usually between 0.5% and 2%) which can set sellers back thousands of pounds.

In contrast, online agents have a set rate paid upfront which can take the pressure off sellers to find additional funds. This can range from anywhere between £200 and £700, and often gives the seller greater control of the overall process.

Although there is a significant difference in terms of fees, high street estate agents help with arranging viewings, taking photographs and assisting with measurements of the property.

Online agents will arrange viewings, but the sellers have to conduct the viewings themselves. Aside from being a more time-consuming option, sellers are likely to lack the finer negotiation skills of an estate agent, which could result in a less profitable sale compared to the high street agent taking the reins.

Determine what type of agent is best for you

Potential buyers and sellers usually ask what the risks are of using high street or online estate agents. Although there are both pros and cons to using one agent over the other, the question comes down to which type of agency fits around your lifestyle and budget.

If you have an understanding of the local area and are comfortable showing buyers around your property, an online estate agent may be more appealing.

However, if you are stretched for time, high street agents offer greater support and expertise. Online estate agencies will likely continue to boom and grow in the coming years, but high street agents will always be reputable for their detailed and tailored knowledge.

Further information

Our conveyancing solicitors in Bristol are experienced in advising clients on property sales and working closely with estate agents to ensure a smooth transaction. To request a free conveyancing quote, call us on 0117 325 2929 or fill out the form below.

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