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Can You Sell a House Without Using an Estate Agent?

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Why hire an estate agent when you can sell a house without one?  The role of an estate agent is to advertise your property online and by putting on a for-sale board.  If you are happy to advertise it yourself, you could save thousands of pounds.

In this blog, we will cover:

When selling a property, using an estate agent is the first method that comes to mind. However, it is worth researching how to sell your house without an estate agent, as there are a few quicker and cheaper options.

Let’s talk about how to sell your property without an estate agent.

Table of Contents

Advertise your property for free?

You can hire a graphics designer on websites like Fiverr to design a for-sale board that your local printers can print, and all you need to do is erect it outside your property.  If you live on a busy road, you are likely to generate interest.

Next, you can list your property on free websites like Gumtree, Property Sell and House Ladder.  Get yourself a good camera, or if you have the latest phone, tidy up the property and take landscape photos as best as you can.  Finally, write a good description of the property.  The only drawback is that these websites will not get as much traffic as Rightmove or Zoopla.

If you would rather sell your property discreetly because you have disputes with your neighbours or you are trying to get away from an abusive relationship, then this is where Property Saviour can help you.  We will buy your property directly for cash, complete all the legal paperwork, and pay you in cash – all without your nosey neighbours finding out. 

Research property values on Rightmove is key.
If you are thinking of selling, it pays to do your research and set a realistic asking price. Use Rightmove, a leading portal, for your research.

Sell your house yourself on Rightmove

Homeowners aren’t allowed to list their properties on Rightmove.  Therefore, you would need to pay an estate agent an upfront fee to list your property on Rightmove.  This could be as much as £1,000.  BBC Five Live reports that having paid this fee to online estate agents, sellers are furious as this fee is non-refundable, and they have been unable to find a buyer.

Selling a house yourself means more responsibilities including conducting views and negotiation with potential buyers
Selling a house yourself means taking on extra responsibilities such as accompanied viewing, answering any questions and negotiating the price.

Is it easy to sell a house without an estate agent?

It depends on:

  1. Your situation – can you wait a couple of months or longer?
  2. Is certainty of a sale going through important to you? What happens if your property doesn’t sell?
  3. Your property’s condition – is it mortgageable?
  4. Location – do you have disputes with neighbours? Is there a planned HS2 route nearby?
  5. Would you prefer to sell to a cash house buyer for a realistic price?

Using an estate agent has several costs associated with it.  These include:

  • paying for professional photographs
  • instructing an EPC
  • their commission – don’t pay fees upfront
  • paying for a mortgage until the property sells, council tax and potentially empty property insurance
  • any urgent repairs that need attention – this is all part of preparing a property for sale
  • instructing solicitors who insist on payment upfront for “opening a file”, and then you will have to pay their fee even if your buyer pulls out. This is called an abortive fee.
Is your home ready to sell
Paint your home in fresh neutral colours because it will appeal to first time buyers who aren't in a chain.

How to sell a house without using an estate agent?

If you have a friend or a colleague who is interested in buying your home, then one possible option is to sell to them.  You do not need an estate agent if you have a buyer in mind.  You will save a fortune in fees.

If you are fed up with your estate agent, then give them a notice and contact us.  You can sell your house privately to us once you are out of your notice period.

Often, sellers want a quick sale with certainty that the sale will go ahead.  This is where Property Saviour can help.  We will buy any property, whatever the condition, and can make you a fair cash offer, pay your legal fees and complete it within a few days or at a timescale that works for you.

House requiring substantial refurbishment
Whether you have inherited a house or you are selling a buy to let house, it is likely to need substantial investment before it can hit the open market.

How to spot and avoid estate agent scams?

Estate agents have long been scrutinised in terms of the value that they offer their clients, with many people questioning what it is they do to charge such extortionate fees. Often, even the strategies used by estate agents can be questionable when they want to achieve a sale.  These include:

Impartiality or not?

Unfortunately, you are likely never to be the estate agent’s only customer, as they will be dealing with both the buyer and the seller. Therefore, they can’t be acting in the best interest of both parties.

Estate agents would, of course, like a higher selling price, as this would mean more money coming their way, but to keep the buyer happy, they will also have to negotiate the lowest price possible.

They can’t do the viewings

If you have sold through an estate agent before, you are also likely to have experienced the call where they inform you that there is no staff available to conduct a viewing, so would you be able to show potential buyers around yourself?

Considering the amount you pay them to provide this service, this should never happen.  Many estate agents put their feet up in the evenings and weekends when most buyers wish to view your property.

Over-valuing your property

A tactic sometimes used by estate agents is to overvalue the property, claiming that they could sell it for more than someone else to win your instruction.

This leads to disappointment when the seller is advised to accept a lower offer later. This isn’t the only underhand tactic sometimes adopted by estate agents.

Getting their mates to view your house

Estate agents are known for arranging a fake viewing.  This is an old scam in which an agent will get a friend to view your property to create an illusion that people are interested in your property.

You reduce your price, but their commission stays the same!

Watch out for a minimum fee clause.  This fee applies if you accept a far lower offer.  If you have agreed on a sale, the buyer can chip away at the price at the last minute because the mortgage surveyor has identified issues with the property.

Upfront fees

Many estate agents will also want some costs paid for upfront, yet there is no guarantee of success, and you certainly won’t be getting your money back if the property doesn’t sell.

If they already have your money, why would they then be motivated to try and sell your property at all?

Leaving you thousands of pounds of pocket after an abortive sale

A few estate agents will include a clause in the agreement that states that they are entitled to a commission fee if they introduce a buyer who is ready to exchange contracts, even if you then back out of the sale.

How to avoid estate agent scams?
One of estate agent scams is to over-value your property and charge you upfront fees meaning that you are unlikley to withdraw your instruction in future.

Our top tips on how to sell your house without an estate agent.

It is not surprising that you are exploring how to sell your house without an estate agent. With more access to online property portals, the ease of being able to reach a much larger audience using social media and the hope of cutting out fees, it is no wonder people are exploring this as a potential option, and you are likely to see more for sale by owner homes.

Selling your own home can take a lot of time and devotion, as well as constantly being available in case of any enquiries. There are a few steps to selling a house by owner:

  • Make Your House Sellable – As with selling anything, you need to make it appealing and presentable. If you feel your house is looking the best it can be, you could consider hiring a photographer to get the very best angles, making it look open and desirable.
  • Home Improvements – When selling a house, it is likely not in perfect condition. Chances are it will need some work done to it, whether that is just a new paint job to make the overall colour scheme more neutral and sellable or if it needs a whole new kitchen or bathroom. In a worst-case scenario, there may even be a structural issue. If you don’t have the luxury of time or you won’t be able to afford to spend thousands on these improvements, it’s worth getting in touch with Property Saviour.
  • Documentation – One of the most common questions asked when using sell your home yourself websites is, ‘What documents do I need to sell my house without an agent? As the seller, you will likely need to gather proof of identity, property title deeds, property information form, fittings and contents form, Energy Performance Certificate and management information pack.
Deep cleaning your property and making it presentable makes it more sellable.
It is amazing what you can achieve with a good deep clean because it gives impression that your home is well looked after. This makes your house more sellable.

What about selling property via auction?

On paper, property auctions offer a great alternative to estate agents – but it is the estate agents that run property auctions!  Selling a property via auction isn’t for everyone. 

  1. First, you will have to pay a solicitor to prepare a legal pack including the searches.
  2. Property auctioneer will tell you that you’d have to put in a really low guide price to attract interest. Be prepared to give it away.
  3. Your reserve price can’t exceed 10% of your guide price. This is the price at which you’d be legally obliged to sell.
  4. You’d be expected to advertise a property for auction for a month before the auction and completion takes another month, so you could wait for up to 2 months, and the buyer can still pull out.
  5. Your property auctioneer will deduct their fee from the buyer’s deposit – even if he/she does not buy your property, and you’d have to start the whole process again.
Auctioning a house means setting a very low guide price. Auction properties are known to be problematic to buyers.
Auctioning a house means putting up a property with a very low guide price but the risk is that you will end up giving it away.

Alternative way to sell privately to a cash buyer like Property Saviour

At Property Saviour we are real cash house buyers who invest in properties all over England and Wales. We provide the ideal solution if you are wondering how to sell a house by owner for cash.

Property Saviour allows you to make a quick sale without having to deal with all the negative sides of dealing with an estate agent. We will take the stress out of the house-selling process, buying any house, including bungalows, apartments, and houses. So, whatever else you have going on in your life, the house-selling process doesn’t have to be something to worry about.

We have over 25 years of experience and knowledge in the industry, so you can rest assured that you are in safe hands. However, if we believe that you will be better off selling via an estate agent, then we will not hesitate to let you know.

We understand that a quick house sale is not for everyone, but for those who need it, there are many benefits. You can be certain of a sale; the house will be bought in any condition, and you can work with a timescale that suits your life plans. Often, working with Property Saviour, you will be able to draw your funds from the house sale in as little as 10 days or faster, presenting one of the best methods of how to sell your house without an estate agent.

So, if you are in a situation where you need to sell your house fast, without the time, fees and stress that comes with it, then be sure to give Property Saviour a call today and see what we can do for you.

Sell with certainty & speed

auction hammer

Property Saviour Price Promise

  • The price we’ll offer is the price that you will receive with no hidden deductions.
  • Be careful with ‘cash buyers’ who require a valuation needed for a mortgage or bridging loan.
  • These valuations or surveys result in delays and price reductions later on.
  • We are cash buyers.  There are no surveys.
  • We always provide proof of funds with every formal offer issued.

We'll Pay £1,500 Towards Your Legal Fees

  • No long exclusivity agreement to sign because we are the buyers.
  • You are welcome to use your own solicitor. 
  • If you don’t have one, we can ask our solicitors for recommendations.
  • We share our solicitor’s details and issue a Memorandum of Sale. 

Sell With Certainty & Speed

  • Our approach is transparent and ethical, which is why sellers trust us.
  • 100% Discretion guaranteed. 
  • If you have another buyer, you can put us in a contracts race to see who completes first.
  • Complete in 10 days or at a timescale that works for you.  You are in control.
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