How to sell your home the thrifty way (without an estate agent)

If you’re thinking of moving house but the costs of selling via an estate agent are putting you off, why not consider selling your home yourself? Did you know that it’s possible to do all the photography, listings, viewings and negotiating yourself and not have to pay a penny to an estate agent? Today’s blog post will walk you through the process…

When I bought my first home, I didn’t quite realise just how much it would cost to sell it through an estate agent if I ever want to move again. Sure the commission they make on selling your home motivates them to find you a buyer but, on the other hand, aren’t YOU just as motivated anyway? Just like anything else in your home, I’m sure you’re perfectly capable of DIYing it!

The costs involved in selling your home can be huge – in fact, you might have to hike up the asking price of your property just to cover the estate agents fees. So why not have a go at selling your home yourself? If all else fails, you can always fall back on an estate agent if needed so try out these tips and see how you get on…

SET YOUR SELLING PRICE

Even though you might want to get a decent return on your investment, you still need to list your home at a reasonable price, otherwise it just won’t sell. Get an idea of the value of other similar homes in your area by searching online for houses that have recently sold, and use free estimated property value tools like those on Zoopla.

Alternatively, you can get a chartered surveyor to assess the value of your property for around Β£200. Once you have this valuation report, you’ll know exactly how much your home is worth and can even upgrade it to a home-buyers report for approx Β£400 to make your home appeal to more buyers and allow you to fix any potential problems before your house even goes on the market.

TAKE LOVELY PHOTOS

I don’t know about you, but when I was searching for a house, I was shocked by some of the photos that estate agents were willing to use to try to sell a house. Some images looked horribly dark, wide angles stretched doors and appliances beyond recognition and some rooms were just downright untidy.

So learn from these mistakes and take some photos that you would be happy to see if YOU were searching online. Clean those rooms, declutter, tidy up and even refresh the paintwork if needed. The clearer and cleaner the house looks when you take the photos, the better.

Try to bring in as much light as possible, so fling open the curtains, roll up the blinds and even remove net curtains if you can. Watch out for reflections in mirrors and windows – noone wants to see you taking the photo haha! And always take landscape photos with a decent camera (stay away from portrait phone photos) so that they can be easily viewed online.

CREATE A DESCRIPTION

Buyers who are viewing your house’s listing online will want to know every measurement of every room, so get out the tape measure and take accurate measurements. Turn this into a floor plan if you can – some online companies such as Floor Plans Ordered Direct will turn a sketch and measurements into a plan for you, from about Β£20.

You can write a description based on the plan and measurements but can inject some personality to explain why the house is so great. This should be easy for you, as you’ve spent time in each room and can explain how the sun pours into the kitchen in the morning, making it the perfect spot for breakfast. Here are some tips for writing a good property description if you’re doing it yourself.

PUT IT UP FOR SALE

Did you know that only registered estate agents can submit properties to portals like Rightmove and Zoopla? Don’t let that put you off though – as many homebuyers exhaust their search on these portals and turn to other, more independent, property websites such as The House Shop. If you want to list your property on popular sites like PrimeLocation or Zoopla, you can pay a small fee to a DIY estate agent such as MoveSelf to get your listing uploaded.

There ARE other ways to sell your house, of course. Remember those days BEFORE THE INTERNET?? Local newspapers have a property section where you can pay for an advert. And you can put up a ‘For Sale’ board outside your house. Plus, now that we are all online, why not make use of social media to tell everyone you know that you’re selling your home and ask them to share your property listing with their friends too? There are local property hunter groups on Facebook that you can even list a house for sale on Gumtree!

For more tips and to learn about the next steps after you’ve attracted a buyer, have a read of Property Road’s blog post on selling your home without an estate agent to make the whole process go as smoothly as possible. Best of luck!



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Cassie is a freelance writer with a Masters degree in lifestyle promotion studies. She loves to 'get the look for less' so regularly shares thrifty fashion posts, DIY interior design ideas and low-cost recipes on her blog.

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