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High Street versus Online Agents

High Street versus Online Agents
Article in 'Tunbridge Wells Lifestyle'. June 2018. Author: Natalie Boardman (Director, Belvoir TWells)
Should I use an online agent or a High Street agent to sell my home?  Its a common post on social media these days …………….

In both cases your property will be marketed on RightMove and various other portals but with an online agent you will need to be more involved in the process – you will often need to carry out the viewings and liaise with the buyers.  Consider carefully your availability makes this practical. You may be able to pay extra for the viewings to be carried out on your behalf – on a per viewing basis or as package.

Does it cost a lot more to use a High Street property agent?

An online agent will take an upfront fee to list your property, which is not refundable making it harder to change to a High Street agent at a later date if it is not working out. There may be hidden costs such as paying extra for photos or viewings. A traditional agent will take a commission which is only paid at completion giving them a clear motivation to work hard on your behalf and ensuring you only pay when they succeed. Across the board around 30% of sales fall through between offer and completion. Good agencies beat this figure by some margin through regular dialogue with the solicitors, buyers and sellers plus work hard to keep the chain together. With an online agent you will be able to track progress of your sale 24/7 and speak to a call centre with extended hours but these are not staffed by property professionals. Belvoir Tunbridge Wells have achieved a 100% completion rate since owner Natalie Boardman took over the company last year, so that’s 100% satisfaction for our sellers.

How do I choose which agent when there are so many on the High Street?

Excellent communication and a good rapport with your agent helps take the stress out of the whole selling/buying process. It is easier to build up a good relationship with someone you can visit at their offices or who will meet you at your home. At Belvoir each sale is important to us and our team strive to provide a very personal and dedicated service.  In a recent transaction in our office, the seller needed to complete by a certain date or face a stamp duty bill of £23k: we pulled out all the stops to achieve this date – would an online agent have done the same?  

If you believe you have the time, skills and expertise to negotiate your sale and progress it through to completion then you may save money by using an online agent. However, we are probably talking about your biggest asset so why would you want to go for the cheapest option?

If you are thinking about selling your property this year call Natalie Boardman on 01892 615406, find us at www.belvoir.co.uk/tunbridgewells or pop into Belvoir’s new offices on Vale Road.


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