Be sure of the reasons you want to sell. Do you really need to? such as for a job move, upsizing or downsizing, or divorce? Or do you just fancy a change?

Bear in mind that it is a long and tortuous process, to say nothing of the expenses incurred and therefore shouldn’t be undertaken lightly.

Having made the decision, you will need a good Estate Agent to guide you through this potential mine field and to be on hand to give you advice, when needed.

How do I know which is a good Estate Agent?

Start with a well- known name. How long have they been in business? There may be some good new agencies, but there is an element of risk in choosing them and most likely, a lack of experience.

Experience includes having seen and resolved all of the many problems and situations that can arise.

Do they have any kind of credible qualification? Look at testimonials such as Feefo or Google. Don’t just look at the 4/5 star ones, but the reasons for any lower ratings and what the response of the company was to these?

Look on the main Portals such as Rightmove or OnTheMarket, but don’t just look at what you see listed for sale, click on the ‘Sold Subject to Contract’ option and see what they are selling. The most effective agents, will have far more ‘Sold’ than ‘For Sale’.

What is their board presence in your area and in the area you may be interested in moving to?

Don’t be misled by the ‘lowest fees’ quoted, these are offered to persuade you into giving instructions and this practise is often accompanied by ‘over valuation’, for the same purpose. In reality, the difference between reasonable fees and cut price ones is only a few hundreds of pounds and relative to the potential advantages offered by a good agent, pales into insignificance, compared with achieving literally thousands of pounds more and just as importantly, ensuring that the sale reaches a satisfactory conclusion.

The last point is probably the least understood and the least appreciated part of the transaction.

It goes without saying that you want the best price possible and achieving that is the first step, but choosing the right buyer, one that is least likely to let you down, is the next step. Following on from that however, at least 60% of the transaction is the progression of the sales process, which is something that requires thorough and expert attention.

A good Agent will therefore provide an able and conscientious Sales Progressor to deal with the many and varied problems and delays that will occur along the way. They will often help and supplement the duties of solicitors, assist surveyors and monitor mortgage advisers. This involves daily attention to detail, including keeping all parties informed. This not only sees the process to a conclusion, but also radically reduces the stress levels involved.

‘It is not where you start, it’s where you finish.’ many Agents will promise great things, but only great Agents will bring them about.

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