How To Privately Sell Your House On Rightmove

Save thousands of pounds when selling your home by using an Online Estate Agent to market your property on Rightmove & Zoopla!

Quick fact: The average ‘traditional’ high-street estate agent fee for selling a property in the UK is £4200. Compare that with £500!

Want to privately sell your house without a greaseball estate agent? Are you looking to escape extortionate Estate Agent fees by listing your property on Rightmove in order to achieve a private sale? Well, you’re not the only one!

More and more home-sellers are ditching traditional high-street Estate Agents to sell their home because it’s become so damn easy and cheap for them to privately market their property on the biggest UK property portals like Rightmove via Online Estate Agentsfor a one-off fixed fee. No hidden fees, or a pricing structure based on a percentage of the sale price (which can add up to a small fortune), unlike the high-street agents.

The truth is, most high-street estate agents use websites like Rightmove, Zoopla, FindAProperty, and PropertyFinder to market their stock, and that’s where the majority generate their leads from. So why not just bypass high-street estate agents and advertise on Rightmove and the alike by using an Online Estate Agent and handle all the enquiries yourself, for a fraction of the cost?

High-street agents charge a whopping 1-3% + VAT commission (approximately) of the selling price. That’s A LOT of money. The online agents listed below charge a fixed rate which doesn’t even come close to high-street agent fees. Why are high-street agents much more expensive? Well, because high-street agents have a load more overheads to cover e.g. premises, utility bills, cars..etc. Online simply have an online presence, but don’t worry, they have real people as staff and a fully accessible customer support team ready to assist.

Online estate agents will market your property-for-sale on the biggest UK property portals, such as Rightmove, Zoopla, Property Finder etc. for maximum exposure, to generate leads.

If you want to sell your house privately with the best possible chance of succeeding, then you need to list your house for sale on the biggest UK property portals (particularly Rightmove & Zoopla).

Online Estate Agents that will allow you to advertise your house ‘for sale’ on the most popular UK property portals like Rightmove & Zoopla:

Estate AgentPriceDurationRatingNotes / Includes
£94*Inc VATNormal price: £99

Discount Code available
Until Sold
9.3 / 10
TrustPilot Reviews
Notes / Includes

Will market your property on Rightmove, Zoopla + more.

Includes your own dedicated account manager, weekly performance report, home verification visit, and viewings/bookings and offers management.

Hybrid Agent - You can upgrade to their Combo £474 Package (normal price £499), which includes an expert local agent who will visit your property to carry out an in-person valuation,
professional photos, floorplans, property description, sign board, negotiations, Sales progression through to exchange. No sale, no balance fee!

*Exclusive 5% discount code: HomePIP5

*Exclusive 5% discount code for Combo package: HomeCPIP5

Visit Website5% Discount Code: HomePIP5
£99Inc VAT
Until Sold
9.5 / 10
TrustPilot Reviews
Notes / Includes

Will market your property on Rightmove, Zoopla + more.

Includes your own dedicated account manager and sales negotiation.

Hybrid Agent - You can upgrade to their premium £199 Hybrid Package, which includes an expert local agent who will visit your property to carry out an in-person valuation.
Premium service also includes professional photos, floorplans, and property description.

Promo Code for free 'for sale' sign: AUTUMN17

Visit Website
£149Inc VAT
28 Days
4.4 / 5
TrustPilot Reviews
Notes / Includes

Will market your property on Rightmove, Zoopla + more.

Visum use a month-by-month service: after the initial month, you can purchase another 1 month marketing block for £69 if you want to. Deals on conveyancing and removals available.

Visit Website
£379*Inc VATNormal price: £399

Discount Code available
12 Months
9.3 / 10
TrustPilot Reviews
Notes / Includes

Will market your property on Rightmove, Zoopla + more.

Includes a for sale board, professional photos or EPC, negotiation and they'll handle all enquiries! They also offer nationwide viewings for £120 for up to 6 viewers.

*Exclusive 5% discount code: Welovethelandlord17

Visit Website5% Discount Code: Welovethelandlord17
£449*Inc VATNormal price: £499

Discount Code available
Until Sold
9.3 / 10
TrustPilot Reviews
Notes / Includes

Will market your property on Rightmove, Zoopla + more.

Hybrid Agent - Includes an expert local agent who will visit your property to carry out an in-person valuation (part of purchased package).

Service includes professional photos, floorplans, sale sign, valuation and a home selling partner that stays with you all the way to completion.

*Exclusive £50 discount code: PIP17

Visit Website£50 Discount Code: PIP17
£585*Inc VATNormal price £785

Discount Code available
12 Months
9.3 / 10
TrustPilot Reviews
Notes / Includes

Will market your property on Rightmove, Zoopla + more.

Hybrid Agent - Includes an expert local agent who will visit your property to carry out an in-person valuation (no obligation thereon).

Service includes professional photos, professional floorplans, for sale board, offer negotiation, and personal support until completion.

*Special Discount: £200 discount code - expiry date: 18/10/2017

Visit WebsiteBook Free In-Person Valuation£200 Discount Code: 200OFF
£839*Inc VAT
12 Months
9.3 / 10
TrustPilot Reviews
Notes / Includes

Will market your property on Rightmove, Zoopla + more.

Hybrid Agent - Includes an expert local agent who will visit your property to carry out an in-person valuation (no obligation thereon).

Service includes professional photos, professional floorplans, for sale board, and support provided until completion. Your local agent can also take viewings for an extra £150 (most online estate agents don't offer a 'viewings' service). For more information, read my complete review of YOPA.

*Selling fee of 1,399 in a few specific London postcodes.

Visit WebsiteBook Free In-Person Valuation
£736*Inc VATNormal price £775

Discount Code available
12 Months
9.2 / 10
TrustPilot Reviews
Notes / Includes

Will market your property on Rightmove, Zoopla + more.

Hybrid Agent - Includes an expert local agent who will visit your property to carry out an in-person valuation (no obligation thereon).

Service includes professional photographs and floorplans, For Sale Board, dedicated negotiator, and Money Back Guarantee.

*Exclusive 5% discount code: NRWTKLSXCY

Visit Website5% Discount Code: NRWTKLSXCY

Please note, I try my best to keep the information of each agent up-to-date, but you should read the T&C’s from the agents’ website for the most up-to-date information.

Why use an online estate agent?

Besides from the obvious benefit of saving massive amounts of money when compared to the traditional route, the reason why online agents are becoming increasing popular is because they operate how society now operates i.e. research and buying online worries fewer and fewer people as every day goes by.

While marketing on Rightmove and selling a home independently may seem alien to some, it’s actually becoming the “norm” to more people every day. However, that said, I believe there’s always going to be a need for the traditional high-street agent, because ultimately, I do believe both online and high agents offer two different services for two different types of sellers.

So that raises the question, should I use an online estate agent to sell my house? It’s a question I have addressed in detail already (in the article I just linked to), so in order to refrain from repeating myself, here’s an overly simplistic answer: online agents are for those that don’t mind doing some of the leg-work that agents have notoriously handled (e.g. managing and handling the viewings) in exchange for a significantly cheaper process. While high-street agents are better suited for those that would rather pay a premium for someone else to manage the entire process. That’s the difference in it’s raw form.

So really, can you be bothered to do work in order to save money? If so, you could be onto a winner with this whole online agent malarkey.

Highstreet Vs Online Estate Agent Fee comparison calculator

Ok, so you want real numbers! You want to know exactly how much you can save by using an online agent, because money talks! No probs, I’m with you.

Use the calculator below to find out how much you can save by using an online estate agent…

What’s your property worth?

You could save approx:

with an Online Estate Agent

Savings based on an estimated traditional estate agent charge of 2% + VAT of the overall property price and the average Online Estate Agent fee of £600 inclusive of VAT.

Can’t I just go to Rightmove directly and advertise my property?

Nope, unfortunately not.

Portals such as Rightmove and Zoopla don’t deal with private home-sellers directly, they only deal with estate agents. So that means you can’t go direct to the portals looking to market your vacant property. You have to use some form of agent, whether it be a high-street or online one.

Can I sell my house privately without an agent?

What, you mean, without any kind of agent, including an online one?

Technically, you can market your property anyhow you want, but I personally wouldn’t bother.

Local newspapers and pin boards in the local corner shop just aren’t as effective as they used to be. With 90% of home-buyers researching properties online, you’d be a fool to try and bypass using an agent, because there’s currently no other way of getting your property on the UK’s biggest portals!

Will advertising on Rightmove really sell my home?

Please be assured that I can’t guarantee that any of these websites will successfully find you a buyer. But then again, a high-street agent can’t guarantee that either.

All I can say is that I’ve used similar online agent based services in the past, and they’ve worked for me (and thousands of other people- and that’s why they are becoming incredibly popular) by generating plenty of interest and enquiries.

As said already, the reality is, most traditional high-street agents generate the majority of their enquiries from online portals like Rightmove and Zoopla. So as long as your property is marketed on at least Rightmove (but preferably Zoopla as well), you stand as good a chance as any high-street agent to generate enquiries.

What about the other portals, like Zoopla, OnTheMarket, and PrimeLocation- do I need to advertise on them?

Nah, I personally wouldn’t rely on any portal other than Rightmove. Actually, that’s not entirely fair. Zoopla deserves for its potency and influence!

As covered in the section above, I would focus on choosing an online agent that will market your property on both Rightmove & Zoopla (the one’s listed above currently do), all the others are just added bonuses which aren’t as popular (i.e. they won’t have as many people looking for property on their website), in my opinion.

Is there anything I need to be wary of when using a Rightmove Estate agent?


An online agent that markets on Rightmove & Zoopla is an awesome and cost-effective solution to selling your home, and their awakening has made it infinitely easier to sell privately. While I’ll happily endorse using an online agent, I will also always caution every vendor to use the same thorough due diligence required when choosing a high-street agent as when using an online agent.

The following won’t apply to all online agents, and certainly not in the exact form, so it’s crucial for you to do your own research. To clarify, I don’t necessarily think the following should scare you away from using an online agent, they’re just points you should be aware of…

  • Limited marketing period / No refunds!
    Most online agents will charge a fixed-fee to advertise your property for a maximum amount of time (I’ve specified how long each agent will advertise your property for in the table above; it’s typically 12 months, which seems fair to me), so if your property fails to shift with in that time frame, you’re very unlikely to get reimbursed. If you wish to continue trying to sell your property, the odds are you’ll have to stump up for another round of advertising. Although, they may give you a discount the second time round (I’m not sure if that’s of any consolation).

    However, that said, and in defence of the agents- if you haven’t sold your property with in 12 months, then it’s likely that there’s something fundamentally wrong with the property you’re trying to get rid of.

  • The “Pay on completion” option
    Many of the agents will offer a mouth-watering “Pay on Completion” option, or something to that effect, as well as the “Pay Upfront” option.

    As enticing as the pay on completion option may seem, the beauty is often only skin-deep. Unfortunately, once you start asking questions and reading through the small-print, it doesn’t always seem so appetising.

    In most cases, not only is there a hefty premium on the “Pay later” payment option (i.e. it’s usually significantly more expensive than the pay upfront option), but I’ve also noticed other unpleasant conditions tied into the option. For example, some agents force you to use their recommended Conveyancing partner if you want to use the “Pay Later” option.

    From my observations, the “Pay Later” option usually comes riddled with conditions which aren’t entirely transparent (that’s putting it lightly). I’m not saying that’s ALWAYS the case, but my only advise is to make sure you understand exactly what the “Pay later” option means if you wish to use it.

  • Conveyancing
    Using a good conveyancing company is imperative when buying or selling property; they can either make the process a delight, or an absolute nightmare. I’ve learned through experience that you definitely get what you pay for when it comes to conveyancing, so it’s important not to make a bad choice.

    Among the dozen products an online agent will try and ‘upsell’ you along the process of selling your home, a competitively priced conveyancing service is almost always one of them. The price may lure you into temptation, but I would definitely proceed with caution.

    Most online agents outsource the conveyancing work, so find out who that firm is, and then run their name through Google, and gloss over the reviews. You know, the usual.

    Personally, I prefer using local recommended conveyancing companies, even if that means paying a little extra. For more info and tips, here’s a guide on conveyancing solicitors.

Did I miss any “online estate agents” out?

If you want to be listed above, please read through the requirements right over…here.

Want to advertise your rental on Rightmove?

If you’re a landlord wanting to market your rental property on Rightmove and the alike and bypass the cost of using a high-street letting agent, then you may want to visit the Advertise Rentals on Rightmove page.

89 Comments- Join The Conversation...

Showing 39 - 89 comments (out of 89)
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David 8th June, 2014 @ 06:11

Viewed a couple of properties yesterday. First one the owner showed us round. Went fine.
Second one the agent turned up 20 minutes late, full of traffic lights excuses, not really what I'd expect for 1.7%
Just signed up for £750 upfront, 0% of sale price. I'll let you know how we get on.

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Chris Hall 8th June, 2014 @ 06:41

Lewis, I'm afraid you are totally incorrect. As a solicitor who's conveyancing colleagues get paid regardless of whether a property sells or not you have no concept of the work a good agent does after a sale has been agreed. As I've acknowledged time after time on this thread, I agree there are good and bad estate agents, just like there are good and bad solicitors. Has anyone seen the website 'solicitors from hell'? It is a litany of horror stories of inept, inexperienced and extremely unprofessional conveyancers costing their clients thousands and thousands of pounds in aborted sales and expenses. A good estate agent will not 'pester' a conveyancer they will work with them to solve the myriad problems that can arise during a transaction. Again, a decent agent will have good relationships with the firms they work with in their locality to everyone's benefit.

In my experience, the solicitors who see the agent as an 'irritant', are the ones perched in their ivory towers with a holier than thou attitude who refuse to communicate with anybody involved in the transaction in any form other than a costly, time consuming, letter. The conveyancing system in the UK is often archaic to say the least.

Just like there are "cheap" online agents which can cost you thousands in the long run there are cheap online conveyancers out there who could cost you dear. Most of the work is done by an inexperienced, unqualified twenty year old while the actual solicitor just rubber stamps everything.

I'm sorry but I will defend my profession and my colleagues to the end. I know what I say is correct. I have an office full of thank you cards, repeat clients who have used our firm time after time and I can sleep soundly at night knowing we do the best for our fee. Every single person we sell for is sent a feedback questionnaire and the fee is never cited as an issue, it is agreed up front and in writing and our clients know they are getting a decent service for it.

Guest Avatar
Chris Hall 8th June, 2014 @ 06:47

David, please don't take this the wrong way, but why would you pay an online agent upfront? Do you get that fee back if they don't sell your property? I'm genuinely curious as I know we couldn't (and wouldn't want to) charge anything in advance.

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Jacko 8th June, 2014 @ 09:52

My previous comments about most EAs being dim kids is based (surprise surprise)on my finding that dim kids end up doing the work! I know that conclusion might seem radical to some though. EAs prosper because the industry has nurtured the concept that they should be used at all times. At best, they do nothing more than a motivated seller can do. If you can put a board up in your garden, place an ad on RM and conduct viewings - you will get your sale. People look on RM these days so dont need an EA to point out a prop for sale! Its there to see. Up to completion it is merely a case of liaising with the seller and both sets of solicitors. How do I know? Well I've now sold 14 houses this way ( I buy and flip for profit. Its not just saving the fees that's important - its that you dont succumb to the classic excuse for a non-sale that most EAs come out with...'you need to drop the price, the markets a bit quiet at present etc'. The industry is laughable and I love it when I get the opportunity to run rings round an EA (just for my fun) when I'm buying a house.

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David 8th June, 2014 @ 17:44

Mr Hall, their fee includes EPCS, professional photos, professional floor plan ETC, and also includes 12 months on Rightmove and 700+ other online sites. I could have paid them nothing upfront and approx double after, but I felt as I'm serious about selling, the only thing that will stop it from selling in 12 months would be the price being too high. And I feel a high street estate agent wouldn't make any difference if that were the case.
Also I'd like to state again the only contact I've had so far with a high street EA left me waiting around for 20 minutes to view a house, because they were late. Not very professional, and not something I'll be doing when people want to view my property.
P.S. Also I really don't mind the £3000 saving too, which more than covers the stamp duty on my next house.
If high street EA used fixed fees too, people might stop feeling that they were making £% for no extra work.
No charge in advance, but about 4 or 5 times the cost after. Thanks, but no thanks.

Guest Avatar
Matt Elliott 13th June, 2014 @ 14:26

From my perspective, it's all about options. Nobody is forced to sell their property through an agent at % of sale price. Most people do this due to security / time / lack of knowledge of other methods.
We decided to sell our property privately, and created a quick and easy website in order to portray the apartment in a good light and give a bit more value added info.
In my book there's not enough value that can be added to justify a £10k + fee for selling a house. I can envision fees continuing to fall as the field becomes more competitive and sellers more savvy.

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Leo 14th June, 2014 @ 17:48

Jacko - Love your no-nonsense...doing my first flip - who with/how do you sell your houses? Just need to get mine on RM. Any tips? Cheers mate.

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Ayyaz Mirza 21st June, 2014 @ 15:24

I used to use agents to rent my properties and then decided to try it myself after a few bad experiences. Nothing simpler! Never used an agent again for the past 17 years for rentals.

However, I've used agents many times to sell my properties, but decided to try and sell my own home after the last potential buyer pulled out after wasting about 5 weeks. I saved 1.25% plus VAT of £425,000! I paid under a hundred quid, met the buyers myself, negotiated a price and shook hands. The rest is up to lawyers anyway, so agents are not needed. Had no chain, so that was easy, but seriously, agents do nothing but create a further risk of delay.

Try to sell privately if you can. It would be different if agents charged a reasonable fee (eg £700 plus VAT fixed fee).

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Gmysak 15th July, 2014 @ 12:46

The estate agents in England are a complete rip off. The way it is set up does encorage them to sell your property, that is correct as they get their hads on your money quicker.
To say that selling a house in all areas of the country warrents the same rate is silly to put it mildly. Houses where I live sell exceptionally quickly, 24hr in some cases and for that 24hr the agent can easily take home £7500. Now yes, they have had to do all that hard work of listing the house on rightmove and taking the enquiries but come on really?
In Scotland there are fewer agents. Instead solicitors sell your houses and they take a set fee. They sell and price houses appropriately so the rubish about you get what you pay for is that rubbish. They do just as good a job and they charge far less normally on houses that I have been looking at (£300,000) less than £1000.
As for showing a house the agents I have met in England have often not (not alway) been usefull except for unlocking the door. One commented on the room having a lightswitch!
The option of using an online seller is a great idea to me and we will be using this service taking 20 days off as holiday or unpaid leave to do showings would still be worth it for me, as I dont earn £350 a day.

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Susan 15th July, 2014 @ 13:49

If you selling the house yourself, why not pay a relative or a friend a fiver or tenner for each showing around the house, saves taking time off work, some might even do it for free.
I find estate agents nothing but a pain in the neck, for doing sod all after the initial listing. With prices plus vat, hitting extortion.
They advertised my 2bed home with a small garden and sent a family with 3 assorted kids and with another baby on the way plus dog, and two cars to view the house. Talking about unsuitable, ha ha (she laughs sarcastically).
The next couple were looking for a bungalow, as both could not make the stairs, another sarcastic ha ha!
The third family drove from Bedford all the way to the south coast to see a house with seaviews. Well I live in a village by the sea, but the sea is 3 miles away, you'd need a helicopter to see the sea! And so it went on until I've had enough and took my house of the market. Estate Agents think nothing of wasting buyers or sellers times. What makes them think that our time is not as valuable as theirs?
When I am ready to sell again, I will do it myself with just a Solicitor at hand.

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Cassandra 19th July, 2014 @ 20:42

An interesting debate. We are in the process of selling a relatives deceased estate. I have to say I would be happy to pay a good, efficient, proactive EA but where to find one? We have been spectacularly let down in the early stages by an agent I have used hapily in the past (different staff now) 3 times late for appointments, now 3 week delay in property being advertised in press and Internet due to their disorganisation, holidays and poor hand over. Being expected to approve draft brochure with only half of info, the list goes Chris if you are in South Yorkshire and prepared to put your money where your mouth is please get in touch, or if you can recommend someone I would appreciate it.

We are also looking to move and the local agents, with whom we have registered are not doing any more leg work than we are ourselves so a bit disillusioned.

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Lawrence 23rd July, 2014 @ 17:56

I sold my last house, got more than any agent was even willing to put it on the market at... So I improved my end sale price, decreased the fees and took more away from the deal. I dealt with a chain of 5, all very easily and logical... Lots of calls, but then running my own business I am very used to project managing, so this was no different. Will 100% always sell everything private to maximise revenue.

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Joe 30th July, 2014 @ 09:59

I have found that estate agents do not work for the seller who is paying the fees - they work for the buyer. I even had an estate agent tell a buyer the lowest price I would go to! I've had friends and family ring agents to ask about houses and have found mine hasn't even been mentioned. I am selling at the moment and will use an on-line estate agent to get onto Rightmove at a fraction of the £2,450 a local estate agent wants for doing nothing more than take a few photos and write some particulars that I can easily do myself. The solicitors do all the work - not the agents. People can bang on about using a professional or a 'specialist' but most estate agents are not specialists and nor are they professional.

I see no benefit to using an agent whatsoever. I don't agree with the comments about a flat fee - it means the agent has no motivation to get you the best price. One of the local agents here in Leicester, Harrison Murray, deliberately under values and sells for low prices and they are a flat fee agent.

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Lorraine 30th July, 2014 @ 22:13

I've been asked by a friend to sell their property for them. As a letting agent (we started up a year ago due to lots of bad experiences,agents letting my properties) I've been lucky so far and I haven't needed to use Zoopla, Rightmove etc. anyway I nearly fell off my chair when I contacted Zoopla last week to advertise this one property for sale.
I'm charging my friend £100.00 for my time, photos, writeup, plus she will pay any online marketing but I refuse to pay the likes of Zoopla for their exorbitant fees. Perhaps if the likes of Zoopla and Rightmove dropped their fees EA's could drop their prices,but I doubt it. So if any of you have any good suggestions where I can advertise at a reasonable price, please let me know.

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Ziedenstein 31st July, 2014 @ 14:03

They can all promise anything and everything until you put the property on with them!

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Piers 15th September, 2014 @ 21:12

There are some other sites that can help like which also lets you list by catchment areas... only thing is that it is a little sparse at the moment!

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Lorraine 15th September, 2014 @ 21:43

Further to my note of 30th July, I advertised my friends house for sale on Visum. I asked a colleague who is a "mystery shopper" to call Visum and obtain details etc of the property along with contact details. Upon calling them he reported that the person on the other end of the line could hardly speak English, Visum asked lots and lots or personal questions and didn't want to give the sellers details out until all questions were answered. My colleague was eventually given the incorrect seller name/details. I had advised Visum that I wanted my information shown, it was not, they say you can edit detaisl at any time, this is incorrect. My mystery shopper advised me that he would not have bothered to make contact with me as his experience with visum was shabby and would have put him off making contact.
I'm not giving up and am now about to try House Network, so if any of you have experience of them, I would be grateful if you would share this with me.

p.s I love this Landlord Blog

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Q Wales 15th September, 2014 @ 22:24

Sold my house 2 months back for a total cost of £100 plus solicitor fees of course. That was advertising on Rightmove, Zoopla etc through a third part agent similar to what I see advertised above.

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Q Wales 16th September, 2014 @ 07:24

Just noticed comment 54 above so I thought I should say that it was Visum that I used to sell my house. I have no complaints.

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jane.bakerdavies 3rd October, 2014 @ 10:32

thanks everyone. i dont want to use our local EA far to snobby and uriah heep for me. I am reasonably intelligent so will try this on line way. Can always go back to EA if it doesnt work.The road i live in is very in demand ,houses sell with in hours !! it seems so i think it will save me some money.I know a good solicitor so here we go!

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Pee 25th October, 2014 @ 09:24

So... how can I genuinely advertise my house for sale online?

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Jon 14th November, 2014 @ 07:17

Have used an online agent twice.Using an online agent gets you on Rightmove etc - which is , in my opinion ESSENTIAL !!!!.
70% of prospective purchasers look on that site initially. More and more people are computer savvy so it makes sense to use the main property portals.
Estate agents are not really motivated to get you the highest price . They are motivated to get their commission so if it sells for 10k or 20k less that represents very little loss to them in commission terms.
Use good pictures and use a good description.
It is true that some buyers are a little uncomfortable dealing with an owner but be friendly, reassuring and honest about the place.
I have also used online agents to rent out property too - really cheap and easy

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andenca 26th December, 2014 @ 00:00

this is very encouraging. We had our house for sale with a local EA and they only called us for a view twice when we contacted them to end our contract as we had not heard anything from them. One of the "prospectives" buyer was himself an agent! and the other one was a developer only interested on knocking the price down so he could make a good profit! We will try an on-line agent in the new year.

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Richard 5th January, 2015 @ 11:50

Wow, amazed at the comments here. A good agent pays time and money up front to advertise a property with the possibility it will never sell. Thats the risk we take as an agent. No fees up front. Anyone asking you for that is usually a con or someone looking to make a quick buck. As an agent we qualify people to see if they can proceed, we carry out viewings, we deal with the solicitors who in my opinion think they are god like in most cases, negotiate the sale and then deal with the sale usually for around three months liasing with solicitors. People pay us, because they do not want to deal with the hassle. When the market is good, yes property will fly off the shelf, but we still have to deal with the sale after for some time. If selling property was so easy and straight forward, more people would be doing it themselves, and estate agents would not be here.

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lesley 27th January, 2015 @ 13:27

Hey you fellows
Isn't this an excellent blog?
I buy lock-up garages and rent them out. I'm in trouble now because one of my tenants is breaking the terms of his contract. He isn't paying rent and he is living in the garage. The baliff won't evict him because that would be making him homeless. Noooooooooooooo

BTW I don't use a solicitor , I do my own conveyancing if the garage is freehold. It goes much quicker when I do it as opposed to using a solicitor. I know what's going on. I don't mess myself about. I don't go on holiday without telling anyone. I have no qualifications in conveyancing. I bought a book called 'Do your own conveyancing by Which?' for £2.81 off amazon: it works.

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Jacko 27th January, 2015 @ 13:48

Just sold 2 in the last 4 months by using the basic package of estates direct and paid them £354 in total. did the viewings myself. I turned the heating on 2 hours before.....makes all the difference in winter (try getting an EA to do that!). As it was MY house and I had refurbed it the vendors knew they were speaking to the organ grinder and not the blinkered EA chimp. I have always been staggered how EAs dupe the general public into thinking there is only one route. I wouldn't let an EA market any of my properties (self sold 22 now in 7 years) if they offered to pay me £500 to do it. There's too much at stake and most of them in my experience are a combination of dim, unmotivated, unbusinesslike, smug, lazy, lacking intelligence etc. Yes there must be some hot shots out there(probably 5-10% max). Trouble is - you have to engage them before you find out if you've been lucky and got a hot-shot. Even if you have - they still rip you off compared to what you can self sell at. I've saved about 75k over the years. You also get to practice your presentation skills - and improve too. A 100% no-brainer for me. Hopefully I've made my thoughts and feelings clear? :)

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Chris Hall 27th January, 2015 @ 14:31

Hey Jacko

Thanks for your comments. Just wondering (as genuinely curious) what experience you have of using an estate agent? Especially if you've sold 22 houses privately in the last 7 years?

To slate an entire industry as "dim, unmotivated, unbusinesslike, smug, lazy, lacking intelligence etc." seems a little harsh to me so some clarification would be welcome.

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Jacko 27th January, 2015 @ 14:45

Hi Chris

I had loads of experience for 10 years before selling houses myself became really viable. I know for a fact through my business contacts who still deal with agents that the only thing that has changed since then is that things seem worse than ever.

The industry seems to be getting sleazier and sleazier in my opinion. You must also realise that I deal with agents when I source property. I hunt for distressed sellers (easy if you have a system)and am amazed how bad these agents acting for the seller are! So I see it all the time. Example. I've just got a deal at 95k and the property was originally on at 125k for a fast sale.

It actually sold for 134k at the top of the market in July 2007! I was convince3d the EA hadn't put my offer through to the owner. I then turned detective and it took me 3 days to locate her(it was an empty house modern - a little unloved - no worse than that - she lived 30 miles away). She was furious with the EA and ultimately 3 days later took my offer. she was highly distressed and her mortgage was 92k. I sold her on a 4 week completion for cash - and the benefits involved.I think this experience says it all about agents. They will still want their wedge off her on this deal though! I have had loads of experiences like that.

I always advertise and manage my own lettings too...piece of cake. LAs are even worse than EAs.

Perhaps you are a whizz kid Chris? However there arent many about.

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Chris Hall 27th January, 2015 @ 14:56

Hi Jacko

So had the agent put your offer forward or not?

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Jacko 27th January, 2015 @ 17:40

That was my they hadn't. I suspected they wouldn't when he said he'd be embarrassed to do so. He did confirm when asked that their was no point below which he was instructed not to bother. The vendor has gone mad with him. The good thing is that I only ever make bids that are embarrassing - that way I know if I get it then its a steal.

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Dee 12th February, 2015 @ 12:40

I have had nothing but problems from EA,s. they tell lies and data protection is none existant, Hunters advertised my last house, never again, I have successfully sold my last 2 houses without any problems at all,

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Jacko 12th February, 2015 @ 13:15

No surprises. Ive just listed another 2 with estates direct. Its a walk in the park £354 all in for what I need. If you need more hand holding then you could spend around 800 with them. I've 12 to sell in 2 years - this approach will save me not just 30k in fees but also the hassle and headaches of dealing with sharp-talking, hollow-promising, over-optimistic jargon obsessed kids in EA offices who have dodgy haircuts, cheap shiny suits and white socks.

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Chris Hall 12th February, 2015 @ 13:57

Jacko - "white socks" ??? What on earth are you on about, this isn't 1987 this is 2015.

Are you sure you're not affiliated with Poundland? Sorry, I mean Estates Direct?

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Jacko 12th February, 2015 @ 14:11

Chris. I find it hilarious that the only thing you object to(with you being an EA) is my white-sock comment. I therefore conclude that you are in agreement about everything else? You date the peak of the white-sock era well. So well, that it makes me think you were perhaps one of them? I had 2 EAs to look at one of my houses for sale lately (I like to check that they are still, in general, as bad as ever). I wasn't disappointed. All the classic signs and guff appeared. Over pricing, telling me of lots of buyers waiting, market's booming Sir! I felt sorry for these half-wits who had obviously just been on some sales school pep talk given by some bloated and grey HQ has-been - and were hypnotised to drone on.....and on...and on.....Still it gave me a fun 2 hours on a rainy afternoon. Let's thank god for this comical 'profession'.

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Jacko 12th February, 2015 @ 14:15

You might decry the fact ED were started by the guy who started Poundland, but they and there ilk are going to take a massive chunk out of your cosy market share - and quick Chris. I'm sensing my comments hurt you? Aww bless. Your cheap retort is typical of any threatened person coming out with pre-planned canned lines. I know, that you know, the truth and reality. Maybe you're one of the very few good guys? If you are then you should be doing well. RIP traditional EAs.

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Chris Hall 12th February, 2015 @ 15:53

Jacko - To be honest (and you will inevitably say that I "would say this wouldn't I") but in our area, traditional full service estate agents are thriving. The market share of the online agents or DIYers is actually shrinking and FAST. This is because we live in a fairly tight knit area, lots of people have tried these new "agents" and realised that a cheapo second rate service is not the best way to market what, for most people, is their most valuable and prized asset.

Your choice of property marketing doesn't irk me. What irks me is the derogatory language and cheap insults you level at an entire industry. And then you follow it up by using an estate agent (no, in fact two estate agents) to give you a market appraisal, no doubt to check you are marketing at the correct price???!!!

You state you are a property developer? To be honest in my experience, if there is one "profession" that is greedy and unprofessional it is the one man band developers that have flourished on cheap credit over the last twenty or so years. In fact, in an earlier post you allude to a scenario where you actually hunt down a seller who actually sounds quite vulnerable to then bully them into taking your quick sale, cash offer!?

I agree the agent you mention should have (legally) put your offer forward and you have every right to pursue this through one of the various INDUSTRY or PROFESSIONAL channels available. Failing that go to Trading Standards, they (like you) love a bit of high street estate agent bashing!!

We'll have to agree to disagree on all of this I feel. And, for the record, the only white socks I wore in 1987 were the ones during gym class at school! I do consider myself and my colleagues as the good ones, but there are many many like us.

Oh and by the way, my main role is running a busy lettings office - so that makes me, in your eyes, lower than low I seem to recall.

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N Mott 13th May, 2015 @ 23:01

We're a high street EA and charge just £500+vat for our full service including floor plans, Rightmove and accompanied viewings. Most online packages are so basic and there's more work involved than vendors realise. I agree that fees of 2% and up is greedy!

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pauline 17th July, 2015 @ 19:09

I have contacted I am the agent 3 times now, once email through their site and twice by phone can anyone recommend anyone better

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Peter 5th August, 2015 @ 18:01

I Wouldn't after my experience !

Last 24 hours : 4 Valuations of my flat

On-line Agent: 30 -35 grand
Local Agent 1: 65 Grand
Local Agent 2: 55 Grand
Local Agent 3: offers over 50 grand sure to rise to 55 ..

Seems Local is by far the best in my case.

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The Landlord 5th August, 2015 @ 18:41


Bearing in mind, that's just an "valuation" - it's always best practice to get multiple valuations in any case. You can still market your property at the higher-end valuation on an online agent.

Also, it's kind of an unfair conclusion, because you asked 3 highstreet agents and only 1 online agent...

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Toby 12th August, 2015 @ 15:45

@Kiwi and @Chris Hall - Chris you make some fine points in comparing agent fees around the world and it is true that UK fees are lower than most - HOWEVER I completely agree with Kiwi that UK EA's are terrible to deal with in the main. Either shockingly unprofessional used car salespeople with zero morals or plum in the mouth types just talk down to people and are overly curt and smug. Let's face it - they do NOTHING. Take a couple of photos and stick them on a portal. Send a kid over (often grudginly) to accompany a viewing. Then play one against the other to maximise fees. All the same time charging a similar fixed percentage on restrictive contracts on ever-increasing sale prices despite the costs falling rather than rising. Agents are two a penny. Not qualified at all and from, what i hear from insiders I know are rude and cavalier about buyers and their customers too. This industry is ripe for disruption and I cannot wait for the online for sale by owner model to break through. The ultimate cheek was the Agent Mutual challenge Onthemarket to 'tackle the duopoly of Rightmove and Zoopla'. What a bleedin' cheek. This industry has done nothing but stitch up people trying to buy someone TO LIVE. They have turned property into the major asset class of society and together with record low interest rates, helped fuel a feudal landlord/tenant society by hiking up prices for greedy vendors. The market works when all parties have "perfect knowledge". False markets ie. incorrect prices work where parties are not privy to all information ie. the agents hide true valuations and bid parties against each other. You cannot keep a false market forever. The taxpayer has helped you for long enough by sustaining interest rates at record lows to stop a housing price crash which because of your collective greedy selfish actions have meant houses are the only assets people have nowadays. The only way to end this ridiculous situation is to do an Uber on estate agents. And by the way Chris - very very very rarely do you get what you pay for. The expression is only used by dinosaurs who know the game is up.

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Toby 12th August, 2015 @ 16:28

Chris - i see you have made other comments... It is a fallacy that EA's provide any significant value to the housing market except to line their own grubby pockets and perhaps downsizers. I say perhaps, because these sellers have been stitched up the whole way up the ladder. Everyone else loses because of the 'services' you provide. In the old days, you were an essential part of the housing market. You were the 'distributors' of a classic goods-type industry. You aggregated vendors together and advertised properties. You did real marketing and connected a world of buyers who wanted to buy with a separate world of sellers who wanted to sell. You did this by building a database of clients which you maintained. You took out expensive press adverts which took a lot of admin and indeed some considerable risk. You made photocopies of property details and mailed them out with stamps to your database of buyers. All this comes at a cost to you and Vendors, and therefore Buyers had to pay. Now you are redundant. And rather than pitch yourself as a FULL-service at low commission, making it obvious that you are a luxury for buyers and sellers - a bit like a travel agent - you continue to charge the same percentage as decades ago - and that despite house prices increasing at a rate that far exceeds the increase in your costs - most likely costs have plummetted as anyone who administers an e-newletter compared to sending out thousands of letters will testify to.

So how does it continue? Well because vendors are greedy and believe they will recoup the cost of using an agent in the higher price. And they probably do. So for very little value-add, the prices of UK houses are artifically high and this goes into the pockets of agents.

In next weeks post, we can get into the entirely unfair system of sealed bids where the agent calls up their developer mate on the last day - something so common-place it is quite openly joked about.

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Chris Hall 12th August, 2015 @ 20:52

Crikey, that was quite a rant Toby!

Are you sure that you're not an 'online agent' or maybe you have a vested interest in a 'for sale by owner' enterprise? Reading some of your comments you certainly know all their jargon!

Regardless, do you honeslty believe that estate agents in the UK have even the slightest influence over house prices? If so I think you need to do some economics research.

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Toby 12th August, 2015 @ 22:41


Yes I am sure. I have absolutely no interest in or with the estate agency industry. I have bought and sold various residential and commercial property in the course of my life. And i have a natural interest in disruptive business models especially internet ones. I am sure you have views on Uber and have no affiliation with mini-cab firms and know their competitors. If you are savvy and business-aware I am sure you can join the dots. I know you rely on a naive world so that you can continue to blur the perfect market which would erradicate your industry but there are many of us 'critical thinkers' still out there.

Dismiss criticisms as a rant and cast ad hominem dispersions to deflect attention from the points. Yep there's no mistaking your profession.

So that we are all clear... as grown ups now talking business - the only reason why estate agents exist is to create separation of the buyer from the seller and drive up prices and using negociation tactics by controlling the flow of information. You know it and I know it and so does everyone reading. Surely you don't justify charging 1.5% on a £2m house sale for simply getting a nationwide subcontractor to put a board up, take a few photos, draw a floorplan and then half-heartedly show up to a couple of viewings before pitting one hard working family against another. No agents promise (and deliver) higher sale prices for their clients. Swear on your life that you do not tell vendors that your fee is justified over a competitor agent because you can achieve a higher price. Think you are the only one!!

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Chris Hall 13th August, 2015 @ 07:37

What do you do for a living Toby? I'd be really interested to know.

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Gary Quincy 5th October, 2015 @ 07:02

Estate Agents = Devil's Disciples

I've never met a straight one yet and I've dealt with dozens in my life time.

All they are interested in is making as much money as possible from a sale. No morals. No professional standards. No code of conduct.

To bump up prices 99.9% of the time they'll lie to the buyer by creating "fictitious" competing buyers. The buyer potentially could end up forking out thousands more than they needed to.

"That's not so bad", I hear you say if you're a seller as you're getting the best price right?

Well the taste isn't so sweet when they decide to act on the buyer's behalf.

Yes I'm taking about the dreaded "brown envelope" scenario.

Picture this, you have your house up for sale for £425,000

A buyer turns up and tells the agent that he wants it at £400,000 at all costs and he's happy to pay a "buyer's fee" of £10k.

This is a fancy term which legitimises a bribe in the Estate Agent industry.

Do the Maths,... Does the agent make more money by selling your property for £450k at 1% commission or selling it for £400k and taking a fee of £10k from the buyer and his 1% commission from the seller?

So far the only agents who I've met who would walk away from taking a fee from the buyer is where the risk of the seller finding out is too large or where they are too junior within the organisation and they risk their superiors finding out (who would do the same themselves anyway).

Sellers who are abroad or hardly ever at the property are most at risk for falling for this trick. The agent will coerce them into accepting the lower offer by locking out other buyers willing to pay more and then saying whatever it takes for the seller to accept the lower offer.

The only thing that an agent is good for is setting up appointments to view your property.

Give them too much power and there's a strong chance of it getting abused.

Would you trust a complete stranger who you have only known for 5 minutes deal with several hundred thousand pounds of your money on your behalf? Most people would say no to this question. But that's exactly what you're doing when you give an Estate agent the power to make / receive and negotiate offers on your behalf!

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Nina 9th April, 2016 @ 15:44

I have had previous issues with Estate Agents and believe that they charge far too much for what they actually deliver so this time when we sold our house we decided to use an online agent. It only cost us £500 and we had an offer and accepted after 3 months. This is not to say that all went smoothly because it did not. Communication with the online agent started off ok with a small hiccup of putting an incorrect address in the Sale of Contract. This was eventually rectified but caused a considerable amount of confusion with our solicitor who was sending legal documents to the wrong address which in effect delayed the processes. The people buying our house happened to be an old customer of mine so we swapped telephone numbers and email addresses. This did help a little with communication. We did not finally complete until 6 months later. The problem was there were 9 parties in the chain. The agent that we were buying our new house from did most of the donkey work and communicated with us on a regular basis at least once or twice a week to inform us of the situations further down the chain. They deserved what ever commission they were making. Hats off to them for a great job. Unlike our online agent who only communicated with us when we had asked questions. They should have been communicating with us at least once a week or once a fortnight to advise us of the progress. Most agents are not very good at following information through and just because it's in the hands of the solicitor does not mean that they should sit back and relax. Reading all the comments above I think it could be due to a lack of training.
We lived in America and the Real Estate there is quite different. The Realtor works for a firm but they promote themselves as an individual person. They contact you and arrange to meet up with you with the intention of building up a good relationship with you and gain a clear understanding of what type of property you are looking for. Our realtor brought along a picnic lunch for each of us during our first property viewings. I quite liked the way the Americans operate in business. They have a very good sales technique and it seems to work well.
What a lot of agents lack over here is the ability to communicate regularly and follow things through from start to the final end. I think it is really important to build a good rapport with a customer.

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Andrea 21st October, 2016 @ 09:46

I am at the moment trying to sell my House here in Wales. I have a newish estate agent, well new to me anyway selling my property. I only get any feedback if I ring them! I am trying to sort out an online agent and have been put off by the way they sell. If your property does not sell i.e. for 12 months, you have to purchase another 12 months! Well, to be honest, you might as well get an EA in the first place as this on line agency is making money from you for nothing. At least a local EA has the "No sale no Fee" to consider. Just thought I would add my little bit.

If anyone has any ideas of selling privately, then I would be grateful.


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alan 19th April, 2017 @ 00:20

Great site...just stumbled across it as looking for a cheap way to sell our previous home. Just for the record my wife and I have sold our last two properties without an estate agent and one also without a solicitor ...that one we put a home made sign in the window and bought the @how to sell your house without a solicitor ' book from cost to sell that house £20...£10 for legal paperwork (solicitors stationers) and approx £10 for the book ! We obviously used estate agents to look for info for property for sale and were totally put off using them as most hadn't a clue about the properties they were trying to sell us ..obvious stuff like 'what is the council tax on this property'? ...not a clue ...and I got to thinking 'poor sellers' ..they are being charged all this money by people who are supposed to be working for them and they can't even be bothered to do their basic homework . Will never , ever use an estate agent to sell our don't need 'em and they are in the main an absolute waste of money . And ps that the Chris Hall from the N. Wales estate agency that said they were going to evict the smelly tenant who lived next door to us and keep us informed on their progress ...and never did ?!

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Karen 21st April, 2017 @ 13:21

What did Nina expect for her £500, of course you will not receive the same full service from
an online agent that you would receive from an EA.
I wonder how much the American real Estate agents charge for their services?
You pay your money and take your choice, online is good for those that are prepared to do some of the work themselves, you can't have your cake and eat it!

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Andrew Omole 2nd August, 2017 @ 09:22

Thanks for sharing this. First think I need to do is research to see at what price other similar properties are selling and what i need to do for making my house much more sellable.


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