Over the past few years there has been an explosion in online estate agents who charge a flat fee rather than commission. Certainly digital technology, smart phones, apps and the Internet have transformed the way people market their property or search for a new home. Slideshows and videos give great opportunities for showing a property at its best and can be seen by potential purchasers all over the world virtually.
Although it is cheaper to use an online estate agent you will pay an upfront fee regardless of whether the property sells or not. It is also likely that you will require to do the viewings yourself and there will probably be no after sales support.
So despite the rise of online tools and estate agents this has not removed the value of traditional estate agency skills. There are still many estate agents who provide a face to face service that can guide the seller from start to finish receiving a commission in exchange. Conventional estate agents impart confidence. Many people want to walk into a shop and speak face to face to a real person and hand over their keys to someone they can trust. Neighbourhood knowledge is also important with awareness of local market trends and pricing levels for the area. It is key to get good advice on when it is the best time to put a property on the market and at what price or when to accept an offer and when to hold out for a better one. Also you want the property to be put in front of the right people not lots of the wrong people. You also only pay commission if the property sells.
Legal firms, as estate agents maintain their popularity with both buyers and sellers.
If you are thinking of buying or selling this spring, modern online tools will ease the task but so will good old fashioned aids like local knowledge and contacts. Put together they are a winning combination.