Estate Agent Fees: Breakdown and Alternatives

couple discussing estate agent fees with property professional

If you’re a homeowner flirting with the idea of selling your home or a property investor looking to sell or let an investment property, you’re likely to have been confronted with the dilemma of whether or not to use an estate agent. While there is no right or wrong answer, using a property agent for the first time can be daunting, particularly when it comes to estate agent fees. From average costs, to how to get the cheapest estate agency and alternatives, here’s all you need to know…

 

How much are estate agent fees?

When you let or sell through a property agency, you’ll likely be confronted with a commission, which is usually a percentage of the property letting/sale price. Estate agency fees can vary tremendously but understanding them can help you get the best deal and save a fortune. For property for sale, estate agent fees usually range between 1% to 3.5%. Property value, location and final sale price typically determine how much fees you are charged. In 2022, the average estate agent fee in the UK is 1.18%+VAT.

 

How to negotiate estate agent fees

The key to getting the best price is to do your research. Knowing the average fees for similar properties in your location will help you haggle. As best practise, you should always invite several estate agents (ideally three) to value your home and quote you a fee.  In many cases estate agents can be a little flexible as they ultimately want the sale. So, don’t be afraid to ask for lower fees. If you have been quoted a lower price by another agency, let the other agencies know and they may be able to beat that price.

 

Should you use the cheapest estate agency?

How much you pay in fees is important as it ultimately determines how much you receive for the sale. Although there is no right or wrong answer, it’s generally not advised to choose your estate agency solely based on price. The cheapest estate agency isn’t necessarily the best one for you. It’s advised to consider the following as opposed to only going for the cheapest estate agency:

 

  • The agency’s reputation
  • How many sales the agency has had
  • How quickly it is able to sell your property
  • Level of customer service provided

Alternatives

A sure-fire way to avoid estate agent fees is to advertise your property without using a third party. Although this will require more work from you, it also gives you the flexibility to choose your price and which offer to accept. There as many quick ways to do this. Here’s a few:

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