Nobody wants to feel left on the shelf. Seeing your neighbours sell and move out while you’re stuck on the market for months, can be disheartening and confusing. And when you’ve poured your heart and soul into your home, but nobody seems to want it, what are you supposed to do? How long is too long before you give up?
It might be small comfort, but many homes fail to sell with their first agent, so you’re neither alone nor even unusual. Perhaps the initial momentum has stalled, or there was never one in the first place. Maybe the advice you received hasn’t delivered the promised results, or a price reduction hasn’t worked, or the contact from your agent has been a source of disappointment.
Wherever you’re at right now, the idea of switching estate agents might seem like a bit of a hassle with no guarantee of success. But for many people, it’s the pivotal moment in getting their move back on track.
If you’re unsure what to do next, call me on 07940 546190 or email me at email@example.com for a confidential chat about your plans. Meanwhile, let’s look at how you can start again without going back to square one.
First things first: have an honest, straightforward and detailed chat with your current agent.
Request details on the number of enquiries from when you began so you can see whether interest has been consistent, intermittent and where it dropped. You could even call your agent and pose as a buyer to discover how they talk about your home.
Next, review all the feedback from your viewings. Look for clues in the responses around location, interior layout & room sizes, distance from schools or transport, garden privacy, and general presentation or style. Is there a common thread in what people are saying when your agent shows them around?
Finally, are you happy with the marketing of your home and the service you receive? Do the description and photographs compel someone to view, and does your agent stay in touch and offer constructive advice? Ask about homes they’ve sold that are similar to yours and why they were more successful.
With all the information you’ve gathered, you should now have a clear picture of why your home isn’t selling. That means it’s decision time.
Do you feel the reasons why your home hasn’t sold are nothing to do with your agent? To continue working with them, you need a new plan of action to avoid getting stuck on repeat. If the marketing for your home still looks and sounds the same, nothing is likely to change.
For a completely fresh start with a new agency, check your current agreement first for any tie-in or notice periods to ensure you don’t become liable for two sets of fees.
Depending on the number of months your agent has already had and how long since their last enquiry or viewing, you might be able to negotiate a shorter time to part company. It’s always worth asking the question.
If you already have a second choice from when you first put your home up for sale, ask them if their initial advice still stands with the feedback you have from your viewings.
To hear some new opinions and ideas, think first about the setbacks and disappointments with your first agent, then use them to fine-tune your selection process.
Look at how agents present and describe their homes online, and note down the ones you feel most drawn to. Then check their reviews on Google or Facebook for an impression of how customers rate their experience.
With your shortlist, carry out one final test before inviting anyone round. Call each agent about a home they’re marketing to gauge their enthusiasm and knowledge, along with how much interest they take in you as a potential buyer. Do they check whether your requirements match the property, that you’re in a position to move, and then invite you to view?
Ask yourself how inspired you feel after speaking to each one.
INVITE, INTERVIEW & INSTRUCT
Now it’s time to meet the candidates in person.
Hopefully, they’ll ask you all sorts of things about your home. To help them factor everything into their suggested asking price and strategy, tell them as much as you can and talk about your previous experience and feedback.
When it comes to each valuation, is it supported by other nearby sales? If it sounds high, even delightfully so, is it credible? A home with unique qualities can achieve more than established local prices, but flattery alone will not get you sold. Watch for any advice that sounds good but doesn’t stack up, then feel free to challenge it: setting your price is very much a two-way discussion.
Your research revealed how agents present their homes, but what’s their plan to generate interest, maintain momentum, and find you a buyer? It’s also worth checking how they’ll keep you up-to-date: nine times out of ten, communication is the biggest let-down that people tell me about - even more than their home not selling.
As well as all this nitty-gritty, think about how it feels when talking to each agent. You’ll be working together for months, so you need to feel cared for as well as confident to be comfortable with your choice.
RELAUNCH FOR SUCCESS
You’ve found an agent who’s just right - now it’s time to agree on a date for your return to the marketplace. Perhaps you’d like a week or two to recharge your batteries after tidying up every day for months, or you might want to finesse the presentation of your home.
To optimise your new marketing drive, use the feedback from your previous viewings to make your next ones a success: those remarks can be priceless in getting it right second time around. Focus on any repairs, tidying, rearranging – or cleaning! – that will have your home looking irresistible in photographs, as well as in person.
With the benefit of hindsight on your side, work together with your new agent to help them avoid previous mistakes and missteps. Let them know if your home was incorrectly described, if any rooms photograph better from a different angle, or if any crucial details were missed.
Could I do better?
If you’ve been struggling to sell your property in Tooting, Balham or Streatham, perhaps a fresh approach and a change of agents can turn your move around. So instead of giving up hope, why not get in touch?
Call me on 07940 546190 or drop me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org – you could be one step away from finding your perfect buyer and successfully moving home.