Think twice before selling your home yourself

Homeowners often believe that selling their homes themselves will result in substantial savings in estate agent fees, but the DIY route does not always benefit the seller.

“Selling a big-ticket item such as a home involves risk if you do not have sufficient knowledge and expertise in this area,” says Dean Hewitt, co-founder, director and principal of Nu Generation Homes. “This is often only gained through experience and endless hours of studies.”

Some of the knowledge you would need includes how to determine the selling price, the sales process, where and how to advertise your home and what to include and exclude in contractual documentation relating to the property sale. It is also critically important to be aware of the potential pitfalls and how to avoid them.

“Mistakes can be costly when it comes to property transactions, so there’s no room for errors,” says Hewitt. “If you’re selling your home yourself for the first time, you need to be certain you are doing everything right.”

Also ask yourself if you have the necessary time to sell your home, as the DIY option can be likened to assuming an additional career, advises Hewitt. You would need to photograph your home, write appealing descriptions and professionally advertise it. When uploading your info on online portals, consider if you are able to showcase it in the best possible light and correctly tag it so home buyers can more readily find your property.

If a prospective buyer contacts you to view your house, are you able to schedule or rearrange your activities to prioritise the request? You also need to be available to collect and submit documents – some during working hours, obtain signatures and liaise with various other parties in the transaction. These may include banks, mortgage originators, attorneys and contractors who are required to provide the relevant certificates of compliance.

“These additional responsibilities not only take time, but increase stress levels,” says Hewitt. “It may also be an emotional experience to sell your own home, and you as a seller should take care not to let your feelings get in the way of closing a sale.

“If you feel offended when a potential buyer points out flaws, you might not want to negotiate with them. On the other hand, home buyers might not want to share their true thoughts about your home with you as the owner. An estate agent is seen as objective, and can therefore more easily obtain honest feedback from potential buyers as well as manage the feedback process to the owner.”

If you are in a hurry to sell your home, the DIY option might not be suitable. Estate agents are likely to close a deal quicker than you would at a market related price, as they have the skills and experience in property sales, as well as insight to property values and trends in your neighbourhood. They also have a proven marketing formula and access to a database of buyers. Without their service, your home might be on the market for longer than necessary or you may end up dropping your price.

“The best way to save on estate agent commission and still enjoy all the services an estate agency provides is to choose an agency that charges a fixed fee for selling homes. It’s important to check that the estate agent provides all the services of a traditional commission-based agency and that there are no hidden costs before signing on the dotted line,” advises Hewitt.

Also make sure the agency and agent you are dealing with has a valid Fidelity Fund Certificate and are registered with the Estate Agency Affairs Board. Make sure the agency is fully compliant with all the latest regulatory requirements, to protect you and act in your best interest at all times.

Nu Generation Homes discloses its’ fees upfront and there are NO hidden costs. You get all the benefits of a professional agency and can save thousands on the sale of your home. Over the past 16 months, Nu Generation Homes has saved clients over R4 million in estate agent commission.

For a FREE, no obligation home valuation in Kuilsriver, Bellville, Brackenfell, Kraaifontein, Durbanville and surrounds, please contact Nu Generation Homes today. To find out more, follow us on social media and keep an active eye out for the positive footprint we are leaving in our local community.

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