Billericay: 01277 623010

WARNING! Up-front estate agency fees do not add up!

25 September 2017

If you’re thinking of moving, beware of the latest tactic being used by online agents advertising on TV and some of the high street corporate chains too.

It works like this. The agent advertises a surprisingly low fee to entice you as a prospective seller, so that you invite that agent to your home with a view to listing your property with them. They may even offer to throw in the VAT and EPC costs!

The “deal” is that in return for the low fixed fee, you must pay the agent’s fees “up front” regardless of whether they successfully sell your property or not! Now, in my view this is totally contrary to the concept of having an agent who is 100% on your side and fully motivated to sell your home, as quickly as possible and for the highest price the market will pay. In essence, by paying the agent up front, the agent has zero incentive to actually go on to sell your home. They have already been paid for listing the property! I refer to these agents as “listing agents” who can easily win your business by giving you an exciting, yet unrealistic, high valuation, only to then suggest a price reduction further down the line when you ask why it hasn’t sold.

The agent will, of course, tell you that buyers come from the internet nowadays. They’ll tell you that their use of technology enables them to achieve cost savings, which they pass on to their clients. Don’t be fooled. It really isn’t a matter of simply uploading your property to Rightmove and waiting for a buyer to materialise. That’s not how a good agent gets you the best price. If anything, finding a buyer is the easy bit. Negotiating a great price with the right buyer, and having the skills and resources to manage linked transactions is a whole different story.

But it gets worse. During your meeting, the agent may then try to sell you other services, such as you have to use their recommended conveyancer, accompanied viewings, negotiation, sales progression support, a for sale board, etc each for an additional fee. These costs add up and remember are paid up front. So, sellers can end up paying the same, if not higher fees, than they would have paid with a regular agent, who would have only charged on results!

If you’re considering one of these so called low cost pay upfront agents, ask them if they would be willing to charge the same fixed fee upon completion of the sale, rather than up front. I know what their answer will be!

The alternative? Work with a local respected and successful estate agent who covers Billericay to Brentwood, proven to deliver results, where personal values combine with a contemporary approach. Please feel free to contact me personally on 01277 623010. There’s no pressure, just sound advice – and, the best bit… we’re not expensive and we only charge when we deliver the results you need!

September 2017

Dean Caldon

Managing Director

Grace & Rose Estate Agents

If you are looking to move home in the near future, or need any advice with regard to selling your property, please don’t hesitate to call 01277 623010 or email me direct on or click to see our latest Testimonials and more advice in our Blogs