Chris Sawyer is the Director of Sawyer & Co. Sales and Lettings with offices in Hove, Brighton and Portslade. He’s also the President of the Brighton and Hove Estate Agents Association, and every month he will be sharing his valued insight about the property market in Sussex in his regular column
One of the most common questions that people ask me is ‘how do you know if it’s the right time to make a move?’ Well, whether you’re buying, selling or looking to make an investment in a property, you shouldn’t really concentrate too much on the prevailing market conditions.
I think your decision should always simply be based around what’s right for you. Ask yourself, has the time come to downsize, maybe a new arrival to the family means that you simply need more space, or perhaps you’ve had a windfall and think that a buy-to-let would be the best home for it.
So, if you have worked out that now is the right time to get things moving, what should you look for in an estate agent? In my experience, whether you’re buying or selling it all comes down to making a personal connection and having a feeling of trust and confidence. These are things that you can’t get when you use one of the various online estate agents that seem to be cropping up all over the place, because you usually never get to meet anyone in person to make that kind of face-to-face judgement.
Another thing that most people are interested in is finding out how much their property is actually worth. There are plenty of clichés about how your home probably ‘earns’ more than you do each year but the only way to really find out is by asking a professional who really knows the market in your local area.
Unfortunately some people let our profession down by giving you an unrealistic figure simply just to try and get your business. At Sawyer & Co. this is something that we would never do. We pride ourselves on always having everyone’s best interests at heart and sometimes that means giving people a realistic valuation instead of just trying to tell them what they might want to hear.
Even after all this some people worry that the estate agent they’ve chosen isn’t doing everything they promised they would do. There are plenty of things you can check for yourself, such as checking to see that your property is actually on all the main online sites such as Onthemarket.com and Rightmove.co.uk. However, it’s also important to check how they’re listed and marketed and how they compare to other similar properties.
When we take on a property we produce a set of high quality pictures taken by our professional photographer and create a well-written bespoke description from our marketing manager, both of whom work exclusively for us in-house.
In the end, I believe that it all comes down to a few simple facts. A good estate agent should have a team which is always looking out for you, doing their best for you and that you shouldn’t accept anything less.
If You Do One Thing This Month…
The old saying ‘fix the roof while the sun shines’ has a ring of truth. Whether you’re thinking of selling or renting your property, or even if you’re happy where you are, now is the perfect time of year to get all those jobs done that you’ve been putting off all winter – which could even include the roof!
Contact Chris on 01273 778877 or via firstname.lastname@example.org or pop into the Hove branch at 52 Church Road, Hove BN3 2FN