Property - Buying & Selling
Reviews and ratings of quality, hand-picked, UK websites
Have you engaged an estate agent on a sole agent basis?
If so, you may still be liable for their fees, even if you sell via the internet.
First of all you have to distinguish between "sole agency" agreements and "sole selling rights" agreements. If you have the second type then no matter how the sale comes about, the estate agent still gets the commission. If you have the first type - sole agency - then your estate agent can only claim a commission if they actually introduce the buyer, or if you sell your house via another estate agent. No commission is due if you sell it privately.
The crux of the matter is whether an internet property retailer is an estate agent or not.
The Office of Fair Trading has spoken. If the internet property retailer carries out any of the following they are likely to fall within the definition of an estate agent as laid out in The Estate Agents Act 1979:
1. Providing clients with a 'For Sale' board.
2. Receiving and fielding queries from potential sellers or buyers and passing on details to their clients.
3. Sending out property particulars and arranging viewings.
For more information, see the OFT advice on Internet Property Retailers.
All internet property websites will assure you that they are not acting as estate agents and therefore any sale that comes about as a result of your internet advertisment is classed as a private sale, just as if you had put a private advertisment in the newspaper. Thus no commission should be due to your agent provided your agreement is a "sole agency" agreement and not a "sole selling rights" agreement.
This might not stop your estate agent from billing you anyway, even if you do not have a sole selling rights agreement with them. In this case you can complain to the Ombudsman for Estate Agents.
The best thing to do to avoid being caught out is to discuss this with your estate agent at the outset and read the small print on any contract you sign with them. You can also get free advice from Consumer Direct at www.consumerdirect.gov.uk or by telephoning them on 08454040506.
Headers: Search Property, Lettings, Services Quotes, Guides
Sign up with Houseweb and they will advertise your home on Asserta, Yahoo, Fish4, Propertyfinder, MSN, UpMyStreet, AOL and more as well as the Houseweb website. They claim the target adudience is 3 million. There is no commission to pay and "until sold" adverts start at £47. If you are looking for a property, Houseweb have thousands of properties to view from throughout the UK and worldwide. In addition to property for sale, Houseweb also deals with lettings - if you have a property you want to let out you can have it listed here.
Headers: Property Sales Directory
For people looking to buy or sell property. Standard listing on the Buyitprivately site is just £10 until sold. Full lead details and 1 photograph. Alternatively you can opt for the other options which include listings on Propertyfinder.com, Fish4 and Yahoo plus many more. No commission charges are payable.
Headers: Buying, Selling, Mortgages, Utilities, Surveys, Insurance, Removals, Estate Agent Directory, New Homes, Overseas Homes
Hundreds of thousands of homes for sale on fish4homes. This is definitely one of the places to go if you are looking to buy. The search facility is extremely good plus you can also search for solicitors, removals firms and estate agents. There is also an extensive properties abroad section. Excellent.
Please note that you cannot get your property listed directly on Fish4homes via their website - you will need to sign up with an estate agent or an online property company such as one of the companies listed on this page.
Headers: Buyers, Sellers, Your Own Website, Marketing, Cost
Very professioanl operation. You can search for property here or list your own property for sale. Each seller gets their own website, in effect, with unlimited space made available and with full control given over to the seller. Pdf brochures are inserted into each property site plus there is a statistics programme whereby you can keep track of your sale on a live basis. Your property will be advertsied not just on Housenetwork but with most of the major UK property portals including Fish4, Property Finder and Asserta Home. For full coverage plus all the extras, you pay £199 + VAT for the design and £199 + VAT on completion, or you can choose the second option which offers a free virtual design service but 0.75% + VAT on completion (six week sole agency contract). For sale boards can be purchased separately for a small fee. Housenetwork also offers professional sale managemnet services, including in-house conveyancing. Housenetwork handles all enquiries from potential buyers on behalf of clients.
My Property for Sale
Headers: Home Seller Package, Savings calculator
Fed up with estate agents? For a one-off fee of £99, you can list your property on the My Property for Sale website until it is sold.
This package includes:
• Unlimited photos of your property
• Virtual tours
• Virtually unlimited text for your advert
• Free for-sale board delivered to your door
• Immediate front page exposure on My Property for Sale
• Live stats
• A link direct to your own website for your property, if you have one.
Your property details will be emailed overnight to any buyers who have requested a matching property in your area. They handle all telephone calls from buyers from their office and forward them to you. You even get entry to their monthly prize competition! For an extra £40 fee, My Property for Sale will actively promote your property on other property portals including fish4homes, Telegraph.co.uk, Home.co.uk and Europeanproperty.com.
• Special Features: Savings Calculator. Free digital camera loan.
The Little House Company
Headers: Buyers, Sellers
If you are a buyer, you can search the site by price, city/county or postcode, specifying minimum bedrooms and property type. If you are a seller, there are two packages, standard package at £89 gives you an advertisment on this site, and the £125 package gives you additional listings on Propertyfinder.co.uk, Fish4, Asserta Home, This is London, ANM, The Mail and Homes & Property.co.uk, reaching an audience of 2 million potential buyers. There is no commission to pay and the property is advertised until sold. Each property has a full page layout, 4 property photographs, online editing, live stats and freephone assistance. The Little House Company is based in Shaftsbury.
Loot Classified Ads
Headers: Motoring, Property, Personals, Shopping, Music Computers Electrical White goods, Audio equipment, Cameras, Adult, Lifestyle, Student, Jobs, Courses, Travel Business & office, Mobiles Software, Penpals.
Online version of Loot magazine full of classified ads for anything and everything. You can place up to 3 private adverts a day free. If you need something quickly, for example you may be flat hunting, then you can buy the "EarlyBird" feature. You then get immediate daily access to every advert published in Loot - both the online and printed versions. Subscription cost is £15 for 7 days with the option to extend.