How to save thousands when selling your property through agents

Fees charged by estate agents for selling a home can vary massively, but new research suggests that many homeowners could have paid less…

With the current average estate agency fee for a sole agency agreement currently around 1.4% including VAT, rising to closer to 3% for multi-agency (where more than one estate agent is instructed for the same property sale), according to The Advisory, it can add up to quite a hefty cost for homeowners selling their properties.

However, it seems that many sellers could actually have saved themselves some money if they’d questioned the estate agent’s fees or haggled them down, according to the latest report released by housesimple.com.

Room for manoeuvre?

The survey found that almost half (46%) of sellers had reported feeling pressurised by their estate agent, while a huge 82% had accepted the first fee that was offered to them without making any attempt to get a better quote. Of those who agreed first time, 49% said it was because they believed they were getting a good deal, while 41% didn’t realise they could haggle.
[crb_image link=”https://www.buyassociationgroup.com/en-gb/advice/property-investment-starter-course/” image=”https://cdn2.hubspot.net/hubfs/1717782/Asset_Store/WebCTA/cta.jpg” align=”left”]
Of all the agency fees forked out by sellers over the past 12 months, housesimple.com calculated that by getting 0.25% shaved off the initial estate agent’s price, a total of £487m could have been saved. If someone selling their home manages to haggle an estate agent down from 1.25% to 1% on a £500,000 property, for example, they’d save £1,250 in fees.

Sam Mitchell, Housesimple’s CEO, said: “The survey highlights how much home sellers could potentially save by negotiating and not taking no for an answer. There is always room for manoeuvre on the fee and an estate agent that is not willing to reduce their rate will need to have a very strong case as to why, particularly if it is significantly higher than other agents are quoting in the area.”

Getting value for money

One in five respondents said they weren’t confident negotiating with the estate agent, and Mitchell adds that agents are “extremely good salespeople” which can make it difficult for the vendor. However, to get the best value for money from a high street agent, it may be worth plucking up the confidence to haggle, or shopping around for cheaper quotes and seeing if agents will match each other.

There has been a growing trend towards using online estate agents in recent years, as many buyers and sellers see it as a cheaper and more transparent route to property transactions, with most charging a flat fee rather than commission. Viewings through online agents can also be agreed at an additional cost, but vendors can arrange viewings themselves instead as another way of saving money.

Mitchell added: “High street agents are living in the past, charging exorbitant fees and not doing enough to justify their meaty commissions. Consumers want value for money, and are, quite rightly, asking ‘why am I paying an agent thousands of pounds for listing a property on Rightmove and managing a few viewings?'”

Self-certified Sophisticated Investor

Please read

I declare that I am a self-certified sophisticated investor for the purposes of the restriction on promotion of non-mainstream pooled investments. I understand that this means:

I am a self-certified sophisticated investor because at least one of the following applies:

I accept that the investments to which the promotions will relate may expose me to a significant risk of losing all of the money or other property invested. I am aware that it is open to me seek advice from someone who specialises in advising on non-mainstream pooled investments.

High Net Worth Investor

Please read

I make this statement so that I can receive promotional communications which are exempt from the restriction on promotion of non-mainstream pooled investments. The exemption relates to certified high net worth investors and I declare that I qualify as such because at least one of the following applies to me:


Sign up for first access to new developments and exclusive property investment opportunities.

We send limited and targeted emails on new launches and exclusive deals which best fit your areas. We are trusted by over 30,000 active buyers as their source for new stock.

  • New property developments
  • Professional market reports
  • Property deal alerts
  • Development updates
Manchester property investment


Receive trending news straight to your inbox and stay up to date on all of the property market trends and advice.

Established since 2005 we are a leading voice of authority and commentary on the UK property market. Our news is trusted by Apple News & Google News.

  • UK housing market
  • Mortgage & money
  • Buy-to-let landlords
  • Guides & advice

Talk to us

Speak to our UK property experts today:


+44 (0) 333 123 0320

Open from 9am-6pm GMT


+852 6699 9008

Open from 9am-6pm HKT