An overwhelming majority of people believe a good relationship with their local branch is important when choosing an estate agent to sell their home.
Some 87 per cent of sellers say rapport with branch staff is a priority and the majority ensure they visit the branch in question before instructing them, according to new research by the Homeowners Alliance.
While building an understanding and developing trust in a nearby branch is a must for so many sellers, some homeowners could be surprised to learn some of the most popular estate agents are not actually as local as they appear.
Another recent study by GetAgent analysed 14,000 branches belonging to major estate agents - including Leaders, Connells and Countrywide – as well as over a million property listings and found their nearest local expert travels an average of just three kilometres between the homes they sell.
However, the average employee at online-only estate agent Purplebricks is typically tasked with selling more properties than a high street agent and travels 10 kilometres between each listed property.
Kevin Shaw, national sales director at Leaders, says: “It is clear that most people want to pick a local professional to support them in selling their home. After all, an estate agent who is permanently based in a particular village, borough or town is more likely to have in-depth and authentic knowledge of that area and its varying market conditions and be better able to help a seller achieve their aims and get the best price for their home.
“The research shows that a less locally-based online estate agent has to divide their time between more properties, while travelling more than three times as far to visit each one, leading many to question whether they can truly be classed as a local property expert.
“On the other hand, a typical high street agent is more accessible to customers and within easy reach of all their properties at all times, allowing them to respond quickly to a sellers’ enquiries; set up and conduct viewings; and draw on their local knowledge and connections to market each property via all the most effective methods for the area in question.”
When it comes to expertise on buying or selling property, the research shows that picking an estate agent based in your nearest high street is still the best option.
For expert advice on all aspects of selling or buying contact your local Leaders branch or visit leaders.co.uk.