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How much is my Property Worth?

This article is, perhaps, a slightly jaundice view of real estate industry and some tips on how to get the most out of it. The article prescribes managing your real estate agent (realtor) as opposed to adopting a passive role. It also suggest you do your own research rather than relying on what the agents chooses to tell you. We hope this article is helpful and regret if any offence is taken. Either way, please get in touch with us and let us know your views and experiences. The nature of Word of Web is to listen.

Highest Possible Price

What is the highest or best possible price I can get for my home? Just how much is your property worth? Easy. It is what the market will bear. What the highest bidder will bid. The best price you can secure during a negotiation with an interested and able purchaser. Sounds straight forward and, of course, as any decent agent will tell you, you just need to secure the services of a professional estate agent (them of course) and you will get the highest possible price – or will you?

The Hook

Before you even say a word the real estate agent knows what you want. Lots of money, as quickly as possible please with minimum of hassle, fuss and stress. So when you meet don’t get too excited if that’s what they tell you.

The Cynic

Any good restate agent will quickly assess your level of cynicism and adjust their approach accordingly. They may talk up your chances, stress their size/locality/personal service, emphasize past successes and experience and might even offer to reduce their fees. A few phases to watch out for during this process:

1. 'I already have two or three potential buyers on my books' - If you think about it, everybody is a potential buyer.
2. ‘Your property is unique/special and we shouldn’t have too much of a problem selling it’ – Most properties are unique in some way.
3. ‘I guarantee you we will sell your property’ Yes but at what price? Will you discount or waiver your commission if you don’t get what you say its worth?

The Contract

Read it carefully, query everything you don’t understand and, preferably, get their response in writing. Never agree to a long period of exclusivity with out good cause or you risk paying out commission twice or not selling until well after the contract has expired.

Who does what?

This varies from country to country and state to state even but generally, and make no mistake about this, if you want the best possible price you will have to do most of the work when it comes to selling your home. There are usually DIY jobs to do, maybe some uncluttering, transporting furniture into storage and rearranging what’s left, renting plants, extra gardening duties not to mention preparing your home for inspection, over, and over, and over again.

What does the agent do?

If you are unlucky, surprisingly little if they can get away with it. Get the agent to tell you up front what they intend to do to sell your property. e.g. attend inspections and, if there is any doubt, make sure they list their duties in writing. Ensure they will ring every potential buyer they hear from after an inspection or enquiry. You don't care who you sell to it is the money you are after. Don't let the agents prejudices, laziness or inefficiencies rob you of a potential buyer. Ask for reports of who they have spoke to and what the feedback was. Make sure they try more than once if they can't reach someone first time. Don't be afraid to ask, quiz and generally check up on them. There is no harm attending your own inspection. Make sure the agent earns their commission.


At some stage, probably not straight away unless you push the issue, the advertising ‘budget’ will be discussed. The Estate Agent will talk column inches, hits on their website and glossy photos and exposure.

‘To get the best possible price you have to let everybody know what great property you have’ Mr or Ms Agent

(by this stage the two or three potential buyers have purchased else where, died or otherwise evaporated).

Marketing for whom?

For whom? is one question you should ask. If they can get you six column inches in that must-be-in magazine at a sensational discount ask how many inches is for their office and/or them personally and how many for you. You never know, the estate agent might have a special, special sensational discount.

Where to Advertise?

More fundamentally, you decide where you want to advertise and don’t be pushed around on this one. Do you own research as best you can and ask for the facts to back up why you should pay thousands of dollars for a glossy photo in magazine you never read.

There must be some estate agents who are honest and hard working.

Yes there are of course many estate agents who are honest and hard working but they may not earn as much in commission as some of their more scruple less colleagues. We list a couple on our website [ – Word of Web is Word of Mouth recommendations on the web] which, at the time of writing, may only be of use to Sydney readers. If you know of one please let me know - [email protected]

Selling your property for the highest possible price The Rich Pom Paid

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