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How to market your home to get the best possible price.

I spent 16 years in the advertising industry helping to advise some of the biggest companies in the country such as Ford, Guinness and Unilever on their advertising and marketing. I have now run BigBlackhen.com for over 8 years and so I thought I would give you my take on how to market your home to get the best possible price. It is, after all, the thing that is on most sellers minds when they put their house on the market.

In marketing they talk about the four “P”s: Product, Price, Packaging and Promotion and the principles are the same when you sell any product, including a house.

PRODUCT
We live in our properties as homes and it’s often the case that by the time we come to sell they are in need of a spruce up and de-clutter to show them to best effect. We work closely with local House Doctors…

With fees like theirs it is no wonder they are too ashamed to publish them!

The world of estate agency charges is a murky and secretive one where few High Street agents are willing to publish what commissions they will charge you on their web sites or in their advertising. They will tell you that they can’t quote thier charges until they come and look at your house and see what’s involved, but this is disingenuous. The real reason is that they want to come along, meet you, and see what they can get away with. If you look on the ball and have a number of agents out then you might get quoted 1.25% or even 1% if you are lucky. But look less clued up or just invite the one agent out and it will be 1.5% or more. The internet has dramatically reduced the cost of marketing homes to potential buyers, but don’t expect those saving to get passed on to…

Stamp Duty Should Be Reformed!

Today the Council of Mortgage Lenders have called for the government to reform the Stamp Duty taxes on property sales in the UK and we fully support them. Yesterday the Telegraph reported that we pay more Stamp Duty in this country than any other country in the world. Successive governments have seen it as an easy way of generating extra revenue with the worst offender being Gordon Brown who put the 1% rate up to £% for houses over £250,000 and 4% for houses over £1million. The coalition added a 5% band for houses over £1million and 7% for properties over £2million as a sop to the Liberal Democrats’ desire to tax the rich. The tax has some serious negative effects ion the market especially with the large jump to £% at £250,000 and it makes it nearly impossible to sell a house for £260,000 or £270,000 as buyers…

October sales excellent!

The housing market seems to have eaten three Weetabix for breakfast with our best month for sales coming in October, which is normally not one of the best months in the year. More houses coming onto the market too so looks like we’re set for a strong start to next year as well!

Welwyn Garden City Estate Agents Close Ranks

The big estate agents in Welwyn Garden City have teamed up to get favoured status from the Welwyn & Hatfield Times in terms of lower advertising rates and better position in the property section in what appears to be a deliberate move to prevent non High Street competitors – especially those who advertise their fees or commissions in their advertising – from being able to afford access to the paper. The newspaper and some of the agents involved have said as much in private but don’t expect them so say anything publically or put anything in writing. Makes me think of King Canute trying to hold back the tide. The world is moving away from printed media to the internet/mobile devices and from traditional estate agency models with their high costs and equally high commissions to more flexible low cost models. We’ll just continue to focus on what we…