Selling a property without an agent - 7 common mistakes you should avoid.

Many property owners decide to sell their house or apartment themselves - often with the idea of saving the broker commission and selling the property quickly. However, great caution is required here because without the appropriate know-how, a lot can go wrong. We'll show you the biggest mistakes when selling a property without an agent and how to avoid them.

1. Bad preparation
Quickly place an advertisement on the Internet and see what happens: With this setting, you will most likely not find any prospective buyers or sell your property well below its value. A well-thought-out plan is needed before the advertisement is published.

The preparatory measures include:
•    Obtain information about the regional real estate market and determine the value of the property
•    Obtain all documents for the sale, for example, copies of the floor plan and site plan, excerpt from the land register, energy certificate as well as living space and property calculations
•    Prepare the property for viewings inside and out.
•    Plan a lot of time, especially for dealing with authorities, communicating with potential buyers and viewing
•    Prepare answers to possible questions from potential buyers

2. Set the wrong value and selling price of the property
Many house or apartment owners take the purchase price they once spent as a basis for real estate valuation and hope to get back at least the amount invested at the time. In fact, this can be far below or above. In the end, supply and demand at the time of the property sale are decisive for the amount of the sales price. Predicting this requires a lot of experience.

The basis for the sales price is the value of the property: To determine this, you can analyze the local property prices as well as comparable properties. However, you can only get a reliable and objective value from a trained and certified appraiser.

3. Unprofessional presentation of the property

Nobody wants to buy a property that already looks uncomfortable and untidy in the photos. Before you release your property for marketing and viewing, it should look appealing:
•    Make an order in the rooms and, if necessary, in the garden. Do not leave personal items lying around that can be a distraction during the tour.
•    Take some money in hand and eliminate the greatest visual defects (for example repainting walls, replacing shower curtains, replacing old furniture). Such adjustments can result in a higher selling price!
•    Photos of the premises and the exterior must be of high quality because they are the flagship of the property. When taking photos, ensure good, natural lighting conditions and use wide angles to capture the entire space.
•    Do sightseeing at a time of day when the interiors are the best lit. Provide fresh room air and comfortable room temperatures.
•    Create a structured and clear synopsis for your property that contains all the important information, images and documents.

4. Inadequate marketing of the property

Placing an online ad on one of the many real estate portals is usually not enough. Rather, use four or five portals and one or the other regional newspaper to expand your target group. In your neighbourhood, you can use leaflets and a "For Sale" sign to draw attention to your property. Tell your friends and work about your sales project - it's not only free, but also extremely efficient.

5. Poor communication with prospective buyers

To your home or sell your home, you need to be accessible to potential buyers: by telephone, via e-mail and, ideally, over fax. If you miss a call, please call back as soon as possible. If the caller or sender has to wait more than a day for your answer, they can get the impression that you are not serious about the sale.
However, good communication also means transparency: Answer questions from interested parties to the best of your knowledge and prepare yourself for possible questions in advance.

6. Underestimate additional costs

If you sell your property privately, you save the costs of the agency commission. Nevertheless, there are a number of additional expenses that amount to several thousand euros.

This includes costs for:
•    Appraisals, for example, appraisals and energy certificates
•    Advertising measures, for example, advertisements
•    Taxes, for example, speculative tax
•    Early repayment penalty in the event of a prematurely cancelled loan
•    Renovation works
•    Deletion of the land charge in the land register

7. Leave the purchase contract to the notary

If you sell a property in Germany, the purchase contract must be certified by a notary. However, this person is only responsible for drafting the contract and making changes to the land register. The exact sales details and all (verbal) agreements must be recorded in the contract by the contracting parties themselves - in legal technical language. So, check before the notary appointment that all agreements are complete and correctly written down.


Always be patient when making such a big decision. Even if you are looking for a quick house sale, it is always advised that you take your time and use all your due diligence before finalizing a deal. Always do a thorough background check on the seller, so you know who you are getting in bed with, so to speak. Patience is good but never take so long that a good deal slips away from your hand. Also, if you have followed all the steps in the guide and are satisfied with the deal you are making then once the deal is finalized, do not have second thoughts about it. In the end, trust your gut and go with it.

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