I recently purchased a home for a client from NVM sales agent Makelaarsland. As a buying agent, it was my first experience with this modern broker. Many people who want to sell their home are curious about how this works in practice and what the pros and cons can be. In this blog I would like to share my experience with such a “Do-It-Yourself Broker”. I will also shed light on the risks associated with this.

Makelaarsland is therefore a real “do-it-yourself broker”. You now have several here in the Netherlands (which I will blog about another time). You really save a lot on brokerage compared to a traditional broker. Where a traditional broker quickly charges at least € 4,000 in costs, you are already ready for a small € 1,300 at Makelaarsland.

As a client of Makelaarsland you will have to get started yourself. You take the photos yourself (or outsource this for an additional price), write the advertising text yourself and you do the viewings yourself.

Request viewing
It starts with making an appointment. With a home offered by a traditional broker, 9 out of 10 people or buying brokers call with the agenda in hand to make an appointment. At Makelaarsland this is done via an application form. You will therefore have to wait a while until you receive a response.

Viewings and sell yourself by the owner
The viewing is provided by the owner of the property itself. Of course he knows a lot about his/her own home. However, there are 5 major disadvantages to selling your home yourself:

  1. Most sellers are not experienced in terms of construction, legal and commercial experience.
  2. Almost all sellers are emotionally involved in the home, which means that people can make expensive mistakes, among other things.
  3. Almost none of the sellers has experience with negotiating when selling a home. The question is whether a private individual really achieves the maximum sales result.
  4. You are at risk. There is (almost) no consultant who points out the risks during the process to you.
  5. It takes time and many people need that time to work. Taking every day or half a day off to be able to do viewings, assist the structural inspection, catch the appraiser etc., costs you money (unless you no longer have to work).

Request documentation
After viewing, I request the documents (documentation) of the property from Makelaarsland. I receive this quickly by e-mail.

Ask the broker
I have some questions about the property and want to speak to a real estate agent. I call, get someone on the line immediately, but there is (at that time) no broker who can help me. Whether I want to ask my question by e-mail. Done and answer within 1 day. Personally, I prefer to always have a broker on the phone immediately.

Negotiating is very easy because I can submit a bid online. Moreover, there is a lot of room to add any conditions to my bid. It is a pity that I only seem to be able to do this through this form and not by emailing my bid.

The sellers receive my bid via Makelaarsland by e-mail and can accept or reject it. Fortunately they accept him.

The deed of sale
The deed of sale is neatly drawn up very quickly and if I pass on some changes, they will also be processed very quickly. I make an appointment with the sellers (and later with my clients, the buyers) to sign the deed of sale. Normally, the selling broker goes through the deed of sale article by article with the sellers. It is an important document and it is a very big and important thing. Now that doesn’t happen.

My opinion
Do I recommend the “Sell yourself” of your home or not? Answer: sometimes yes and sometimes no. That depends entirely on the customer, his wishes and his home. The sale of a home in all cases involves an extraordinary amount of money and both the seller and the buyer run an extremely high risk. If something goes wrong, then it goes wrong and can really turn your life upside down.

I don’t see internet brokers as a competitor for the traditional broker. Our profession will undoubtedly be subject to change in the future, but a transaction such as that of selling your most important property will not let the lion’s share of people go through technology companies or even robots. However, renting a room, your home (Airbnb) or, for example, taking a cheap taxi (Uber). And the brokerage fee? Your brokerage fee is paid to the traditional broker from the sales proceeds after you have been to the notary for the transfer. A good real estate agent earns back his brokerage for you by working hard for you, delivering excellent service, creating an excellent presentation (images, texts) and, work legally watertight, put down a very smart sales strategy and negotiate very well for you. That can quickly make the difference for many thousands of euros.