COLUMN: Consumer Champion Sarah Willingham gives her money saving advice


Sarah Willingham, founder of, is the UK’s best known female money saving expert and consumer champion. Here she shares her top tips for saving money when selling a property.

Estate Agency Fees – Online Vs Traditional

High Street estate agents charge an average of 1.8% of your property’s value to market your home.

The average selling price for a property in the UK is £266,000, so that’s a £5,666 fee! Before you list with a high street agent ask yourself if you are happy paying them that much money!

It is worth looking into hybrid estate agency models such as This agency combines the best elements of high street estate agencies (local property experts) with the convenience of operating online 24/7. You can save thousands of pounds using a service like this!

Appointing a Solicitor – Shop Around!

Ask your estate agents to recommend a solicitor but do shop around. Call for a consultation and get written confirmation of their charges. Also ask yourself - are they friendly, helpful, efficient and straight-talking? If you’re in talks with more than one solicitor, play one off against the other to get the best service at the lowest fee possible.

Move It, Don’t Lose It

Save money on removal costs by doing it yourself. You can hire vans from as little as £19 and there is always the man with a van option if you need some extra support! If money is really tight, ask family and friends to help you move.

Box Clever

These are heavily discounted, and if you don’t mind a few scuff marks and peeling off remnants of old tape, are just as strong as the unused versions. Better still – see if your local supermarket will let you have a load of used ones for free.

Time to Switch?

Shop around for the best utilities deals for your new home. According to one comparison site, you can save up to £383 a year by switching energy plans alone. It’s also an ideal time to negotiate new phone and broadband contracts.