Author Topic: Finding a good estate agent - you probably wont!  (Read 8684 times)

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Finding a good estate agent - you probably wont!
« on: July 09, 2011, 11:21:44 am »
Why you should not trust an estate agent.  Most of the points listed here are based on acts of deception, immorality and just plain stupidity. All the following examples are common practice used by most estate agents nationally, from the junior, all the way to the top management.

No qualifications required and regulations exist
The Estate Agent industry in the UK is unlicensed and unregulated, so anyone off the street can set up as an estate agent without training, qualifications or experience.

Who would want to be an estate agent?
What type of personality would actually want to be an estate agent? This is a profession that includes back-stabbing colleagues, manipulating people into buying homes because their salary depends on it and a life of working 6 days a week, 12 hours a day in an occupation that requires no qualifications at all, and has no consumer protection. In short, probably not a very nice person - a chancer or a wide-boy.

You have more protection when buying a Television
Estate Agents are safe. They are unregulated. They should comply with the Properties Misdescriptions Act 1992, requiring them to be truthful when describing the property, but seldom do. They can laugh all the way to the bank without any real fear of prosecution. It is very hard to claim anything against estate agents, unless they do something blatantly illegal. It's amazing how the British consumer has more rights when buying a television or sofa than they do when buying a house.

Commission-based salary
Their commission-based salary is an incentive for them to sell at any cost. They use all the tricks or deception and manipulation often masked by an outward "kind nature" which is always false. They are motivated only by money.

"This property is really popular"
One trick they use is to arrange two viewings to accidentally coincide, so the property appears to be in demand. The agent may even get someone to call them during a viewing and pretend that someone has just put an offer in.

"This house is perfect for you"
Estate agents will lie through their teeth about every little detail in order to persuade you to sign on the dotted line. They will try to turn every negative you find into a positive no matter how silly their statement may sound. Has an estate agent ever suggested that you DON'T buy a particular property?

Estate agents make more than commission on the sale
Estate agents prime objective is to get themselves the best deals. This relates to the commission based salary scheme, and their greed for money. Whether a buyer or seller, they will try to exploit every aspect of the transaction to maximise their income. They often earn MORE from referral schemes by recommending insurance products, solicitors, surveyors and mortgages brokers as they do from their commission. You should NEVER use anyone recommended by an estate agent!

They are all the same
Estate agents come from the same school. They all step off the production line in their cheap River Island suits, slicked hair, with the slime ball wide-boy personality that makes them think they're really hot. Estate agents should be required by law to have a qualification but they aren't.

Estate Agents waste everyone's time
Being specific about what type of property you want to buy matters little. It's in the Estate agent's manual that they show you properties out of your price range and/or properties that don't match your original needs and criteria. When they do this it is because they probably don't have enough properties on their books that match your requirements, so instead if missing a sale they show you any random properties, in hope you will buy one.

They hate each other
Estate agents hate other estate agents, so what chance do sellers and buyers have? This is not just the feud that exists between rival companies; but the in-house war, too. They back-stab each other by stealing leads from each other and take enjoy seeing their colleagues losing out on sales.

Estate Agents boards and flyboarding
It is not unknown for estate agents to put boards up outside properties that are not For Sale or Sold as a very cheap way of advertising. This is common in blocks of flats where there are boards from several agents permanently on display. Estate agents are quick to change the board from For Sale to Sold subject to contract.  But it can be months before the Sold board is taken down, often by the new owner!
Try selling a property with an agent and banning them from erecting their board.

Not all estate agents are dodgy. Most do some or all of the above and maybe have even more tricks. Finding an agent that gives a service to both buyer and vendor and cares about people more than money is an all but impossible task.

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The Prophet

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Re: Finding a good estate agent - you probably wont!
« Reply #1 on: July 09, 2011, 12:17:08 pm »
The Property Services Regulatory Authority is going to be the main place to go to complain
about estate agents.  It is not a statutory requirement yet but is going through a long-winded appoval and consultation process.

From their provisional website they say:
The new regulatory environment provides for:
· a comprehensive licensing system covering all PSPs
· the investigation and adjudication of complaints made against PSPs
· the audit/inspection of PSPs operations
· the establishment of minimum qualification standards

Are estate agents concerned?