Questions, questions, questions…(part 2)
Part Two – Service.
Often a feature lost on estate agents, service should be as important to the estate agency industry as it is to any other in the service sector.
A common complaint we hear about other estate agents is the way they treat their buyers and sellers. Sellers are given the gold star treatment up until the point where an estate agency agreement is signed when the mood can change. The final goal of a successful property sale is the aim for both the seller and the agent. However problems can arise in the way the sale is achieved. A seller might have chosen a particular estate agent because of their valuation and this should be based on sound research and recent market movements. Sadly the figure given is often inflated by agents to secure the sole agency agreement over other agents. This means that once the property is put on the market the enquiries won’t start coming in as prospective buyers are put off by the inflated asking price. The estate agent then starts to badger the seller for a price reduction, sometimes as early as a week after the listing goes live on the Zoopla and Rightmove etc. This is a common sequence of events and one that leaves bitterness on the side of the seller as they feel they have been misled by a valuation in order to sign a contract, only to be pestered soon after to reduce the asking price which was based on a valuation that the estate agent provided. The seller is locked into an agreement for a period of time and feels they can’t change agents for however long the agreement runs for – they feel trapped.
At Edward Giles we much prefer to have a frank and open chat about the asking price and to not place too much weight on the valuation process – exactly because of the events explained above, which happen every day, all over the country.
By choosing the right asking price – not too high and certainly not too low – one can generate a great amount interest from buyers in the early stages of marketing.
Estate agents have a reputation of treating buyers badly. Not only is this unprofessional but very short-sighted too. We know that the estate agent earns the fee from the seller but you can’t have a successful sale without good quality buyers. More importantly, buyers become sellers one day and it’s interesting how many people remember the agent that they purchased through. If it was a good experience then they are likely to instruct this agent for their future sale.