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Fees are vendors' biggest concern - but only 25% are willing to negotiate

Nearly all home owners (96%) consider fees to be the most important factor when choosing an estate agent, according to research carried out by EstateAgent4Me.

Despite this, only 25% of those surveyed said they would try to negotiate the fee first put to them.

On top of this, only half of participants said they would bother to get at least two agents to visit their property before putting it on the market.

Participants were also asked which non-financial factors would influence their decision when choosing an agent to represent them.

Some 93% agreed that a good phone manner is essential, while 87% acknowledged that the ability to build a rapport is a valuable skill.

A significant 70% of those taking part also admitted to not reading the fine print of their estate agency contract.

The study, conducted over the summer, which spoke to over 1,000 adults that have used an estate agent to either buy or sell a property also looked into the most common turn-offs.

Almost half (48%) of those agreed that 'pushy' sales tactics would put them off using an agent, while a similar proportion indicated that poor punctuality was also a big turn-off.

Other common turn-offs included poor local knowledge, being unfriendly or being over-familiar.

Fees are vendors' biggest concern - but only 25% are willing to negotiate

“Consumers are sensibly choosing an estate agent based on both gut feeling and the impact on their bank balance," says Paula Higgins, chief executive of the HomeOwners Alliance which runs the EstateAgent4Me website.

"Homeowners say fees are the top issue, but two-thirds don't read their contract and a quarter don't negotiate fees." 

"If they aren't more savvy, they will put themselves at risk of high fees and rip off contracts," Higgins adds.

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