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Mr P
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Mr P
Interesting article. Information is key to decision making but what the inexperienced buyers generally don’t understand is that to get accurate lease terms, service charge details, rising ground rent info etc essentially anything ACCURATE that can be relied upon you need a management pack from the freeholder/managing agent and a solicitor would need to report on the lease, conditions etc. Info like service charges can fluctuate over time so if it takes 6 months to sell the second round of management info and charges can easily have changed and so the original info is misleading?. It’s all well and good trying to streamline these processes but it’s never that simple. The issue with buying and selling isn’t the miss information it’s the buyers/sellers/agents ability to communicate and understand the process. In addition the time it takes for information to be obtained (searches,surveys, management info). The time it takes solicitors to process a sale is one of the greatest challenges and should be addressed. For example we buy properties using cash and can generally exchange within 7 days. Introduce a buyer in a chain needing a mortgage and it takes months, throw in a lease and it takes even longer! Why? Because solicitors act for lenders not buyers and offer appoint their own solicitor to second check the files, management companies won’t provide info until they are paid and take forever to turn info around, search providers are hit and miss but essentially are churning out repetitive info that probably could be streamlined and solicitors who always seem to like to have the final say are more mindful of covering the ***** than giving a buyer good advice. Paperwork well that’s another topic sending a contract to a buyer to sign and insisting they have the original back before exchanging, well we never sign the contract our solicitor does it for us this saves days alongside many other things that can be done to save time and money that most people don’t know about. So comes back to education and the need an experienced agent )perhaps qualified) holding the hand of buyers and sellers through a difficult process. How does everyone feel about the online agents who take an upfront fee, don’t do the viewings never see the property or meet the buyers or seller and essentially just take a few and leave everything to chance?

From: Mr P 21 April 2021 09:15 AM

Mr P
This issue can be viewed from many angles. The majority of agents overvalue to win business and everyone knows that, but then unsuspecting buyers get caught up in what is often an emotional process agree to buy at the inflated price. In the eyes of the seller the agent has delivered. In the eyes of a professional (the surveyor) the buyer has overpaid and they down value to protect the buyer and the lender. In the instances where there are multiple buyers chasing a property, again the agent has delivered but the price isn’t market value having been pushed up by multiple bids and so the surveyor down values to protect buyer and lender. The issue where surveyors are down valuing properties because they are fearful of what may or may it happen in the future simply isn’t ethical and valuations need to be based on the current market conditions not future predictions. At the end of the day no one can predict the future so surveyors should not be liable for future price changes. This is only an issue where buyers buy with small deposits and short term mortgages. If after 2 years the value has dropped and they can’t refinance because they don’t have equity then the fault is with the lender for agreeing to give them a mortgage with a small deposit not the fault of the buyer or surveyors for not predicting what might happen! As a developer we have been enormously frustrated by down valuations this year. £30/40k drops per transaction adds up to huge sums and wipes out hard earned profit. The time to get sales through to completion this year has also been frustrating and in general once a surveyor has issued an incorrect valuation getting it turned around is like getting blood from a stone, after all they are the professionals and don’t want to admit getting it wrong. Also to put it out there, get a grumpy surveyor on a bad day and you know what’s going to happen! The phrase a property is worth what someone is prepared to pay for it simply isn’t true a property is worth at least what the last person paid for a similar property. If that comparable hasn’t completed the surveyors don’t consider it. I know agents work hard to show surveyors comparables of what they have under offer and at what price they have been agreed or even valued up but surveyors do not take the under offer stock into consideration and the big issue at the moment is that the land registry backlog means sold prices are slow to appear in the land registry and in turn the property portals that display house prices. I believe there is a lot of work that needs to be done to regulate agents who over value and/or drop fees to win business. I believe the ombudsman expects valuations to be carried out using comparables, if these were solid evidence used in the original valuation and buyers weren’t made to compete to secure properties the there would be no need for down valuations and maybe the agents valuation should be give to the surveyor? Needless to say, property valuations need to have a set format that is made clear to all parties. Surveyors and agents should use exactly the same format which must not include predicted conditions and be current. That way down valuations will be a thing of the past and agents will win instructions based on their merits rather than sellers decisions being based on price and fee and there will be no down valuations unless there are underlying issues with the property that are identified by the surveyor and can be justified.

From: Mr P 15 December 2020 10:54 AM

Mr P
Up until recently I have been a staunch supporter of traditional estate agents, I was one for many years and had always been anti online agents, with the opinion that their cheap fees and low service levels ie sellers doing virtually everything them selves and the agents putting it online and then sitting back and waiting for enquires. However having been out of the EA business for a few years and now buying and selling as a developer I can see that there is very little difference between the high st and online models. Bearing in mind I’m registered with at least 500 high st agents across London and the Home Counties I get maybe 5 calls a week from agents, mostly about properties that don’t match my criteria, in addition I get 1000’s of emails from agents who are simple sending me everything on their books repeatedly. Therefore I might as well look online my self as at least I can filter the results. This approach drives me insane given my 15 years experience as an agent, it’s a scatter gun approach, devoid of all skill and makes the high st agents no better than the online agents with the exception that they are considerably more expensive than the onliners. In my opinion it’s nice to be able to walk into an office and speak to someone but at the end of the day it’s the agents ability to sell that counts, and I never thought I’d say it but high Street agents are no better than the online agents now and they should be the ones reducing their fees not the other way round.

From: Mr P 23 January 2019 07:48 AM

Mr P
The statement of fact that everyone seems to forget-"So, sure, you save $27,000, but if you could have gotten an extra $50,000 on the sale of your house, you're losing money" he says, citing the argument that traditional agents may be able to secure a higher sale price than an online operator “. True in the UK, Canada, America, Australia and the rest of the world. Oh and the comment of helping negotiate is BS it’s all online, there’s no help the agents aren’t interested once the property has been listed and they don’t qualify offers. I offered on a property in 2016 had a call told them I was cash they said “okay but wouldn’t you like to talk to a mortgage advisor” no thanks I don’t need a mortgage”. 2 years later I’m offering on properties and haven’t heard from them.....Traditional agents are suffering globally because these guys have a business model revolved around undercutting to get the business. What’s the expression pay peanuts get Monkeys! Hey there’s an idea maybe someone should start a business called Purple Monkeys and charge 10% less that PB and take over the PB market share. Oh hang on isn’t there an agency that likes sheep that’s trying to do that! Ewe decide! I’ve said this before an I’ll say it again, if your an idiot and think that paying a cheap fee for a company to just stick it online and wait for a buyer to rock up to view who then has to deal with a seller with no sales skills or an agent who doesn’t care whether it sells or not as THEY HAVE ALREADY BEEN PAID! Then good luck to you, but why agents moan about PB and don’t launch their own marketing campaigns and actually explain to the public what the differences are between traditional and online is beyond me! Have a great day 🥜🙈

From: Mr P 23 August 2018 08:57 AM

Mr P
So here comes the rant......PROACTIVE vs REACTIVE. I viewed with a Purple Bricks local property expert a while back, first point to discuss was that he had no agency experience he'd gone from a golf pro to estate agent over night and also didn't live local to the property he was selling or know anything about property or the local area. The sellers had paid for the viewing service as the agent showed me round or at least opened the front door and let me have a look around. Viewed with another Purple Bricks agent a few weeks ago again no interest in the property and just followed me around. When I asked if he had anything similar to this on his books or coming up his response was "were not proactive mate you just need to check online for other properties and book a viewing if your interested". If customers knew about this service they wouldn't pay a penny for it and this is what "real" estate agents need to be highlight to potential customers. Once Purple Bricks have your money for listing the house the literally have no incentive or motivation to do anything at all other than sit back and wait for an email to come in (reactive). High St agents need to up their game, what happened to being called by an agent because a property that suit your requirements is coming up, now not all but most agents mass email properties to their clients regardless of whether the meet their criteria on the hope that they will get it right and get an email back to view. No calls and sometimes a text to call them about a random property (wheres the service). Arguably they are being proactive, but effective, I don't think so? So my view is (real) estate agents need to go back to basics and start selling houses the traditional way and show the potential vendors the value of what they can do. Really show them the difference between proactive and reactive and what impact that can have on the result and the price. Get the right price and the fee is irelevant, do a s**t job an they might as well have paid Purple Bricks for the same outcome.

From: Mr P 02 July 2018 14:07 PM

Mr P

From: Mr P 11 September 2017 08:41 AM

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