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Estate Agents AIBU

(98 Posts)
GrannyBettie Mon 16-Jul-18 13:36:07

Sorry if there is a live conversation on this subject but I couldn't find one.

We are selling our house after a very long time in it and naturally can't remember how stressful the process is. We invited a number of agents round and all agreed a valuation (in line with each other). We made our choice and sat back. 5 weeks in the agent we chose is suggesting we reduce the price by 51K. This is an enormous sum for us compared to the reduction in their commission. House prices in our area compare favourably with our original asking price but there is quite a bit competition. We were not prepared to go down 51K but agreed to reduce. Today I receive a letter from EA saying well, we told you people are saying your house is worth £100K less than asking. After 8 viewings one person made a cheeky (in EA's words) offer of £100k less, which they (EA) also told us was not worth considering. I am feeling so despondent over this.

I know a house is only worth what people are prepared to pay for it but I think the thing that riles the most is 5 weeks ago the EA said "I am confident that we will get at or near asking price for this". I should add that the same agent has a house which is 250 sq ft smaller than ours at the price they want us to reduce ours! My neighbour tells me this is a well known tactic of this EA (Shame I hadn't spoke to her earlier). AIBU about this?

MawBroon Mon 16-Jul-18 14:05:00

Tell them to take the proverbial running jump.
Have you looked at Purple Bticks?
Just check on Rightmove what sorts of prices are being asked andpaid in your area and for your type of house.
It is not unknown for estate agents to quote a flatteringly inflated price just to get your business, so make sure you do your homework!

trisher Mon 16-Jul-18 14:09:54

It's also not unknown for Estate Agents to take a bung from a buyer to find them a house at a bargain price. They then look for someone they can bargain down the price with. That might be you. Don't know what your agreement is with your agent but I would issue a warning that you are thinking of leaving them and look elsewhere.

petra Mon 16-Jul-18 14:10:11

I have to admit upfront that estate agents, together with surveyors are top of my hit list with professional people.
That said, if you in all honesty believe that your house is worth the asking price and your not in a chain, stick to your guns.

Squiffy Mon 16-Jul-18 14:22:41

You could have a look on Nethouseprices to see what houses in your area are selling for, then you’ll have a good idea of what you can realistically expect.

Squiffy Mon 16-Jul-18 14:23:33

Sorry, should have said HAVE sold for!

Jalima1108 Mon 16-Jul-18 14:29:23

What other posters have said

Do you own research too - don't trust any of them!!

Cherrytree59 Mon 16-Jul-18 14:35:08

I would also advise Purple Bricks

MeltingMacaron Mon 16-Jul-18 14:39:04

It's a very old ploy. They all quote top price so that they get your business but esentially they are lazy and want to sell it quickly. Reducing the price is the easiest way.

And yes, they will have cash buyers, developers looking for something to spruce up and sell on quickly for that 50K margin and some.

If your house is worth what you think it is compared to others in the neighbourhood stick to your price but ditch the unscrupulous agent as soon as you can.

And don't forget the time of year. It can be a dead time in the housing market. Families are on holiday. Exceptions to this can be for houses near good schools or universities where buyers are looking to be in situ by autumn term.

Buyers can be astonishing in their cheek. I was tempted to sell my house a while back. One man offered me 100K below market value because "that was all he could afford". I know agents are obliged to pass on all offers but this agent was asking me to accept it. I pointed out that I was his client. I would be the one paying his commission and suggested he show the man something he could afford.

My other pet peeve is when they try to knock down your price on the grounds of the house "needing" a new bathroom or a new kitchen because it doesn't suit their taste. My response is always this. I use that bathroom and that kitchen every single day. Everything in those rooms is clean, in good condition and in good working order. You may WANT a new bathroom or WANT a new kitchen but why should I pay for it?

You need to be tough. If someone wants to live in you home (as opposed to using it to make a fast buck) they will be happy to pay the true market value.

Melanieeastanglia Mon 16-Jul-18 14:39:59

I'd advise researching the "sold" price of any neighbouring similar properties.

People have told me Purple Bricks are good but I have no personal experience.

lemongrove Mon 16-Jul-18 14:40:47

Change your agent!

Jalima1108 Mon 16-Jul-18 14:47:10

You can look on here for sold house prices, GrannyBettie

Fennel Mon 16-Jul-18 15:36:51

I don't know if you can do it here, but in France many houseowners sell without using an agent. You've still got to use a lawyer of course. Some websites are very well used.
Make up your own advert with photos etc. But it's a bit risky, you never know who the people are who want to view.
French E.A fees are much higher than UK.

GrannyBettie Mon 16-Jul-18 17:26:59

Thank you all for your replies. They have certainly made me fell better that I was right not to accept the £50K reduction first off! I have checked other prices and it seems ours is priced about right; some have been updated more recently than ours and that is why we agreed to drop our prices. Recently sold also seem to be around asking price. Of course until prices are on land registry the actual price paid won't be published.
I wonder @melting macaron whether we are talking about the same agent smile

Telly Mon 16-Jul-18 17:31:46

Of course this is not the best time of year with so many people on holiday or thinking about holidays. You need one person who is willing and able to buy your house but you also need some viewings. I would contact the agent and give them notice and see if they can drum up some business with the possibility of your taking your custom elsewhere. Then go to your second choice, after of course taking note of all of the excellent advice on here already!

Jalima1108 Mon 16-Jul-18 17:38:56

Your house is worth what someone is prepared to pay for it - that is not necessarily the lowest offer!

gmelon Mon 16-Jul-18 18:04:25

Purlebricks are excellent.You can sell for a fraction of the price.
Pay upfront and instruct them right away or pay in ten months time or when your house is sold whichever is sooner.

However if you were to take up their offer of deferred payment in ten months then you are tied to a contract with the Purplebricks conveyancing people.
They are very good too.

They still market your house until it is sold however long that is.

Bluegal Mon 16-Jul-18 20:41:36

Tell your agent you do not appreciate their bullying tactics and will move your custom elsewhere without penalty if they don’t start marketing at the agreed price.

Put everything in writing or email preferably so they have to respond and you have it all in writing.

I’ve moved literally dozens of times and learnt the hard way Estate Agents leave a lot to be desired! It’s obviously an advantage to them to have a quick turnaround of house sales which also looks good in advertising.

Good luck and stick to your guns. So long as you aren’t being unrealistic for your area and have time to wait a bit ... it WILL happen. Good luck

Diana54 Mon 16-Jul-18 20:54:37

Estate agents are the worst of all professionals be careful of giving them " unlimited agency" make sure it's time limited. Online agencies are becoming increasingly popular and will be cheaper, do be realistic about your selling price and remember you are buying another in the same market so insist on a reduction on the new house it works both ways. To get the best value from a house don't move.

Bluegal Mon 16-Jul-18 21:05:11

Just a slight caution on using purple bricks conveyancing. It’s difficult to get to speak to them for updates and you have to make an appointment for a phone conversation. Fine if house sale is proceeding nicely but frustrating if you need questions answering. My friend found this and eventually the first ‘sale’ fell through. It took an age of trying to speak to the conveyancing dept to find out the buyer wasn’t proceeding but overall she liked purple bricks (just wished she’d picked her own solicitors).

nanasam Mon 16-Jul-18 21:16:48

Bluegal we moved into our house 3 years ago via Purple Bricks. Our solicitor was very frustrated as she was unable to speak to a 'person' - nearly everything appears to be done online with no dedicated administrator. We were shown around the property by the owner and if we had any queries we had her number to call so it worked quite well for us but the level of communication wasn't perfect. Good luck!

nanasam Mon 16-Jul-18 21:17:42

Sorry, I meant Good Luck to Bettie blush

gmelon Mon 16-Jul-18 23:06:05

The conveyancer from Purple Bricks was on the phone daily.
Her personal number was available from day one.
She was lovely and very proffessional.
If her voicemail answered then she rang back the same day.

gmelon Mon 16-Jul-18 23:06:50


gmelon Mon 16-Jul-18 23:07:45

The online part of conveyancing with purplebricks has a photo of the person doing your conveyancing.