Metro - 14 November 2014
Making the most out of estate agency relationships
By Jo Eccles
A friend of mine is currently tearing his hair out; he’s found a property he wants to buy through a particular estate agency. Unfortunately for him, however, he initially viewed the property through a sales negotiator who doesn’t seem to know what he’s doing, and has very limited knowledge about the property and the sellers.
My friend has viewed the property a few times now and, on the second viewing, dealt with a superb sales negotiator from the same office who was well informed and gave him confidence that she could get a sensible purchase agreed. What my friend didn’t realise when he first called the agency and did his first viewing, was that he would be registered with the first person he contacted. He is therefore now tied to dealing with the initial sales negotiator, who he doesn’t have faith in, so is struggling as he doesn’t want to make the purchase through him. The seller will never be made aware of this, even though it could negatively affect the sale of their property.
Having to deal strictly with one individual negotiator only tends to be the case within estate agencies who pay their negotiators on individual commission. So it doesn’t always apply, but as a buyer you should always try to find out – the more you know about the set up of agency behind the scenes, the better. Unfortunately, in the instance of individual commissions, as a buyer, you are going to have to grin and bear it if you don’t like the sales negotiator. Relationships count for everything when purchasing property (it’s not just about the money!), and if you kick up a fuss, it may mean the difference between securing the sale and losing out.
Finding the right property is only a fraction of the work, it’s successfully navigating through the subtleties that make all the difference to your purchase and the price you’ll pay – remember, to be forewarned is to be forearmed!