The Good, the Bad and the Ugly Estate Agents
Estate agents like any other service business come in all shapes and sizes. Many estate agents are members of professional associations like the National Association of Estate Agents or maybe the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors and even the Guild of Professional Estate Agents. Have a look when you visit your local estate agency to see if they show their membership of any of these or similar organisations. Knowing they are can be a good starting point to dealing with a professional Estate Agency.
Membership of a professional association means that the estate agents agree to abide by a code of practice and will be subject to sanctions from their governing bodies if they fail to meet the standards that are laid. If the estate agent is a member of a Professional Association, you can pursue your complaint through a structured process and often as not, it needs not get that far as you are likely to be dealing with a genuine estate agent from day one.
Take some time to know your Estate Agent
One of the easiest things to do when dealing with an estate agent is to take the time at the beginning to choose who is best for you to work with. Whether you are buying, selling or renting a property, the right estate agent can make a huge difference to how smooth the process is.
Estate Agent and Letting Agent Check List
• How Long Has the Estate Agent Been Trading? – New is not always bad but experience does count for a lot when it comes to understanding the local market.
• What Similar Properties Have The Estate Agents Sold Recently? This is important as again, familiarity and proven success means that the estate agent is in a good place when it comes to being able to connect with the right kind of similar buyers.
• How Many Buyers do The Estate Agents Have on Their Books? – this can make the process of selling your property easier if they have an active list of buyers it makes the initial marketing easier and can lead to a faster sale.
• How Will The Estate Agents Advertise Your Property? – Do they use property publications, the internet, property portals, and their property window; do they have a database of buyers? Get as much information as you can, good estate agents have many channels to encourage sales and the more pro-active they are, tee better the likelihood that they will sell your property quickly.
• Viewings – How will the estate agent handle viewings? Do they work evenings and weekends? Do they want you there or do they prefer to show clients around without you. While you may prefer to be present sometimes this can disrupt the natural flow from the estate agent and the prospective buyer, you are dealing with experts so take their advice on this.
Above and beyond the questions and answers, sometimes it is important to just go with your gut feel. If something does not feel right then better to walk away. The estate agent market is busy, you are the one who should be in the driving seat when making a choice of who to entrust the sale too.