With the property market getting back into shape & house prices in many cities sky rocketing, estate agents are trying harder than ever to get the best quality properties advertising with them.
In essence this means that sellers have more say over how their property is dealt with, however, it is still important for you as home owners to be aware of the tricks estate agents use.
1. Selling your home is not their top priority
It seems logical that an estate agents top priority would be to simply try and sell your property, sadly, this is not the case. An agents main goal is to try and get you to list your property with their firm.
Ever noticed how when you register interest with an estate agent you start receiving marketing calls and e-mails regarding properties not on the market yet? This may seem like a ‘kind’ gesture by the estate agent in attempts to help you make a new home purchase, however, all they are really doing is using it as a trick to get you to sell your home with them.
2. Commission is rarely based on sales
It is very rare to see individual agents get paid commission on a per sale basis. It is more common for agents to get paid based on how many properties they get listed. This is why you will see many agents pushing to get you to register your property with them.
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3. Free valuations exist so agents can get in
There is great appeal to getting something for free & the same applies here. Estate agents tempt home-owners with ‘free’ valuations so they can get into your home. Once in, they will ‘value’ your property but their main aim will always be to get you to list your property with them.
4. Valuations aren’t always accurate
It is very a common for estate agents to ‘over’ value your property in attempts to try and get you to list your property with them.
What does that mean for you? In general, any property valued higher than its actually worth will be harder to sell. An estate agents solution to this would be to sign you up to a 12 and up to 26 week contracts so they can try and convince you to lower your price down during this period.
5. Ready made buyers not always apparent
Many estate agents boast they have ‘ready made buyers’ just waiting to take your property from you. In most cases they do exist, just not in the way you are made to believe.
Once an agent has your property listed with them, they will go ahead and register your property on websites like rightmove, property network etc. In doing this they generate potential leads from these ‘ready made buyers’ but these buyers have no prior relationship with the agents.
6. Newspaper advertisement not effective any more
With smart phones & the internet in full flow, no matter what estate agents say newspaper ads are not a sure way to make a sale anymore.
One of the main reasons you may see a newspaper advert of your property if you have registered with an estate agent is – they are trying to get you off their back. If your home is not getting enough attention, putting in an advert is a very easy way to say to vendors ‘we are working hard’. This way they easily bypass the real reasons for lack of interest.
7. Professional viewers are hired
Although this used to happen a lot more during the old says of estate agent sales it’s not to say it still doesn’t happen.
Professional viewers are hired to look around your house just like any other potential buyers before your property reaches the market. They look around, seem like they are interested but it never progresses into anything.
The trick to this is the immediate attention. Once a seller sees this, in most cases they are more than happy to sign up their property.. and chequebooks.
8. The ‘Best price’ is not an agents top priority
Surprisingly, trying to get the best price for your house is not an estate agents top priority. There are even training courses designed on how to convince home owners to accept lower offers than they want!
By getting you to sell quickly, they can get your sale recorded & get you off their books as quickly as possible.
One way to combat this trick is to look for agents that offer a fixed fee on sales. You may have to pay extra but this way, it works in the agents favor to get the right amount for a sale so they can make their return.
If you do ever find yourself selling a property, as well as watching out for these tricks, here are some questions you can ask your estate agent before selling.
We hope our list has educated you somewhat so if you do ever find yourself selling a property with an estate agent you know what to look out for!