Why it should be a sea­son of good­will to­wards es­tate agents

Yorkshire Post - Property - - PROPERTY - Tim War­ing

SO, we have all sur­vived the aw­ful weather in Jan­uary and last Mon­day was, ap­par­ently, the most likely day of the year for ab­sen­teeism for those with New Year blues. That means we can now look to­wards the brighter days of spring and count down to the long­est day of the year, which is only 133 days away.

If you are read­ing this col­umn, there is a strong like­li­hood you will have more than a pass­ing in­ter­est in prop­erty and I am pleased to tell you that, like many agents in York­shire, we have had a pro­duc­tive start to 2014. I’d also like to see it as the sea­son of good­will to­wards es­tate agents.

Whether you are a buyer or a seller, a so­lic­i­tor or sur­veyor, builder or agent, it is in our col­lec­tive in­ter­est to have a healthy and ac­tive res­i­den­tial prop­erty mar­ket in York­shire.

I am pleased to say that the prac­ti­cal re­al­ity of 2014 thus far, is that buy­ers and sell­ers, as the main pro­tag­o­nists, are be­ing sen­si­ble.

Buy­ers are pre­pared to pay good prices for the right prop­erty and where own­ers are slightly strug­gling to sell, they are be­ing proac­tive and ad­just­ing their pric­ing.

The re­sult of this ap­proach is an in­creas­ingly ac­tive mar­ket­place.

So why the need for good­will to­wards es­tate agents, es­pe­cially when some mem­bers of the pub­lic still ques­tion the wor­thi­ness of our pro­fes­sion?

Well, I would con­tend that es­tate agents are the “ring­mas­ters to the cir­cus” and, more of­ten than not, the glue that holds the whole process to­gether, par­tic­u­larly when there is such a wide diver­sity of in­ter­ests in­volved with any sin­gle prop­erty trans­ac­tion.

This is par­tic­u­larly rel­e­vant when the in­di­vid­u­als in­volved do not al­ways seem to have the same ob­jec­tives in mind. Per­haps a few ex­am­ples would be help­ful here.

At the start of the process, po­ten­tial buy­ers un­der­take view­ings with proud own­ers spend­ing time pre­par­ing for the event. If you view, it is not un­rea­son­able to pro­vide the agent with feed­back, even if you did not like what you saw. An in­abil­ity to re­spond to fol­low up calls will hardly en­dear you to the sell­ing agent, es­pe­cially if it turns out that the next house you look at through them is one that you re­ally like.

If you are sell­ing and have say five view­ings in the first week, it does not nec­es­sar­ily mean that the price is wrong and that you are sud­denly go­ing to sell your home for a lot more by wait­ing four weeks. You might wish to heed the old es­tate agents adage that “early in­ter­est is of­ten best in­ter­est”.

As a buyer, once you have agreed terms then you’ll want to have a sur­vey to check there is noth­ing un­to­ward. If there is an in­her­ent prob­lem, it may come to light at this stage.

Do re­mem­ber a sur­vey can be a ques­tion of in­ter­pre­ta­tion and not sim­ply a tool for rene­go­ti­a­tion. An agent, and in­deed an owner, is not be­ing un­rea­son­able in ques­tion­ing whether a bit of peel­ing paint­work and soft tim­ber re­ally is a ma­te­rial prob­lem in an Ed­war­dian house that is over 100 years old. And then there is the ques­tion of “the pa­per­work”. Yes, lenders are be­ing more strin­gent. Yes there is a need for searches to be ob­tained from the lo­cal au­thor­ity and, un­der­stand­ably, there is the re­quire­ment for due dili­gence on the part of the le­gal ad­vi­sors. Whilst this does all take time, there is no mys­tique to the process. It is a ques­tion of en­sur­ing all those in­volved re­alise that time is of the essence to sat­isfy the ex­pec­ta­tions of both buy­ers and sell­ers alike.

And where does this leave the es­tate agent? Keen and will­ing to en­sure all con­cerned work to­gether for mu­tual ben­e­fit. That can mean gen­tle per­sua­sion and plenty of phone calls and emails.

Un­for­tu­nately some in the process seem to think at times we are just be­ing an­noy­ing.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.