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Do estate agents tell lies about the interest in a property??

(58 Posts)
darlink Thu 12-Oct-06 01:00:15

Have put a bid on a house (Scottish offers over system)

quite an unusual house would not have thought much interest.

No other bids when I offered yesterday.
Agent now say they are expecting another bid tomorrow of 30 thousand more!!!!

Might they be lying to force my hand? (not that I can afford to be forced)

darlink Thu 12-Oct-06 23:45:20

wonderful women the lot of you!

Helen I can see why this conversation would make you hacked off.
Good for you for being an honest estate agent.That is heartening to hear.

But do you think many of your colleagues are dishonest? If not why is the public perception thus?

Jbck the house is being sold through Slater Hogg.
Half an hour from Glasgow in a small town ( Population 8,000)
Detached 6 bed Georgian Villa in own walled grounds. Offers over 475K.
We bid 530

Seems there is indeed a genuine bid of 560 Subject to survey.
The owner called us to tell us this because he wants us to have it! he even told us the amount and if we bid the same we will get it!

We cannot go that high and ar waiting to see whether the sale goes ahead at 560. as it is not signed and sealed.
I m not ttoo downhearted as we live in a lovely farmhouse in the country.
The new house is in the town our kids go to school in (3 miles from our current house)

darlink Fri 13-Oct-06 08:48:18

keeping fingers crossed for other bidder to pull out!

FioFio Fri 13-Oct-06 08:49:39

Message deleted

darlink Fri 13-Oct-06 09:00:25

Fiofio
Do you really thing the situation is that bad? WHy do we put up with it?

PhantomCAM Fri 13-Oct-06 09:28:53

darlink, interested to know why you put in a bid higher than the asking price??

helen, what's in it for estate agents? mmmm, more commission?

and buyers and sellers aren't professionals that are being trusted so no equation there.

Helennn Fri 13-Oct-06 11:13:56

"Seems there is indeed a genuine bid of 560 Subject to survey".

Glad you have clearly stated that the agents were not lying, although obviously sorry that you may not be able to get the house.

I honestly believe that not as many agents are dishonest as you lot seem to think they are. I think this is partly due to the media, and threads like this, that love to jump on the band-wagon and criticise them when they 'think' they have been diddled. PhantomCam asks what is in it for the agent - in this situation the agent legally has to put all offers forward to the vendor - it is his job to get the best price for the vendor that he can. If he had have been lying and darlink couldn't afford the higher price she would have pulled out and he would have lost her, therefore not getting a sale at all!

Please don't make statements such as "I have yet to meet an estate agent that tells the truth", - you are helping to perpetrate a myth that says that all estate agents are liars - they are not.

I know I am obviously banging my head against a brick wall even daring to post on a thread like this - but what you are saying is quite offensive to a significant proportion of estate agents who are hard-working and honest. There are un-doubtedly shitsters in the job who give everybody else a bad name - but please don't call us all liars - we are not.

darlink Fri 13-Oct-06 11:39:37

Phantomcam I am in Scotland where properties are often advertised as "offers over". It is a daft system really. If there are lots of interested parties sealed bids are submitted at a closing date for offers.
Occasionally people with plenty money offer way over the offers over price.

Helen thanks very much for your insiders info. I do NOT think all estate agents are dodgy and you are dead right that you get dodgy people in all walks of life. I know a lawyer who deals in property and tells his friends the amount of other bids so they can go just a bit higher.

Helen I don't think it's over yet.
What happened was the agent contacted me and said they were expecting a bid subject to survey, of 560. Would I like to offer that amount and it will be mine?

This made me pretty scunnered . It seemed dishonest to the other bidder.

At this point I asked my lawyer to retract my bid, but still retain a note of interest.The seller was on the phone within minutes!

I explained I was out of the running as I could not afford to go higher (and thought it was an over inflated sum )but to get back to me if the other offer fell through.

I still don't know if the other bidder really exists.

Helennn Fri 13-Oct-06 11:54:00

Darlink - yes you are right - it does seem pretty hard on the other bidder. I can only imagine that the vendor made it clear to the agent that she would much rather you had the property than the other buyer. After all it is not always just the money that can influence a vendor.

Sorry, I am a little confused. In your post on Thurs, 10.34am you said "It was The SELLER- who I trust not to lie - who told me the agent told him about the alleged higher bid coming in", and then just now you said, "What happened was the agent contacted me and said they were expecting a bid subject to survey, of 560. Would I like to offer that amount and it will be mine?"

Maybe I am splitting hairs but it seems to have changed. Anyway, I do think it sounds like the owner would rather you had it, and if you would offer what the other bidder was talking about they would agree it to you and they would stop the other buyer going to the expense of a survey for no reason. Just a shame you don't have another £30,000 hanging about ..

Best of luck.

darlink Fri 13-Oct-06 12:28:11

Thanks Helen.
It was indeed the seller who told me first, late on Wednesday night when he asked me to go round for a chat about everything.
He told me the agent told him about the other possible offer of 560. He himself ( the seller) said "it all sounds a bit fishy to me"

The agent spoke directly to me the next day with the same story.

I phoned my lawyer and retracted my bid.

I did this to make it clear that If the other bid was real I was out of the running.
If it was not the agent would get back to me to ask if I was still interested.

A bit later my lawyer phoned me. He had phoned the agent and he (lawyer)thought the potential higher bid was a genuine thing. (although no bid had been made and no survey carried out)

I will let you know how it goes. Even if I could raise the other 30 I don't think it is worth that much money especially as I love my current house and am not desperate to move.

UnquietDad Fri 13-Oct-06 12:35:40

I think the direct answer to the OP's question is "Does the Pope have a balcony (with a 'pleasing aspect')?"

Estate agents will say and do ANYTHING. They'll talk up an area, lie about the area, lie about the school catchment, exaggerate the accessiblity and the size of the garden, be evasive about how much interest there has been...

I would not be at all surprised if some "offers" against which people compete are about as real as the Tooth Fairy, and magically diappear once the house is bumped up to a certain price.

I don't know why they bother with all this, given that people are bright enough to work things out for themselves and a sensible buyer will open lines of communication with the vendor, and cut out the middle-man (woman).

Estate-agents want to CONTROL the entire process - don't let them.

Helennn Fri 13-Oct-06 13:00:41

I really don't know why I'm bothering. If an estate agent lies about a property then take him to court under the Property Misdescriptions Act and get him shut down - and do us all a favour!

We always tried to stop the vendor and buyer speaking directly as that that was when things usually went wrong, one wouldn't understand what was supposed to happen, things would get personal and heated and then it would fall apart. We always found there was a much higher rate of fall throughs when they started dealing direct - which obviously we didn't want.

Oh - Fiofio, perhaps we should meet, then you couldn't go around saying you had never met an honest estate agent - because you would have .

ScareyCaligulaCorday Fri 13-Oct-06 13:22:44

Haven't read the thread but yes of course estate agents tell lies. Even lies they know will be discovered.

I remember once, a friend of mine was staying with me while she bought the house next door. The estate agent knew the buyer and the vendor lived next door and were friendly, and could compare notes. And even then, he'd lie to both parties. Every couple of days she would pop her head over the fence and have a chinwag with the neighbours, where they would swop incredulous stories of what latest lie the estate agent had told them. It was like he was so used to it, he couldn't stop himself. Whenever he was challenged, he would simply look sheepish and start flanneling.

In theory they're not supposed to tell lies, because they can be reported to the NAEA, but in practice, everyone is so bloody relieved and broken in spirit by the time they move in, that no-one can be arsed to complain. I guess if more people made a fuss and challenged them, they'd stop, but the process of moving house is so stressful that complaining is one more enormous piece of work that no one wants to take on. (I've done it myself, last time I moved house I swore I'd write and complain, but you're so busy moving that you don't, and six months later when you've had time to draw breath, it seems so long ago and not worthwhile.) So they get away with it.

UnquietDad Fri 13-Oct-06 13:28:45

I didn't read any of your posts, Helennn, only the OP's question. You're obviously an honest one and I commend you for that. But come on - take an estate agent to court for lying? We'd be doing it all the blinking time! What about:

- saying that the house has an "impressive" fourth bedroom, which turns out to be pretty poky?
- describing a garden as "extensive", when it is extensive only in their imagination?
- calling a ramshackle lean-to slapped on the side of a house a "sun-lounge"?
- saying it's in a "desirable" area when it's not?
- saying it's in Nice Suburb X when, in fact, you'd have to stretch the boundaries to a point which would challenge the Laws of Thermodynamics to make that true, and it's in fact in Less Nice Suburb Y?
- and the "lies of omission": failing to mention the planning permission for a new housing estate on the fields nearby, the noisy and dirty garage next door, the railway-line at the bottom of the garden, the JCB in the front garden as the vendors are building a bungalow in front of it...

And why do estate agents always say stuff like "meriting an internal inspection" or "a viewing is absolutely essential"? I mean, if you like the look of the photo/ particulars you're going to go and have a look, aren't you? Or do people stand outside and admire the brickwork??

And that stuff about "reputable" schools really winds us up, too, as it implies that the school next door is somehow "disreputable".

SPACEdoutzombieCADET Fri 13-Oct-06 13:31:02

i must admit that when i was house hunting up here, when i would enquire about the interest in a certain proprty, most agents would truthfully say, no there hasnt been much interest if there hadnt, however the agen selling the house i eventually bought, told the most disgusting whoppers to get me to complerte sale by thecend of the month, claiming that the seller was going to pull out, the chain was going to collapse etc, however when my solicitor looked into it, it turned out it couldnt be further from the truth, it caused a lot of undue stress and soured relations with the people i was buying from.

SPACEdoutzombieCADET Fri 13-Oct-06 13:32:15

unquietdad-, pmsl @ "extensive only in their imagination"!!!

UnquietDad Fri 13-Oct-06 13:34:55

the JCB/ bungalow thing actually happened to us, too. To say we were is an understatement!! And they didn't even appear ashamed when we took them to task!

SPACEdoutzombieCADET Fri 13-Oct-06 13:37:49

unquietdad-i was originally going to move locally last year and went to view a house which ticked all the boxes, however, the estate agents had failed to mention that the vendor was actually retaining all the garden with property and building a great big four bedroomed house on it!

LIZS Fri 13-Oct-06 13:42:57

and it is variable from branch to branch of the same group. One branche (who as a potnetial buyer I generally get on well with) has the most elaborate method of desribing the property even surpirisng the part time viewing accompanier - "undoubted feature" etc - whereas the branch "acting " on our behalf insisted on the barest minimum of description on our particulars to the point of not even being able to say fully tiled in case they were sued for it only being all 4 walls ! The latter have actually turned out to be the more underhand btw !

edam Fri 13-Oct-06 14:12:45

There used to be a fab agent in London who wrote very entertaining, truthful property particulars 'the roof is about to fall in but as a bonus you will have a fantastic skylight' sort of stuff. Now sadly deceased.

Yes, many estate agents lie - you only have to read a few Which? magazine reports to see that. So do vendors and buyers although the agents are supposed to be the professionals so should be more darn responsible.

UnquietDad Fri 13-Oct-06 14:33:52

There was one here last year - surprising as it was from one of the usually mendacious crowd - "please be aware that the floors are unfinished; also that part of the roof has collapsed and piegons have taken up residence in the attic"!

I mean, what happened to "elegant, natural stripped-wooden floors throughout, open-plan roofing space and highly original aviary feature" ?!

FioFio Fri 13-Oct-06 16:19:30

Message deleted

Jbck Fri 13-Oct-06 16:57:06

Darlink sounds fantastic, makes my £200K sound paltry.
Hope you get it & you can let us see how gorgeous it is then. Similar thing happened to a colleague at work recently the agent phoned & said someone had offered higher than them but vendor really liked them & would rather sell it to them if they matched price, she told them to get stuffed! House sold for a bit more than they offered but not the amount they'd been led to believe had been offered.

Jbck Fri 13-Oct-06 17:06:55

Think I've seen it, does it have a Bow room 8'9" x 7'3"? If so, what is a bow room, I'm thinking archery but could be for doing one's pigtails in . Looks lovely and tbh if you get it at your offer price sounds a bargain to me. this is a just over a mile from where I'm moving to and look at the price, mind you it's been reduced from £795K so I suppose it's going cheap.

darlink Fri 13-Oct-06 18:32:28

No Bow room as far as I am aware!
It has def been sold to a higher bidder.

Jbck Fri 13-Oct-06 18:43:20

shame, the one I found was in Stewarton with SH. Obviously wasn't for you. At least you're v happy where you are.

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