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What should estate agents do?

(17 Posts)
MyHouseWontSell Sat 04-May-13 12:33:49

Just that really. House up for sale for 3 months, not a single viewing. Lots of helpful mumsnetters looked at the link and recommended changes, many of which we did, then we retook all the photos.

Spoke to EA and asked what they've been doing and they replied that they've put the house online and there's not really a lot more they can do. Apparently houses sell themselves these days hmm

So what else should the estate agent be doing, before we drop the price? It seems I'm paying them while I do all the work.

jenduck Sat 04-May-13 13:15:18

They usually have mailing lists of potential clients who are after a certain type of property who they can mail/email your details to.

TBH, yours sound a bit rubbish. We changed agents a couple of times & eventually sold very quickly with the 3rd lot, who just advertised our property & we did everything else - arranging viewings, talking to people afterwards re offers/opinions etc. For this we paid about £300 total instead of £3k - a welcome difference!

Crutchlow35 Sat 04-May-13 13:16:12

What Internet sites is the house being marketed on? Does your EA have a shop front window? Is there a window card up? Do you have a floor plan?

They should be handing out your schedule to anyone coming into the office and asking about property within your price bracket. Similarly if there is a request for information through an online source for one property and yours is within the same price bracket I would send yours too.

What postal mailing list do they have and what was sent out and followed up?

Similarly do they have a separate email mailing list? I do.

It could genuinely be that you are in an area that is difficult to sell in. Mine is. 3 months is still classed as new on the market where I work and it can take months to sell here but your agent should have explained all of that to you when you met with them? Did they give an indication about the local market? On the flip (and I don't mean to be rude) were they honest but you felt your property would sell regardless? Lots of sellers where I am take onboard what I have to say but still think their property will sell within a few weeks with hundreds of viewers. Drives me a bit bonkers that they don't listen!

LastMangoInParis Sat 04-May-13 13:23:33

Three months isn't all that long - although it certainly feels like it.
Have you checked how other similar properties on the market in your area have fared?
I think you might find that now the weather's picking up, people are much more optimistic and interested in viewing. I know that sounds like glib advice, but I think it's worth something.
Also, have you considered using another EA?
I've found smaller, local estate agents (who have to actually sell properties to survive as individual EAs aren't salaried as such) are much more proactive, imaginative and committed and make more effort to get excellent photos of a property, give more considered advice on asking price, put more effort into sorting which buyers are genuine and likely to really suit the property etc. My experience of more corporate EAs is that they take a less considered 'conveyor belt' approach.

MyHouseWontSell Sat 04-May-13 13:24:20

Thanks for the input.

No idea about mailing lists - Will have to ask. They just seem to think it will sell itself! I asked whether they'd sent the brochure out to anyone but the look on her face suggested this was a silly idea hmm

I don't expect miracles, but we did make it clear that there's a lot of give in the price and we are very keen to sell. We will drop the price if necessary, but I wanted to check whether they should be doing anything else first.

If there really isn't a buyer out there at the moment, that's fine but they seem to be sat waiting for someone to fly through he door and beg to buy it!

kezlou2 Sat 04-May-13 22:37:56

When your property is put on the market the estate agent should ring all the buyers they have on their list to tell them about the property
It should be listed on all the usual property sites.

In my opinion, estate agents should do all the viewings. But that only seems to happen in London (this is where I used to work as one)
If a vendor does the viewing, the buyer doesn't feel
Comfortable. They want to look round and say what they want to say, not worry about offending the vendor. They want to talk about what they can do with the property.

The next working day, the estate agent should then ring the buyer to get feedback
They should then ring you to tell you the feedback

If the property is not selling or getting viewings they should then ring you with advise on a reduced price or what to do.

In all honestly, estate agents outside London are so rubbish. They do absolute nothing. It's no wonder they have a bad name! In London estate agents work so hard, but that's because people don't take any crap there.
This is when you tell me you are in fact on London!!!

If you're not getting any viewings then the price is too high or the house doesn't look attractive on the pictures on the net. That's another thing, estate agents are so rubbish at taking the photos! We used to get professionals in to do ours. Make sure the photos are good.
Would you want to view it if you saw it on rightmove?

Sounds like your estate agents are pretty rubbish to be honest. Your paying them to help you.... Make sure they earn that money.

kezlou2 Sat 04-May-13 22:40:53

Also the points crutchlow made are really valid.
If someone rang about another property, they should think on their feet and get them into yours too.

Ps I don't mean to offend any estate agents who are great outside of London. I know there are many out there. I'm just generalising from my experience!

LastMangoInParis Sat 04-May-13 22:43:45

In all honestly, estate agents outside London are so rubbish.


This has not been my experience.

But there were some right lazy fucker EAs when we were selling London property. Really arrogant. And seemed to think that the fact that they and the properties they were 'selling' were in a great part of London meant they had to do fuck all except turn up to let viewers in (and call with a bit of worthless 'feedback' the next day).

The quality and skill of an estate does not depend on her or his geographical location. hmm

kezlou2 Sat 04-May-13 22:53:27

We've all had different experiences then haven't we!

LastMangoInParis Sat 04-May-13 23:12:11

Indeed we have, kezlou but we're not all snobs thank goodness!

flow4 Sun 05-May-13 07:56:21

The obvious answer to "Houses just sell themselves these days" is "OK, well then I shall be switching to an online EA in a month, if you can't prove to me that you're worth the extra".

poocatcherchampion Sun 05-May-13 09:29:29

grin kezlou! London must be such an amazing place.

I also disagree that agents should show buyers around. I often prefer the vendor so we can ask questions that the agents won't know the answers too. also making small talk with agents is dull when you are on your 50th house and just want to find a home!

MyHouseWontSell Sun 05-May-13 12:47:13

Our agent doesn't show people around (they will if we pay them extra).

I'd love to leave them and switch, but it'll cost an extra £200 to leave and we've already paid them £250. It's a lot of money to lose for nothing.

Will try and get someone to call and 'enquire' about it on Tuesday and see how enthusiastic they are.

lechatnoir Sun 05-May-13 12:56:55

I worked as an EA in central London for 15yrs & was gobsmacked how different it all was when it came to buying & selling my own houses outside London & my opinion is similar to your kezbar

lechatnoir Sun 05-May-13 12:57:28

damn auto correct - kezlou not kezbarsmile

Crutchlow35 Sun 05-May-13 13:50:43

In all honestly, estate agents outside London are so rubbish. They do absolute nothing.

What rubbish! Such a sweeping statement. You can't possibly know the service they all provide. Yes, many of them are awful. I would hate to buy or sell in England full stop but don't tarnish us all with the same brush.

I am thankful for the way we operate here in Scotland and I work exceptionally hard for my clients. In fact I am just home from 2 hours at the park and managed to negotiate a sale while there.

Deaglan Tue 14-May-13 13:21:04


as an Agency Owner I can tell you now a house left on the books will stay on the books...

an agent should:

Market Appraisal you home it may be the wrong price - did you see comparables etc?
take fantastic photos
create invigorating written marketing
PROACTIVELY search for people looking to buy
if it isn't getting attention they should be thinking about how to change the marketing to get the attention.

however talking of price - once your house has been on the market for a while (4 months+) its really hard to get a price drop noticed... I would suggest taking it off, asking a few agents what they think of the marketing and price before resubmitting it to the market - you may need to clean/redecorate and or remove things but all of these things should of been thought up by the agent.

also are you in a sole agency agreement? and for how long I've known my competitors tie people in just to ensure they "Look" busy for more clients.

if you PM me your property I'll do a initial area appraisal and drop you it back with some hints on marketing if the wonderful people on mumsnet haven't already gotten them.

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