I always suspected that estate agents were generally bad…but after having two bad experiences within the space of a few weeks…I decided to write about my experiences and see if anyone else had questionable experiences with estate agents.
So, my background is very simple, am looking for a family house with a garage in a good area in London with transport links. Not very dissimilar to what a lot of people may be looking for I suspect. For the purpose of this article I have deliberate not mentioned specific names and details.
My first bad experience, seems minor at first, but when I thought about it more, it could be the tip of the iceberg so-to-speak on some very dubious practices by estate agents.
So, I visited a property on one Saturday, which I had shortlisted with an agent. The property seemed generally in good order but I wanted to discuss with family before taking any further steps.
Normally, after a Saturday viewing my experience has been that the estate agent would phone up on the Monday to get some feedback. On this occasion when the estate agent phoned up, I could not take the call and they left a voice message. When I retrieved the voice message, I was surprised to hear the estate agent inform me that my offer had been rejected by the vendor for the property I had seen on Saturday. I thought nothing of it, other than that they obviously dialled the wrong number, so I phoned up the agent to inform them that I hadn’t made any offer and that they may have mixed up my details with someone else. The agent sounded coy and laughed and said they will look into it.
Then, a couple of hours later I got an email from the agents about the property, saying that my offer of a particular amount had been rejected. I immediately replied back saying that I had made no such offer and that I had also phoned that morning to say that same things after their voice message. I got no further reply back or any acknowledgement that their records had been corrected.
Two days later, a letter from the agent arrived stating that my offer of a particular amount had been rejected. At this point, I was beginning to think what games these agents were playing at. Had they made up my offer and told the vendor? For what reason?
I tried various times to get the agent to acknowledge that they records have been corrected that I made no such offer…but till this day I don’t know whether the agents records are correct or not, because I have received no confirmation from them.
Not Allowing a Property Viewing
Recently, I came across a property which ticked all the boxes when I saw it on a popular online property website. I phoned the estate agent to arrange a viewing and was told they will come back to me after they had spoken to the vendor.
I couple of days passed and I hadn’t heard from the estate agent and the weekend was approaching and I wanted to see the property on the Saturday if possible. When I phoned the estate agent, they said they had no records of my request, so they will ask the vendor and get back to me. I, maybe naively, agreed to wait for them again.
You won’t be surprised but I didn’t hear anything back, and the weekend came and went. So I phoned the estate agents again and the cycle continued. Then the last time I called them, they informed me that it was under offer. I was really annoyed at this stage and told them that I had been trying to request a viewing for three weeks, and each time they had said they will confer with the vendor for a viewing and then they never came back to me. I was the one always chasing the estate agent and now they tell me it is under offer.
It simply made me feel that the estate agent was playing games and wanted to hinder any further viewings on the property for whatever reason. May be the vendor had instructed them? Who knows…the fact is there is no communication from the estate agents and what is most suspicious is that they had no record of my various requests.
I pulled up my phones records to check when I had called them, and the records clearly indicated over three weeks of requests…and all I got from them was that they will look into it. Of course, you won’t be surprised to know that so far, I have received no further information from the estate agent, and most disappointingly of all a property which I would have liked to see, I never got the chance to go see.
Don’t you just love estate agents?
Check out the Property Ombudsman website for details on how to complain about estate agents: www.tpos.co.uk
Editor’s Note: The Author of this article wishes to remain anonymous. The views expressed are that of the author and not FreeSpeech Magazine.