If you were told tomorrow you needed open heart surgery, you would want to ask a few questions to your surgeon.
What’s that got to do with property?
None of the team here, in all our combined years’ experience, can remember being asked more than a handful of times:
Why don’t people ask these questions when they are clearly extremely important to achieve a minimal stress, successful sale?
All people seem to focus on is lowest fees and highest valuations, regardless of the consequences and choose an agent based on one, or both, of those figures.
As Perry Power says: “Yet 75% of the population don’t trust estate agents… maybe that’s because 75% of the population choose the wrong estate because they aren’t choosing based on enough research or the right questions and then they’re being left with the guy (or woman) who was a car salesman yesterday, never negotiated anything in his/her life and moonlights as a part time Local Property Expert while doing nails and eye lashes in the evening. (disclaimer: There are LOTS of AMAZING estate agents out there).
Smoothly handling property sales (and negotiating the best outcome for a client) requires skill, practice, expertise, commitment and experience. Not £900 and a login area to get your house on rightmove.co.uk.”
The most important take away is that something may seem cheap but what hidden costs are there? Increased risk, poor experience and poor success rates. You wouldn’t take that option with your health, why do it with your home?
Q. Help! It turns out that my ‘cash buyer’ actually has a property to sell. How can this sort of thing happen, and what can I do?
A. Actually you’d be surprised just how easily this sort of thing can happen - and how frequently.
People often describe themselves as cash buyers when in reality they’re not. Sometimes, this may be a deliberate ploy to try and hoodwink the seller into accepting a particular offer. More often however, it’s simple ignorance, for example, some people will claim to be cash buyers when what they really mean is that they won’t need to borrow any additional money to fund the purchase - once they have sold their existing property! Others may indeed have the cash – but it may be tied up in savings accounts that require anything up to 6 months’ notice or more before it can be accessed. The same often applies to people who claim to have sufficient funds to put down a large deposit.
A genuine, non-dependent cash buyer is just that: someone with sufficient funds ready and waiting to make the purchase - without having to sell anything else first. If the money is held in an account that requires an extended period of notice before it can be released, then this notice needs to be given straight away – and you will have to decide for yourself whether you are willing to wait for that length of time.
Establishing the true financial position of would-be buyers is an integral part of the agent’s role - any reputable, professional agent would have asked all the right questions at the outset. The fact that this has happened to you therefore suggests to me either that your agent didn’t do a very thorough job, or that you tried to sell your property yourself, without using an agent. Either way, you’re perfectly at liberty – should it be what you want to do given the current market - to cancel your acceptance of this person’s offer and put your home back on the market.
Robert Williams Estate Agents, 2 Southernhay West, Exeter, EX1 1JG
Tel: 01392 204800 | Sales: email@example.com Lettings: firstname.lastname@example.org