Do estate agents take bribes from buyers?

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  • Do estate agents take bribes from buyers?
  • antigee
    Member

    “What I don’t understand is why a seller would take a property off the market after only a day or two. Surely they would be better off letting it run and trying to get people into a bidding war.”

    because as the post says above EA’s “need” to move sales thru quickly and on a % basis a higher selling price for the vendor doesn’t translate to much increase in commission to the EA

    “It is the vendor who decides whether to accept an offer or not.”

    only if they get told about it

    was selling a flat around 10years ago and asked 3 agents to look at as prices all over the place, fully renovated as had the whole block and unusually for area had a garage so a bit unsure – anyhow the 3rd agent suggested a price around 30% lower than the other 2 who were close to each other – when I asked if advertising was a separate cost he was dumb enough to tell me that it wasn’t an issue as “had some clients lined up” – which obviously meant “this is the price I’d like my mate to buy it at”

    its a self regulating industry

    woffle
    Member

    It’s not fair to tar all agents with the same brush but there are some real scumbags about.

    We rented in a lovely location and the house opposite was coming up for sale (we heard through a friend of the elderly owners son – she had been moved into a home). Phoned the agent and told it was an open day at the weekend and we would be first through the door. That same night we watched said agent turn up with developer friend and take an hour to look round. We offered asking and were turned down. We made higher offer and were turned down as ‘seller wanted to go with developer who had cash waiting’.

    Bought another house and about a year later had some building work done by, it turns out, the son of the elderly lady. His side of the story was that the agent did her level best to dissuade them from selling to us (a risky proposition apparently). The worst was that he never got the higher offer.

    I think he took it up with the ombudsman. The agent has closed down (was a branch of a national chain) and I don’t think ours was an isolated incident.

    When we sold last year one agent’s approach was ‘that we’ll market “off the record” – ie. no board, no web etc’. And that he had a list of people who would be interested. Alarm bells rung!

    Market was relatively slow when ours was on but locally (Sussex) prices seem to have risen a good 10% in the last 9 months or so at the end of the market we were selling at (two/three bed). That said, I think there is still a disconnect between seller’s expectations and the realised prices – the media etc all saying values are shooting up and I know agents who are having sellers phoning mid-marketing to ask for price rises. Locally there is a glut of houses at 700K+ and prices at that level are moving in the opposite direction. This means that smaller, ‘starter’ property is harder to find – what would have been 250K a year ago will now be nudging 300.

    Our village and surrounding area also suffers a lot from property never actually hitting the open market; lots of trades are also house developers who happen to have property portfolios so word gets around quickly if places with potential look like they might be up for sale. Our neighbour was a roofer and I don’t think he ever spoke to an agent when buying but would deal direct. Anything that can be developed that’s marketed through the usual channels has been priced accordingly to take into account (ie. small 2 bed bungalow in 3/4 acre plot at 650K)

    konabunny
    Member

    What I don’t understand is why a seller would take a property off the market after only a day or two. Surely they would be better off letting it run and trying to get people into a bidding war.

    In my recent case, because the offer I got was a non-chain offer that was higher than or equal to any other offer I was ever going to get. Why bother carrying a mortgage for another month to get the same end result?

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