Every now and then, a traditional agent is invited at the same time as an online agent to appraise a property and have an opportunity to provide a proposal for selling it. A traditional agent generally relishes such opportunities and only rarely will he lose out to the on-liners.
There are many and various reasons why this is the case, but it doesn’t usually take long to illustrate to a potential customer why paying, often upfront, for a call-centre approach to selling property is generally a total waste of time.
There is invariably a difference in fees, but even when this is a few thousand pounds, the seller generally understands that if you buy cheap, you buy twice. It is very common indeed for a traditional agent to take over the sale of a property which has been in the hands of an online agent and for the traditional agent to successfully sell what had been languishing on the market for some while.
What doesn’t seem to be advertised so widely, however, is the experience of the buyers involved with on line agents.
In the last few days, we were approached by a seller to help out with a property that was being marketed by an onliner. He was adamant, however, that he wished us to joint-market, since he had already paid the online agent a fee.
We then received a request for a viewing which we carried out. We subsequently received an offer and negotiated an acceptable increased offer. The applicant then told us that he had also approached the online agent to arrange a viewing. He is still waiting for a response from the onliner to arrange the viewing. Obviously, he no longer needs the viewing.
Had a traditional agent not been involved, the owner would have had a further frustrated week. He would no doubt have been told that the market was still slow and that there are precious few buyers out there.
In truth, the market is slow and there are precious few viewers available at the moment. Surely this is all the more reason for the onliner to make the most of any viewing requests?
In a market such as this, someone interested in a property shouldn’t have to chase repeatedly in order to view a property. An agent should be falling over his staff whilst beating a path to the door to show someone around a property. Our recent experience isn’t an isolated one, but is made all the more appalling with the market as it currently stands.
Is your online agent telling you that there are precious few viewers out there?
Is he telling you that the market is really slow?
Do you think there’s a chance that your lister might have earned his commission and doesn’t truly care whether you successfully sell or not?
If you’re beginning to regret your decision to engage the services of an online agent, pick the phone up and speak with a traditional agent. A professional traditional agent won’t mock you; he’ll be genuinely sympathetic of your plight and believe me, he’ll go out of his way to help you sell your property quickly and painlessly.