Estate agents echo industry watchdog warnings

Mark Hayward, president of the NAEA, said: “Our members have noticed a significant increase in the number of companies purporting to offer cash purchases on properties in whatever condition within 24 hours.
 
“While this might sound like a great solution for people looking to sell their property in a hurry, we are finding that it is often families who are in desperate financial circumstances which are targeted through website advertising and a door-to-door sales approach.”
 
Harrison Murray estate agents are members of the NAEA and echo the advice to customers using their 17 branches around Cambridgeshire, Leicestershire, Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire.
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Managing director Nick Salmon said: “The tough economic conditions mean that some home owners may find themselves having to sell in a hurry. The temptation of a cash purchase by one of these quick-sell companies is understandable but owners need to

be aware that they won’t be achieving anything like the full value of their property. Typically these quick-sell firms offer 20% or even 30% below ‘market value’. If the sellers talk to our branches and give us a clear understanding of their circumstances and needs the chances are that we will achieve a much better figure for them.
 
NAEA has four key tips to remember when trying to sell your property without the risks associated with cash-purchase companies:
 
Explore all sale options – Don’t get pressurised into making a sale, no matter how desperate the circumstances. In many cases, quick-sale companies incentivise sellers by covering all legal fees, but this is negated by the low cash price

offered for the property itself. Speak to your local NAEA estate agent to find out about how they could assist with the sale of your property.
 
Remember your cancellation rights – If you have already signed up to a quick sell service, remember that you are still legally within your rights to back out under the ‘cooling off period’. Under the ‘Cancellation of Contracts made in a Consumer’s Home or Place of Work etc Regulations 2008′ you can cancel the contract within the first seven days. Don’t be pressured into making a decision.
 
Speak to Citizens Advice – Buying or selling a home is a long and complicated process and it is important to know how to make the right choices. If you’re worried about your finances and need help in understanding the implications of choosing to sell your house then you can contact your local Citizens Advice Bureau, or use their online portal with pages dedicated to selling your home: www.adviceguide.org.uk
 
Research market value – Quick sell services are known to offer prices at below the market value for properties, so if you are thinking of selling your home, make sure you receive a professional valuation from an NAEA member agent, and do your own research about property prices in your area. You can use a property portal such as PropertyLive.co.uk to do this

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2 thoughts on “Estate agents echo industry watchdog warnings

  1. John Michael

    Properties Wanted, sell your property within 7 day. Don’t you just hate these adverts. The headline should read Seller Beware. As an estate agent we are legally obliged to get the best possible price for our clients. Yet there are unscrupulous individuals and companies who are quite happy to prey on the desperate sellers. I believe that if people are in a position where they have to sell quickly that they instruct a surveyor to provide an independent valuation on their property, then they will be in a better position to decided whether to agree a quick sale on their property at a price that is acceptable to both parties.

  2. Dave

    The reason a seller uses these quick sale companies is speed. Anyone selling to these quick sale companies is going to be in a desperate situation. Getting valuations from agents and surveyors only provides a market valuation and could cost more money, something the seller hasn’t got. The seller isn’t going to acheive a quick sale from a cash buyer by asking for market value or even a couple grand below it. No agent can compete with quick sale companies in terms of selling speed unless they sell to a cash buyer themselves that operates in a similar way to the quick sale buyers.
    I’ve been on both sides of the coin. I’ve an agent for many years and a cash buyer for some years. I think there will always be a place for quick sale buyers depending on the circumstances of the client. In most cases the people I buy from need their money out yesterday and are happy to sell below market value as their situation is dire. If time is not such a pressure then yes an estate agent is a better option and will get a higher price. My advice to anyone in a dire situation is to try and find a cash buyer that has a good reputation. There’s always regular cash buyers wherever the property. A lot of less professional buyers might take advantage of your situation and try to reduce the price at the very last minute to increase their profits. If possible source a buyer that has a reputation for offering a price and sticking to it.

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