Estate agents tend to get a bad reputation. And while this might sometimes be unfair, there are a few bad eggs out there pulling the wool over potential buyers' eye with these estate agent tricks.
The Home Owners Alliance has warned buyers from being fooled by a trick that some estate agents use to get buyers to increase their offer on a property. While estate agents are there to help people to sell and buy houses, they also earn a commission. By driving up an offer on a house, an estate agent will get to pocket a larger commission.
The estate agent trick that drives up their commission – and leaves you out of pocket
In order to do this, The Home Owners Alliance explains that some estate agent will try to pressure you into putting in a higher offer by claiming that another party has offered more than you have for the property.
'Your below-asking-price offer has been accepted, the property you are buying is on the market, and it's all steam ahead toward completion,' The Home Owners' Alliance (HOA) told the Express.
'Then the next week, the estate agent calls to say that someone who viewed the property previously has put in an offer a few thousand pounds above yours. You smell a rat,' the HOA warns.
The organisation that champions the interests of Britain's homeowners and aspiring homeowners advises that if you suspect something sketchy is going on, you should ask for the other offer in writing.
'If you suspect this is a false bid, challenge the estate agent and ask to see the proof in writing that this third party exists and they are willing to make a higher offer,' explains the organisation.
However, it's not just buyers who can fall victim to these estate agent tricks – sellers can be at risk too. The Home Owners Alliance warns sellers against revealing the minimum price they will accept for a home they're selling to an estate agent.
Some estate agents might be angling to get a commission, but not work too many hours for it. 'Never let them know your bottom line (if you're selling) or your maximum price (if you're buying),' warns the HOA.
Have you been reeled in by either of these crafty estate agent tricks?
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Rebecca Knight has been the Deputy Editor on the Ideal Home Website since 2022. She graduated with a Masters degree in magazine journalism from City, University of London in 2018, before starting her journalism career as a staff writer on women's weekly magazines. She fell into the world of homes and interiors after joining the Ideal Home website team in 2019 as a Digital Writer. In 2020 she moved into position of Homes News Editor working across Homes & Gardens, LivingEtc, Real Homes, Gardeningetc and Ideal Home covering everything from the latest viral cleaning hack to the next big interior trend.
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