Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

DIARY OF AN ESTATE AGENT; Our Agent Gets Firm with a Snooping Seller and Frees a Buyer Oblivious to the Fact He's Locked In

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

DIARY OF AN ESTATE AGENT; Our Agent Gets Firm with a Snooping Seller and Frees a Buyer Oblivious to the Fact He's Locked In

Article excerpt

MONDAY Following a strong wake-up coffee, it's time to discuss the offers from a weekend of open houses and viewings. Clients are naturally keen for feedback and an offer is an even more exciting prospect.

This morning we are holding discussions with a couple of clients who are proving to be a little difficult.

One seller -- who has received a slightly low offer -- has to be convinced he should counter-offer rather than take the first one that comes along. Another seller who has received an offer at the asking price following a considerable number of viewings has now decided he is under-selling and believes we should market his property at a much higher price. When will people learn that the agent knows best? TUESDAY The day starts with a meeting with a new vendor in one of Little Venice's smartest coffee shops, Raoul's, to sign paperwork, collect keys and discuss the marketing arrangements.

Our chat is interrupted by a frantic phone call from a colleague who has managed to lock himself inside a top-floor flat with his client. This requires a quick dash down the road to let him out... luckily the potential buyer is so overwhelmed by the fabulous views of the communal gardens in Maida Vale that he doesn't notice there is a problem as we saunter out of the front door and on to the next viewing, oblivious to that fact we could easily have been prisoners in someone else's home.

WEDNESDAY The day is going swimmingly until a rather cross vendor comes into the office to complain about rude comments made by a potential purchaser. It transpires the vendor regularly hides in a cupboard to listen to everything a prospective buyer says. Nobody really likes to hear that they have no taste and the only way to improve the property is to burn it down. I suggest that it may be better for all concerned if he stays away from the cupboard, and the house, during viewings. …

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