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    • victoriavictorious
    • By victoriavictorious 7th Mar 18, 6:05 PM
    • 291Posts
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    victoriavictorious
    How do people ever manage to book viewings??
    • #1
    • 7th Mar 18, 6:05 PM
    How do people ever manage to book viewings?? 7th Mar 18 at 6:05 PM
    Our house recently went under offer and we need to find a house to buy but not having much luck arranging viewings. In theory at least, we're in a good position as we don't need a mortgage and there is no chain below our buyer.
    Yet we're finding it impossible to book a viewing and penetrate the layers of lazy, unprofessional, unreliable EAs (and possibly sellers) who don't seem to give a rat's whether they sell or not.

    Attempts to book viewings so far:
    HOUSE A - (my favourite and I'm gutted!) = SSTC 2 days ago, almost immediately after it went on the market but it's still on Rightmove, with no indication that it's even under offer. Agent said it 'takes time to mark them as sold.'
    So how come our own agent managed to mark our house as sold on RM within 5 minutes of us accepting the offer?
    HOUSE B - tried to book a viewing but told it had been taken off the market 3 months ago, yet it's still being advertised. It had received a full asking price offer but seller apparently never got back to the buyer as to whether they'd accepted it or not,, then took it off the market (yet there it still is!)
    Agent promises to email details of another similar house 'now.' She does not send anything.
    HOUSE C - a slightly quirky house with 'limited appeal' that has been on the market a couple of months. Yay, still available so I try to book a viewing. Agent says he'll contact seller and call back to confirm. He does not.
    It will involve a 2 hour+ train journey, so it's not exactly up the road and needs to be planned.
    If the agent was unable to contact the seller to arrange a viewing, he could at least have let us know that by the close of business - he has all our contact details. Doesn't exactly fill us with confidence for a smooth transaction further down the line!

    Our own (online) agent has been fantastic and puts this lot to shame. Our viewers remarked on how efficient they were.
    I'm perfectly polite & civilised when I call, so I can only think it's maybe because we won't be requiring their mortgages that we're getting such cr*p customer service?
    Last edited by victoriavictorious; 07-03-2018 at 6:08 PM.
Page 2
    • buggy_boy
    • By buggy_boy 10th Mar 18, 9:42 AM
    • 469 Posts
    • 334 Thanks
    buggy_boy
    When we bought this house, the EA never flagged it as under offer or sstc or anything, right up until completion, when they simply took it off...

    ...and if anybody had called about it, that's what they'd have been told.

    Ah, so you're telling them you won't even talk to their finance guy? THAT's why they're not taking you seriously.

    Are all agents like that? No. But you're talking about a sample of one here.
    Originally posted by AdrianC
    Some estate agents use the ploy of leaving properties that have been sold on rightmove as not sstc so they get inquiry's, they then tell the people phoning the house has gone but if they give them their details they may have a similar house soon... When they value a property they can say to the prospective sellers we have X number of people looking for a house like this...
    • NeilCr
    • By NeilCr 10th Mar 18, 10:48 AM
    • 1,816 Posts
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    NeilCr
    We conducted a long distance house hunt last year. If the places you're interested in are all in a similar area, start by putting aside your feelings on the profession and ring around all the local agents in that area, get on their books and explain what you're after. That should mean you get advance warning of properties about to come on the market before they hit Right Move etc.

    We booked a couple of weekends away in the towns we were interested in, the first one to explore/"live" there and do a recce of the decent roads etc. The second trip we did intensive house viewings c. 6-10 a day. Once the local EAs realised this is how we were playing it they were actually really helpful, even working with each other to make sure we could get between appointments with different agents. We were cash buyers not requiring mortgage ssrvices either.

    When I rang to enquire about listings the EAs gave me the house number/postcode. Sometimes I also found them on the titles of the floorplans on RM etc. So worth looking there. I hope your luck changes and that you get to the fun viewing bit...but try to find one before you get to house 40 like us!
    Originally posted by JoJo1978
    Pretty much what happened with me. I had a 2 hour + journey and could only, practically, come down at weekends.

    The first time I stayed over, had a mooch round the area (I did know it reasonably well) and went into every estate agent in town to make myself known and explain what I wanted. Helpfully, most agents are in the same road.

    After that I'd get an early train on the Saturday and see 6-8 houses on the day. I had a reserve list as I found agents would ring while I was on the train cancelling viewings or trying to rearrange. It was a bit hectic as sometimes I didn't know exactly where I was - or the agent was late for a viewing which had a knock on effect.

    Like JoJo1978 I didn't need a mortgage and have to say all the agents were absolutely fine. I think they, perhaps, accepted I was serious as I'd been in to see them and they knew that I had had to make a longish journey.

    It worked. Saw one house that I liked - full offer made but in the end vendor (who went completely silent) decided not to sell. So back to the drawing board - next Saturday down again and found even better house. Negotiated on the day. Had to wait in the pub while this was going on. Agreed a price and was, by then, so drunk I couldn't find the station.



    One thing I'd say from my experience is that you have to watch out for acting too quickly as you have it in your mind that you won't be down that way again soon and don't want to miss out. Second viewings are problematic!

    And, even in these days of RightMove, online everything, agents still appreciate seeing you face to face
    Last edited by NeilCr; 10-03-2018 at 11:29 AM.
    • Crashy Time
    • By Crashy Time 10th Mar 18, 11:12 AM
    • 6,143 Posts
    • 2,363 Thanks
    Crashy Time
    Crashy time at it again, this time being even lazier... Its a new index and its telling us prices are dropping, lets believe this rather than the established indexes including the land registry that are saying they are very slightly going up... All hail the new only truthful index (Unless it changes to show a positive in which case its a new index that can't be trusted).
    Originally posted by buggy_boy

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/news/foxtons-profit-slump-latest-results-london-housing-market-sales-lettings-historic-lows-a8232051.html
    • victoriavictorious
    • By victoriavictorious 10th Mar 18, 12:07 PM
    • 291 Posts
    • 471 Thanks
    victoriavictorious
    Ah, so you're telling them you won't even talk to their finance guy? THAT's why they're not taking you seriously.

    Are all agents like that? No. But you're talking about a sample of one here.
    Originally posted by AdrianC
    We won't be talking to *any* finance guy because we don't need a mortgage.
    • AdrianC
    • By AdrianC 10th Mar 18, 12:15 PM
    • 17,602 Posts
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    AdrianC
    We won't be talking to *any* finance guy because we don't need a mortgage.
    Originally posted by victoriavictorious
    It'll be a very short conversation, then...
    • victoriavictorious
    • By victoriavictorious 10th Mar 18, 12:50 PM
    • 291 Posts
    • 471 Thanks
    victoriavictorious
    Pretty much what happened with me. I had a 2 hour + journey and could only, practically, come down at weekends.

    The first time I stayed over, had a mooch round the area (I did know it reasonably well) and went into every estate agent in town to make myself known and explain what I wanted. Helpfully, most agents are in the same road.

    After that I'd get an early train on the Saturday and see 6-8 houses on the day. I had a reserve list as I found agents would ring while I was on the train cancelling viewings or trying to rearrange. It was a bit hectic as sometimes I didn't know exactly where I was - or the agent was late for a viewing which had a knock on effect.

    Like JoJo1978 I didn't need a mortgage and have to say all the agents were absolutely fine. I think they, perhaps, accepted I was serious as I'd been in to see them and they knew that I had had to make a longish journey.

    It worked. Saw one house that I liked - full offer made but in the end vendor (who went completely silent) decided not to sell. So back to the drawing board - next Saturday down again and found even better house. Negotiated on the day. Had to wait in the pub while this was going on. Agreed a price and was, by then, so drunk I couldn't find the station.



    One thing I'd say from my experience is that you have to watch out for acting too quickly as you have it in your mind that you won't be down that way again soon and don't want to miss out. Second viewings are problematic!

    And, even in these days of RightMove, online everything, agents still appreciate seeing you face to face
    Originally posted by NeilCr
    Thanks NeilCr that was helpful (and funny ) and is more or less the situation we are in, except that every property of the type we are looking for, is snapped up immediately it comes on the market, so at the moment there isn't anything left for us to go and view!
    If and when another comes on the market, it may mean making a special journey to view each one separately - if it hasn't gone before we can get up there!

    It's not easy for us because OH works shifts, so we almost never have weekends to view, when vendors are around for viewings. Agents rarely seem to do viewings, and even when they do, they are very limited as to when they can fit you in.
    I've never known it to be like this - it certainly seems to be a sellers market atm.
    Only a week ago (just before we went under offer) I had 3 pages of bookmarked properties to view in 3 different regions but in the space of that week, every one of them has gone, even the ones that had been up for months! One of these did fall through but was again snapped up the day it went back on the market and we could never have got there in time anyway because of OH's work, so yet again we missed out!

    It doesn't help that some agents deliberately leave sold properties on RM in the hope of selling you something else. Well, they're not going to persuade us to view another house on their books if we're not interested in it. We'll have already seen them all on Rightmove anyway. Agents just don't seem to get that.
    As we've got nothing to view at the moment, we've no reason to make that 2+ hour journey, so I've registered online with a few agents for now.
    • victoriavictorious
    • By victoriavictorious 10th Mar 18, 12:58 PM
    • 291 Posts
    • 471 Thanks
    victoriavictorious
    It was on the news yesterday that EAs have the lowest stock in all time at the moment (or the past 20 years).
    It seems the last stamp duty concession has only muddied the market further as its put wise first time buyers off buying starter homes to rather wait till they can afford their first family home.

    Stamp duty on ordinary family homes needs to be urgently abolished. Its put me off even thinking about downsizing or relocating for lifestyle reasons.
    Originally posted by buglawton
    And don't I know it!!
    • buggy_boy
    • By buggy_boy 10th Mar 18, 1:25 PM
    • 469 Posts
    • 334 Thanks
    buggy_boy


    Would that be the same independent that last month said....

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/news/uk-house-price-growth-housing-market-december-2017-property-average-a8207996.html

    London saw massive increases, over and above the uk average for years so its not surprising that it is cooling as London prices are totally nuts.
    • AdrianC
    • By AdrianC 10th Mar 18, 1:27 PM
    • 17,602 Posts
    • 15,968 Thanks
    AdrianC
    Thanks NeilCr that was helpful (and funny ) and is more or less the situation we are in, except that every property of the type we are looking for, is snapped up immediately it comes on the market, so at the moment there isn't anything left for us to go and view!
    If and when another comes on the market, it may mean making a special journey to view each one separately - if it hasn't gone before we can get up there!

    It's not easy for us because OH works shifts, so we almost never have weekends to view, when vendors are around for viewings. Agents rarely seem to do viewings, and even when they do, they are very limited as to when they can fit you in.
    I've never known it to be like this - it certainly seems to be a sellers market atm.
    Only a week ago (just before we went under offer) I had 3 pages of bookmarked properties to view in 3 different regions but in the space of that week, every one of them has gone, even the ones that had been up for months! One of these did fall through but was again snapped up the day it went back on the market and we could never have got there in time anyway because of OH's work, so yet again we missed out!

    It doesn't help that some agents deliberately leave sold properties on RM in the hope of selling you something else. Well, they're not going to persuade us to view another house on their books if we're not interested in it. We'll have already seen them all on Rightmove anyway. Agents just don't seem to get that.
    As we've got nothing to view at the moment, we've no reason to make that 2+ hour journey, so I've registered online with a few agents for now.
    Originally posted by victoriavictorious
    Is it worth you breaking the chain, and moving to a rental in that area - then you're on the spot to network with the agents and make sure YOU'RE on their "to call" list?
    • victoriavictorious
    • By victoriavictorious 10th Mar 18, 1:42 PM
    • 291 Posts
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    victoriavictorious
    Is it worth you breaking the chain, and moving to a rental in that area - then you're on the spot to network with the agents and make sure YOU'RE on their "to call" list?
    Originally posted by AdrianC
    Yes, it is beginning to look that way at the moment. We have said we'd do this as a last resort.
    • Smodlet
    • By Smodlet 10th Mar 18, 2:05 PM
    • 3,199 Posts
    • 6,335 Thanks
    Smodlet
    Yes, it is beginning to look that way at the moment. We have said we'd do this as a last resort.
    Originally posted by victoriavictorious

    If you are looking in more than one area, vv, you might want to make your rental in the middle of them if at all possible. I think, if you just hang in there, you will find the one and be the person who gets it. We are just coming into Spring, traditionally the best time of year to buy a house. Good luck and please let us know how you get on.
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    • NeilCr
    • By NeilCr 10th Mar 18, 9:33 PM
    • 1,816 Posts
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    NeilCr
    Yes, it is beginning to look that way at the moment. We have said we'd do this as a last resort.
    Originally posted by victoriavictorious
    I think that's a good suggestion

    I'd also, though, say try and get a weekend/days away have a look round the area and press the flesh with the agents.

    I understand that your OH works shifts but this is a big thing for your future life. Can OH not get a break so you can get down there and, at least, get a feel for the area and the agents - face to face before you move on to renting. While it was a pain in the butt for me I worked round it and got there in the end.

    Also, not a bad idea to be not too picky about properties you will, or won't see. You might find something that surprises you, you'll get a bit of information about local areas and the agents may feel better about you when you turn up from a distance and do some viewings. I sort of like and don't like Location but I always remember one couple who kept discarding properties on the internet. There was one they decided they didn't like because there was no parking. When Kirsty finally got them out seeing houses it turned out there was loads of off street parking not shown in the details. Think they bought it!

    I saw some awful places but the agents knew I was serious and kept me in the loop about properties coming on to the market.
    • Crashy Time
    • By Crashy Time 10th Mar 18, 10:05 PM
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    Crashy Time
    Would that be the same independent that last month said....

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/news/uk-house-price-growth-housing-market-december-2017-property-average-a8207996.html

    London saw massive increases, over and above the uk average for years so its not surprising that it is cooling as London prices are totally nuts.
    Originally posted by buggy_boy

    Price averages are based on houses that sold, not on how many houses don`t sell. The article says that sales are at "Historic lows", so your link has absolutely no relevance to anything that I posted. Slowing sales usually come before a crash
    • victoriavictorious
    • By victoriavictorious 11th Mar 18, 11:47 AM
    • 291 Posts
    • 471 Thanks
    victoriavictorious
    I think that's a good suggestion

    I'd also, though, say try and get a weekend/days away have a look round the area and press the flesh with the agents.

    I understand that your OH works shifts but this is a big thing for your future life. Can OH not get a break so you can get down there and, at least, get a feel for the area and the agents - face to face before you move on to renting. While it was a pain in the butt for me I worked round it and got there in the end.

    Also, not a bad idea to be not too picky about properties you will, or won't see. You might find something that surprises you, you'll get a bit of information about local areas and the agents may feel better about you when you turn up from a distance and do some viewings. I sort of like and don't like Location but I always remember one couple who kept discarding properties on the internet. There was one they decided they didn't like because there was no parking. When Kirsty finally got them out seeing houses it turned out there was loads of off street parking not shown in the details. Think they bought it!

    I saw some awful places but the agents knew I was serious and kept me in the loop about properties coming on to the market.
    Originally posted by NeilCr
    Completely agree and yay! The penny has finally dropped, OH has seen the light and will be willing to take a day off work if need be!
    • victoriavictorious
    • By victoriavictorious 11th Mar 18, 11:49 AM
    • 291 Posts
    • 471 Thanks
    victoriavictorious
    If you are looking in more than one area, vv, you might want to make your rental in the middle of them if at all possible. I think, if you just hang in there, you will find the one and be the person who gets it. We are just coming into Spring, traditionally the best time of year to buy a house. Good luck and please let us know how you get on.
    Originally posted by Smodlet
    Thanks Smodlet. We *are* in the middle of the regions already
    I'll keep you posted.
    • Crashy Time
    • By Crashy Time 11th Mar 18, 8:18 PM
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    Crashy Time
    It'll be a very short conversation, then...
    Originally posted by AdrianC

    There won`t be *any* conversation.
    • fudgecat
    • By fudgecat 11th Mar 18, 8:31 PM
    • 207 Posts
    • 434 Thanks
    fudgecat
    We had similar problems, except it was closer to 4-5 hours journey. In the end, I went to view on my own and meet with estate agents etc; it puts a face to a name and establishes a relationship. After viewing, I could then shortlist houses. You can still make an offer on your own or send video links to the OH. In extremis you can change your mind.
    In the end it worked for us - though we`re still living in a wreck of a doer upper two years later! Hasten slowly...
    Debt July 2009 £479.29 Debt Jan 2011 £20,000! (Helping Kids) Debt May 2013 £3,600.00
    Debt March 2015 £2,400 (owed £3000.00)
    Debt October 2016 BIG FAT ZERO!
    Now mortgage free too - AND we helped the kids some more.
    • jungle jane
    • By jungle jane 11th Mar 18, 10:45 PM
    • 609 Posts
    • 1,773 Thanks
    jungle jane
    We moved 350 miles across the country and viewing was a similar nightmare. Properties were getting snapped up for insane prices as soon as they hit the market and stocks were (and still are) extremely low.

    To make it more difficult some estate agents closed at 2pm on a Saturday so that reduced viewing times. We used to make private sales (eg Purple Bricks) during the hours that estate agents were closed and we always tried to line up one or two extra in reserve that didn't look great online in case we got a pleasant surprise in real life. Inevitably our viewing schedule kept changing as houses were snapped up.

    We used to stay the Monday too - that way we could get second viewings before we left.

    We ended up buying one of the houses on our 'reserve' list. it looked horrible on RM and was still pretty ugly when we first viewed it but after walking about we realised the potential and that's what we bought. It looked so awful on RM that it had very few viewings so I would say if a place is in the right area, ticks a few boxes and there isn't much housing stock it might be worth looking at it anyhow.
    • Beardmidget
    • By Beardmidget 12th Mar 18, 12:00 AM
    • 151 Posts
    • 110 Thanks
    Beardmidget
    Hi OP,

    I just wanted to offer a crumb of comfort.
    We were in a similar position, having lost our on the 2 or 3 places we wanted prior to going under offer (for within 3% of asking price thanks all the same C***time).

    We just kept a really wide open search area, and moved as soon as something right came on the market. In the end it is better located, better priced, and has much greater potential than what we had looked at before- and we got it for a decent offer because we were proceedable. Our new place (one hopes) was only on the market for 3 days before we saw and offered.

    Somewhere great might come on tomorrow morning. Just be ready to do something about it.

    FWIW- I donít know many EAs who really donít like buyers, but I do know our house has now been sold STC for 3 weeks and is still up on Rightmove. Iíd need perhaps 30k extra to seriously f* over our buyer (I.e. noticeably more than asking price) so I can only assume thatís the agent keeping it up to gain enquiries (house is newly renovated and reasonably fancy, so we got lots of viewings). Agents are usually pretty good at sending new enquiries for sold properties off the trail because they donít typically stand to make much more commission, but itís a lot of new hassle.
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