We are all responsible for improving our industry

Ever had a bad experience with an Estate Agent? This may sound like an oxymoron but if you have dealt with the industry enough times then the answer is almost certainly YES! It is a sad state of affairs but, whilst we remain largely unregulated, this will continue. It is vital that reputable agents and anyone using the property industry demand the highest professional standards at all times if peoples’ perception of the property industry is to ever change.

Over the years I have dealt with many clients who come in to the office with a nightmare tale of how poorly they have been mis-treated by another agent. I have listened patiently and sympathetically to a story I have heard many times before of clients receiving anything from poor service to criminal behaviour. I am shocked and get angry and wonder why more isn’t done to stop this!?

Then the main cause for this becomes clear- no one can be bothered. This isn’t a dig at our incompetent government, but the client’s failure to take any action.

Most clients do not report the agent to Trading Standards, the OFT the Property Ombudsman or pursue the matter further through any of the many channels available to them. No further action is taken. The usual reason is ‘they gave me my money back eventually’ or ‘I have learned that lesson’. But what about the next unsuspecting client that walks through that agent’s door?

If you don’t take action- you don’t have the right to complain. Unless you are part of the solution you are just part of the problem. If an agent treats you badly and you are not adequately compensated then you owe it to ALL clients to take further action. It is only by routing out the ‘rotten eggs’ that we can ever hope to have a respected, efficient and exemplary profession.

Kristjan Byfield at Base Property

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