Oct 09,2006
By: 'TallPaul73'
Oct 09,2006
1 people found
this helpful
It is said that moving house is the most stressful thing you will ever do and after 12 weeks of Beals "attempting" to sell my flat I'd have to agree that this is the case.

My story starts just after Christmas 2004. We had recently found out that my girlfriend was pregnant and decided that we should attempt to move before the baby was born. We were then living in a two bedroom flat in a nice part of town but decided that we needed a garden, more space and to be closer to our parents. Since we've been living there we had been inundated with flyers from estate agents in the area claiming that they had people queuing up to move into the area and they could sell our flat in an instant. Bearing this in mind we contacted a few of the agents that had posted flyers through our door. They all seemed convinced they could find a buyer in a matter of days, (naive I know) so we narrowed it down to two who impressed us the most, they were Beals and Saltmarsh. Their valuations were around 10 thousand pounds apart but as they were both impressive we decided to go with the highest price (greedy I know but who isn't?) and that was Beals.

This is where the first problem was. Their advertising promised a huge reduction in fees, which was one of the things that tempted us. The problem is that their original fee was so high that after the reduction was still slightly more than other estate agents (as we found out later). This aside we were still very happy with the service they proposed and signed the contract. About an hour after this we received a phone call to arrange a viewing. We were stunned that this had happened so quickly and assumed these were the first of the "queue" of people that had lined up. Anyway they came and went. They seemed impressed but later told the estate agent that is wasn't quite what they were looking for which we thought was fair enough and waited for the rest of the people to turn up. But that was it! For the next 3 or 4 weeks not a single viewing. I'm not blaming Beals for this as they cannot show people round if there is no interest. What annoyed me was the lack of communication and contact. We were potentially paying them a lot of money and they couldn't even be bothered to pick up the phone to let us know what was going on and why they thought there was non interest!!! Another disappointment was the advertising. The flat was advertised on their website but with a very basic description and no pictures of the interior which we thought was strange but they were the "experts" so we didn't argue. They just didn't seem to be trying hard to sell it.

After about 6 weeks we did eventually get a phone call, not from the agent we were told would deal with our sale but from one of his colleagues who didn't know anything about our flat or us. She suggested that we drop the price (REALLY?!!) but made no indication of what we should drop the price to so we just knocked
Was this helpful? Yes
By: Mr p
Feb 27, 2011
Most unhelpful munch of cowboys that have ever walked the earth and seem to think they are untouchable, but they have just choose the wrong people to let the tenants ruin a beautiful home and do nothing about.
By: Mark Tailor
Jan 30, 2011
Totally agree with you Syd, we were shown round a property by some Pamela Anderson woman who seemed more interested in texting than showing us round!!
By: Syd
Jan 19, 2011
The worst company I have ever worked for. I worked for them on a voluntary basis for only a week. They don't train you, I was expected to sell a mortgage in the first five minutes of being there. I feel very sorry for the customers who have been hard dun by their service. They only seem to take on Young girls with fake tans and make up. They are the laughing stock of Estate Agents in Portsmouth.
By: marme
Jul 25, 2009
Don't sign any contract that ties you in. Ask for 14 days notice anytime. If the agent is confident, they'll agree.

Beware the agent that price drops your property and sends a new contract for you to sign at the new price. You could be for example eight weeks in to 16 week contract and then price drop. The agents sends you a new contract, you sign, and now you're at the start of another sixteen week contract. I've seen this done! You do not have to re-sign a contract on price drop, simply confirm your instruction to your agent in writing.
Do not go automatically for the highest price. Listen to what the agent is telling you.

Questionable agents will ALWAYS over value to play on your "greed" in order to get the instruction and if you go along with this then you only have yourself to blame. This is actually doing you a dis-service. After all, you want to sell, right? Alarm bells that this was overpriced just have been ringing after two weeks. If you're not getting the viewings, either something is bady wrong with your property or location - or it's simply overpriced, usually the latter.

Never agree to a sole agency contract with sole selling rights. If you find a buyer yourself, your agent can still claim a fee!

Don't over haggle the commission. Fees in the UK are some of the lowest in Europe - even at two percent. An agent accepting half or one percent is less incentivised than he would be on a neighbouring or similar property at 1.5%

Finally, yes I am an estate agent - and I used to work for Beals so I am not at all surprised by any of the comments on this site. That's why I used to work for them!
Oct 23, 2008
I wonder how much a agent charges for not selling your house let me answer, Nothing, therefore all the work they do and all the costs they incurred they underwrite. I realise agent get bad press however if a agent sell a house quick it was too cheap but if it doesn't sell, the agent is rubbish not the fact the owner had a choice what to market a property for and decided to be Greedy, an agent only gives a market opinion and not a formal valuation and the owner decides what to market for, at the end of all of this, they still earn nothing, not many things in life are free but until an agent sells a house they are!

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