In line with many (although not all) agents in Glasgow, Martin & Co were very little help in the first instance in helping myself and my partner find suitable property for viewing in the first instance. Our requirements were quite specific and easy to interpret with knowledge of the property available (which I expect the agent to have) however were not available as search options on the internet sites we were directed to. I found t his most unhelpful.
However, not easily put off, I did spot a house with Martin & Co. which looked from the description to be perfect, if a little large for our needs. I rang Martin & Co, who offered me an appointment for the middle of the next day. I explained that I could not make this as it was such short notice. The agent I was speaking to did not seem to understand this, however eventually I managed to make an appointment for the Monday of the following week at 10am, which the agent told me I should confirm with them at 9am that morning.
The following Monday came around and as instructed I duly rang the agent to confirm their appointment to sell me something. The representative had no record of the appointment. Whilst this itself did not particularly offend me, I am used to mistakes, the absolute disregard for any inconvenience caused most definitely did. In the most blase manner, I was informed I could join the group viewing the following morning at 10am, other than that she couldn\'t really help me. I was unable to confirm this as I had other commitments at that time which I was unsure I could re-arrange.
I did manage to attend the group viewing though. On arrival the agent did not greet me nor introduce herself, instead demanded to know who I was. The house itself was not \'brand new\' as described by the advert. It had been tenanted by people who had obviously not quite cleaned it as they left. In addition they had given it a very poor decorating job, resulting in multi-colour taste specific decor, as opposed to the pleasant magnolia which had been in the advertisement photographs.
More seriously every radiator in the house had the same \'pattern peeling\' of paint along the entire top face exposing the metal underneath in a most unsightly manner. I attempted to ask the agent about this. "That will be touched up" she said as she walked away, filling me with anything but confidence. I had a similar response to my question as to whether the property would be cleaned, however this was coupled with a look of extreme distaste, and the remark "I don\'t know, I\'m just here the same as you".
I realised this property was not for me and my partner. I strongly believe that the agent prevented, rather than facilitated, a sale. The house itself, with the niggles duly fixed, was probably perfect; however I was left with a feeling of being unwelcome, and that issues for Martin & Co would be just that, rather than an opportunity to demonstrate great customer service.
As a landlord myself (I have property in another town) I also know how important it is to get the right tenants. They are the customer. The right tenants may demand a high standard of cleanliness when taking on a property, but they will return it in the same pristine condition. As such they deserve to be treated as customers by letting agents, rather than annoyances.
What agent could do to change your mind?
Treating tenants like customers rather than dirt is likely to secure your clients the best customers.