As estate agents we are acutely aware of the need to understand and assist with some of the frustrations involved in the moving process.
One of the most immediate irritations which buyers face is the fact that a property, which they had hoped might still be available, has in fact sold. This is one of those things which can make people annoyed with estate agents, and can be difficult to overcome.
On one hand our job is to expose a property to the market using the most effective methods at our disposal. As well as portal listings, this could take the form of a “For Sale” board, advertisements in the local property newspaper, a strong internet and social media presence and, importantly, a proactive approach to keeping registered buyers fully informed about properties which are new on the market.
And of course, if we do our job well, then the property should sell relatively quickly – sometimes even in a matter of days.
However, due to the relatively drawn out legal process of property transfer we “enjoy” in this country, it would be foolhardy instantly to withdraw all reference to a property which has just gone under offer, as having a back-up buyer is one of the most effective ways of speeding up a sale and providing the comfort of an “insurance policy” should the original sale fall through.
A good agent will probably generate a fairly high turnover of stock. If a property is still for sale after four to six weeks, then this is almost always down to an inflated asking price.
So if you are a purchaser, there may be some reassurance in buying through an agency that has more properties “sold” than “for sale” ads. It probably means they are an agency which is actually very good at helping people move! And in our case, we usually have some “off market” sellers up our sleeve as well!