New research looking into the questions British estate agents are most wary of being asked by prospective property buyers - as well as some of the oddest requests ever made – finding that Britons want to know how much money has been lost in the property and if anyone has died in the property.
In a bid to uncover how those looking to invest in property in the future can ensure they aren’t missing out on receiving any crucial information, the team at www.Hillarys.co.uk have conducted some home-buying analysis. More than 1,500 UK homeowners, all of whom had purchased property within the last 3 years, were quizzed on their experiences of dealing with estate agents and viewing prospective properties.
Of those polled, more than three quarters (76%) stated that they’d had more than one viewing of their home before making the ultimate decision to buy. More than two thirds of buyers (67%) admitted they were ill-prepared during the initial viewing of the home they ultimately purchased, and arrived without a pre-set list of questions to ask the estate agents showing them the property. A further 21% confessed that they’d asked a question that bordered on the ‘weird/unusual’ during their first viewing, with the majority (78%) admitting this was down to the ‘awkwardness’ of the situation.
The team also spoke asked more than fifty UK-based estate agents, with a view to uncovering what the most commonly asked questions that they are wary of or dread being asked, with the top five emerging as follows:
How much money has the property lost in value over the last X years? – 54%
Are there currently any plans for the local area that could affect us as homeowners? – 42%
What is the lowest price the sellers are willing to go? – 33%
Is the seller part of a chain and how motivated are they to sell? – 21%
Has anyone died in the property? – 18%
Furthermore, the estate agents revealed some of the most unusual questions they’d been asked by prospective buyers during viewings, with ‘do the pets/plants come with the house?’ (14%), is there any chance that the home is haunted/has ghosts (9%), ‘would I be allowed to paint the house exterior?’ (4%) and ‘Can I stay over before I put an offer in?’ (1%) amongst the most common.
Lucy Askew, interiors expert for www.Hillarys.co.uk, commented:
“House viewings can be intimidating and a little overwhelming, so it’s always best to arrive with a list of questions so your heart doesn’t overrule your brain. This way you can make an informed decision ahead of making an offer.”
Matthew Wasley, Valuations Manager from www.michaeltuck.co.uk, said:
“In all honesty, I think as an estate agent it’s important that we are there to make sure sellers achieve the best possible price, but at the same time we need to respect first-time buyers’ lack of knowledge. Generally, we welcome any questions, whatever they may be, and answer them to the best of our knowledge. The weirder the better in some cases!”