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Old 18.09.2017, 17:24
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Useless real estate agent ...

We want to view an apartment with a view to possibly buying. However, on contacting the agent two weeks ago, turns out that the main estate agent guy is away (no idea how long for) and the stand in guy refuses to show us the property, as he has no time

Long story short, he originally made an appointment with us, which he then cancelled by text saying he didn't have time. We tried to call him, but he didn't pick-up. We then contacted the main office who said they would get back to us, but we just got a WhatsApp from the stand in guy, saying pretty bluntly that he didn't have time and we would have to wait until the main man returned.

I literally can't believe their attitude and really want nothing more to do with them. But I quite fancy the look of the apartment. What should we do? Forget it completely? Wait for the main real estate guy to get in contact if and when he is ever back? Try and contact the owners ourselves (how?)?

I know one thing, if I was the owner/seller I would be bloody furious with them!
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Old 18.09.2017, 17:29
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Re: Useless real estate agent ...

we had similar experiences when we where looking, we'd seen a place (just turned up) then saw it again with the agent, then wanted a 2nd viewing to make sure 100% it was for us and the agency wouldn't show us as the guy was on holiday for 3 weeks, come back then. Needless to say we didn't buy it
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Old 18.09.2017, 17:30
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Re: Useless real estate agent ...

Is there a way you can contact the owner and let them know the situation? (not sure what's ethical when it comes to buying houses )

Agree with you that if I were the person trying to sell the place, I'd be pissed off if the estate agent seemingly can't be bothered to do his job.
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Old 18.09.2017, 17:41
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Re: Useless real estate agent ...

I started checking apartments/houses a few years ago. The guy took a look at me (obvious foreigner, who dresses casual during free time) and decided I wasn't worth much (even though he saw on my application that I had a "fancy" job).

He gave up the wrong address to a viewing (they had 2 in the same street, and sent us to the wrong one). We ended up on the correct house by the time he was leaving - and sent us a sarcastic, unprofessional laughter saying we were too late, "Pech", while he hurriedly got inside his Porsche and drove away.

I didn't have anything to loose. I rang on the door and politely explained to the owners we had come for the viewing and there had been some trouble with the agent.

They opened the door to me, and just spilled their beans on how unhappy they were with the guy, and please come in, let me show you the apartment.

We bought the place. We took care of EVERYTHING on our own, together with the owners. The guy was pissed but got his contractual fee, and we had a trouble free sale.

I really don't like to deal with real estate agents, and I deal with them at work really frequently. They always feel like slimy eels.
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Old 18.09.2017, 17:44
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Re: Useless real estate agent ...

Quote:
Is there a way you can contact the owner and let them know the situation? (not sure what's ethical when it comes to buying houses )

Agree with you that if I were the person trying to sell the place, I'd be pissed off if the estate agent seemingly can't be bothered to do his job.
I don't know who if anyone is in the apartment tenants/owners/empty. I guess we could knock on the door or neighbours and try and get their contact details? not sure if this is ok? Also thought about maybe asking the Gemeinde?
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Old 18.09.2017, 17:57
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Re: Useless real estate agent ...

Or put something in their letterbox asking them to call you.
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Old 18.09.2017, 18:06
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Re: Useless real estate agent ...

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I don't know who if anyone is in the apartment tenants/owners/empty. I guess we could knock on the door or neighbours and try and get their contact details? not sure if this is ok? Also thought about maybe asking the Gemeinde?
O.k. would be if the agency would just take the time to show you the apartment, they get paid thousands to do so.

Since o.k. seems to be in the past, I'd contact the owners in whatever way, tell them how rotten their agency is, and that you'd love a viewing and when you are interested in buying tell them that you did not find them through the agency and that you'd like to deal with the owners themselves. (no clue how the last part works legally tho here)
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Old 18.09.2017, 18:16
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Re: Useless real estate agent ...

While many agents want an 'exclusive' arrangement with the seller/lesser this often involves higher commissions. When we were selling I refused.

Other agents may have it on their books and, perhaps, will be better disposed to customer service.


Don't hold your breath on either.
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Old 18.09.2017, 18:22
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Re: Useless real estate agent ...

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I don't know who if anyone is in the apartment tenants/owners/empty. I guess we could knock on the door or neighbours and try and get their contact details? not sure if this is ok? Also thought about maybe asking the Gemeinde?
Gemeinde won't know at this point (or is unlikely to know).

My suggestion would have been similar to Helm's. Where did you see the ad? Other than the agency, is there no contact person as in current owner mentioned? If it's a small house, I'd take a shot and show up and try to find out. If you do, I'd drop a note in the mailbox with your contact details. Actually why not do that for everyone in the building, it can't hurt (edit: saw newtoswitz had the same thought). If the house has more than 6 parties though, it's probably too much of a hassle.
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Old 18.09.2017, 18:43
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Re: Useless real estate agent ...

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While many agents want an 'exclusive' arrangement with the seller/lesser this often involves higher commissions. When we were selling I refused.
Should that not be the other way around?

Why would sellers want to pay more to restrict themselves?
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Old 18.09.2017, 19:14
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Re: Useless real estate agent ...

You're placing yourself in a poor barganing position if you wait until the other guy's return. Perhaps leave a note to the main guy (certainly he has email?) telling him to contact you upon his return, you may still be interested.

There's a very high chance for one or two neighbors to have the owner's contact info. Talking to them would simultaneously give you (and them) a first impression on what kind of persons you'd have to deal with should you decide to buy. I would think this is perfectly Ok, certainly the owners are interested in knowing about that guy's poor salesmanship - you're protecting their interests.
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Old 18.09.2017, 20:08
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Re: Useless real estate agent ...

I would second the advice of asking the neigbours. The officials at the local office are not likely to give out personal details. The postman will absolutely know who lived there. If it was tenants that might not help you.

Don't get me started about real estate agents....
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Old 18.09.2017, 20:46
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Re: Useless real estate agent ...

After renting for 6 years, we've begun looking for a small house in the same commune. It's a nice family area with very few affordable properties. Houses for sale often stay on the market for months, or years without being sold.

Right now, there are two small houses in our price range. Both are advertised the same agent. One is 20% more expensive than the other.

My wife called the agent to ask for details about both.

The agent told my wife that she will not show her the smaller one because we can afford to buy the more expensive one.

My wife asked again. The agent said no again.

The same house is advertised with two other agencies..
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Old 18.09.2017, 21:23
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Re: Useless real estate agent ...

So the property is not in the same village that we are in now, so we don't know the Postie unfortunately. Think we are going to see if the land registry will give our contact details to the owner, plus a note in the letter boxes... it's a 3 apartment house, so hopefully they all know each other.
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Old 18.09.2017, 21:45
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Re: Useless real estate agent ...

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Should that not be the other way around?

Why would sellers want to pay more to restrict themselves?
That was my reaction as well. But no, if he had an exclusive arrangement, he would work harder for me.

But this is Switzerland and these are estate agents.
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Old 19.09.2017, 09:54
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Re: Useless real estate agent ...

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So the property is not in the same village that we are in now, so we don't know the Postie unfortunately. Think we are going to see if the land registry will give our contact details to the owner, plus a note in the letter boxes... it's a 3 apartment house, so hopefully they all know each other.
You can request an excerpt of the registry for the plot, probably costs a small fee like 20CHF. You may have to state your reasons to actually get the excerpt but as a potential buyer that should be a non-issue.
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Old 19.09.2017, 10:23
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Re: Useless real estate agent ...

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The agent told my wife that she will not show her the smaller one because we can afford to buy the more expensive one.
Lol. Absolutely preposterous. I hope you didn't buy either of the properties...
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Old 19.09.2017, 10:50
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Re: Useless real estate agent ...

On the other hand, the two experiences we've had with estate agents over here were both very positive. When buying our apartment, she turned up on time, was always very helpful, and kept us up to date and informed.

When we sold our appartment to build our house, we went with a different agent, who handled both our sale and the house purchase. We had numerous viewings in the first week and had agreed a sale within 4 weeks. Again, was always friendly, helpful, and informative and never let us down or put us under pressure in any way whatsoever.
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Old 19.09.2017, 11:11
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Re: Useless real estate agent ...

Makes me realise I was very lucky with my estate agents. Sold 2 properties last year through the same agent. Had 3 potential buyers within 12 days on one, which went to sealed bids. Maximised the possibilities with the other and the sale was completed within less than 3 months. Still in touch and friendly with them and pop in for coffee when I'm in the area
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Old 19.09.2017, 11:24
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Re: Useless real estate agent ...

With there being so few properties for sale in Switzerland, makes you wonder in the internet age why anyone even bothers taking on an estate agent. If you're trying to sell a real dump, I guess then it would make sense, but if you're selling anything half decent then you may as well just do it privately and keep their 3% fee.
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