The Most Common Property Fairy Tale and Why You Shouldn’t Fall for It
As 26 February was Fairy Tale Day (yes, it’s a real thing), let’s look at the most common property fairy tale and how falling for it can cost you time and money.
We love a good fairy tale as much as the next person. Whether it’s a frog that morphs into a prince or a feline in fancy footwear, these stories have stood the test of time for a reason – they’re imaginative and entertaining.
But when it comes to helping people make their next big property move in real life, we think it’s best to save the fairy tales for bedtime.
That’s because, over the years, we’ve seen many sellers fall for the same fanciful story, and it never has a happy ending.
It goes something like this.
A homeowner decides it’s time to sell up and invites three estate agents round to value their property.
While the first two agents tell the homeowner what they expect to hear, the third agent claims they can work magic. Their valuation is way over the odds, but the seller is enchanted.
They sign with the silver-tongued agent making big promises and start making plans for their future.
But here’s how the story ends.
Buyers aren’t bewitched by the sky-high valuation and stay away. Time ticks on, no offers come in, and eventually, the seller drops the asking price.
Not only have they wasted a huge amount of time, they may well have had an offer accepted on their next property that then falls through due to the delay.
So what’s the moral of the story?
It’s great to be optimistic and have high expectations.
But buyers, especially in the current market, aren’t fools. Nor are lenders who will be quick to downvalue a property if they think its value has been overstated.
If an agent makes promises that seem too good to be true, they probably are. They’re most likely trying to secure your instruction (it’s a competitive business, after all) and know that, ultimately, you’ll have to downgrade your expectations.
They’ll still get the sale, but you’ll have to wait much longer to get to your ‘happily ever after’.