Top tips to combat vendor tricks

Top tips to combat vendor tricks

As house buyers, we need to be very very careful! From the moment we turn up at the beautifully manicured front door flanked by carefully cropped bay trees, and the smell of a Jo Malone candle wafts out to greet us, we should be on our guard.

Rachel Johnston of Stacks Property Search, has some brilliant tips to help cut through a vendors BS and says:

“Historically, buyers were challenged to see potential through peeling paintwork, houses over-furnished with granny's wardrobes and sideboards, pink bathrooms held together with moulding grout, and children's rooms that were basically inaccessible.

Today's buyers need to do a mental 180, and set their synapses to repel strategies and techniques employed by canny sellers who have read up on 'how to present your house for sale.

You need to be on your guard, and ready for the unexpected, but here's our quick guide to some of the tips and tricks that you will almost certainly encounter on your way to buying your perfect property.


We'll start with the basics.

Aspirational bathroom products, fluffy towels, delicious smells of coffee / baking bread / scented candles are the ABCs of the issue.

Heat and light too are fundamental. If a house is beautifully light, turn all the lights off, everywhere, then go round and look again. If the property feels comfortingly warm and cosy, check whether the temperature is only achieved by radiators working at full tilt.

Ignore, ignore, ignore – anything that will move out with the vendors. It's difficult to imagine a property minus the beautiful works of art, divine rugs, and fabulous furniture, but help yourself establish a realistic image by mentally replacing existing furniture and furnishings with your own, essentially re-furnishing the property in your mind's eye.

Don't allow yourself to be subconsciously seduced. You are NOT buying the vendors' lifestyle. If they're sipping Champagne in the garden when you view the property at 4pm on a Wednesday afternoon, this is a scenario you should banish from your thought process. And remember, you will not inherit the invitations, Grade 8 piano certificates, pictures of angelic children, and framed press cuttings when you move in. Brain train yourself by picturing the vendors packing all those precious things into a box on moving day leaving nothing but a slightly faded area of blank wall.

Beware some of the more underhand techniques. If a letter is left in full view evidencing anything to do with the property, its price, or any existing offers, DO NOT READ IT! You will be falling into a carefully placed trap and you will find yourself adapting your behaviour in response. No good can come of it.

If a neighbour turns up on the doorstep during your viewing bearing gifts of fresh produce or flowers from their impeccable garden, acknowledge that this could be a set up, and there's a strong chance that the scenario will never be repeated, however long you live in the house.

Finally, try not to be seduced by external influences. A great pub, wonderful village shop, and desirable neighbours all play their part, but they come and go! Imagine one of them isn't there – would it be a deal breaker? If the answer is 'yes', then the house is not for you.

Good luck. If you know you're a house-viewing pushover, take a hard-hearted, pragmatic friend or relative to provide a reality check.”

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Latest Comments

Scott Garnet
Scott Garnet 06 Nov 2017

If you have a patio or a porch it is important to make sure that any connecting doors are secured. Good advice for sliding glass doors is replacing the panels with storm resistant glass and getting heavier...

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richardrawlings
richardrawlings 01 Nov 2017

What has not been mentioned here is the effect of not only higher interest payments, but also that these payments are less likely to be offsettable as a business cost due to the scaling back of mortgage...

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Kelvin Lloyd
Kelvin Lloyd 09 Oct 2017

IT is up, to the Planners. If they will only give permission for bungalows on certain (suitable) sites, they will be built.

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maggie swift
maggie swift 09 Oct 2017

It's just the beginning of the shocking rise.

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maggie swift
maggie swift 09 Oct 2017

I have recently read that the bungalows can provide social housing for elderly residents in London.

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zoe glover
zoe glover 05 Oct 2017

Update! Worst company I have ever dealt with. Undervalued a Cambridge property by over 100k, wont take on any evidence of valuation including a RICS valuation done 3 years ago for the very same value...

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Paul Edwards
Paul Edwards 27 Sep 2017

Its nonsense articles such as this that make it harder to get clients to realise just how difficult the market is out there. When you see Rightmove and there are more 'price reduced' then 'new' most days...

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Tom Allen
Tom Allen 20 Sep 2017

Absolutely agree with you!

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RyanGeo
RyanGeo 18 Sep 2017

A sharp correction would be a less dramatic expression to use. That is already underway in certain sectors in Reading where I practice as Chartered Surveyor

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sean benton
sean benton 01 Sep 2017

Identity theft is a thread for any profession. So,people should stay alarmed. I once take help from a letting agent and came to know that letting agents are taking every precaution to prevent fraudulent...

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Mark N.
Mark N. 30 Aug 2017

We have seen a surge in instructions over August and that should continue into September too.

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Chris
Chris 30 Aug 2017

Unfortunately, all the legislation bears its force on Landlords and ignores, naively, the effect of Rogue Tenants on the ability of landlords to keep houses in repair and offer properties for rent at reasonable...

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