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To sell/buy a house

05 November 2012, 14:30

There is no intention in this article to debase estate agents and other persons. All names given are pseudonyms.    

In December 1999 I was retrenched from a coal mine in Mpumalanga. The retrenchment was converted to an early retirement and I scored financially. Wife and myself decided to purchase a plot outside Bloemfontein. On our arrival in Bloemfontein we were directed to an estate agent. The agent showed us about 12 plots, many were in a poor state of repair and much plundered by criminal elements in the area.. We turned them all down. Later we saw an advert in the local paper for a large plot for sale.  A telephone number was given and it was a private sale. We met the owner and discussed the sale and filled in the necessary forms. Within a short while the contract was signed, the plot was paid in cash and the transaction was completed shortly after.   

One afternoon some weeks, later the original estate agents paid us a visit. The guy was apoplectic with rage. He demanded we pay him a commission which we refused to do seeing that he had not even showed us the property in question and we, in no way, made use of his services other than a car drive through the area. He left in a huff and empty handed. This guy, too, claimed that area  was his “Sites” and was therefore entitled to a bite out of every transaction.    

Two years later we put the allotment up for sale due to my wife’s failing health and  serious crimes and murders in that area.     
We moved to Kimberley and purchased a large 1887 mansion that once housed Cecil John Rhodes. This house was later declared a national conservation building and could not be modified in any way whatsoever. There was a huge demand for it and was sold well above the market rate. The house was placed on the market and produced a price well above the market level due to its national standing.  The estate agent we chose taught us one serious lesson: “do not trust every one”  She would load potential buyers into her vehicle and tell them how well the house is maintained , etc.etc. she would then divert to a different house on the other side of the city. The good lady would then proceed to tell the potential customer the original house  (mine) was to be withdrawn from the market. Etc. Never trust anyone was her motto. 

I got my daughter staying in Bloemfontein to contact the estate agent and offer to buy the house at any cost. The agent immediately referred her to another house, part of an old age retirement home. My daughter was adamant that she wanted the house as advertised and offered almost a million for the house.  Nest day the agent came to collect her sign boards.    

After the sale which went well with another agent we moved to another area in Kimberley. In 2009 my wife died and I put the house up for sale as a private sale. I received a visit from a large national estate agency and was told that I am busy stealing the bread which they are entitled to, to feed their children. Some agents illicitly planted their boards in my property which was promptly removed.  The house was advertised in the local papers and three months later the transaction was finalised.  As I stated in my opening statement that I will not be doing any agency bashing I am forced to ask: How strict is the code of conduct adhered to in the property business
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