So, what is the role of the buying agent? Jonathan Harington, a country specialist at Haringtons explains:
The main role of a buying agent is to add value to the process of finding a property as well as buying it. That is not just saving money for my clients, but also steering them through the inevitable minefield. Very few purchases are completely drama free and have not required my full 45 years of experience to sort out.
Clearly this cannot happen until we have found our clients their perfect property, but having been in the business since 1986, after ten years as a selling agent, the finding is the easy part. Like the surgeon who knows where to put the scalpel, I know where to look and how to find them. The reality is that most of the clients that I have worked for would say the real added value was in the professional work after finding the property. The part of the service they do not fully appreciate until the day they complete and move in.
Buying a property to live in for many years, often as a family home, is an intensely personal business – the psychology of the parties involved is hugely important. I still get surprised at some of the ways people behave and what we have to do to keep purchases on track.
So the benefits of a buying agent include:
- Making sure my clients know the correct value – not just what the selling agents say.
- Negotiating the lowest possible price.
- Advising on environmental issues, planning on the property and surrounding area and future management.
- Ensuring that once a purchase is agreed, there is a good relationship between the sellers and the buyers so there is no gazumping, no falling out over minutia (such as carpets and curtains) and common sense prevails if there are legal hurdles to sort out. My role is to ensure all parties remain calm so that they can work their way through any issues or concerns.
In the last 34 years acting for buyers, I have bought about 400 properties across just about every county south of Lincolnshire with a huge range of values, from £300,000 (which in 1986 bought you a Manor House) to £36m. They have included houses, cottages, parts of houses, barn conversions, land (both small blocks and up to several thousand acres), farms, studs, racing yards and the perfect shooting estate. In fact, you name it outside London, and I’ve bought it.
If you employ Haringtons you are buying into a level of experience that no other firm of buying agents can provide. Whether London or the country, we are the most experienced buying team in the business.