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Estate agent ‘regulator with bigger teeth’ needed ‒ Star Letter 05/04/2024

  • 05/04/2024
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Estate agent ‘regulator with bigger teeth’ needed ‒ Star Letter 05/04/2024
Each week, Mortgage Solutions and its sister title, Specialist Lending Solutions, pick the top comments from our readers.

This week’s first comments come from: MPs launch inquiry to improve ‘stressful’ homebuying and selling process

Arron190 said: “Buying a property is stressful and many of these issues have been examined repeatedly, but it is curious this is on the list of government priorities over say the regulation of builders, who can cause untold misery on everyone, not just homeowners. This alone could increase tax revenues instead of increasing the rates on those that do pay tax.

“That said, the code to ensure good standards from estate agents and the sales agents for developers referring services is still abused with no evident enforcement. Perhaps a regulator with bigger teeth and one that encourages brokers to report infringements. Or an outright ban if that does not work.”

The comment continued: “The main consumer detriments seems to be: 1) Referral fees of typically £500, but up to £1,000 for law firms that would never receive new business based on service. 2) Non-refundable deposits of £2,000 for new build (up from £200 and refundable) with high-value properties at £5,000. 3) The brokers whom buyers are forced to engage only using 3-6 lenders, despite claiming independence and whole of market. Indeed, this should also be an FCA focus.”

Zeno of Citium added: “It would help from the start if estate agents just sold the house, and if the applicant is already sorted with a broker and solicitor, let them get on with it, rather than trying all desperation measures to unhook that relationship.

“It is funny how they attack the broker link, but never in such ferocity with the conveyancer – probably to avoid being sued for libel.”


‘More brokers should be selling income protection’

This week’s last comment is in response to: Almost half of people buy critical illness cover for financial security and protection

Arron190 said: “This is why more brokers should be selling income protection, which does allow multiple claims and is significantly cheaper. For many illnesses, people need to cover the financial impact to ensure they are in a similar position and not the ‘lottery win’ of a lump sum for an illness that might take 1-2 years to be treated.

“While nice, it is reflected in the price, such that few buyers over 30 can afford to fully protect their mortgage.”


The comments here are from our readers and do not necessarily reflect the views of Mortgage Solutions and Specialist Lending Solutions.

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