Finding/Owning French Property

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Dismal quality of real estate listings - agents, lift your game!

Looking at various immobliers web sites, mostly those either specifically aimed at the UK buyer (or those English speaking) or at least that have acknowledged our existence as a potential market (the 'We speak English' sign or flag on the web site), I am amazed at the poor quality of the listings. I'm looking from Australia and it's far from a simple matter of popping over the channel for a long weekend to look at a potential purchase.

Why, given the pretty hefty fees agents make, or even if only(!) to actually sell the properties, don't they put more effort into making the listings informative (decent photo's, floor plans, even a description!). When I compare them to Australian real estate listings they are, quite frankly, pathetic. It's like they don't really want to sell them.

The average one has a few poor quality, badly lit, distorted in proportion, poorly angled shots, most likely from the agents phone, or even the sellers. They rarely give much more than a cursory idea of what's there. Even one of the big players, whose magazine had an article about 'their star photographer' this month, is guilty of this. Most listings have rubbish photo's.

So my plea to agents (or sellers) is - come on! Put some effort into it. Lots of photo's, decent quality. Sellers, clean up! Get your household stuff out of the pictures. The only things visible should be to give an idea of how to use the space, or to give scale. The 360 degree setups are very good. A proper dimensioned floor plan is a must, with a North arrow (so we can tell where the sun will be).

Here they use drones, videos, even professional photographers & lighting in the big markets, photo boards outside the house, all kinds of tricks, but the seller pays up front for it, however it does make sales. I've read this is not allowed in France (tres ridiculous, no?). Surely the minimum standard can be lifted so that, if you're looking to sell to those outside your phone code area, those buyers have some information to filter through the thousands of places available?
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Re: Dismal quality of real estate listings - agents, lift your game!

Twas ever thus. And when you get here, there are rarely any agents boards outside properties. Oh, and the agents generally won't even tell you the exact location of a property on their books because they're too afraid they might lose their commission by a buyer popping round to see the seller and cutting them out of the deal.
They're catering predominantly to a local market. I'm not sure a French agent would, in their wildest dreams, ever consider the likelihood of a buyer coming from so far afield that they'd want to actually know enough information to make a visit worthwhile.
The nearest most get to acknowledging foreign buyers is having a 2 tier price system, where their "English speaking" listings are priced higher.
Don't want to end up a cartoon in a cartoon graveyard.
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Re: Dismal quality of real estate listings - agents, lift your game!

I think you will find that in 'real France' or 'mainstream France' Betty (LOL) the houses are advertised well. Well, they are not so bad.

It is only when you get into the backwaters that things get a bit iffy.

A year or so back I was looking at a house on 'Le Bon Coin' and they had taken a photo of the bedroom. What they did not realise when taking the photo of the bedroom was that on the wall in the background was the sellers favourite porn photos. LOL. I kid you not. Everything was there to be seen. All nicely sellotaped to the wall.

Anyway yes,...hmmmm... there are good estate agents in France.

Usually the houses presented badly are ones that you really don't want to buy. Or, they have to be visited to really get an idea.
ner ner nee ner ner!!
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Re: Dismal quality of real estate listings - agents, lift your game!

Years ago when we were looking, I recall photos of a kitchen with half the doors to the units left partly open, and a selection of carrier bags and dirty tea towels hanging from the handles, and a photo of a coffee table. Nothing else, just the coffee table, with photos of the family. Bizarre.
And even the external shots of beautiful-looking houses won't tell you there's a wind farm or power plant 100 metres away. Especially if the actual location is such a closely guarded secret.

Don't want to end up a cartoon in a cartoon graveyard.
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Re: Dismal quality of real estate listings - agents, lift your game!

When we sold last year the immo insisted on taking his own photos and wouldn't use any I had taken. Not impressed, but he did sell the place, at a large loss to us Cry Out [:'(] The description was minimal as compaired to here in England. But then again what do you expect when they have cut their slice right down to around 6% Woot! [:-))] In fact ours took a hit on his cut and only made about 15,000€ the sale!

As for the photos on some of the sites? Just what does the corner of a dark garage tell you or a view out of a dirty window that you can't see through. They seem to do as little as they can for as much as they can get, but ours did smile, and speak English.

The best advice that I can give you wfpTamar is to find out approximately where you want to buy and then to come over and rent a place on a long rental. That way you can see what you a re doing and also find out what the place is like and if you really want to live there? That is what we did in 2004. We took out a rental n a house for 2 years. We found the place we wanted within 5 months and got everything on the move. We then gave 3 months notice and that is/was the normal time it takes to actually complete on a house and had a seemless move from rented to owned.

We are doing exactly the same now we have moved back and we hope to complete and move out of our rented place to our new, to us, home at the end of next month at the latest?

Good luck with your move and leave the Devil behind, there's enough of them already on the roads in France Devil [6]

John.

Never forget that you are unique, just like everyone else.
http://johnamandiers.wix.com/johns-w-o-w-1
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Re: Dismal quality of real estate listings - agents, lift your game!

I am quite positive that there are honest helpful people on this forum who are selling their houses, just ask. Am sure they would supply you with all the details you are looking for in such a way that you could buy with confidence without even the need to visit France ;)
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Re: Dismal quality of real estate listings - agents, lift your game!

We used Guy Hoquet when we sold and they were OK and the photos were fine. Also we negociated their fee before we did anything else. They weren't happy about that but did it never the less. Saved rather a lot of money for the buyers.

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Re: Dismal quality of real estate listings - agents, lift your game!

idun wrote : Also we negociated their fee before we did anything else.

The estate agent we bought through cut his fee from 18.6K€ to 10K€ .. he offered this to ease negotiations. Just as well he did as his previous fee, plus the notaire/state fees, would have totalled 40K€ .. which is 'lost' money and one of the myriad of reasons I believe that French people stay put more than is found in some other countries.
Computing - it's another world
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