Am I the only person who thinks that some French Estate Agents do a poor job? 2014 - 2019

France may be in a mess but on the one hand it would take a lot of convincing for me to believe the UK is not and on the other hand the French mess is nothing like as bad as the media in the UK would have us believe. The HSBC story tells us a lot too. The rich are richer than we think they already are because of the small savings they make, namely not paying tax and two top officials have blamed France for the UK not knowing, which the man who blew the whistle alone has said is not true. So, if Labour can make things worse they will have to work really hard on it. Then think back to early Blair, in the wake of Thatcher everybody was suddenly cheerful with something to jingle in their pockets. Well, it was The Times, so a pinch (or large sack) of salt methinks.

Thanks Peter,

The house to meet our needs for retirement is, of course, the issue


That's great, Barbara. We will probably head south next week. Our intention was to stay in Duras. However, we know & love St Foy le Grande next to your area. We stayed on a site near the river there that I think is still closed although we can soon find an Aire or an alternative.

The reason we have been looking locally is that the campsite has English owners who have helped us with the paperwork & it seemed logical to start here.

All the best,


Yep, it was an interesting programme to watch but as you say, not too much to do with estate agency. Nice area where you are now. Handy for Bordeaux, Bergerac & Marmande etc and all points south. Lovely golf course nearby at Monestier too (Chateau de Vigiers).

Bon chance.

Roger you are looking in my part of the world and it is lovely.

Get in touch with me if you wish to talk about the good, bad and the ugly estate agents.

My good friend had an annoying experience with an estate agent ....or agent commercial who disappeared recklessly with her photos and promises of putting

the property on for sale.

The agency which he was/is associated with and with whom she has signed a contract

with have been nonchalant and unprofessional,So disappointing as I had previously

good thoughts about the agency.....this has been drowned by their attitude.

No joy with property hunt yet. It's warm but peeing it down. We're thinking of moving to a site we know near Duras & going to see Beaux Villages in Monsegur. Maybe also do our own site search so we only see what may 'fit'.

I wonder whether an agent would give us addresses so we could do 'drive-by' viewings to save time. Maybe not-they might think we would try & cut them out? However, on first sight we can usually tell e.g. on 'Escape to the Continent' we knew with 2 houses they would not suit-down a road with overhanging trees that would have holed 'Hettie-the-Hymer's' roof-4 stories & a balcony high in the air-'how could I paint that?'-no way. However, that program was nothing to do with 'estate-agency' it was all about good TV!

All the best,


...How does the system work ?"

One of the great mysteries of the universe Roger...

Have you found your dream home yet ? At least the weather has warmed up a tad !

Leader in The Times today "Labour would put Britain 'in same mess as France' ".

I guess 'mess' depends where you look. I know it's superficial & I don't know what lies underneath but not too much mess where I look. Some empty shops whereas UK high streets seem to have loan sharks, betting shops & charity shops in abundance!

As an aside I got here by following a link to Barbara's post in my 'inbox' & find myself amid January dated posts-other recent posts are 9 pages away. How does the system work?

Just a small point.

I do believe that the UK press paints France as the poor cousin

who is lost in poverty and devoid of most aesthetic qualities.

This is not editorial which will attract people to seek a new life

and home in France. It is not something which will encourage Estate

Agents or fill them with hope.

There are so many people who have sold their stories or despair to the

press...home and away. Where are the positive stories?

There are many.

They may not relate to financial gain but something much greater.

Bad practice, you are entitled to use the initials of the Foreign Office on next appearance, if there is one.

Brian, I think the one thing any client in any type of business is looking for is honesty. If the agency isn't interested then they should say so. One month to fulfill their obligations in the middle of winter should be easily within their capabilities ! The agent, a very pleasant young lady turned her nose up when I announced my minimum acceptable price which means she doesn't agree with my estimation. She will do the usual trick of waiting a few months, come back with the usual "We don't seem to be having much response at this price, would you condsider dropping your asking price etc etc..." at which point the property will miraculously take it's place with the other things for sale.

Cynical, MOI ?

Barbara, your friend will have a visit today.

Peter, as I understand it, some agencies and agents have enormous portfolios and put everything up. Many similar properties, I just asked, apparently does not justify fur another up. Window display is one thing perhaps but on line is another. It is possible if an agent has a backlog of course, and my OH is a couple of weeks behind, but she gasped at a month.

An agent from an agency in the town and the most 'local' to have visited came a few weeks back I signed the Mandat and she promised me the property would be up and running online the next day. One month on and the property isn't online nor is it on display in their shop window in the centre of town. Coincidence maybe the same agency has a few properties very similar to mine which tells me she has no immediate interest in my place.I suppose she has put me 'on hold' until some of the others clear...Not at all surprising to me as I often did the same thing when I was in the business !

Well I have found 2 agents who will be visiting my friend in Bergerac who has

a large house for sale with decent size garden.

We shall see a] If they keep their appointments and

b] if they try to find a people match for the property.

If the do well that will make several people happy.

Good to hear your keeping warm Roger. Keep moving south !!!! You'll get here in the end!!! The weather is definitely warmer here and property is still good value in the Minervois ..... you can't go wrong. And as I mentioned over the phone, we have a group of like minded Anglophiles here, all needing to get back to the UK permanently for one reason or another and we're all happy to swap details with visitors who want to make sure they have seen keenly priced property down here without paying 7% extra to an agent for the privilege! Happy hunting !

I am thinking about posting a brief "idiots guide" to selling a house in France without an agent. Would you be interested in taking a look at the first draft? I would be interested in your thoughts.

I've no idea what they charge. My son-in-law told me about them to help with the marketing of our house. I think they use professional photographers with professional lighting & that means you can see everything clearly + they offer a pre-sales survey for a fee to ensure that you can make the most of what you've got.

Our agent used a lot of my photographs of the hawthorn tree at the front in blossom April/May with purple clematis cascading down & the Indian stone at the back in the right lighting conditions to create the best effect. As I think you have done yourself.

We are rather frustrated with our search locally-"done to a high standard" that when we saw the property I thought I wouldn't be satisfied with that & I've worked with my head not my hands all my life-I don't mean knocking nails in with it either (!) doctoral research ain't easy.

Grouse over. Bought some Duras Rose´ in the local SuperU at Oramadour sur Vayre that brought back happy memories & we may well switch our focus & move Hettie the Hymer further south next week to Monsegur & that area.

Be good to hear from anyone who can advise.

It's as warm as toast here-sat in the sunshine drinking lager today. Plus our miniature schnauzer loves house-hunting especially when he's allowed to eat the resident dog's meal!

All the best,


Yes I understand Mark. Not sure about if it is European thing, quite possibly. It is so much cheaper in UK (I seem to remember anyway). We are going to be in this selling scenario in about 10 days time so it will be interesting. I will pay attention and take more note this time of all the ins and outs :)

I agree Liz that you are far better taking matters into your own hands rather than using an agent. The problem is that most buyers are used to using an agent so they continue in the same vein, assuming that is what everyone does! Thanks for taking part in the discussion Liz.

The vast majority have no choice Mark. It's difficult NOT to pass by the agency. The family interested in my place (subject to them selling their place) used an agency photo and spent three weeks driving around the area until they found my place. This will save them about 17K€ !!!!!

Absolutely scandalous - not the cheating clients but the commission the agent is charging !!!