What problems have you encountered when you're looking to buy property?

Okay, I've decided to post this partially because I'm interested in seeing what aspects of purchasing the majority of us here need help with.

Once we've got a good list there should be some common themes and then I and the community can write posts to help everyone out!

So guys, I put it to you, what have been the problems you've experienced when you're looking to buy, are buying (auction/private sale), and have bought!?

edit: Thought I'd give some examples...

1. Don't know where to look
2. Dealing with Real Estate Agent
3. Problems with finance or contracts etc
 
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having to double check everything that is said by a serial lying agent

and getting sick of proving them wrong, in order to get them to stop sprucing crap
 
That's a pretty serious problem, was the agent mis-representing the property in question?
I heard an agent giving incorrect info to a prospective purchaser a couple of weekends ago. It appeared to be more out of ignorance than mis-representing the property.

In my case the property was an old "purple title" strata. This means that the actual is was the outline of the building with the rest of the lot being common property, including (in this case) an enclosed patio. The prospective purchaser asked if the lot could be converted to a survey strata (two seperate lots with exclusive use). The agent advised that it is possible but that it would make no practical difference on the ground. This is patently wrong but a purchaser should not rely on town planning advice from a real estate agent. Real estate agents in WA often provide town planning advice about the development or subdivision potential of properties they are selling. However, rules change quite often and the agent don't always keep up with the changes. Better advice would be for agents to direct prospective purchasers to their local council or to seek advice from a qualified town planner.
 
That's a pretty serious problem, was the agent mis-representing the property in question?

the latest one was, after I enquired about a property was

"the vendor is keen to sell due to personal problems, the land is valued at 1.4m, while for a quick sale they would be willing to accept $1m, you can also build units on it, which shouldnt be a problem"

a house in a similar condition is worth about $750-$850k, Doncaster East, 800sqm with development potential

plus on top of that, there is a single dwelling covenant on it

Normally I ignore agents like this one, but I called them up and abused them

and am considering writing a complaint to the director, but im trying to work out if the director would even care or not, the agent being asian, and I know how they have no hesitaition in lying and acting though as nothing has happened even if they get caught out
 
Hi Jake,

A particular agency expecting top dollar,only would sell through them not buy.

Also the usual bending of the truth.

Cheers Spades.
 
Suitable properties not being on the market.

Properties going to auction, I have been in a situation where I wasn't able to bid at auction. Have similar cases with clients as they need to be subject to finance.

Agents not being flexible with opening times.
 
I've experienced a few problems in different categories.
Agents that can't answer questions that vary from how big the land is, or the size of of the dwelling to not knowing anything about the area and a few times the property itself. Agents that do not follow up requests for contracts and agents that blatantly do not do what they promise. It seems to me successful agents get the basics right.

All this I can deal with, my main frustration is with the lenders, their staff, their lending criteria and the luck of the draw in staff that take up your queries. My current settlement had the wrong security, then the mortgage documents were voided by the local bank staff who incorrectly filled in the docs.

This all pales in comparison to some of the issues SS'ers have experienced and are experiencing in the last few weeks in other threads.
 
I've experienced a few problems in different categories.
Agents that can't answer questions that vary from how big the land is, or the size of of the dwelling to not knowing anything about the area and a few times the property itself. Agents that do not follow up requests for contracts and agents that blatantly do not do what they promise. It seems to me successful agents get the basics right.

All this I can deal with, my main frustration is with the lenders, their staff, their lending criteria and the luck of the draw in staff that take up your queries. My current settlement had the wrong security, then the mortgage documents were voided by the local bank staff who incorrectly filled in the docs.

This all pales in comparison to some of the issues SS'ers have experienced and are experiencing in the last few weeks in other threads.

Why not deal with a staff member who you can trust to assist you correctly?
 
The thing I hate mostly are agents that do not know basic information.

Eg.
How much does the house rent for (if it's rented). Really even if it's not they should ask their rental department so they know.
What are the strata fees?
Are they open to extended settlement?
Is the granny flat approved?
What are the inclusions? Often contracts don't have the boxes ticked (dishwasher etc). They should know what's included.
 
Why not deal with a staff member who you can trust to assist you correctly?

CBD bank branch - the city branches are always full of people and they change the staff all the time. You take a number and get served by a manager of sorts in a small office. One would hope they know what they are doing considering it's a main branch of the bank.

They even rang the department for mortgages to confirm that yes the document printed had the security stated incorrectly, but on the system it shows as correct. Then they discussed what they needed to fill in for the completion, but the staff still got it wrong (I wasn't talking about tellers). It's got nothing to do with who I trust to help me.

Jake was asking what problems SS'ers have encountered and those were some of mine.

One more example was a conveyancer I dealt with a few years back. Blatant lying, not paying the agreed fees for settlement with the allocated money. Being caught out, as everything was in writing and lying about it. I complained to the relevant body who after investigating wrote to me in a detailed full page letter to confirm they were well aware of her practices as many others had filed complaints, and unfortunately I would need to purse civilly etc. Also stating they were unable to help further, but they were glad I complained formally so they can add my complaint to their records. What was frustrating about this is that I used the same conveyancer eight months prior for another purchase and it was a perfect transaction.

Regarding TMNT's comments - I have had friends buy and sell in the same locality in the last few years and we have had the same sort of conversations.
 
In my case over the years when buying apartments I have found the flat out lies when it comes to the actual size of the unit. I have had agents tell me it is 55-60 when clearly it's more around the 45sqm mark
This happens nearly every time I ask for an approx size
 
Dealing with the bank directly to get the loan. It was a nightmare. From my opinion, he was very incompetent. Changed my loan limit couple of time cos he didn't put the numbers (income,expenses etc...) right. Very frustrating/risky.
During this transaction, I had to extend the subject to finance clause (via solicitor) because this guy could not provide the unconditional approval.

Now I go through a broker and so far so good :).
 
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