Each association hold to the claim that their primary objectives are usually to support and streamline members’ professional competence through an associated code of conduct, newsletters and training opportunities.
This principle is laudable. But if the mantra behind one association and another is more or less similar, then there would be cohesion to deliver the best service for its membership. There wouldn’t be the need for splinter groups. Would there Letting Agents agencies estate Dublin?
Let’s now explore a little further what the words “rogue”, “dubious” really mean.
Common English definition describes “rogue” as a dishonest or unprincipled person. This accommodates any act construed as insincere, unethical and not playing within set rules of engagement by any person or group.
Dubious, on the other hand is a qualifying adjective for any act that would cause doubt; of doubtful quality or propriety; questionable!
Simply put, both words suggest dodgy, deceitful behavioural act either by commission or intent.
With a broad definition as this, who then is a rouge or dubious agent? And what qualifies a safe agent?
There is none more suitable candidate to provide such unbiased appraisal than the last client who actually used the service on offer.
Every client deserves a reasonable level of good service. But since there is no such thing as a definitive perfect service, someone somewhere would always have a rant and a moan, even if it’s only for the heck of it. That’s human behaviour!
Then again, there are very bad services around. So to try and convince a client who strongly believes that they have been poorly served by an agent would be like asking the proverbial mountain to move to the left.
Justified or prejudiced, each client reserves the right to have an opinion of the service they received, as long as it is fair and does not cross the mudslinging slander/libel line. However, mere perception is not proof enough. Why? Unless you have used a service, your opinion could only be based on third party information, not your personal experience.
Service in this context is reminiscent to having agreed with applicable terms and conditions of that service, the subsequent signing of a binding contract and accepting keys for possession at check-in. To phone an agent for the purpose of comparing service charges would therefore not count as a fulfilled service. It’s only a conduit for information gathering.
If then you have never used a particular agent’s service, how would you determine whether they’re the best or rubbish in what they do? Are all service levels the same across estate/letting agencies? Absolutely not!
Same goes for every other commercial business model, whether it’s a Doctors’ surgery, or a fish mongers. You can only make like-for-like comparisons in order to obtain a fair conclusion.
Anyone with some sort of reasoning and intent could presently set up an estate or letting agency and consequently make success of the business. Similarly, any one could set up a used car lot. They don’t have to gain any ‘superior’ qualification to make a success of that business model either.
Reasoning, in this context is the ability to interpret the right thing, as opposed to that which is not right. Intent is the ideal to make a profit, possibly provide employment and potentially enjoy the eventual benefits which success brings.
So why do property agents have so much head battering in the public domain as ‘rogues with dubious intent,’ while the very important role they play is genuinely to strive to bridge and more often than not, hasten the process of providing essential accommodation in a professional manner for those who need it, and for a service fee?
There is currently no legislation determining minimum entry level qualification as base requirement to be identified as a scrupulous estate/letting agent, or to set one up. There is none for the motor trade either. Should there be one? Most agents who have been through any committed level of study and written examination would drum its benefits. Reason being that such dedicated study affords invaluable depth of knowledge that is essential to stay at par with the ever changing regulations covering the UK housing act. Currently it looks like a mine-field.
The onus therefore rests with the industry’s Mr Bigs to initiate a collective framework necessary to formulate and implement industry accepted minimum entry levels.