Ever wondered how to spot a sleazy estate agent before they rip you off? We’ve paired up the five most disreputable stereotypes from the industry and passed judgment on their classic crimes. From bullying tenants into signing a lease to misusing your property when they think no-one’s looking, here are five estate agent archetypes to avoid.
The Sloane Ranger is a middle-aged woman who “always used to be mistaken for Princess Diana” when she was younger. She has blonde hair, wears a waxed Barbour jacket or quilted gilet and sports a huge diamond ring on her wedding finger. She pronounces Battersea as ba-TER-see-ah – but only to foreign clients. She drives an old Mercedes E class estate.
As his name suggests, Windsor Knot Guy is never seen without and obnoxiously large tie knot, which he uses to accessorise an even more obnoxiously shiny suit. He is 6 foot 6 tall and hits the gym every day after his last viewing. His sales patter is brutal and unrelenting. He drives a red BMW 6 series and looks at you with a mixture of pity and humiliation if you say you’d like a few days to think about it.
The Geezer is instantly recognisable, with spiky gelled hair, an oversized fake Rolex and Bluetooth headset clamped to his ear. His voice is high-pitched and he talks in rapid fire, assuring you that even though the property you had made an appointment to see is now off the market, the one he is showing you is much better. To landlords, he’ll promise tenants that never materialise for weeks on end, before finally admitting that no one’s interested in your flat. He drives a Mini Cooper, but claims his wife has a Boxster S.
Work experience girl is an underachieving high schooler who is constantly baffled and irritated by the fact that she actually has a job. She grunts when asked questions and nips outside during the viewing to have a fag and check her Facebook. She drives her mum’s Renault Clio and is going to give it back soon, honestly.
This jaded fat dude, perhaps the most common of all estate agent stereotypes, is middle-aged, balding and just coming out of his second divorce. After losing his previous two jobs as bank clerk and a telesales manager, retirement can’t come soon enough. He occasionally orders an escort to one of the penthouses on the agent’s books, but most of the time is just too depressed to bother. His handshake is sweaty and lasts a bit too long. Drives an Audi A6.
Do you recognise one of these classic rogues when visiting your letting agent? It might be time to consider the alternatives…