The latest guidance specifically addresses the issue of transparency of fees, including referral fees, within the Estate Agency sector.
An Estate Agent should disclose in plain terms
Barbers refer business to internal departments (however no referral fee is paid) and external companies, and to this end a full disclosure is set out below.
Barbers refer clients to the services of TIME Mortgage Experts Limited, an Appointed Representative of Mortgage Advice Bureau, and receive a referral fee of 20% on legal completion.
Barbers may provide a conveyancing quotation via The Conveyancing Partnership Ltd in conjunction with a selected local law firm. Where a client instructs the Lawyer to proceed with the process Barbers will receive a referral fee of £202.50 on legal completion. This fee is included in the law firm’s quotation prior to instruction and the fee taken is to cover the sale progression, transaction management, text and web updates, service level management and work carried out by the Panel Law Firms.
Barbers are part of the Relocation Agent Network which has associated offices throughout the UK. As members Barbers receive a referral fee, amounting to 20% of the recommended Agents’ selling fee, should Barbers refer a client who subsequently sells through that agent. The referral fee is paid from the commission agreed between the Agent and the introduced seller. If Barbers introduce a buyer/applicant to a member agent Barbers receive 5% of the sales fee. This is a national agreement between all members.
Barbers refer clients to the services of Spencer Hustwick Ltd Chartered Surveyors and typically receive a referral fee from them of 20%.
If you apply to rent a property from Barbers and choose the option of “Zero Deposit” it is declared that the Agent receives a commission from “Zero Deposit” equal to 14% of the deposit guarantee, which on average is £21. You may also choose to use the “Tenant Shop” service to set up utility accounts and in this instance, the Agent will receive a referral fee from “Tenant Shop” of £5 for each gas, electric or a broadband account you take out.
*All clients have the option to deal with any of the above companies or seek alternative providers of these services.
*Clients are defined as people who have instructed Barbers to sell their property or people who are buying a property through a Barbers office.
*All figures quoted above are exclusive of VAT.