Only one in five people trust estate agents

17 July 2013

Only one in five homeowners and people looking to buy a property trust estate agents, while only a third of homeowners trust builders, a new survey reveals.

The survey, commissioned by the HomeOwners Alliance, asked homebuyers and homeowners about the most stressful aspects of buying a home.

Homeowners said the top five worrying things are: finding the right home (41%), hidden costs such as stamp duty and surveys (37%), the conveyancing process (37%), completion (36%) and securing a mortgage (26%).

For those looking to buy, securing a mortgage was the most stressful aspect (68%), followed by: hidden costs (66%), finding the right home (46%), paying the right price (39%) and the conveyancing process (35%).

Women told the HomeOwners Alliance they are more concerned about being gazumped, while the under 45s are more worried about securing a mortgage.

The survey also looked at consumers' trust in the professions related to buying a home. Aspiring homeowners trust surveyors (62%) and solicitors (52%) more than banks and mortgage lenders (35%), while estate agents scored the lowest (20%).

The latter figure remained the same among people who already own a home, while only a third (34%) of homeowners said they trusted builders.

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Architects are the most trusted profession, according to homeowners (60%) and aspiring homeowners (65%).

Paula Higgins, chief executive of the HomeOwners Alliance said: "Homeownership remains the dream for many but things aren't always helped by the professionals. There are trustworthy and conscientious people out there who want to help you look after your home but a few rotten apples can spoil it for everyone.

"Homeowners and aspiring homeowners need to take control of the situation – your home is one of your biggest investments so research and seek out independent advice about professionals before signing on the dotted line."

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