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I have certainly picked up on this as the problem with most professionals is that they will look to place the blame on another person, when in fact so many of them have actually been working in collusion.
Interestingly in Portugal ReMax has come under pressure from several homeowners who feel that they paid too much for their homes and they are now looking at ways to assist these homeowners to cover the mortgage payments with the lending institutions by re negotiating the lending terms on their behalf.
So at least in Portugal there is a feeling of responsibility and integrity even if there is no admission to culpability. Estate Agents advise individuals on decisions which if made can make or break that individual. I believe that Estate Agents should be regulated and assume responsibility for collecting all the information required from various specialists and presenting this in a transparent and responsible way to the purchaser. There must be a duty of care.
I advise people on the purchase of property and I am pleased to record that for the last 18 months I have not sold a single property in Spain or in Portugal because I felt that the risks are too high, and that it is more important to place my clients interests ahead of my own. The result is that I now have a list of potential buyers who have asked to be contacted when I feel the time is right for them to invest.
Sometimes cash is King, and any investment portfolio should always retain a level of liquidity.