Caveat emptor

A football agent being interviewed about the negative impact of his profession on the game was asked, shouldn’t negotiating be left to the players’ union, the PFA? Well, he replied, the PFA are nice people, but they’re mostly former players, not businesspeople. If I was buying a house, I wouldn’t trust a bricklayer to do the conveyancing.

Neither would I trust and estate agent to do the wiring.

A friend of a friend bought a house which had been modernised as a speculative investment by an estate agent. All the rooms were generously supplied with power sockets, but after moving in she found that only about half of these seemed to work. When she called in an electrician to check the wiring, the truth was revealed: there was no wiring. The sockets were stuck on for show but not powered up for use.

The moral of this story? In every domain there are sellers and there are doers. Whether you’re buying a house, signing a new player or launching a high-tech product, make sure you know which of those you’re dealing with.

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