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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

Agents shouldn’t just sell - they must be Residential Property Experts

High Street estate agents should re-define themselves in today’s competitive market by becoming Residential Property Experts offering a wide range of services.

Sava - the education, technology and compliances services provider - says agents should provide a holistic range of services aimed at anyone buying, selling, adapting, improving or managing residential property.

Austin Baggett, managing director of Sava, says the industry is feeling the squeeze thanks to lower average commission fees and initiatives such as the Tenant Fees Act - as a result, additional revenue generation ideas are needed. 

On top of that, people move home far less frequently - on average only once every 23 years according to the latest Zoopla analysis.

He says that currently the competitive marketplace is packed with agencies offering broadly similar services, making it difficult for one to gain an advantage. Therefore, providing a more comprehensive range of property services could help agencies to grab the attention of potential clients and win more instructions.

Sava suggests that using additional in-depth knowledge gained through qualifications, agents can build new revenue-generating services, such as condition surveys or valuation reports, into their product offering.

"By providing valuable advice on anything to do with property, from traditional buying and selling to key structural or building information, agents can create more opportunities for themselves, making the market seem less crowded” adds Baggett.

"Having a certificate on the wall or letters after your name can be beneficial, but the real value from taking qualifications comes in knowing what you're talking about and becoming a real industry expert. Property sales and the moving process can be complex and you're often dealing with people's most valuable asset; therefore, consumers need reassurance and advice from someone they can trust.”

Sava cites Tim Crowe, owner of Crowes Estate Agents, saying: "Sava’s surveying qualifications have certainly helped to increase confidence among our existing clientele. For something they would usually instruct a surveyor to do, they can now ask us to do it, which they prefer. This also helps to maintain our long-term client relationships.

"Moreover, being able to offer surveys has created an income stream for our business and when it comes to valuations, having RICS accreditation distinguishes us and can help win instructions." 

Poll: Should agents re-define themselves and win 'lifelong' clients?

PLACE YOUR VOTE BELOW

  • Andrew  Estate Agent

    Though many agents are 'residential property experts' I think that having extra qualifications such as the Sava Diploma in residential surveying and valuation, definitely does help. One of my best friends did the course a few years ago, and when he worked with me his additional 'credentials' were definitely an asset, especially as we were dealing with high end clientele and property in excess of 1M.

    I know from running my own business for many years that deciding to invest over 10k in a course or similar seems a big ask, but it is not only about the qualification, staff retention and development of good people always pays off, especially with the current churn of property staff.

    When I started in agency in the mid 1980's I was a graduate and at that time only about 5% of the UK had degrees, and very few were agents. Now 41% of the new generation are set to have at least a first degree, that is brilliant as it means a better educated nation which can only be a good thing. Especially with the technological revolution that is currently sweeping the world.

    As a point of balance, many very successful property people, sales and lettings have very few formal qualifications, but are great communicators and extremely talented, so just as with other things in life, formal academic qualifications are not for all, but certainly within each 'team' to have at least one accredited person does help businesses stand out. Thoughts?


  • Peter Hendry

    As is clear here, services offered by estate agents across the board need wholesale improvement.

    My research suggests this should take the form of The Hendry Solution which is fully set out if you Google for it.

    Now it’s time to get the housing market singing again and the way to achieve that is to represent buyers; and do so fully comprehensively.

  • Peter Hendry

    The fact that no-one from within the estate agency sector shows the wish to engage in debate about the state of that sector or the need for it to evolve speaks volumes.

    However, if some should wish to express their views elsewhere rather than on the Estate Agent Today web site they may use my blog site instead if they wish to.

    One thing is clear. It is time for change, time for improvement in the aged methodology used to market, find, buy and sell houses across the whole land surface of our nation today.

    Who will rise to such an inviting challenge?

    It is about so much more than simply up-skilling or training more people in the existing skill-sets which have been in use, these decades past.

  • icon

    When I used to conduct training courses for agents, one said to me one day "The more I learn, the easier my job becomes". It has stuck with me for the best part of 25 years.

  • icon

    Exactly Perfect practice make practice perfect.

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