Only 16% of property listings are currently compliant with upfront information rules, it has been claimed.
Agents are currently required to include the property price, tenure and council tax information on listings as part of Part A of Trading Standards’ material information rules.
Part B and C will come later next year and are set to include features such as flood risk, broadband and mobile signal.
Portals have created categories where these details can be entered but Beth Rudolf, director of delivery at the Conveyancing Association, has warned that the customer relationship management systems (CRMs) have not developed their systems to send the data.
She was speaking at the latest meeting of proptech firm iamproperty’s Partner Agent Advisory Council (PAAC), made up of estate agents from its UK-wide network,to discuss challenges and opportunities for next year.
She suggested gathering more material facts and property information as early as possible, has the power to reduce transaction times significantly to eight to 12 weeks.
Rudolf said: “It is going to become a buyers’ market, after being a sellers’ market over the last few years.
“Naturally, the recession and cost of living factors will see a quietening of the market. For those looking to transact, agents will need to focus on enabling sellers to provide a better-quality property to market. What I mean by this, is collating material information upfront to lessen the chance of sales falling through, providing more information to prospective buyers and protecting transactions for the sellers but also the estate agent’s own pipelines.”
Collating all of this at the point of onboarding the seller, Rudolf said, gives the agent a chance to look for, and resolve, any issues before going to market and gives a wider open market for properties.
She added: “It ensures all parties have the facts and transparency to make informed decisions, making it much less likely for buyers to withdraw from transactions later down the line or apply to a lender who will decline their application because the property does not meet their lending policy, and speeding up the process overall.
“Certainly in the early months of the new year, agents aren’t going to see as much return so it is especially important to do what’s in their power to avoid sales falling through.”
Ben Ridgway, managing director of iamproperty, agreed that every bit of information is good for sales pitches and working out which potential buyer to seek out or go to.
He said: “Material information doesn’t have to be another thing on the to-do list. Tapping into the right tech can do the job for agents.
“With parts B and C set to come into play in the New Year, onboarding the right tech now will help agents to get ahead.
“It’s a sales tool too when it comes to winning instructions, as offering to collect the majority of data so sellers don’t have to answer questions they’re not sure on will be welcome. The right tech can pull together these summaries of the right information.”