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Agents must do more to help mental health, says industry supplier

A prominent trade body says the property industry must do more to recognise and support those with mental health issues.

The Association of Independent Inventory Clerks says steps in the right direction have been made in recent years but working patterns and practices can be improved to help overcome this problem.

“The property industry does more hours than most and this can have a damaging impact on many people’s work-life balance. Better support systems in place can help avoid a mental health crisis, something which has been worsened during the pandemic with such a hugely busy market” says Daniel Evans, chair of the AIIC.


“By implementing training in specific areas such as time management, we can help people better manage these obstacles. This will allow people in the industry to learn how to prioritise their workload in a way that does not seep into their personal lives or make their job stressful.”

Although the AIIC is mostly involved with letting agents and landlords, Evans says the problems run across the industry.

“Large sums of money that take years to accumulate are dealt with and people's homes are on the line. As a result, strong emotional responses from customers should be expected … Therefore, proper structures within individual businesses should be put in place, and companies that endorse high levels of professionalism should only be used.”

Speaking to people regularly and asking if they need support is necessary to prevent these issues from causing mental health problems, Evans adds.

“Finding time to see the team in person and arranging social events are ways of combatting this” he suggests.

The ongoing impact of the pandemic continues to put further financial pressure on various businesses in the property industry. 

It has resulted in a vast reduction in appointments and clients while the popularity in suburban rural areas has resulted in stock shortages.

“Being open about mental health and understanding how to deal with issues surrounding this is necessary to move the whole industry forward,” Evans says. “Charities like Agents Together have done an excellent job of highlighting the issues and offering support, but we still need to go further.

“When you work in the property industry you not only represent the business, but you represent the industry. With this on the line, the service these workers provide is often scrutinised, since first impressions are everything,”

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    Now estate agents are psychologists and social workers ok

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    I think we always have been.


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