How to… build a good relationship with an estate agent

For anyone selling a property, efforts to find and build a good relationship with an estate agent holds the key to long term success. Statistics from the property-listings website, Rightmove, indicate that an outstanding estate agent will get 136% more leads over twice as quickly as an average agent. They are also far more likely to sell houses, with over 90% of an outstanding agent’s stock being sold. So, the essential question for anyone selling a property is how do you find an outstanding estate agent, and how do you keep hold of them?

The first decision that a landlord must make is whether to go with a large estate agent chain or a small, local service. Both have different merits. With a large firm you are guaranteed to receive a lot of exposure. Large firms such as Foxtons or Savills have enormous resources, allowing them to attract a higher amount of traffic. That name recognition may also attract a higher quality buyer, particularly from overseas. However, there is the risk that, as with any large firm, a landlord could feel lost amongst other clients. Therefore, a smaller estate agent may offer a more personalised experience and might be a better choice. Though smaller firms do not have the same resources, they are likely to have significant knowledge of the local area and will be able to provide a more tailored service to you.

Moreover, the right estate agent will depend to a large extent on the type of property you are looking to sell. An affordable property would be unsuitable for a high-end estate agent and vice versa. When choosing the right agent, it is important to ensure that you understand the types of properties they sell. If you are looking to sell multiple houses, it is also advisable to have more than one estate agent so as to avoid this issue.

Regardless of the type of estate agent, building a good relationship requires a good deal of professionalism. It might sound obvious to point out, but landlords must treat their relationship like a business. This means organising weekly calls, emailing regularly and responding quickly, and keeping them up-to-date of any planned works you intend to do or any other key announcements you might have. This way, agents are able to work with you as partners.

Part of maintaining professionalism is ensuring that you make contact with the agent early in the week. Most estate agents will hold a weekly meeting on a Monday morning to discuss the weekend’s viewings and formulate plans for the week. As a landlord, it is important to ensure that you are constantly involved in those plans. Therefore, make contact with estate agents on Monday afternoon to discuss their plans for the week and how your properties will fit into them.

At the heart of any successful relationship is a deep level of trust. Naturally this will take time to develop. However, small gestures can go a long way to building up trust. Regular calls and visits will do this along with providing estate agents with information and resources that help them do their job. If you are able to be transparent about the properties you are looking to sell, an estate agent will form a better relationship with you and do more to sell your properties.

Written by Israel Moskovitz,

“How to… build a good relationship with an estate agent” first appeared on my Medium profile.