Estate Agents – What do they really do?
It’s a great question and is one that we get asked all the time. Every person that we speak with about marketing their home wants to know the answer to it, and quite rightly too. The answer to this question would probably vary massively depending on which agent you speak with however, I wanted to answer it from our perspective. What we perceive to be ‘the answer’.
Firstly, though I followed what appears to be the current trend and asked ChatGPT that question.
Here is the answer…
‘Estate agents, also known as real estate agents or realtors, are professionals who help clients buy, sell, or rent properties. They provide a range of services, including marketing properties, conducting property viewings, negotiating offers, preparing contracts, and facilitating transactions. Estate agents also provide guidance and advice to clients on property pricing, legal and financial matters, and market trends.’
That’s not a bad overview, but we need to expand on this.
We should probably start with the ‘Why’. Why do we do what we do?
We want to help people move. We use this tag line on almost everything that we do, and it represents our desire to get your moved, whether you’re selling your family home, you’re renting a property, your business needs a new premises, and many, many more situations, we want to be part of that move. Estate Agents are here to help make memories, good ones hopefully, as you move your life on to its next phase.
So, how do we do this? Let’s start with selling a home.
There’s an idea that all an estate agent needs to do is to put a property on a portal, like Rightmove, and that will sell it. Although during the period after COVID that happened most of the time, the pre-COVID market, and today’s housing market, that is not the case. The internet is an advertising platform, a shop window, not the way a property sells.
The way the property is advertised, and the knowledge and experience used in doing so, is what will sell the home.
Our aim is to sell your home for the best price in the current market, quickly so that you can move to your new home sooner, and to make the sale process as easy as we can to take away the stress.
Getting you and your home ready is the first part. There are many things that you are going to have to produce along the journey, and the sooner you can get them together, the quicker your sale will go. Some of the things we legally require before we can sell your home, like energy performance certificates, and Identification checks. Some are things that help inform buyers on whether & what to offer on your home. Things like leasehold information if relevant, installation certificates for log burners, FENSA certificates for windows, etc. The list can be long, but spending the time BEFORE your home goes on the market to get this information, the less time your sale will take later.
Having your property ready is also a massive part to it too. Is there a bit of paint that needs touching up, some carpets that need cleaning, a fence panel that needs replacing? All of these, and anything else that you feel needs sorting, should be done before you market your home. You’ll know this from your daily life. A negative feeling/emotion/thought weighs heavier than a positive one does. So even if your home is the right house, in the right area, at the right price for someone, too many negatives will stop them from buying. Get those sorted before people see it!
The quality of the photographs and the order that they are shown in matters too. Even the number of photos that you show online makes a difference and can be the difference between someone flicking past your property or making the step to get in touch and book a viewing. We can talk to you more about this but there is just too much to cover in this blog. Contact for the full info.
Next up is that taboo subject. The price. The market determines what the asking price of your home should be. Basically, is there a buyer out there at the price we’re asking.
The only way that we, an Estate Agent, can sell your home is by getting people through your door. The above bits that I mentioned contribute to it, but the final part is the asking price. At the time of writing, demand from buyers is good, which means that you will get people viewing, offering, and buying your home if all 3 things are in sync with each other.
You can have your house over-valued whereby no-one comes to look at it, meaning it can’t be sold. It is extremely difficult to under-value a home though. Because buyer demand is high, if the price is low, you’ll be inundated with people wanting to view and make offers, which will drive the price to where it should be. We have seen this many times over the last few years and continues to be the same in early 2023.
All the above happens before your property comes to market. That’s before we start utilizing all the systems and processes in place to get the property in front of as many buyers as we can. Here are a few of the things that Estate Agents use…
- Social Media
- Their own website
- ‘For Sale’ Boards
- Property Portals
- ‘Buyer’ databases
- Virtual Tours
The list goes on and on. We all advertise homes in a lot of places 😏
Each one of these attracts more and more people. It’s up to the agent to manage communication with these people once they engage with us. You’d be surprised how many agents do not engage with potential buyers though.
What we’re looking at from here is to convert enquiries to viewings (our new system can cut this section out, skipping enquiry, going straight to booking viewings – speak to me for more information), encourage and negotiate on offers, finally agreeing a sale between owner and buyer.
Or is that the final thing and estate agency does? Check out my next blog in a couple of weeks to find out!