Taking a look at 2020
If you read or listen to the property press, or the national media commenting on the property market, you will know they are currently awash with speculation and projections on…
Taking a look at 2020
If you read or listen to the property press, or the national media commenting on the property market, you will know they are currently awash with speculation and projections on the way the market will behave in 2020. But it is only speculation. We have never been in conditions quite like this – coming off the back of a surprisingly emphatic election and three-plus years of market dormancy, brought on by political confusion and inertia.
However the national press are not necessarily the safest forecasters of the overall picture. Many seem to forget that the property market is not confined solely to London and the Home Counties, but is a series of mini-markets.
As we enter a new decade, these micro conditions will once again enter into play. Regions about to see economic stimulus will come into a new focus. Areas benefiting from new infrastructures such as transport will become targets for renewed interest from buyers. Parts of the country that have been in decline will begin to bloom and perhaps even boom in property terms. Sellers will reap the reward.
Of course, buyers will still choose locations for schooling, work, retirement and natural beauty so these factors will continue to be strong personal influencers. But one thing most of us in the business can agree on is that the cloak of uncertainty which created the prolonged low levels of activity in the property market has lifted. This is borne out by the increased levels of activity we are seeing in the new year so far, a large numbers of buyers and sellers are coming forward earlier than usual wanting to make the most of the increased optimism we are seeing.
It is important now more than ever, that if you are wanting to sell your home, you hit the market at the correct time. Rightmove has recently detailed that 8 of the 10 busiest days for property searches will fall before the end of February. The days of waiting for the Easter Bank Holiday to list your home are long gone, the buyers are there and have the appetite right now.
As estate agents, experts in property and our areas, we are the people best suited to advise on the market in our area. We have been doing this for a long time, have seen many cycles within the market and understand the best way to maximise the value of your home.
Michael Hewitt – Branch Manager of PFK Estate Agency, Cockermouth.
A day in the life of a Sales Negotiator
Our day promptly starts at 8.45am, everyone will sit down together and discuss the agenda of the day. We will talk about the previous days appointments with our valuer…
A day in the life of a Sales Negotiator
Our day promptly starts at 8.45am, everyone will sit down together and discuss the agenda of the day. We will talk about the previous days appointments with our valuer Hayley and discuss pressing issues to be dealt with immediately. Our branch manager Paul will then allocate jobs to the team to ensure all aspects of enquires are dealt with and then we can positively start the day knowing what we are doing. The first job of the day typically includes checking our mailbox for any enquires and dealing with anything that has been sent through from the night before. If any new properties have become live, we print off a window card and rearrange our window display to include it, do a mail-out to all matching applicants on area and price and finally contact any buyers we know would be interested in viewing the property and send them the details to encourage early viewings.
We would then go through all the previous days viewings, contacting the people who have been to see a property and asking for their general feedback. We view this as a priority of the day as it is so important our vendors and landlords know the feedback on their house and that they are kept updated throughout the process as it can be quite a stressful time for some people. We then come to look through our vendor and landlord checks for the day and make arrangements to follow up on any previous notes, for example any registers of interests who are to be contacted or any previous offers to be looked into before calling the vendor with the latest updates.
We aim to contact our vendors every two weeks to ensure the best relationship possible with open communication. After speaking with our vendors, we will then look at contacting our individual buyers to discuss their matching criteria, what they are looking for in a property and hopefully arrange some viewings for them. We do try to be as proactive as possible and always encourage our buyers to book in a viewing – sometimes people can be pleasantly surprised and may then consider something they thought they couldn’t consider before viewing a property. If a buyer has a property to sell, we will then encourage them to book in a free, no obligation valuation with Hayley for the best advice on their house too.
If there are any accompanied viewings arranged for the day we will attend them and do our best to sell the house in person. Upon returning to the office we deal with all email and telephone enquiries from buyers/tenants, registers of interests, vendors, surveyors and of course in office visits to the best of our abilities. A huge part of the job is of course negotiating! We aim to find the middle ground between the purchaser and the vendor, landlord and the tenant to ensure everyone reaches a happy outcome and people feel like they can buy/sellor rent with confidence in us as their agent. We can also arrange for any help for a purchaser and vendor where needed, including solicitor quotes, survey quotes and mortgage advice through our trusted partners who we know will make the sales process as smooth as possible, that’s why we recommend them!
Any agreed rental applications, move across to our property management team who oversee the application process and any properties that are sale agreed, move to our sales progression category where each negotiator personally deals with each house sale until exchange of contracts. We chase solicitors for weekly updates and then feed the latest update back to everyone involved. This gives continuity of service and are important factors when selling, buying or renting a property.
We aim to take the stress out of moving for everyone and always ensure to help in any way we can to achieve simple results for all.
Alex Weir – Sales Negotiator of PFK Estate Agency, Carlisle.
A day in the life of a Branch Manager
After working as an Estate Agent for the most part of 10 years in varying roles from Lettings Negotiator to Sales Negotiator right through to my current role as Branch…
A day in the life of a Branch Manager
After working as an Estate Agent for the most part of 10 years in varying roles from Lettings Negotiator to Sales Negotiator right through to my current role as Branch Manager/Valuer at our busy Whitehaven branch, you would think I would have seen it all. This week I have been conducting interviews for a Sales Negotiator for the office. Speaking to candidates and explaining to them what exactly the role entails has really made me think again about just how varied a day working as an Estate Agent can be.
A typical day:
8.45am to 9.15am – It is really important that our office begins the day with a staff meeting. It will usually involve discussing any new sales and lettings instructions, updates on pending offers and generally catching up on how sales are progressing.
9.15am to 10am – This is a good time to prepare for any valuations I have that day, looking at recent comparable sold properties on Rightmove and considering any similar properties that we have been to and/or sold. The team will be catching up on emails and enquiries which can be anything from arranging viewings, taking and negotiating offers and handling sales progression queries. This can admittedly take longer than 45 minutes!
10am to 12pm – This is a popular time for viewings, valuations and listing appointments. A typical valuation lasts around 1 hour, I will give the owner my opinion on market value and explain more about our services and it is a good opportunity for them to ask specific questions they have about the sales process.
12pm to 1pm – A break from appointments is a good opportunity for the team to grab some lunch whilst ensuring that any calls and walk ins to the office are dealt with. I find this a good time to browse on Rightmove as it is always beneficial to know what is happening in our local market. This can also be a busy time for our Sales Negotiators as potential purchasers will book viewings in across their lunch.
1pm to 3pm – This is usually where I will take time to prepare paperwork and draft sales particulars for properties which are about to come on to the market, editing photographs and preparing detailed information about the property which will soon go onto our website, Rightmove and other property portals as well as social media. The team will gather viewing feedbacks from the previous day and speak to vendors about the viewing updates to their properties and ideas to increase viewing levels. Keeping customers updated is an essential part of our service.
3pm to 5pm – The end of the day is a good time to contact solicitors for updates on sales which are currently going through and checking that any issues which may have come up are now resolved.
The most important part of my day is making a list at the end of it with tasks that I will pick up the following day as there will be many days where lists are put aside as an issue or several issues crop up which need to be resolved urgently. And that really epitomises why I love working as an Estate Agent, no day is the same! There are always different people, different tasks and different properties to keep you busy. Every day you learn something new.
Lesley Waugh – Manager of PFK Estate Agency, Whitehaven.