In this fast-paced, instant-access world we live in, communication dominates our lives. Despite the plethora of mediums upon which we can reach each other - phone, email, social media, newspapers or even old-school face-to-face, getting hold of people and communicating in the right way is still a
difficult thing for many of us to get right.
Property is one of those business sectors where it is more about people and less about transactions. Inexperienced agents (of which there are many in this age of online and hybrid estate agencies) are often driven by thoughts of their commission and overlook this critical point. They concentrate
solely on signing up willing vendors or getting them to the “Under Offer” stage.
But getting a property under offeris only step one. Progressing to exchange of contracts is a whole other ball game where the experienced and knowledgeable succeed.
One sometimes hears about property professionals having had previous careers in say insurance or stationery, where the
focus is just on ‘shifting units'. Property is more complex than that and is where these newbies fall down, as they are unable to communicate effectively enough or manage people's expectations.
When it comes to buying selling a home, good communication is critical. Great estate agents are masters at it. After all, they need to attract the right audience to get themselves across the thresholds of the right types of properties for their brand. They then need to convince the vendor why they should be the preferred agent.
At this stage, vendor beware, as talk is cheap. The valuer sat in your kitchen waxing lyrical about their amazing company isn't what is going to sell your property. As a vendor, you should be open with your agent about your preferred timeframes and any potential obstacles you fear might trip up
a sale. Being upfront and honest enables your agent to properly guide you on the best course of action.
What will actually sell your property is how well the front-of-house team back at the office know your home and can effectively communicate this to proactive and reactive buyers. Liaising with viewers and driving people across the threshold is an art in itself. If that is successful, then the all-
important negotiations to get the right price on the right basis takes time and clear communication.
Another fundamental detail is to instruct an excellent conveyancing solicitor. They must be prepared to regularly and clearly communicate with all parties. When I act for clients, I always check who the solicitor acting on the other side is. If I believe them to be a poor communicator, then I suggest that the other side changes firm. The reason being that a huge amount of time, money and effort has been put in to reach the under offer stage. All parties then relinquish everything they have done up to this point and put their faith into those two solicitors to see the property over the line. If one isn't good at communicating, then the deal will be in jeopardy.
Some of the less experienced agents focus only on transactions, while the experienced know that by communicating effectively with all parties and being a people person leads to a satisfying completion.
Whoever you use in your next property sale, make sure they can communicate well and have the credentials to back it up.