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An interesting fact about a leading online estate agent recently came to light. Financial specialist, Anthony Codling of Jefferies, calculated that between November 2015 and March 2016, only 14% of homes listed with this particular online-only agent in three sample areas - Bournemouth, Southampton and Birmingham - had actually completed (by comparison our branches are completing on up to 90% of properties). It shows that pre-qualifying buyers and sales progression – the hard work that happens once an offer has been accepted – are vital for a successful sale. These figures are likely to be an indication of what’s happening across the country, as our own agents can testify with these stories:-

Steve Mason, Branch Manager at Lewisham A vendor came to us after an online agent failed to secure him any viewings. We took the property on and conducted two open days – a service generally not available with online agents - that culminated in 44 viewings. The sad thing is the online agent still charged the vendor, despite not getting anyone through the front door. In our experience, multiple viewings will always lead to better offers! All 44 of our viewings were pre-qualified potential buyers – not time wasters. It’s a stark contrast to a client of ours who had previously tried an online agent. The ‘hot prospects’ sent to him were poor – in fact one ‘buyer’ turned out to be a tenant. The online agent had failed to ask the viewer a vital question – are you looking to buy or rent?

Neil Smith, Branch Manager at Bexleyheath We took on a bungalow that remained unsold by an online estate agent – it had had just three viewings and one offer below the asking price. We knew it was a desirable property so while the details were being prepared for our own website, we offered it to our registered waiting list of clients. We generated many viewings and an offer followed at £10k over the asking price without any online exposure - proving High Street agents are pro-active and can sell a home even without the internet.

or extension, therefore revealing scope and a future vision.

lots of time. Why leave it to chance when there’s a whole

Our staff will probably also know a local contractor who can

sales team on your local High Street waiting to help you find

provide a building quote and offer advice about planning

the perfect property?

permission. When viewings are organised online - cutting out

“When buying or selling a property it is not like buying a bike

the skill of the estate agent - both the buyer and the seller miss out, as the true potential of a property is not discussed.

from Amazon, where there’s an immediate transaction and no associated ties. A buyer for a property might have one

When suggesting alternatives, Simon’s staff often choose from

time frame, while the seller another. They may both be reliant

a selection of ‘fresh to market’ properties that haven’t even

on other properties in a chain. Adverts online do not reveal this

made it online yet. “As we leave the office, it’s quite normal to

but, in the hands of a good sales negotiator, the timings of one

grab an extra set of keys for another property that only came

party can be married to another. Without due diligence, the

onto the books that day. There is nothing quite like seeing a

conflicting timescales might only come to light after an offer

buyer’s face light up when they see something they instantly

has been accepted. Sadly, hopes of a dream move unravel

fall in love with. It would be disappointing if these emotions

if either party pulls out, and both the buyer and the seller are,

were lost.”

once again, left disappointed. Offline communication - face

Surprising and delighting buyers also relates to mortgages.

to face advice and discussion - is so vital in smoothing out the

Many buyers think they know what they can afford and will

nuances when buying or selling a property.”

search according to their own figures. However, once they

“Selling isn’t always about the quick sale – it’s about the

meet a mortgage adviser they may find they can widen their

secure sale, and that’s what a High Street agent will always

options. Our independent mortgage advisors – available in all

pursue,” concludes Simon. “Estate agency has always been

24 of our branches - can provide a more accurate budget,

about presenting unique opportunities and making dreams

and it’s wise to meet with one before you start looking. With a

come true. It may sound corny but it’s in the hearts of every

more defined budget and even a mortgage offer in principle,

salesperson around The Robinson Jackson Group.”

our sales team will point buyers in the right direction and save

robinson-jackson.com

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Robinson Jackson Group Moving Magazine - New Cross Edition