As the internet has become the first port of call for most prospective buyers, estate agents can feel somewhat swamped with buyers. The issue is not a lack of enquiries, but which of those enquiries will turn out to be serious.
This is because many estate agency websites are simply an invitation for buyers to register on line, yet all too often this results in huge numbers of poorly qualified “window shoppers” applying. Whilst this is a good service for the buyer who is “just browsing” it can be difficult to assess the seriousness of genuine buyers from their basic requirements alone.
This is where the skills of a good estate agent come in, and part of your estate agent’s job is to identify the most able and motivated buyers. One of the ways we do this at Starkey&Brown is to actually to speak with our buyers rather than simply accepting a brief on-line “wish list” at face value. We can then probe for motivation and ability to proceed, then listen and respond accordingly, saving buyer and seller alike time that would otherwise wasted on unsuitable viewings.
Only by fully understanding a buyer’s needs in context can we direct that buyer to the most suitable homes. For example, does a request for a garage mean that the buyer needs to park a valuable car, or do they just need good storage space? If the latter, then we will be able to offer that buyer a far wider range of suitable homes than those limited to a garage.
A deeper understanding of buyers also means that the we can discover what has prompted the move, the likely timescale involved, and whether there are related-sale or finance issues to be addressed. A successful sale does not depend solely on the suitability of the property, but also on whether the buyer’s circumstances are compatible with those of the seller.