Metro - 21 March 2014
Selling yourself to estate agents
By Jo Eccles
I recently had a panicked call from a friend of mine, she and her husband had decided they were ready to finally buy a property.
They’d started off, as most buyers do, looking at websites and had stumbled across a house which looked perfect. She called the agent quite excited about the property in question, only to be told fairly curtly that the property was under offer. The conversation ended and that was that. She had failed to strike up any dialogue or relationship with the agent and she wasn’t sure where to go from there. Some of the better estate agents will engage an initial buyer enquiry in conversation to take down their requirements and contact details, but it’s amazing that many don’t.
If you’re inexperienced and gingerly approaching the market, then having a basic script can really help you get taken seriously and prioritised by the estate agents. You need to try to forge those relationships quickly and as best you can.
First impressions count. When you call up an agent, it’s a two way thing and you need to sell yourself too. Let them know a bit about you as a buyer so that they can identify with you – who are you, what’s your profession, where do you want to buy, what are you looking for, why are you moving, do you need to sell or are you chain free and so on. If you have your mortgage approved in principle then throw that out there too.
Also if you’ve seen a property online which you like, explain why you like it. The more an estate agent can buy into you as a good buyer, and the more they can pin point exactly what you’re looking for, it means they can call you when the right place comes up. If they have no direction from you, they will simply add you to their email alerts and lose interest.
So as with any relationship, put in what you hope to get out of it and hopefully it will eventually pay off!