Sales progression- The sleeping giant.

Sales Progression

This article discusses the sales progression process and how estate agents might be failing to highlight its importance during transactions. An article earlier this year in Estate Agent Today detailed how long it takes to purchase a home in the UK- the average answer: 210.95 days or 6.8 months.

Key findings

• Most of the poll surveyed expected the whole process would take just under four months with more than a fifth believing it would be done and dusted in less than two months;
• The average purchaser views their new home three times before completion;
• Potential buyers will spend around 20 hours looking at 16 homes online;
• Compromise was ranked in order of Location, while room size and price followed closely behind.
*The figures were taken from a study, For EMEA Matterport polled 2,000 buyers to dissect each part of the transaction process.

Why is sales progression so important regarding your choice of estate agent?

The expectation

Most sellers place the majority of their decision making for agents on various elements e.g. sold boards within the area; marketing campaigns; direct referrals;  a sense of trust. However, I wonder how many potential clients are discussing the post-sale process with their potential agents? Clients automatically assume all agents are good at sales progression. I’m sorry to say this isn’t the case and each agency differs dramatically in approach and experience.

The reality

People selling property generally underestimate the importance of sales progression within the transaction process. In my opinion, this is currently not being discussed by estate agents when carrying out market appraisals. The reason for this- it’s not sexy to potential clients.
Agents will prefer to ‘win the business’ by highlighting their strengths of marketing, photograph techniques and floorplan expertise rather than discuss the fact that a sales chain may fall through due to issues outside their personal control. A market appraisal should be seen as a positive experience, discussing the problems won’t help…or would it? Sales often fall through for numerous reasons. If these potential pitfalls are not discussed as early as possible, then clients may feel let down or undervalued during the post-sale process.
Clients need to understand that the road to a successful completion is rarely smooth but it’s the expertise and experience of a good agent that can help cross these milestones for you. So how can you reduce your risk?  Please find our tips regarding sale progression:

1) You should understand the post-sale process before it begins and the impact of time on your sale

Time is valuable and every week that goes by will give your purchaser time to reflect and compare your home against others. A proactive approach from your agent and solicitor can reduce the risk of the purchaser window shopping. The UK sales market has many micro/macro-economic influences at present and you don’t want these playing on the mind of your buyer. You should know what the process involves as this will help you deal with the issues that arise during the process. Your agent should give you clear and simplified advice during the process.

2) Hope for the best and plan for the worst

Discuss a realistic timeframe with your agent and plan for delays or potential problems from an early stage. For example, local searches under Birmingham City Council takes a few weeks longer to return than properties under Solihull Metropolitan Borough Council. Different parts of country differ in timescales- is the house your purchasing out of area? Expect delays so when they arise you are prepared for them.

3) Stay connected

Your chosen agent should inform you of the milestones within the selling process. The stronger your relationship means sales progression can becoming more efficient. Choose an agent which you feel will look after the transaction and not just look after the elements discussed on the market appraisal. If major issues develop within the chain, then you need a proactive agent who will inform you at the first instance and provide clear options to you.

4) Do you trust your agent? You should!

Traditionally, clients don’t trust their estate agents but have to deal with them in order to move. This is changing within the industry. Your agent should demonstrate the tasks and actions they will carry out so you feel more comfortable with the relationship.
In conclusion, when choosing an estate agent to deal with the sale of your home, look beyond the marketing of the property and consider the way your agent will protect your transaction and progress this to a successful completion.

If you’d like to discuss your residential property needs in more detail, or for more information on Horton & Storey estate agents Shirley, feel free to give us a call on 0121 663 0099, email us on or you can fill out our contact form.

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