As Estate Agents we are often compared with Car Dealers and Double Glazing salesmen. The premise being that we are all masters of the hard sell.
Whilst I agree we are sales people, a successful Estate Agent rarely, if ever, participates in hard selling. As Agents we have to tie up and manage deals that will hold together through the weeks and often months of legal/mortgage/personal procrastination that comes with a modern day property transaction. I think we are far more closely aligned with Dating Agencies. We are matchmakers. The better ones in each profession will aim to create partnerships that can survive the trials and tribulations that will be part of the journey and not be just a temporary tick on the weekly sales sheet… or heaven forbid, another notch on the headboard.
Dating agencies may ask an applicant about height preferences, hair colour and body shape. We may ask how many bedrooms, preferred areas and other detailed questions. A good matchmaker is all the time trying to glean the nuances of what the client wants, what they like and what it is they are trying to achieve. Because a ‘character house’ is as subjective as a date with a ‘GSOH’.
Like using a dating agency, the more you talk to us the better the chance of a perfect match. We need to know how you live, what is important to you, what makes you tick. I heard a talk given by a successful realtor, one of his phrases was “people buy their motivations not their specifications”. It is the extra details we can glean that really matter, what are your motivations? Where do you socialize? What are your pastimes? How many members in the immediate family? Do you entertain at home? Schooling? We are not just being nosey!
One question I always like to ask is have you seen any properties that you have missed out on or nearly bought. My matchmaking skills mean I may be able to suggest properties that have a similar look or ambience. These may be homes currently on the market but also homes about to come to market or that we have previously valued. The more we know about our buyers, the more able we are to be creative and find them the perfect fit.
I have enjoyed making hundreds of hot property dates in my time and more importantly relationships that last. If I were ever to leave the world of Estate Agency, it is to the local Dating Agency I would send my CV, not Dodgy Den the local car dealer.