Are you providing a truly tailored lettings service?

Smart office? Check. Deposits protected? Check. Adherence to over 500 regulations and pieces of legislation? Check. All the ingredients of a sophisticated, trustworthy and transparent lettings business, surely? While all of the above are essential in today’s marketplace, this attention to detail is all-consuming. Has the quest for accountability and professionalism overtaken ground-level customer service?

What prompted this line of thinking was a recent media story on a new online agency, offering both lettings and sales services.  Property Cat claims to be the only agency where all the profits are put back into the community.  What’s more, every landlord or vendor who chooses to use Property Cat’s services will have a tree planted in their name.  Although you may be quick to dismiss this as superficial froth in return for some quick PR, the owner of Property Cat reveals a different approach to nurturing the client/agency relationship, which caught my eye.

What is seen as a massive disadvantage in the online agency world – a lack of a tangible office – has actually been turned into a positive.  Property Cat meets clients in a location of their choice, with coffee houses a popular option.  The agent even trumpets that the coffee’s on them – a small gesture that’s no doubt welcomed by clients.

Meeting clients away from the office isn’t a notion that agents and property managers should be unfamiliar with.  Financial advisors have been travelling to meet with clients in their own home and at their workplace for years, so why should a letting agent operate differently?  Perhaps because many of us feel uncomfortable and less able conducting business outside of our business cocoon?  However, agents are renting and selling products that aren’t even in their office – that’s why valuations and viewings all take place away from branch.  Can we cross the mental barrier and take more business away from branch and actually to our clients?

Is the ultimate customer service tailoring your time and presence to the client’s exact needs?  In the high street versus online agent argument, one of the plus points of a physical branch and team is the face-to-face element – the personal touch.  Yet here we have an online agency that is going out of its way to meet with people at times and at places convenient to them, rather than restricting clients to office visits during working hours.  For Property Cat as personal ‘meet and greets’ are possible as they have confined their business operation to Cardiff and the South Wales Valleys.  However, doesn’t every high street agent laud its local credentials and presence in the community?  Is now the time to meet Mr and Mrs Bowden in Coffee Bean Central at 6pm on a Thursday?  Perhaps you just don’t have time as there’s too much paperwork to complete and boxes to tick. It is, however, something worth thinking about.

* Dave Hunt is the business development director of the ARPM Group

 

, who provides national outsourced lettings and property management services.

 

ARPM

Simon Duce is the Founder and Managing Director of ARPM Outsourced Lettings Support - a business designed to help small and start-up letting agents/property managers offer a full suite of property management and tenancy administration services through outsourcing.

You May Also Enjoy

Breaking News

Breaking Property News – 28/02/24

Daily bite-sized proptech and property news in partnership with Proptech-X.   Birchgrove and Hybr launch intergenerational living scheme A unique partnership will see students, key workers and retirees live together at new north London retirement development. Birchgrove, the UK’s leading provider of rented retirement homes, and Hybr, the UK’s leading student letting platform, today announce an industry-first…
Read More
Estate Agent Talk

Benefits Of Choosing Roger Bates Properties

Roger Bates Properties stands out as a prominent real estate agency that offers a myriad of benefits to individuals seeking to buy, sell, or invest in real estate. With a stellar reputation and a commitment to excellence, choosing Roger Bates Properties can prove to be a decision that yields numerous advantages. 1. Experience and Expertise…
Read More
Love or Hate Rightmove
Breaking News

Rightmove’s weekly mortgage tracker – 28/02/24

The average 5-year fixed mortgage rate is now 4.80%, up from 4.59% a year ago The average 2-year fixed mortgage rate is now 5.15%, up from 4.92% a year ago The average 85% LTV 5-year fixed mortgage rate is now 4.73%, up from 4.64% a year ago The average 60% LTV 5-year fixed mortgage rate is now 4.30%, up from 4.25% a year ago The average monthly mortgage payment on a…
Read More
Love or Hate Rightmove
Breaking News

Rightmove calls for stamp duty reform with only 4% of London homes exempt

Ahead of the Spring Budget on March 6th, the UK’s biggest property website Rightmove suggests three policy reforms that could help people moving home: A reform of stamp duty to consider regional property price variations: Only 4% of homes in London are stamp duty exempt for all buyers, compared to 71% in the North East Less than…
Read More
Breaking News

Breaking Property News – 27/02/24

Daily bite-sized proptech and property news in partnership with Proptech-X.   Alto reveals ‘next generation’ of Lettings Progression Alto, software for estate agents and part of Houseful, has revealed further information about the improvements being rolled out in 2024 to drive a step change in business efficiency for letting agents. Leading the way is a…
Read More
Home and Living

The Versatility of Parquet Flooring in Contemporary Homes

What comes into your mind when you hear about parquet flooring? Most probably Victorian era, historic estates, grand ballrooms, and grand mansions but what if I tell you that the parquet flooring has redefined itself with warmth, texture, and classic elegance? Parquet flooring in contemporary homes is a delight to the eyes because when you…
Read More