Why landlords don’t swap letting agents.

When you try and persuade landlords to swap agents, the first thing a landlord will think is this …

Firstly, Is there a problem with my current letting agent?

Secondly, if there is, do I like the solution this new letting agent is offering me … can he or she (the letting agent) guarantee it, will my problem be sorted in a flash with ease by this letting agent and it doesn’t want to cost me anything or anymore for this letting agent to sort it

Then, even if you, as the letting agent, can overcome those three issues (guarantee it, sorted quickly and the cost issue) …. are you the right man/lady for the job?

Next …and even then, is your solution to my problem the way I would do it, if I were a letting agent?

… and finally, even then, is this problem a pressing problem …. or can it wait?

Think I am talking rubbish ….. You just about tolerate your bank, but you don’t love them and most certainly don’t swap banks… why? .. for the same reason landlords don’t swap agents. Most landlords, especially those who use the chains or the corporate’s don’t love their letting agent, but they don’t swap agents .. why … well start at the top and start asking the questions.

The order in which the questions are asked is the way most people decide to buy goods and services. Most landlords do not have a problem with their letting agent (begrudging toleration is not a problem), so you don’t even get past the first hurdle, but even if the landlord does have a problem, it is hassle and costs money to swap agents… so you fall down at the second hurdle .. and there are three more hurdles to go.

Why oh why do you letting agents continue on with dull dull boring advertising messages .. landlords don’t care if you are the biggest agent in the UK, biggest agent in your region or town, they don’t care if you are ARLA registered, they don’t care about the name across your door, your new office refit, what portals you go on, whether you are regulated or not, the design of your to let boards, the pantone colour of logo, you open until 8pm in the evening 8 days a week, your property of the week, cut and pasted testimonials, the awards you have won … landlords don’t give two hoots .. all they care about is themselves and their property ..how much it is worth, how much has it increased and how will it increase by in the future and finally …. is the rent coming in? (…..because landlords are loyal to the rent .. not you Mr(s) Agent).

Talk about that (what is happening to the local property market .. subject that everyone is interested, especially landlords), and you will get landlords coming to you, not because they have problems (..and I don’t know about you, but almost certainly when I have a problem, I begin diminishing the problem in my mind, because no one finds it easy to walk around with a difficult problem in their head), but because you have something that even more powerful …. because they, landlords want to pick your brains, because you are your local town’s guru on property.

Christopher Watkin

I teach, guide, support, mentor, consult, counsel, partner many hundreds of UK Estate and Letting Agents in their quest to grow their estate and lettings agencies business. Old school techniques of touting, landlords wanted leaflets, ring us for a free valuation, we have sold this in your street leaflets don't work anymore. There are too many competitor agents .. meaning cheap fees are epidemic, overvaluing is almost a norm to get the stock and don’t even mention about the online/hybrid threat. So a few years ago, I set about looking around the UK and spotted that certain agents (not many mind you) in certain towns were still seen as the ‘go to person on property’, the person the newspaper editor rang up every week for a comment and I looked at what they did and they were doing some thing quite remarkable…. Only one thing but they were doing it so well .. and reaping the reward in terms of decent listings and decent fees, happy staff, decent sales pipeline and exchange income, managed lettings portfolios in the many hundreds .. but more importantly, they really enjoyed the job… they enjoyed getting up in the morning and people looked up to them Over 400 agents around the UK are on a mission to change the way our Estate and Lettings agency profession is perceived and looked upon, doing it town by town, city by city. I guide these 400 agents, teach them, mentor them and support them to be seen in a different light, to be seen as the ‘go to person for property’, actually be the ‘local property expert’ and prove it. Christopher Watkin 07950 147 572 christopher@christopherwatkin.co.uk

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