Agents will need to switch to a more proactive mindset to prosper in 2023 despite green shoots emerging in the property market, according to Kris Mclean, MD of the Guild of Property Professionals.
Mclean pointed to “positive aspects”, such as mortgage rates beginning to stabilise and lenders offering competitive fixed-rate deals. “Right now, the evidence suggests that we will start to see sustained stabilisation within the mortgage markets again, which should open up the market to more buyers and bolster the housing sector for a period,” he said.
“The market was turbulent during the last quarter of 2022. However, based on the numerous conversations I have had with our members throughout the country, enquiries are picking up and agents are seeing good volumes of valuations booked in during these first weeks of the year.”
However, the year ahead will still be challenging and agents will need to be proactive to play their part in stimulating business, Mclean insisted. “In a challenging market such as the one we are currently facing, agents are going to need to proactively put measures and practices in place that will help them gain more business,” he said.
According to Mclean, the market is split between active buyers and passive buyers. “Active buyers are those who are actively in the market and looking to purchase a home,” he explained. “In past markets, around 20% of transactions were created by passive buyers, who are buyers that agents approach, engage with and arouse their interest in moving home.
“If agents do not have a plan to stimulate the passive marketplace in the local area, they are potentially missing out on the additional business they could be getting from this portion of market,” the MD warned.
According to Mclean, agents should be looking at aspects such as past market appraisals from the last two years. “If agents haven’t done so already, they should be touching base with people who they may have done a market appraisal for in the past, asking if they would like an updated valuation or information of what is currently happening in their local property market,” he said.
Mclean also recommended social media and digital marketing strategies to increase agents’ market exposure. “It is all about driving hits to your website, getting hits on your social media pages, and it’s all about making the phone ring, rather than waiting for it to ring,” he said.
“In today’s market, agents should accept that their first point of contact in most instances will be outbound,” Mclean added.
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