We've all heard the jokes about estate agents, but have you ever considered what it's really like to be a sales negotiator for a property business like Dafydd Hardy?
In this article we'll take a look at what our sales negotiators' jobs entail, and then meet each of them to find out their opinions of the role.
What exactly does a Dafydd Hardy sales negotiator do?
Put simply, their job is to find the right buyer for the right property, agree the best possible price for the seller and follow the agreed sale through to handing over the keys. When you approach Dafydd Hardy to help you buy or sell a property, our negotiators will help to ensure that your journey is as stress-free as possible.
Our negotiators embrace all the available hi-tech tools we've provided to help them do their jobs as efficiently as possible, but there's no replacement for the ‘human touch’; unlike a computer, a human being has a 'gut instinct' that a specific applicant will fall in love with a particular property. It’s all about getting to know the people involved and understanding customer needs. Anyone can place a property on a global platform, but our negotiators take great satisfaction from their ability and from applying local knowledge to achieve a successful sale. A sales negotiator gets to know the buyers and the properties very well, and has many important qualities such as patience, tenacity and empathy - qualities that IT systems completely lack.
Local knowledge really is key; you can't beat working with a negotiator who is local to the area in which you're buying or selling. And in an area with such a high concentration of Welsh speakers, in North West Wales this aspect of the role is particularly significant.
When we recruit a new sales negotiator, there are several skills that we look for. A natural ability to sell is a given, of course, but we also look for excellent communication skills as well as confidence when meeting new people - and the ability to gain the confidence and trust of clients and colleagues. When we asked our branch managers about the qualities they feel are essential in a good sales negotiator, unsurprisingly 'excellent people skills' came up several times. And since our negotiators also work closely with customers' solicitors and mortgage providers as well as the clients themselves, the ability to conduct themselves professionally as well as personably is essential.
Negotiators need to be excellent communicators, as they spend much of their time contacting vendors regularly, negotiating offers, obtaining feedback, arranging viewings and keeping all parties to a sale informed of progress every step of the way.
The day-to-day work of a negotiator varies a great deal - "[they need] the ability to juggle several balls at the same time," as our Holyhead branch manager Penny points out - and it's a very interesting job: "stressful but rewarding" is the general consensus.
Meet our sales negotiators
Find out a little about our sales negotiators, including some of the more difficult sales they've dealt with and what they enjoy most about their jobs.
Beth had an extremely long and difficult sale which took 15 months and five days to complete. There were major issues with the chain, as the purchaser’s sale fell apart and the purchasers disappeared for months. The property itself wasn't ready for sale – it had no water supply and there were issues with the boundaries. Beth’s persistence, determination and skills managed to save and move the sale forward.
Charlotte has amazing people skills, patience and determination, her Branch Manager Ruth Tottey tells us. She deals mainly with our difficult repossessions, a task which demands outstanding negotiation skills as the property has to remain on the market until exchange of contracts. Charlotte handles this with extreme confidence and professionalism.
Sue has nearly 17 years' experience in agency work in the Caernarfon area, and has worked in the sales, lettings, commercial and professional sides of the industry. Sue's preference is for the sales side, and she's dealt with many clients in this area over the years and still loves her job.
Natasha is a long established member of the team, with a dedicated eye to finding her applicants their ideal property. From investment to first-time buyer purchases, Natasha will leave no stone unturned to find you that ideal property!
Tracy has a background in sales and has successfully transferred these skills into being a property sales negotiator. She loves being out and about, showing buyers their possible new homes and negotiating the price to make their dream a reality.
At 22 Colin is one of our youngest sales negotiators, and is studying towards the National Association of Estate Agents Award in Residential Sales in England and Wales. Colin loves negotiating, and he especially enjoys making what can seem the most stressful time of a client's life easier and stress-free. He also enjoys building great relationships with clients, and his skills in this area are evident in the amount of repeat business he wins for the company.
Alana has been with Dafydd Hardy for five years, and when asked to contribute to this article she stressed in block capitals: "I LOVE MY JOB!" Alana says that being a negotiator isn't just about selling a property - it's about taking the client on a journey, and making that journey as easy as possible. She's also fascinated by the properties she gets to work with: "Seeing fantastic properties is a bonus and each one has a different story to tell."
Becky's enthusiasm for her work is obvious: "There was nothing like that feeling when you are allowed to negotiate your first sale solo - what a buzz, hitting that 'sale agreed' button!"
Karen's passion is for getting to know her clients and properties as well as she can. "There's nothing like knowing your stock and your customers so that you can guide them towards and eventually sell them something they hadn't even considered."
"This is my first job and I am so glad to be working in a sales environment, taking people to view properties and them coming back and making an offer makes it all worthwhile."
Nia says that while there's no better 'buzz' than the feel-good factor of agreeing a sale, the hard work often starts in earnest when following the process through with solicitors and surveyors. "Dealing with survey reports and solicitors can be stressful for anyone - we are here to help it along the way, liaising with all parties and making it less stressful for all involved." But then, she says, comes the rewarding part of the job: "Handing over the keys to the new owners, watching them leave the office excited about moving in, is the satisfying part."
"I love the variety of this job; every day is different, I’m constantly learning new things and meeting new people. I’m very proud of the fact that I recently obtained a 100% on my exam following attending an Estate Agency Allstars course. The best part of the job for me is the personal interaction with both the buyers looking and the sellers selling."
"I joined Dafydd Hardy seven months ago after working for a competitor and I’m impressed with how this company operates. I appreciate their open and honest approach, which is a refreshing change! I enjoy meeting new people and building long standing working relationships. Our office is always a great place to work and I love being part of a united team. "
"No two days are the same within the world of being an estate agent, from dealing with customers to visiting new properties or showing buyers around the property of their dreams. An interesting part of my job is getting the opportunity to meet people of different nationalities and helping them find the perfect property for them and their families."