Careers in Estate Agency
The Role of a Sales Negotiator
The role of a Sales Negotiator is both varied and exciting. You will become the public face of the company, dealing with a variety of people and enquiries every day. You will see and sell a wide range of property from pieds-a-terre to mansions.
Good estate agency is an art as well as a science and, as such, you will possess the style and flair to negotiate deals to their successful conclusion. You will have to be well-presented and thoroughly professional at all times. Previous experience, whilst welcome, is not always necessary as full and ongoing training is provided. In fact, many of our most successful negotiators come from a variety of backgrounds and industries.
The required traits are common sense, maturity, responsibility, patience, an excellent telephone manner and a good sense of humour.
In this type of incentive-driven environment, the rewards can be substantial. You will earn a competitive basic salary, have a generous car allowance, and will have the opportunity to earn uncapped commission directly linked to your personal performance from day one.
The Sales Negotiator's job is to provide clients and customers with a professional estate agency service, maximising business from opportunities created. Among your responsibilites are:
- To provide clients with a professional service, and to achieve the best price for their property that market conditions permit.
- At all times to understand and to abide by the provisions of the Estate Agents Act 1979, The Property Misdescriptions Act 1991, and the Money laundering Regulations 1993 and subsequent Statutory Instruments and to follow the directives as set out in the company hand book.
- To interview applicants in a structured fashion to identify their requirements and to enquire if they have a property for sale and to achieve a market appraisal for the company.
- To contact applicants in a pro active manner introducing them to property matching their requirements swiftly and efficiently.
- To negotiate with potential buyers, ensuring that our clients' interests are best served at all times, that other offers and sensitive information is not divulged to prospective purchasers, and that comprehensive and accurate file notes are recorded on the appropriate property file and the IT system.
- In liaison with the office manager to keep clients regularly informed about the progress of our client's sale and marketing.
- To efficiently and diligently expedite and administer the sale process from the agreement of terms to the exchange of contracts, and finally to facilitate the completion of the sale and the smooth handover of the property.
- To achieve sales targets as agreed with the office manager.
- At all times to use best endeavours to gain instructions for any office of John D Wood & Co.
- To be alert to development opportunities, and to inform the Company's development department.
- To introduce clients and applicants to the Company's associated independent mortgage advisor.
- At all times to project a smart, friendly, polite and professional image providing the highest standard of customer care in order to secure recommendations and further business for the Company.
- To be a fully integrated team member and to keep the office manager and other negotiators informed as to the progress of all negotiations.
- To be proficient in the use of all office IT and communication systems.
- To attend training sessions and participate fully.
- To accurately measure and write sales particulars of properties.
- To value property for the purpose of a market appraisal to sell.
- To be aware of the provisions of the Leasehold Reform Act, 1967 for the enfranchisement of residential freeholds and the extension of leasehold interested so that clients may be properly advised.
- Any other duties as directed by the office manager.
Prior to joining John D Wood & Co. I tried my hand at working for global investment banks and having been politely asked to leave The City when the dot com bubble burst, went on to set up a distribution company which supplied branded clothes to independent retailers in the UK and Ireland.
In 2004, I joined John D Wood & Co.'s Battersea office as a negotiator having never been involved in property and in 2009 was appointed manager of the office. The role is extremely varied and whilst it is a cliché to say that two days are never the same, it really is the case. The nature of the company is such that you are able to manage your day on your own and get on with the business of selling properties, which is the exciting bit!
Outside of John D Wood & Co. anything concerning sport will grab my attention, although this was taken to extremes when I recently abseiled down the Trellick Tower in Kensington (322 feet) in the company of JLS!
Having spent the best part of 20 years as a Lloyds Insurance broker, latterly specialising in Fine Art Insurance, and travelling the world, I felt that I needed a change of direction. Having met, a Director of John D Wood & Co. one Sunday lunch with friends, I decided that a second career in property would suit me very well. To cut a long story short, I joined the Kensington Church Street branch as a junior negotiator in 2000, having successfully completed the London Marathon. After about 18 months, with some decent sales under my belt, I headed south to run John D Wood & Co. in Wandsworth, thereby capitalising on my previous managerial experience in The City and my local contacts as that is where I live. After 6 years of successfully winning business at the school gates, I moved back into Central London and joined the Elizabeth Street office in Belgravia, close to where I grew up, recently taking over the mantle of office Manager after three years.
Apart from getting through a lot of shoe leather selling property, I have also worn out numerous pairs of trainers, having now competed in two Triathlons, including the Olympic distance Windsor Triathlon, and more recently clocked up a sub-three and a half hour personal best in the Paris Marathon 2011, followed up by the 2000 metre Henley Swim. When not clad in skin tight lycra racing round Richmond Park on two wheels or careering at break-neck speed down the ski slopes of Europe, I enjoy entertaining friends and family with my wife and daughters, and other more cultural activities that we lucky Londoners have on our doorstep.
After studying Humanities at university I was, like many, at a serious loss of what to do when out in the big wide world. Once ensconced in the world of estate agency in a small independent I realised that to further my career I needed to work for a larger company but didn't want to give up the feel and team spirit that a small company offers. What I have found in John D Wood & Co. is just that: we run our offices at branch level but have the support and backing of a large and very well regarded company. We are encouraged to work as a team for the good of the client and are regarded as a 'one stop shop' for their property needs. I've now been working at the company for over five years and love it. The team I work with are fantastic and no two days are the same.
After leaving the Royal Agricultural College with a Degree and Diploma in Property Agency and Marketing, I started in London with an independent estate agents as a negotiator in 2007, I quickly moved on to become a property search and letting agent at another London Company for the next three and a half years. I then joined John D Wood & Co., being placed in the Fulham office, useful as I am a local resident. The team went of their way to make me feel welcome when I arrived, and I now have a good record of sales under my belt.
In my spare time, I am a keen shot, fisherman, golfer and all round sports enthusiast.
I joined John D Wood & Co. fresh off the boat from Cape Town in 2007 - my family had moved there in 1990. After university there I was letting large seafront properties to various international clients (less glamorous than it sounds) but was lured back to the bright lights of London.
I started my life at John D Wood Co. as a lettings negotiator in our Battersea office where I soon realised that sales was where I wanted to be - and being female, and an only child, set about getting what I wanted. Quickly. My 'in' to the male-dominated world of sales was as an Administrator in Chelsea - I thrived at the opportunity to learn the trade from the bottom up but it wasn't long before I wanted to be a step closer to my goal and I was putting my hand up for negotiator positions in our various London offices.
This rather unfortunately coincided with the slump of 2008 and was moved to Head Office to be a part of our profitable London Country Association to both help there and essentially 'ride out' the recession. The gloom and doom of that year didn't last as long as the media were predicting and by the following year I found myself back where it all began for me, but this time in the front of the building as a sales negotiator in our busy Battersea Park Office. After two successful years I was promoted to Associate and Assistant Manager which was a wonderful feeling of achievement for me, but most importantly we have a remarkable team here which I am extremely proud to be a part of.