Is social media the holy grail of home selling?

You read about how lettings is getting more difficult, the sales market is toughening, interest rates are likely to be on the rise and unless you’re involved in the tech sector somehow, you’re never going to make money again.

Then the following week you read how well the property market is doing, how desperately we all need stock and how it’s fast becoming a sellers’ market in certain price ranges. I suppose the point is, we all live in challenging times, where volatility is everywhere, and in almost every area of our busy lives.

I know that in challenging times the way ahead is to give a better service than your competitors. And that’s what we try to do, every day.

In the past, estate agents like Foxtons were open seven days a week and were everywhere, serving customers and being paid well for it.

Even developers open their doors on Sundays. I must admit, I’ve thought about opening on a Sunday too but I had to draw the line somewhere. Everyone deserves time off, time with their loved ones, time for their own interests etc as no one really wants to work at weekends. Indeed, there’s now some clamour for four day working weeks.

However, customers’ expectations have gone up too and with many now working six days a week, Sundays are often the day they want to be served. You only have to go to shopping centres on a Sunday in the UK to see that.

As a seller you pick up the phone to your agent, they advertise it, potential buyers or tenants try to see it when it suits both parties and that’s about it. Or is it? It’s not that simple particularly with what goes on behind the scenes.

There are lots of different types of estate agent these days, and the existing model is going to alter. I’ve talked about this regularly in this column.

I was reading through some old copies of our property magazine, ‘Property Choice’ the other day, dated pre-2006, which showed a cracking four-bedroom detached family house listed in Douglas for
under £200,000 – those were the days eh?!

The awful truth is that not much has really changed in terms of selling your property since then, except that more traditional forms of advertising have been replaced by agent’s websites, Zoopla and
Onthemarket.com, particularly if you live in the UK, and now there is this fascination with social media, seen as the ‘holy grail’ of advertising property, and advertising in general. Sure it definitely has a place in the modern world of property sales and lettings given its reach but it’s not a magic bullet. It cannot replace person to person contact – that is something I strongly believe in. Something Black Grace Cowley prides itself in doing.

So the dilemma is to find staff and technology that will give the customer the responsive service a new generation of buyers expects. We have to move with the times. And that means moving swiftly, efficiently and with the customer in mind. No sluggishness here.

That includes communications, new ways of presenting property searches and facilitating access when it suits those requesting it.

With a new website shortly being launched, market leading social media channels, the opening of our new branch in Port Erin and the new roles we’ve created in Douglas, Peel and Port Erin in lettings and sales, we are doing just that. And we want you to come with us and be part of the future of estate agency on the Isle of Man.

Call us on (01624) 645555 or visit www.blackgracecowley.com
for more details.

#helpingYOUmove

Tim Groves
Black Grace Cowley


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