Consumers have never been better informed than now. At their fingertips is a near-limitless supply of constantly-updated information about products and services that previous generations could not have imagined. Yet if one thing remains true throughout history, it is that everyone needs a roof over their head. In the contemporary world, that means the majority of us will at some point have dealings with an estate agent, either as buyers and sellers, landlords or tenants. We have recently received a report which explores attitudes towards estate agents using research commissioned by Feefo and some of the results are very positive when it comes to service from estate agents and what factors influence a customer’s choice.
Some of the most interesting results are as follows:
• 52% of consumers say the last estate agent they used was efficient and effective.
• Only 14% of landlords claimed that their last dealing with an estate agent was a disappointing experience in which there was a failure to deliver.
• The general level of satisfaction remains high with the main aspect they liked about the service received; 44% being the speed with which queries were answered.
• While nearly a third (32%) thought that virtual reality tours of properties would make buying, selling, letting or renting easier, substantially more (48%) thought online booking of appointments would be an advantage.
• From a list of factors that influence their choice between online-only and more traditional estate agents, low fees certainly did top the list; but only by a very narrow margin.
• Landlords (38%) were more concerned with the quality of service, whereas renters said low fees were uppermost in their minds (36%).
• The survey asked respondents to choose from a list of potentially decisive factors and found that by far the most influential for consumers was the feeling that they can trust the agent. This was chosen by 28%, with recommendations from family and friends the next biggest selected.
• 42% said knowledge of the local market was a top requirement when considering having their property valued.
• 70% of 25 to 34 year olds said they rely on reviews before they decide on an agent, (compared with 40% of those aged 55 and above).
• A high percentage of renters (68%) read reviews first. The figures indicate very directly how agents will need to make sure they fully adjust to this trend, which is bound to gather pace as the property market is entered by more young people completely accustomed to apprising themselves of online review content before making a decision